Looking at receivers, is 50 watts enough?

scoobert

Limp Gawd
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Feb 26, 2005
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342
I am going to buy a receiver with my tax return and am stuck between the Harman Kardon 347 and the Famous Onkyo SR606.
I really like the Harman Kardon for the price. The refurb 347 straight from the factory usually goes for around 325 but the big difference for me is the sr606 runs 90 watts and the HK only 55.
The amps will be running into these HK 18's which are rated 10-120.

Will the HK's 55 watts be ok with those or should I spring the extra 100 for the onkyo?

Sorry for all the fleebay links, its the only place I could find all the listing quickly.
 

Syndicated_Death

[H]ard|Gawd
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Feb 8, 2005
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I'd say it's worth it. cranking your speakers with low wattage amps mostly results in distortion. that distortion will take it's toll on your speakers. however if you aren't the type to "rock out with your cock out", or like to "bump it" then you should be fine with the HK
 

96redformula

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Oct 29, 2005
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HK is rated much more accurate than the Onkyo, personally I have the avr 247 and would reccomend it if you wanted to spend < $200. It is a solid receiver and best in the price range direct from the manufacturer on ebay at $180+$25shipping Best Offer to HarmanAudio. At $300+ I would try to find the Onkyo for the extra features and HDMI inputs.

I use Multi-Channel PCM through ATI HD 4670 to stream my DTS HD and Dolby Digital TrueHD to the AVR 247. I DID have to update the firmware on my receiver as I did have an issue with speakers making a pop occasionaly with Multi-Channel PCM with HD audio formats.

I would not worry about the HK not having any power, I am running some high end infinity beta 50's on them and its more than sufficient power to make you lose your hearing.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Harman-Kardon-HK-AVR-247-7-1-Home-Theater-Receiver-HDMI_W0QQitemZ390031772861QQcmdZViewItemQQptZReceivers_Tuners?hash=item390031772861&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1234|66%3A2|65%3A12|39%3A1|240%3A1318|301%3A1|293%3A1|294%3A50
 

Trepidati0n

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50 watts is a lot if its an actual 50 watts...

50W from a single channel will blow your ears out in a small room. Where you need the power is for "short bursts" (things like gunshots) and low frequencies. Since most people with 5/7.1 systems have subs, the low freq shit is out. As for short bursts, it only really shows up if playing at"reference" levels (which is fucking loud) and a large room. Honestly...a ten Watts of continuous power in a typical room Ht type room will become uncomfortable quite quickly.

I calibrated my HT with a SPL meter. The room is about 14x26x8 and not heavily damped (only 2 of the 4 walls are concrete with a drywall ceiling and concrete floor). I set my old "sony" (which had a liars 125W channel rating) to hit the 85dB mark. I tried watching Gladiator at that level and by the end I was a flipping pool on the ground. The knob was only turned to 50% of max volume. I finally calibrated @ 70-75 dB which was comfortable (the wife likes 65). So honestly, a amp with a true 50W per channel is way more than enough as long as your room is reasonable sized with speakers that are reasonably efficient.
 

muck

n00b
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Feb 16, 2006
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Another thing to consider is how effiecient are your speakers (LCR)? What are the recommended minimum watts? Are you using a sub? With the sub you redirect your low freq signals to the sub and not reproducing them via your L/R speakers, taking some load off your receiver.
 

figgie

Supreme [H]ardness
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here lets make it simple for everyone to see :)

use a pair of speakers at 89 db/m/w

1w = 89dB
2w = 92dB
4w = 95dB
8w = 98dB
16w = 101dB
32w = 104dB
64w = 107dB

Folks.

If you are playing at 101dB level which means a measily 16w of juice. Consider yourself to be deaf by the time that movie is done. And if you have some of the more efficent speaker from the like of Klipsch.......blood.
 

