A good 11-channel AVR vs a good 9-channel AVR +amp for 7.x.4 HT?

k-pad

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Hi all,
Mid-way through my planning stage, am wondering if it would be better to just do a good mini HT in my 10x12 room instead of searching for both cinema and listening experience.

If I go this way, I'd likely want to do a 7.x.4, which will require 11 channels.
Should I look for a straight 11-channel AVR or get a 9-channel AVR at a lower price and add additional power for the L-R/LCR?
1. Which will be cost beneficial?
2. What would be the other pros and cons of either?

(Will not be using it for music)
Regards
 
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sandeepmohan

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Get a AV processor and a couple of power amplifiers to do this properly and if you want to get some decent life out of the gear.
What I recommend is cost beneficial in the sense that, when you need to upgrade several years down the line, you can just flip the processor with a new one. Some brands let you flip the processor boards yourself so when Dolby Introduce their next sound field, its either a simple software or hardware upgrade. The power amplifiers stay the same.

Also; any decent AV receiver that can drive 11 channels will be upward of 300k INR. At this sort of price, you'd rather go separates and enjoy the benefits of a nice high current power amplifier from the likes of Monolith, Acurus, Emotiva, Adcom, etc.

The pro's of going with just one AVR is simplicity of the set up.
The con is that I don't think any AVR exists that can drive 9 or 11 channels by itself with any meaningful power output that will bring your speakers up to their full potential.

The pro's with separates.
The power amplifier section grows with the system no matter what changes on the processing front. This component stays untouched.
You split amplification. Drive 5 channels with one and the remaining with another power amplifier.
Far better sound. Your loudspeakers are likely to perform much better with cleaner current flowing to them and that means a better experience for you.

Con
A bit more expensive.
 
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k-pad

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Get a AV processor and a couple of power amplifiers to do this properly and if you want to get some decent life out of the gear.
What I recommend is cost beneficial in the sense that, when you need to upgrade several years down the line, you can just flip the processor with a new one. Some brands let you flip the processor boards yourself so when Dolby Introduce their next sound field, its either a simple software or hardware upgrade. The power amplifiers stay the same.

Also; any decent AV receiver that can drive 11 channels will be upward of 300k INR. At this sort of price, you'd rather go separates and enjoy the benefits of a nice high current power amplifier from the likes of Monolith, Acurus, Emotiva, Adcom, etc.

The pro's of going with just one AVR is simplicity of the set up.
The con is that I don't think any AVR exists that can drive 9 or 11 channels by itself with any meaningful power output that will bring your speakers up to their full potential.

The pro's with separates.
The power amplifier section grows with the system no matter what changes on the processing front. This component stays untouched.
You split amplification. Drive 5 channels with one and the remaining with another power amplifier.
Far better sound. Your loudspeakers are likely to perform much better with cleaner current flowing to them and that means a better experience for you.

Con
A bit more expensive.
Thanks a lot. This gives me a lot of clarity.
Will this apply if I choose to run just five satellites or even a passive lcr?

Just in case I end up not doing a good pair of l-rs...
 

sandeepmohan

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Just in case I end up not doing a good pair of l-rs...
I did not follow this last bit.

AV receivers tank in their power outputs as you increase the number of speakers. I find that none of them can get a grip on the loudspeaker other than just making some noise. This includes even flagship Marantz receivers that cost an arm and leg. They are okay for the average bloke who does not care so much for sound quality. Even if you are going to do just 5 channel passive, even a modest 50 watt per channel dedicated power amplifier will blow the socks off any AV receiver.

Satellite speakers are not easy to drive. They are generally not sensitive, some going as low as 83db. Unless by satellite you meant a stand mount or bookshelf speaker.

There are so many nice loudspeakers out there. You can't really fault any of them so pick what sounds right for you. When it comes to amplification, you need to pay attention, especially when it comes to AVR's. Honestly; I can't tell which sounds better anymore. They all sound pretty much the same in my view. NAD's, Anthem's, Lexicon up the game a bit, at a price.
 

efernand1

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Hi all,
Mid-way through my planning stage, am wondering if it would be better to just do a good mini HT in my 10x12 room instead of searching for both cinema and listening experience.

