I thought I'd make another post having now had the 8050 for a couple of weeks.
First off, the sound quality really is excellent. Earlier in this thread there was a comment that the receiver lacked detail such that the "bee buzzing" sound between "Lost For Words" and "High Hopes" (on Pink Floyd's "The Division Bell" album) couldn't be heard. But that buzzing sure sounds clear as day to my ears - quite distinct. In fact the 8050's sound overall is very detailed and the power amp has a lot of authority.
I wonder if perhaps some of the people who were unhappy with the sound of the Onkyo were using turntables as a source? The 8050's phono section is adequate but it isn't, to my ears at least, high fidelity. I can certainly see how some might be unhappy with the ultimate sound of this receiver when playing records without an alternate phono preamp.
I still think this unit is really well suited to being paired with a high quality older receiver (for phono and iPod headphone use). I'm not aware of another receiver in this price range (or anywhere near it?) that pairs a very competent iPod DAC (and excellent iPod integration) with a decent amp and tuner. So if one pairs the 8050 with a good older receiver then there's a good set up for records, radio, CDs and iPods (especially Apple Lossless files) that can provide good output to speakers or headphones. I haven't each touched the web music options. This pairing gets past the two main weaknesses of the unit which are a mediocre phono section and no headphone output when using an iPod.
I've slightly modified my connections so that they run like this:
Records: turntable > CR220 Phono in > CR220 tape out > Onkyo 8050 tape/TV in
Headphone listening (iPod): 8050 tape out > CR220 aux in > headphone jack on CR220
I'm also going to try running the Onkyo using a split of the pre-amp and power amp of a refurbished (or so the seller tells me, we'll see when it arrives) Yamaha CA-600. I'm trying this not because there's anything wrong with the current set up but because I like to experiment - especially with older audio gear. It's just fun.
On other thought about the iPod use. I've read complaints about the Onkyo not offering gapless playback when running music from hard drives, etc. That problem doesn't exist with my iPod Classic - songs flow right into one and another when they should. So one solution, for people in that boat, might be to pick up an older used iPod Classic and run digital music through that.
I'm sure one can spend more money and get better sound than this (without even considering speakers) but the 8050 is really good and not very expensive.Cheers,
I: Mac Pro, Audioengine D1 DAC, Yamaha CR220, Cizek IIs
II: Yamaha YP-B2 (Ortofon), iPod Classic, Onkyo 8050 as tuner and Ipod DAC/Preamp, Yamaha CA600, Advent Laureates
I made some changes that I'll note in case anyone runs into this thread in the future and is thinking about using the Onkyo 8050 as a tuner/preamp along with a (maybe older) split-able integrated amp that doesn't have a DAC, remote control, etc. I split my Yamaha CA-600 into phono preamp and power amp.
Here's what I've moved to:
Yamaha YP-B2 Turntable > Yamaha CA-600 used as phono preamp > 8050 as general preamp in "pure audio"mode > CA-600 as a power amp
8050 as iPod DAC and preamp > CA-600 as power amp (which also allows headphone output from iPod, something the Onkyo won't do)
8050 as tuner > CA-600 as power amp
There are three benefits to this unusual set up. First the Yamaha's phono preamp is better than the Onkyo's. Second, one gains headphone output for iPod input. Third, the Onkyo's power section sounds very good but the Yamaha sounds a little better to me.
So I recommend the 8050 as a receiver or a tuner/DAC/pre-amp. It's cool that the whole 8050 doesn't cost much more than a good standalone DAC and it's iPod integration is excellent.
Glad you're enjoying it - it's a great option, and deliivers the goods.
Onkyo TX-NR818 / Tannoy DC4 speakers / Marantz UD-7007
AVI Lab Series CD player / various cables
Not sure that was in here, but I can't trawl back through the whole thread to be sure. It was mentioned somewhere though and I never thought it stacked up as a gripe. Especially when that detail can be clearly heard as you have found! Oops!
Incredibly it doesn't look like the OP uses the Onkyo any more, looking at his Sig.
Oh yes he does...!
TRS, do you biwire your speakers with it? (apologies if it's been covered before in this mammoth thread). I found it easier to use speaker connections a+b and then have both switched on rather than have 2 wires into each connector. I seem to be only getting a really muddy sound right now though, so I'm hoping I haven't damaged anything. I can't put my finger on why it sounds so bad. All connections are correct and the speakers are in phase.
Nope, gave up with biwiring a few years back. Have you accidentally reset some of the settings?
I really don't think this amp was designed to be bi-wired.
I may have missed something, but was there any particular reason that led you to switch back, or just mixing it up for variety?
Observe the signature in its natural habitat.
Which settings do you mean?
I like playing around with different amps - I landed a Sony ES model a few months back and used that for a while, then I picked up a hefty Harman Kardon amp that had my name on it. Just unplugged the HK and popped the Onkyo back in. It's back in place and singing like a bird! Lovely amp.
Long shot, have you reset the IntelliVolume down a little (via the Setup button on the handset) - it'd take some doing admittedly. Are the speakers in phase? Have you got them bi- or single wired?
Phasing is all correct. I was bi-wiring but I've reverted back to single to simplify the list of causes. I checked the intellivolume and it's set to 0. Perplexed I am
Have you moved your speakers (or has someone else...)?!
EDIT: Seeing your iother thread, and that you've swapped out the 8050 for the Rotel pre/power pairing but still missing top end detail, sounds like a speaker or source problem perhaps?
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