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Do I still need my 11 year old power amp?

by jrbuuck / January 1, 2010 6:11 AM PST

I have a Classe CAV-75 6-Channel Power Amplifier (75 watts/channel) that I bought in early 1999 for use with a Marantz AV receiver & Thiel speakers in a 5.1 configuration. I am upgrading to a full HD setup and have just purchased a Denon 3310ci AV receiver. I know that receivers have advanced a lot in the last decade so I'm wondering if my amp is now redundant. I'm keeping the Thiel speakers and the 5.1 configuration.

Is it at all possible that using the CAV-75 amp would degrade the sound quality coming out of the Denon 3310? Will it essentially add another 75 watts to the output of the receiver or would it limit the signal strength sent to the speakers to 75 watts per channel? Please bear in mind that I'm not really technically proficient when it comes to these sort fo things.

Thanks

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Old vs. New Amp
by Dan Filice / January 1, 2010 6:38 AM PST

If your old receiver was 6-channel, why did you buy a new amp? The only thing I could see different is the ability of the new amp to accept HDMI connections for True HD Audio. Other than that, the two seem redundant unless I'm missing something.

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More info..
by jrbuuck / January 1, 2010 7:36 AM PST
In reply to: Old vs. New Amp

I went to a home theater company that sold me a package in early 1999 that included the amp, receiver, dvd player, cd player, VCR & speakers. Perhaps they pulled a fast one on me but I was told that the amp improved my audio experience. The amp is almost 11 years old and has no HDMI connections.

It's hard for me to crawl back behind my entertainment center to check, but I believe the amp is connected to the receiver's PRE OUT & SUBWOOFER OUT jacks and then the speakers & subwoofer are connected to the amp.

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Old amp
by Dan Filice / January 1, 2010 3:22 PM PST
In reply to: More info..

The old amp did improve your audio experience. The Denon is a very good unit and probably decodes newer audio formats included with Blu-Ray discs and it has HDMI, so it will serve you well. At this point if you really want to improve your HT experience, get a Blu-Ray player to watch BR discs. When you see the stunning image, your audio will immediately sound better.

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i forgot to mention
by jrbuuck / January 1, 2010 3:52 PM PST
In reply to: Old amp

I'm also buying a Blu Ray player - LG BD390. As for the audio output... Any thoughts on whether the amp will boost or otherwise improve the sound coming out of the Denon? Any chance it would be a detriment?

Thanks

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Denon Receiver
by Dan Filice / January 2, 2010 8:32 AM PST
In reply to: i forgot to mention

I don't mean to ask the obvious, but have you read the Owner's Manual that came with your receiver? If your receiver has an HDMI input, it probably is new enough to process True HD from BR properly, and if so, then it will allow you to hear the latest audio available with BR. This is one thing your old receiver won't do. I've heard the difference and the new HD Audio processing does sound better. So now...go read your manual. I expect a full written report on my desk in the morning.

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