If I go this way, I'd likely want to do a 7.x.4, which will require 11 channels.
Should I look for a straight 11-channel AVR or get a 9-channel AVR at a lower price and add additional power for the L-R/LCR?
1. Which will be cost beneficial?
2. What would be the other pros and cons of either?

(Will not be using it for music)
Regards

Besides all the guidance you have received so far, it also depends on how much one is willing to spend and what is the level of SQ expected coupled with performance and features from the system.

Some are content with simple setups which are within budget and provide the required levels of output and performance in a defined area.

Example, I use a SR60xx series AVR in a 200 sq ft area which is an overkill. Reason being that SR series is built with better components and performs more superior to the NR series which is actually more than sufficient for the listening space I have. For me 40% if the volume is considered as loud for my space which is very satisfying.

My take is read reviews, audition where possible so that you have a fair idea of what you will be getting into and then decide to invest accordingly and build the system.

Besides speakers which usually are not updated regularly by users every 3-5-7 years of use, it is the AVR which most update due to new features, functionality and latest processing. Choose wisely.

All the best!
 

k-pad

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I did not follow this last bit.
As in, I meant whether this route will help if I decide against good L-R towers or bookshelves.
For example, one option I had in mind was to just have an HT in the small 10x12 room with a Klipsch on-wall set of 5 to 7 speakers, and have a separate music set up in the larger room.
This is a use-case scenario where I wondered if I could just finish the HT set up with a 11-channel processor.
And later, when budget allows, invest in a good pair of floorstanders and stereo amps for the living room.
Satellite speakers are not easy to drive. They are generally not sensitive, some going as low as 83db. Unless by satellite you meant a stand mount or bookshelf speaker.
This is a great point. Never considered it this way.
Thanks
 

k-pad

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Besides all the guidance you have received so far, it also depends on how much one is willing to spend and what is the level of SQ expected coupled with performance and features from the system.

Some are content with simple setups which are within budget and provide the required levels of output and performance in a defined area.
Exactly!
Asked the question in a moment of frustration during research, where I started thinking of setting up a sufficient HT initially and worry about a music set up in a different room later, due to many constraints.
You have put it nicely and better than me.
Example, I use a SR60xx series AVR in a 200 sq ft area which is an overkill. Reason being that SR series is built with better components and performs more superior to the NR series which is actually more than sufficient for the listening space I have. For me 40% if the volume is considered as loud for my space which is very satisfying.
So, one of the options I am thinking of is just an HT with a set of Klipsch on-walls (whose sound I liked a lot for movies) and drive them with just an AVR.
My take is read reviews, audition where possible so that you have a fair idea of what you will be getting into and then decide to invest accordingly and build the system.

Besides speakers which usually are not updated regularly by users every 3-5-7 years of use, it is the AVR which most update due to new features, functionality and latest processing. Choose wisely.

All the best!
Yes, will do. Thanks a lot.
This hobby is quite maddening, especially if one is starting from scratch.
Some nights i get nightmares :D
 

efernand1

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Exactly!
Asked the question in a moment of frustration during research, where I started thinking of setting up a sufficient HT initially and worry about a music set up in a different room later, due to many constraints.
You have put it nicely and better than me.

So, one of the options I am thinking of is just an HT with a set of Klipsch on-walls (whose sound I liked a lot for movies) and drive them with just an AVR.

Yes, will do. Thanks a lot.
This hobby is quite maddening, especially if one is starting from scratch.
Some nights i get nightmares :D

Happy to help.

Keep us posted.

Prices have gone up quite a bit due to stock and availability. You can also consider pre owned if you want to save some budget. Check for options in the Sale section of the forum or OLX.
 

Decadent_Spectre

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Wow your making a lot of threads!