Logan321

[H]ard|Gawd
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The HK actually is rated at 95W/channel unless all 7 channels are at full power... which is where the 55W/channel rating is from. At least, that's what it seems to say on the website... probably the Onkyo SR606 is just displaying the latter rating.
 

scoobert

Limp Gawd
Joined
Feb 26, 2005
Messages
342
HK is rated much more accurate than the Onkyo, personally I have the avr 247 and would reccomend it if you wanted to spend < $200. It is a solid receiver and best in the price range direct from the manufacturer on ebay at $180+$25shipping Best Offer to HarmanAudio. At $300+ I would try to find the Onkyo for the extra features and HDMI inputs.

I use Multi-Channel PCM through ATI HD 4670 to stream my DTS HD and Dolby Digital TrueHD to the AVR 247. I DID have to update the firmware on my receiver as I did have an issue with speakers making a pop occasionaly with Multi-Channel PCM with HD audio formats.

I would not worry about the HK not having any power, I am running some high end infinity beta 50's on them and its more than sufficient power to make you lose your hearing.

http://cgi.ebay.com/Harman-Kardon-HK-AVR-247-7-1-Home-Theater-Receiver-HDMI_W0QQitemZ390031772861QQcmdZViewItemQQptZReceivers_Tuners?hash=item390031772861&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=72%3A1234|66%3A2|65%3A12|39%3A1|240%3A1318|301%3A1|293%3A1|294%3A50

Wow that 247 does look pretty good for 180, does not seem to be a huge difference between it and the 347.

Thanks for all the great input guys. Seems I will be just fine with 50 watts :)
 

no_control

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the 247 is the better bang for the buck between the 2. I Only have a 347 because it was the same price as a 247.
 

Logan321

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I have the 245 (year before 247 model) and I don't turn it up past -20dB, and that's loud already.
 

Klob

Gawd
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Some of the best stereo amps made in the UK only have 30w per channel. All depends on how loud you like your music. You want to avoid driving the amp into clipping range. I have Onkyo SR505 with only 75wx7 and that is plenty form me because I live in an apartment. Years ago I used to rock out with Audiolab 8000A and Paradigm Export Monitor speakers and that was only 60wx2 and yet it could play very loud without clipping. Loud enough that I had the police called on me more than once.
 

htpc_user

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I've always heard about Harmon Kardon that they're about the "Amps" (as in amperage), not the "Watts". However, I consider myself a "spec" guy so when I see 90 watts vs. 55 watts I just can't do it. I admit; it's a flaw I have. Of course other factors come into play such as THD and other stuff, so it's not purely about the watts with me.
 

criccio

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Yea but THD is another one of those overly marketed factors that big box stores push to sell electronics. It about as important as wattage....

You all seem to be missing a very important (if not THE most important) factor when buying audio equipment. What it sounds like to you. I can't tell you how many components I have auditioned that have specs that blow away the competition but I absolutely hated the sound.

Audition, audition, audition. :D

The easiest way to figure out what to buy. And of course there will be no regrets.
 

htpc_user

[H]ard|Gawd
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Sony is a prime example of that. My first Pro Logic receiver was a Sony that supposedly was rated at 120 watts x 5 @ .05% THD. No way. I had to turn it almost all the way up to get loud. My Yamaha now is rated at 100 watts x 5, and it gets louder much quicker.
 

Klob

Gawd
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You all seem to be missing a very important (if not THE most important) factor when buying audio equipment. What it sounds like to you.

Well, there is scientific data to support the claim that amps do not sound much different from each other so long as they are within no clipping range.
 

zandor

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Dec 14, 2002
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Watts aren't really important. What's important is matching the amp/receiver to the speakers. You're close to the middle of the recommended range for the speakers you're looking at, so it should be fine power-wise. I've got a 70 watt/channel receiver (in 2 speaker mode, 60/60/60/30/30 with a pre-out for the sub in 5.1) and speakers that are a little more greedy (minimum recommended is 30 watts, I think the range is 30-120), and they still get loud enough to really piss off the neighbors.

I join the above posters in recommending auditioning new equipment. Some combinations just don't work well, and there's bound to be some equipment you just don't like the sound of. If everyone agreed on what sounds best we wouldn't have CD v. vinyl and tube v. solid state holy wars. On the up side, at least we all seem to be able to agree that cassette tapes are inferior to CDs.
 
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