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toxicity187's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: Dec 10 2011 - 1:00pm
I am a COMPLETE idiot.

I always though i knew a "little" something about electronics till I started looking into a home theatre system the past month.  I will quickly tell my story, what i need help with.  And HOPEFULLY someone will kick my butt in the right direction.

*Disclaimer, i am a simple man with a modest job (budget) and family.  Not looking for nothing amazing, just satisfying.

A month ago I was looking into complete home entertainment systems.  ALMOST bought a Sony BDV-HZ970W (I have a nice Sony 3d tv as well).  In hindsight it's probably all i needed and I could have been done and saved money.  It was a complete kit with a blue ray 3d player.  What i didn't like about it was the front speakers were only 60W and because they used a pin set up in the back it didn't seem like it would just be able to switch them out or upgrade to easily.  Which led me to my next part of the journey.

I decided to piece the system together maybe a little at a time, but a sysytem i would hopefully enjoy more and last longer.  So I started with speakers, I eventually ordered some Sony SSF-7000 speakers.  200W max, nice floor speakers like I was after.  So this brings me to where I currently am STUCK at.  The receiver/amp

I initally though this wouldn't be hard.  I have started tearing my hair out.  I thought considering that the home entertainment system was 1000 watt set up and alot of them provided 160w per channel i'd find something similar.  Well most of the receivers i look at provide less wattage and cost more money.  I only wanted to pay about 150, but now about to spend 300.  I know thats nothing, but its what i got.  Trying to keep it Sony (might as well match at this point) I'm looking at all the STR receivers and they all pretty much seem the same.  I am about to purchase the STR-DN1020.  It provides 110W at each channel.  Can get it for just under 300.  Says it's 3d blue ray rdy.  Does that mean I can hook up a regular blue ray player and watch it 3d on my 3d tv, or do i still need a 3d blue ray player?

To finish the point im at now is all the Sony STR's pretty much seem the same to me.  They range from 200-300$.  The STRDN1020 was 500 new and now 300, seems the same as last years model STR-DN2010 that was 800 and now 250$.  The STRDN802 is only 160 and says "3d" sound for 160 the 720 is only 200.  ALL THESE SEEM PRETTY MUCH THE SAME!  Which one should I get. and if i get the STRHD1020 3d which is the most excpensive why is it worth the price difference?!?!

Someone who undersdtands this stuff PLEASE take the time to read this and help me pick out one that will fit my need and explain the difference between all these models that pretty much all say 3d sound and punp out 100-110 watts a speaker.  And why does the DN1020 model say 3d blue ray ready.  I can't hook up a 3d blue ray to the others?  I just don't understand and would like to before I pay an extra 100 for nothing. 

Kal Rubinson
Kal Rubinson's picture
Last seen: 4 days 14 hours ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 9:34am
1.  There are no 1000watt

1.  There are no 1000watt HTIBs as the power ratings are inflated.  The ratings for individual componentry is likely to be more honest.

2.  Power differences between the Sony AVRs is inconsequential.  You need to see a doubling in power to enjoy a real difference.

3.  3D is Bluray, so the listing differences for the AVRs are inconsequential.  You need a 3d BR player to play 3D discs.

4.  I am unfamiliar with those Sonys so I cannot help you distinguish them.  It is likely that there are feature differences.

5.  You might try our sister publication at where they are possibly more familiar with such products.


commsysman's picture
Last seen: 4 days 1 hour ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am

First; you need to have a 3d Blu-ray player if you want to watch 3d, period.

Second, there is no such thing as "3d sound". There are various sound encoding formats for home theatre, but they have nothing to do with whether you are watching 3d or not.

Third; since you only have two speakers, I assume that you are not going to do 5-channel sound at this time (or ever?).

Fourth; To watch 3d, you need a receiver that Sony (or some other manufacturer) describes as having "3d pass-through".

The receiver that will do exactly what you want is the Sony STR-DH520, which has plenty of power and is available from Amazon for $177 at this time (Sony sells it for $249). I definitely advise you to buy this one unless you are certain that it lacks some feature you need. (the STR-DH720 has somewhat different features, and sells for about $220, but from what you say it seems doubtful that you want it)

The DH-520 receiver will give you the capability to go to 5-channel surround sound later if you wish to simply by buying a center and rear speakers. Most people who watch a lot of movies choose to do this eventually, but 2 channels works fine for me.

When/if you are ready to do this, Amazon has the Sony CN-5000 center speaker for $70 and the SS-B1000 rear speakers for $43/pair. They should be an appropriate match for the front speakers you have now.

If you ever want to upgrade to better speakers, this receiver has plenty of power to drive 80% of the speakers on the market; that should be a non-issue. Upgrading to some relatively high-quality speakers in the future will be a major expense, however ($600-1000).

The ratings on these receivers are deceptive to the novice. A receiver such as this one that is rated for 100 watts per channel and has seven channels does NOT have a 700-watt capability. It probably has a peak total output capability of maybe 400 watts (which is all you will ever need).  It will be designed to put out 100 watts per channel on the two front channels while supplying lesser amounts to the other channels, but not 100 watts to all seven channels simultaneously. The ratings are extremely deceptive.

Each channel may be capable of 100 watts, but the POWER SUPPLY cannot power all seven channels to full power simultaneously (and it is unlikely that it would ever need to, so to keep the price down they don't provide that kind of capability). Where Sony says that the total power available from the DH520 is 945W; that is absolute bullshit! You can only get that ridiculous number by ignoring reality and adding up things that shouldn't be added up.

P.S.- Any person who is intelligent enough to ask for the information he needs is certainly not an

toxicity187's picture
Last seen: 5 years 9 months ago
Joined: Dec 10 2011 - 1:00pm
Thank you for the input.  I

Thank you for the input.  I cancelled the STRDN1020 (300$) model and got a cheaper one.  Went one up from the 520 and got the 720, saved myself almost a hundred bucks.  The 520 didn't have a USB input and that is something i really wanted.  The 1020 had features like controlling it with a phone app n such, and that is something I will probably never use lol.  Really all I wanted was sound quality and i'm sure this model will sound just as good with the speakers I choose as the more expensive model to my novice ears.

Thanks for taking the time to post very good and clear input for me to help me make a better decision, I really appreciate it.


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