I would advise that you set a hard long term budget for *everything* or else you will keep falling deeper in the hole and keep upgrading/changing equipment/ideas since you will not have a clear end goal, either that or set a performance/subjective sound goal if budget is truly flexible.

What's more important to you? HT or Music?

What's the total amount of resources you wish to allocate here to both?

Will you buy once and be done with it or do you wish to keep "upgrading"?

What takes precedence for you, subjective experience or objective numbers?
 

sandeepmohan

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As in, I meant whether this route will help if I decide against good L-R towers or bookshelves.
For example, one option I had in mind was to just have an HT in the small 10x12 room with a Klipsch on-wall set of 5 to 7 speakers, and have a separate music set up
I realized you have not put a price you want to work with, your priorities for sound, so maybe the Pre Pro route may not fit in the budget or may not be required.
If you are not overly critical of HT performance, get a sound bar that has Atmos Integration, dedicated surround speakers and a sub woofer. Some of the ones from JBL and Klipsch are really good. They are expensive.
Spend more on the music set up.
It does not really matter whether you pick a floor stand or stand mount. Just pay attention to the spec's and listen to as many as you can.

I've been down the road with this whole quest of I must have a dedicated HT and Stereo set up. Over a period of time, I realize I don't value or care much for surround sound and stereo is where I spend most of my time. I put most of my money on the stereo set up and just 30% of my total stereo budget towards HT. The latter is all used gear too.
 

prateekatasniya

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Hi all,
Mid-way through my planning stage, am wondering if it would be better to just do a good mini HT in my 10x12 room instead of searching for both cinema and listening experience.

If I go this way, I'd likely want to do a 7.x.4, which will require 11 channels.
Should I look for a straight 11-channel AVR or get a 9-channel AVR at a lower price and add additional power for the L-R/LCR?
1. Which will be cost beneficial?
2. What would be the other pros and cons of either?

(Will not be using it for music)
Regards
9 channel AVR.
With power amp.
This way you directly get power amp upgrade for your left and right speaker.
Rather in the same cost you could have power amplification for the LCR.


Before considering pre pro route one must make sure that the room's noise floor is under check which cost decent amounts.
Lower noise floor improves the overall experience by a signification margin.


Basics for low noise floor:
No fan noise from equipment rack.
Projector kept in a projector hush box.
Low noise ducted air conditioning.
Sound proofed door

One could sound proof the whole room for lower noise floor.
 

Love4sound

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Hi all,
Mid-way through my planning stage, am wondering if it would be better to just do a good mini HT in my 10x12 room instead of searching for both cinema and listening experience.

If I go this way, I'd likely want to do a 7.x.4, which will require 11 channels.
Should I look for a straight 11-channel AVR or get a 9-channel AVR at a lower price and add additional power for the L-R/LCR?
1. Which will be cost beneficial?
2. What would be the other pros and cons of either?

(Will not be using it for music)
Regards
If you have decided to get Denon or marantz, their 9 channel avr supports 11 channel processing so you don’t have to worry much. Denon 3700, Marantz6015 or the Denon 4700, Marantz 7015 are all 9 channel avr’s but with additional PA they can process upto 11 channels. Now their 11 channel avr’s 8015 and 6700 are very expensive and the 3700 is the least priced 9channel avr. So the best cost efficient route will be 3700 and PA
 

k-pad

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Wow your making a lot of threads!

I would advise that you set a hard long term budget for *everything* or else you will keep falling deeper in the hole and keep upgrading/changing equipment/ideas since you will not have a clear end goal, either that or set a performance/subjective sound goal if budget is truly flexible.
Yes, doing this. Of course, there definitely is a final long-term budget for everything. Have also tried to balance it with performance requirements. So, that is so far-so good.
What's more important to you? HT or Music?
It's fairly equal I'd say. But the thing is am willing to live with something functional for the HT, but am finding myself unable to bring myself to do that to music. When it comes to music, certain expectations have risen along the way and I'd like to fulfil them. Hence the thought to take it to two rooms.
Will you buy once and be done with it or do you wish to keep "upgrading"?
Definitely hoping to buy once and be done with it, running and being happy with the set-up till something conks off. There is no case of upgraditis so far even in other buys in life, thank god for small mercies.
What takes precedence for you, subjective experience or objective numbers?
Here again, thankfully, whatever sounded good to my ears (only speakers, can't speak for electronics) do seem to measure well.
I do go by my ear, but will not completely ignore credible measurements, either.

