Yep; plugged mine in without a hitch. 1TB Western Digital Elements external hard drive; recorgnised the folders and after that it was a quick scroll through to the music one and away we went. Doddle.
Onkyo TX-8050 / Tannoy Revolution DC4 / Marantz SA7001-KI / Apple TV 3 / Sony PS3 320Gb / Denon DVD-3930
Thanks to your enthusiasm my plans have changed. All I can say is you are absolutely right. Thank you!
Rega RP3/Elys 2, Roksan K2 CDS, Squeezebox Touch, Denon PMA720AE, Q Acoustics 2020i, Sennhesier HD595, Beyer-Dynamic DT770PRO, Chord Crimson/Chord Rumour 2
Ye me too. I'm thinking Onkyo amp with hard drive connected. budget blue ray player for spinning discs. spotify and internet radio all in one box. sounds good to me.
Marantz mcr603-Kef IQ5se
Listen and compare with others.
All others at the same price. Don't really understand what you're getting at.
I didn't quite understand what you were getting at either but we've now cleared it up between us!
Nothing else offers the functionality at the price so all-round comparisons are difficult for anyone to make. If its purely on sound quality I am familiar with pretty much every budget integrated below £500 so, for me, it isn't a major issue, but I think for most people that is very good advice indeed.
I've been happily listening to mine all afternoon.
I'd be asking that question too MP. It's a fair one though. I know I've rattled on about this product for months now and - like I said some time ago - I don't generally buy blind without plenty of info beforehand if I can't hear the item in question. The Onkyo was different; it's almost as if the company is keeping this under wraps - no reviews that I can find online, none in the UK titles, it's word of mouth so far and that's about it. Yet to read a bad review although on the other hand, there's not many out there.
Yet, what other products are there out there? The Marantz MCR-603, a few stereo integrateds with a DAC (Onkyo's own A5-VL, Harman's HK3490), Brennan JB7, Cocktail Audio's X10 media streamer and the few network capable AV receivers (mostly Onkyo again) under £500. Over £500, there's the Naim Uniti/UnitiQute and other AV receivers. I don't see a product that comes close to delivering what this one does with the performance to boot and does it all seamlessly at the price it's at with the additional flexibility it offers. It's a brilliant product, deserves more time in the (record) spotlight (sorry...!) and if you're like me and want spec and performance for all of the many ways we can access music (and other stuff now), then the TX-8050 is a no-brainer.
Trust me, I've looked round - been up and down that road well enough and this is a happy haven for me.
If it doesn't sound good compared to other amps, then the functionality counts for nothing. If functionality is the only criteria, then my guess would be AV amps offer more. This is HiFi. I'm no purist, but sound has to be the number one criteria, surely.
Wow! Didn't realise you'd splashed the cash MP! Glad you like it though. I found it worked well pretty much straight out of the box, but you just keep playing with it to try more of the functions - been using it with the external HDD and it just works so well. Okay, okay, I'll stop...!
Yes - and as I've been saying constantly; it ticks both boxes.
OK. I bought a TX-8050 this morning having decided that I want more flexibility from my hi-fi. I've been tempted before and have felt pangs of doubt about the functionality that most integrateds offer. The Record Spot's experience pushed me over the edge.
I've owned or extensively listened to most of the sub-£500 amps out there. Owned - Marantz PM6003, Cambridge 650A, Rotel RA-04SE, NAD C326BEE and C325BEE, Yamaha A-S500 and A-S700, Arcam A18, Arcam A70, Arcam A65+, pre-owned Pioneer A400, pre-owned Naim Nait 3, pre-owned Cyrus 7, pre-owned Arcam Alpha 8R, various pre-owned Sansui integrateds, a Yamaha RX-V667 receiver. Some I've enjoyed and others have been damp squids. I've also listened to (fairly extensively) Rega Brio-R, Naim Nait 5i, Audiolab 8000S, Rega Brio 3, various NADs, various Arcams, and the Marantz MCR603 as well as shorter sessions with other amps.
The Onkyo is excellent. Based purely on sound quality it loses nothing on the Cambridge 650A which has been one of my favourites of the integrateds I have owned. If anything it has a more organic quality to the sound. The Onkyo doesn't have the clinical sound you might expect a product of its type to exhibit and it gets more out of the Mission 751s than I've heard them deliver before (and I've had these speakers in my collection for quite some time and tried them with many amps). Ultimately the Naims of this world are capable of more in pure sound quality terms but, in my experience, they only really deliver their best with an equally capable CD player and speakers which means a huge outlay and, unless you shell out for something like a Uniti, you aren't going to get the flexibility and features.
Hi-fi has to be a compromise. It has to balance your sound quality expectations with your needs and financial resources, as well as practicalities and domestic situation. Ultimately it has to be about the music and an ability to access as much music as possible at a level of sound quality that enables you to enjoy the music without always thinking about the hi-fi. I'm not a purist and I'm not rich. I'm also not actually an obsessive audiophile. I'm never going to spend hours and hours fitting mods to my turntable or worrying over whether I've got the absolute best cartridge and I'm never going to change my Chord cables to anything more exotic. I'm not remotely interested in mains cables and filters and I don't want a pile of boxes with pre and power amps, PSUs etc.
A lot of my box swapping happened over 12 months ago and my system has been more stable in recent months. I've learned a huge amount about what is possible on a budget and what isn't and I've also learned a lot about what I want from my system. I'll never change my CD6003 unless it ever breaks and I've been gradually moving excess pairs of speakers on as I have the most affection for the 751s. I don't need or want surround sound even though I love watching films, I'm quite happy enjoying them in 2 channels. Most rooms (including mine) don't allow you to really get the benefit of 5.1 anyway. If I ever find myself with enough money I'll probably end up with a Uniti or Super Uniti and some PMCs, but the likelihood is very small at present. I'm happy with CD and vinyl but I like Spotify and I enjoy radio whether it be internet, FM or DAB.
The Onkyo fits my needs and, on the evidence of an extended listening session this afternoon, it fulfils my sound quality requirements as well as (or in many cases better than) any of the other amps I've owned. It is very well built and even the plastic controls are better than the flimsy ones on the Yamaha A-S500 and A-S700. It makes more out of Spotify than I've been able to in the past and it sounds every bit as good as my Squeezebox Classic when streaming lossless files whilst also opening up the possibility of Napster and lastfm. The phono stage is perfectly decent and, unlike many amps I've tried, the 8050 still sounds good at low volume levels (I never go above 9 o'clock on most amps as I live in a ground floor flat). I'll report back on sound and functionality as I use it more (as I hope The Record Spot will continue to do) but so far I'm very impressed and think I've found the missing pieces in my hi-fi jigsaw.
This is a pointless question; of course I know that it ticks both boxes. I've had the following in the last three years:-
Audio Analogue Puccini SE
Leema Pulse II
Harman Kardon HK990
So let's not get too quick with the "you've not tried anything else, so how can you possibly know" line. I've tried plenty and I'm more than comfortable with my choice. The problem isn't that I've not (in your view) tried anything else, it's that nothing else matches what this amp deliver - form and function in one package delivered. If anything, the rest need to catch up.
I didn't need to do a direct compare - I knew what I was looking for and I've landed it. The setup that's playing in my living room right now is as good as I could ask for.
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