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in the market for new audio receiver...some issues..

Hi---I'm looking around for a new receiver after a long time, and boy has the market changed!

I don't have a lot of needs on wattage.

I DO have some issues.

First, I'd like something with a jack so that I can hook up an MP3 player. At the moment, I use a Treo, but have an adapter to make it a standard plug. BUT I don't want something compatible with and only with an iPod which I have no intention of buying.

Second, I was almost ready to pull the trigger on a Denon and then saw that they were now talking about streaming! I was looking also at some DVD players that have wireless (wi-fi) access, and I didn't realize you could do that with a receiver too. If I'm interpreting that correctly, that's a nice feature that I'd like to have. The Denon I was looking for required ethernet, no wi-fi. Deal breaker.

Finally, the way things are going, I think myself that 3d is the future. I want something is at least 3D compatible. Even though I haven't got it at the moment.....

In terms of price, I'd prefer to keep it under $500

So, that said, any advice, suggestions, comments?

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Clarification Request
why do you require high power?

In reply to: in the market for new audio receiver...some issues..

I'm curious. What makes you feel you need a high powered system?

Keep in mind the word 'streaming' can mean different things. Regardless, you are nearly always better off with a wired connection, especially when issues like audio delay/stuttering or bandwidth are concerned. Not to mention the basic one of sound/picture quality. Don't let lack of wifi be the deal breaker. There are better ways to network such a setup.

Nearly all receivers with an 'Aux in' port in back/front can accept output from an MP3 player. A simple 'Y' connector from radio shack permits this connectivity. It won't generally sound as good however as going direct digital via an iPod dock connector- that's the biggest advantage.

Also try to find a receiver that supports HDMI 1.4. Look again at Denon, Onkyo, Pioneer & Sony for those features.

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In reply to: why do you require high power?

Sorry, don't know what you mean by high powered.

This is a mid-level system. I want something that is streaming ready, has a jack for MP3 audio, and HDMI inputs for HD.

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In reply to: answer

I misread your post regarding power requirements.

I did however address some of your needs in my reply above. More specifically regarding MP3 connectivity, receivers generally handle it one of two ways. They include an iPod dock, or go the aux in route like I mentioned. You will have to decide which MP3 player you intend on going with in this sense, along with the receiver brand. All the newer receivers will have multiple HDMI inputs, just get one that has the correct number for your other components you intend on using.

Again, regarding streaming I made my opinion clear. Read more here on why it's not the best idea to go with one that has built in streaming. The networked versions of many of the popular mid-priced receivers cost more and do it worse than the $100 add on streaming box solutions. YMMV.

You might also look into this feature as part of a blu ray player instead. I've seen better pickings with their streaming abilities than on most receivers in your price range.

All Answers

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More info on mp3 connection

In reply to: in the market for new audio receiver...some issues..

In addition to what Pepe7 said about the way mp3 players connect, at the moment receivers have two connection methods: A simple mini audio plug on the front panel or an iPod dock. The difference is that any mp3 player can connect to the mini audio plug, but it's analog and you can see your playlists on the TV. With the iPod dock, you not only get true digital audio, but you can also see and often control your music that you see on the TV. Receiver manufacturers only seem to make docks for the iPod. Not sure why. But love 'em or hate 'em, gotta admit the iPod is pretty amazing.

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