Thanks again for laying out the points, Spectre.
Regards
 

k-pad

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I realized you have not put a price you want to work with, your priorities for sound, so maybe the Pre Pro route may not fit in the budget or may not be required.
I am looking to spend 3L-4L for sound, all included. So, ya, the pre-pro may end up leaving not much for speakers.
If you are not overly critical of HT performance, get a sound bar that has Atmos Integration, dedicated surround speakers and a sub woofer. Some of the ones from JBL and Klipsch are really good. They are expensive.
True. Have checked them out, too. And that option still remains open. Doing this (under 2.5L with a sub) will also leave me with some money for a later music-only set up.
Alternatively, even if I could achieve a decent HT with a passive soundbar (Klipsch or the Martin Logan) for the front soundstage, will be happy considering there is not much width in the room and the main listening position is just one. And think of a separate music set-up in a different room.
I've been down the road with this whole quest of I must have a dedicated HT and Stereo set up. Over a period of time, I realize I don't value or care much for surround sound and stereo is where I spend most of my time. I put most of my money on the stereo set up and just 30% of my total stereo budget towards HT. The latter is all used gear too.
Though I am not yet there, I do fear it will become the same story here. :D
I will definitely keep reminding myself of your experience along the way.

Also, I have come to realise that, at least in my mind, HT is more or less a plonk it and forget it project, while music does look like it will become a bit of experiment-and-improve as one goes along.
 
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k-pad

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9 channel AVR.
With power amp.
This way you directly get power amp upgrade for your left and right speaker.
Rather in the same cost you could have power amplification for the LCR.
Okay, Prateek-bhai. This is what other FMs too have suggested. And after seeing their points and a bit more reading, I see the merit.
Before considering pre pro route one must make sure that the room's noise floor is under check which cost decent amounts.
Lower noise floor improves the overall experience by a signification margin.


Basics for low noise floor:
No fan noise from equipment rack.
Projector kept in a projector hush box.
Low noise ducted air conditioning.
Sound proofed door

One could sound proof the whole room for lower noise floor.
Yes, I am looking to keep the noise floor low, even for a non pre-pro set-up.
I currently watch movies on an AIO, and during some quiet passages, the CPU fan noise just kills the experience. And once the ears pick up CPU fan noise, they start focusing on the room's ceiling fan!
Hope it works out.
Also, just curious, why do you say it is important specifically in a pre-pro set up?

Thanks again.
 

k-pad

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If you have decided to get Denon or marantz, their 9 channel avr supports 11 channel processing so you don’t have to worry much. Denon 3700, Marantz6015 or the Denon 4700, Marantz 7015 are all 9 channel avr’s but with additional PA they can process upto 11 channels. Now their 11 channel avr’s 8015 and 6700 are very expensive and the 3700 is the least priced 9channel avr. So the best cost efficient route will be 3700 and PA
Yes. That is what it looks like it is going to be.
From what everyone has said, easier set-up to live with and even upgrade later.
Thanks, man.
On a lighter note, you are kind of the reason why I reached the question in this thread, when in the very beginning, I was looking at the 2700 for a 5.1.2 tentatively, and you advised me to go for the 3700 for its pre-outs, because who knows later... :D
 

Love4sound

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Yes. That is what it looks like it is going to be.
From what everyone has said, easier set-up to live with and even upgrade later.
Thanks, man.
On a lighter note, you are kind of the reason why I reached the question in this thread, when in the very beginning, I was looking at the 2700 for a 5.1.2 tentatively, and you advised me to go for the 3700 for its pre-outs, because who knows later... :D
Happy to help
 
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