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Advice please on adding stereo amp to AVR.

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Skiman's picture
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Joined: 1 Nov 2008
Posts: 66

Hi everyone - hope this is in the correct forum category,

I'm very happy with the sonic performance of my system (see signature) when watching a BR or Sky but would like to improve 2 channel music

playback if possible so am seeking advice/information from anyone who can help.

I currently have the UDP player linked by HDMI into the AVR and when playing multichannel SACD's the sound is, in my opinion, quite stunning

but when playing standard CDs find it palatable but slightly "wooly" and was wondering if I purchased a separate stereo amp and connected

it via the AVR pre-outs would render paplable returns in sonic clarity. Currently when playing 2 channel discs I have the sub woofer enabled to add 

bottom end grunt - I realize that the speaker package is my system's weak link but their replacement is a non starter.

1) Would an integrated or power amp be more suitable?

2) If a seperate amp was used would I have to alter connections for signal output from the UDP for 2 channel playback and retain the HDMI

connection for multi channel playback and BR use? If so how would I integrate both amps for film/SACD multichannel playback?

3) Should the new amp also be a Denon unit to retain a unified sonic signature when 5.1/7.1 playback is in use?

4) As the AVR HAS 7.2 channels of amplification for (new) £1000.00 - therefore simplistically £111.00 per amp channel would I have to look at

stereo/power amps at £200.00+ per amp channel to achieve a worthwhile improvement? Is this theory pertinent?

5) If I were to go down this route would a seperate amp with bi-amping capabilities be beneficial as my L/R speakers are capable of this.

Any advice, comments or information about the above would be greatly appreciated and if any reader has done something similar with Denon

equipment your experiences would be most welcome.

Thanks in advance.

Stefan

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Samsung PS51E 6500 (calibrated), Denon AVR 3312, Denon BDP 2012 UD, Denon PMA 355 UK Amp., PS3, 2 x Pure AV mains conditioners, Sky HD, Tannoy Mercury V4 ,VC ,VR ,MA BXFX ,KEF PSW2010, Dual CS 505-2 with OM10, Chord Carnival , decent HDMI and I/Cs, Logitech Harmony 1000 and several granite chopping boards.

CnoEvil's picture
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RE: Advice please on adding stereo amp to AVR.

1. A separate 2 channel amp should be better.

2. Probably, but depends on the amp. You will likely need RCA s.

3. Ideally the amp needs to have a similar sound character, but depends how much you are prepared to compromise in order to sort out 2 channel.

4. It's not as simple as that.....I wouldn't bother unless you are prepared to get something like the Rega Brio-R.

5. Bi-amping with an AV amp will improve matters, but imo the right Stereo amp will bring greater improvement.

 

Nb. You need to try this for yourself, as you mightn't agree.

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Skiman's picture
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RE: Advice please on adding stereo amp to AVR.

Hi CnoEvil,

Thanks for your reply - I think I'll have to beg,borrow or steel a stereo amp and try it out in various configurations to assess it's impact before

 

commiting to a definite solution.

 

Regards

Stefan

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Samsung PS51E 6500 (calibrated), Denon AVR 3312, Denon BDP 2012 UD, Denon PMA 355 UK Amp., PS3, 2 x Pure AV mains conditioners, Sky HD, Tannoy Mercury V4 ,VC ,VR ,MA BXFX ,KEF PSW2010, Dual CS 505-2 with OM10, Chord Carnival , decent HDMI and I/Cs, Logitech Harmony 1000 and several granite chopping boards.

CnoEvil's picture
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RE: Advice please on adding stereo amp to AVR.

Skiman wrote:

Hi CnoEvil,

Thanks for your reply - I think I'll have to beg,borrow or steel a stereo amp and try it out in various configurations to assess it's impact before

commiting to a definite solution.

Regards

Stefan

Once you start listening to amps like Brio -R, Arcam A19, Roksan K2, Harman Kardon HK990 and Musical Fidelity M3i...you will realize where your sweetspot lies. >)

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abacus's picture
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RE: Advice please on adding stereo amp to AVR.

Hi Stefen

You seem to have posted twice, so here is the reply I gave to the other post.

Before adding or changing anything, I would connect the analogue outs of your Blu-Ray player to the analogue inputs of your AVR and use the analogue out for CDs to see if this sounds better, this way you are bypassing the Denon AVR processing which can have a detrimental effect on CDs.

If there is still no improvement, post again and we can look at alternatives.

Hope this helps

Bill

AnotherJoe's picture
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RE: Advice please on adding stereo amp to AVR.

Have you tried out all the various listening modes?

There are loads to choose from, and one may suit your listening taste.

 

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Skiman's picture
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RE: Advice please on adding stereo amp to AVR.

Hi AnotherJoe. I have tried all the various sound modes and only can get on with Pure Direct in both 2 and multichannel modes but thanks

for the suggestion.

Hi Bill. A great big thank you for your suggestion re using the analogue outputs. I used some reasonable i/c cables I had lying around and using

Pure Direct mode I was able to compare 2 channel music through HDMI and analogue on the fly. The differences are not massive but the analogue

sound is smoother in the mid range ( Eva Cassidy on "Songbird" has lost the brittle edge on the louder notes whilst seeming to have more

clarity), the cymbals on all other tested music less harsh and I could probably do without the sub as the bass is more defined and "warmer". I shall

keep to this set up until "upgradeyitis" strikes as it surely will!

Again many thanks.

Regards

Stefan

 

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Samsung PS51E 6500 (calibrated), Denon AVR 3312, Denon BDP 2012 UD, Denon PMA 355 UK Amp., PS3, 2 x Pure AV mains conditioners, Sky HD, Tannoy Mercury V4 ,VC ,VR ,MA BXFX ,KEF PSW2010, Dual CS 505-2 with OM10, Chord Carnival , decent HDMI and I/Cs, Logitech Harmony 1000 and several granite chopping boards.