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Old 23rd November 2007, 10:51 PM   #1
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Default Cheap Stereo Receiver w/ Preamp Outputs

I'm looking for a new, cheap stereo receiver with preamp outputs. I only need 3 or 4 sources coming in. I don't need any amplifier section, so the quality and power of the amp doesn't matter.

Mainly I need a good source selector and volume control, and the best price I've found so far is on the Denon DRA-297. However, if a good kit exists, I'm perfectly willing to build the selector (might be preferable since I could design the case/ use smaller case). However, I'd like to stay below the price of the DRA-297 (around $160 shipped from Ebay). Rackmount components are OK, since all of my equipment resides in a rack.

The option of a remote control would be an added bonus, as would be a preamp output for a subwoofer.
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Old 24th November 2007, 09:41 PM   #2
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I thought I might add a little more information to make my overall plan a little more clear.

Right now I own a Pioneer VSX-515 receiver. I'm using it as a stereo amp only, powering a pair of Pioneer S-G300B-K speakers. I also have a powered sub, which using the VSX-515 as a crossover, I'm outputting the redirected bass first to a Behringer DSP1124P parametric equalizer. From there, I'm inputting into a cheap plate amp, and finally the Assassin 12 sub.

Now, I would like to upgrade my system soon with a rack mount computer as a source for movies, music, TV (Windows MCE), and general use (I have the computer, it's just not rack mounted yet). This will act as my primary source for all inputs for now. I would also like to upgrade my sub woofer amplifier to maybe the Mackie FR-800, Tapco Juice J-800, or the Behringer EP1500. So far, none of this requires changing my receiver.

However, I would like to also add an American Audio VLP-300 to give my Pioneer speakers more power. Since the MCE computer doesn't have a broad enough dynamic range to use it as the sole volume control, I need a new receiver with stereo preamp outputs (with sub outs also preferred for bass management). The sub out/bass management isn't necessary, as I would like to also buy a Behringer crossover to experiment with active crossovers (which I would use one channel for a sub crossover).

I do not have money for the crossover right now if I was to buy a new mains amp and receiver, so I would either have to not use a new mains amp for a period of time while using my Pioneer receiver to manage the bass redirection, or I could use the new amp with a new receiver, but have no sub for a time if the receiver comes without bass management.

However, I would someday (soon) like to build a pair of actively crossed Dayton Reference Series tower speakers for new mains. If I did this, I would need the crossovers which in case I no longer need the bass management on the receiver.


Edit - Added Thought Process: If need be, I could run a receiver with only stereo preamp outputs to both a secondary amplifier for the mains and then daisy chain in my Pioneer receiver to use it only as a crossover for the sub amplifier.

Lastly, Since I'm a teenager and have no money, my only source right now is the MCE computer. However, in time, I would like to buy a large capacity CD/DVD changer/player and a real TV, so that I won't be listening to MP3s all the time or watching movies in an office chair. Three or four inputs on the receiver should be sufficient.

So I need help finding a cheap receiver which has multiple inputs, stereo preamp outputs, and is as cheap as possible without sacrificing reliability and sound quality. The amplifier section doesn't matter to me.
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Old 27th November 2007, 02:47 AM   #3
dangus is offline dangus  Canada
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Join Date: May 2004
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I don't think you're going to find much stuff with preamp. outs. Now, it shouldn't be too hard to add them.... You ought to be able to score a receiver with blown amps for next to nothing from someplace (Craigslist, Freecycle, local electronic repair shops, junk removal services).

There's some Pioneer receivers with pre outs... like the VSX-816-K/S. It has the built-in bass management, automatic and manual EQ and time delay, and plenty of positive reviews. Original list price was way over your budget, but you might find a deal on it if you troll around local stores and online discounters. There's one on eBay for $150 with no remote right now.
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Old 27th November 2007, 03:30 AM   #4
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I'll still be looking, but in the meantime I found a simple solution that I've been overlooking the whole time: I'll just use the headphone jack as preamp out until I have money for a real receiver with preamp outputs.
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