ARCAM AVR600 Reliability Issues



I'm considering the purchase of an ARCAM AVR600 but have read a lot of older posts on various forums about reliability/operational issues with it - weird noises from the speakers, the unit freezes up, random volume changes, etc.

Has anyone had similar experiences? Have the more recent firmware updates addressed these issues?

The sound of the ARCAM blew me away but I don't want to invest in a piece that's going to drive us crazy. I'm also considering the Integra 80.3 and the NAD T187 to use with my existing power amps. Any thoughts on those units in comparison to the ARCAM?
audioengineer99
I wanted the avr600 but as you say, many posted some issues with it I also wanted the 1.4 hdmi.
I finally bought the Arcam avr400 1.4 hdmi 90w pc x7, plenty of power and very happy with it, about a year now never an issue.
hope this helps
Here's what I've experienced with my Arcam AVR600 (the model with 3D)...you may find it hard to believe but it's all true.

I'm an extremely patient person but enough is enough. I've had 6 brand new Arcam AVR600's in the last 8 months. One was received DOA but each of the other 5 were installed in my home and they ALL had a tremendous amount of issues not to mention their repeated attempts to blowout my tweeters in my B&W 802D's and HTM2 speakers!! I'm going out of my mind with all the daily problems with EVERY unit I receive!!! Each unit has had the sound delay/sync with video issue, the LOUD POP out the DB1 sub, and of course the LOUD SNAP out the speakers as the Arcam tries to blowout my tweeters when it shuts off during use (and this happens regardless of the volume setting...it even does it when on MUTE) and then immediately powers back on only to do the LOUD SNAP again and repeat the cycle over and over until I physically turn the unit off with the power button on the front of the unit...the remote will not turn the unit off when it's doing this malfunction. On a less frequent basis I'll get 8 - 10 LOUD POPS out the sub rather then just a single LOUD POP out the sub, and at times I’ll get LOUD POPS out the 802's also. Whenever mute is activated, the sound is terrible for approximately 3 - 5 seconds when the mute is turned off.

When the unit works properly I do like the sound...it sounds very good IMHO. But even if it had only one of the above, very frequent, daily issues I would not keep the unit. For $6000.00 MSRP it should work flawlessly. Needless to say, this extremely patient person has reached the end of the line with his Arcam AVR600. After 8 months of torment and 6 new units none of which having had any improvement during the 8 month timeframe, it's going back for a refund. Can't say I didn't try to make this work. Sure wish Arcam would have made an attempt to fix their problems cause it does sound very good when it works.
Jeez Cayman I would have thrown the towel in after a 3rd defective unit, at most.
For 6 grand not only should it work flawlessly but the dealer should come to your dwelling to ensure that it does.
The sound is truly superb.

Mine does the pops too but only on the DVD input (from an OPPO BDP-83), and only when a DVD is first booted up in the start-up menu, in which case I merely hit Mute till the audio codec displays on the Arcam.

Mine has the latest firmware but not the 3D board.
I am on my second AVR 600 and dealing with the same POPs followed by the unit shutting down and then starting again. Have to send this one back as well. I am so frustrated by the situation...I really want to use the product...but this is unacceptable for 6k.
see ARCAM partial buyback

http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?bhome&1324311378b

sounds like this was another case in a long line of the buggy Chi-Fi kit that was kayboshed by Arcam
I recently put my Arcam Avr 600 in my system--purchased it about two years ago, but was in process of moving and assembling new system--something is wrong when I change channels on the video and the unit needs to transition from 2.0 to 5.1---no audio-------I then need to grab remote, and change from analog to digital to get audio.
does ANYONE have any idea what is going on, and or a fix? Not sure what to do---thoughts? thanks-
Google the many post re: reliability issues with the AVR 600 FYI

Just one of many examples of this buggy and expensive AVR

" ... My new Arcam AVR600 has problems (e.g., HDMI lock-ups/handshakes, transient spikes, time delays between playing source material and amplification).

Arcam and the dealer attempted to install a firmware update on two occasions and were not successful. The second attempt went terribly wrong and further compromised the unit. Now Arcam is proposing to add an additional device to secure HDMI signals and restore the unit, followed by the proper firmware update.

I am hesitant to give them - and the AVR600 - a 3rd chance. The sound is amazing, but I've been dealing with these problems for about 5 weeks now.

AND
I was within hours of ordering an AVR 600 until I read this post. Does anyone know what percentage of these receivers are flawed??? Are they all flawed??? Has Arcam ben able to fix the problem by now???
We have sold 30+ of the 600,s from our store. I think I had 2 that I sold that needed updates. I don't believe I have had an issue with one in about 2 years. (Give or take) the new firmware seems to have resolved the early issues some people experienced. I had one myself and loved it. I never had any problems at all.
Have been advised by Arcam in UK that the AVR 600 is in need of several updates on firmware and hardware. Do not buy this unit until you have verified that it is ENTIRELY up to date.
REALLY??? Zydo-----not according to Arcam. these are specific changes that were and are required by every unit at some point. I do not understand your affirmation of this product????
bluesnbike,

I'm simply stating what my personal experience has been. There are many products I've sold over the years that have been much more troublesome. For one thing, none of the 600's I've ever had were the original firmware. I was not an Arcam dealer when they came out. Every time I get a shipment, they have the newest firmware out. That's not to say that at some point a person won't want to get the latest version. I never updated mine, and I know to this point, it still never has been. I have several things at home that have updates available. I personally don't do it unless I have a problem. To say they will all (the 600's) NEED it at some point isn't accurate. They may, they may not. My advice to people would be if its working well, leave it alone. Many years ago, I updated my PC to service pack 2. It became totally non functional. Only after going back to the previous version was I able to use it. My attitude since then is "if its not broken, don't fix it" People try to do their own updates, sometimes they are successful, sometimes they screw something up. I think the 600 is great. If I could afford one for my second system in my living room, I'd buy it in a second.
Zydo--- I have just had my Arcam 600 "updated for software and firmware"---I did not purchase this unit with the expectation of this nightmare. I will report back as to how this unit functions with my Conrad Johnson Amp, Pre Amp, Oppo DVD, Comcast, Pioneer Elite-----to be continued. Also, I do not believe that you have had so many "happy" customers for this unit. Based upon feed back I have gleaned from this site and others on internet--
Blues,

I would expect the updates will solve your problem. Did you send it to an authorized Arcam repair center? I assume you bought it new, and it was under warranty.

I guess I'm a bit confused as to how you are hooking it up with an amp, and pre amp. Or what the pioneer elite is you are talking about.

You can believe whatever you care to about my "happy" customers. If you read my feedback, you won't see that. As for negative posts on the web, I'm well aware, and have read some myself. Keep in mind, one person with a problem is going to make a lot of noise. 1000 people that are happy probably don't sit down and type out a review.

Its unfortunate that you had a problem, but, Arcam will make it right for you I'm sure. You can google any product made and find people that are unhappy with it. I don't care if its toothpaste, or a Learjet. As I said in my first reply, my personal experience has been good, and that's what I base my comments on. Believe it or not.
I bought one 4 years ago and have had it in the shop twice now. In fact Arcam has it right now and my retailer sent me email saying it would be back next week. The first time it was the internal cooling fan. It was running all the time, winter or summer, hot or cool. It is a very loud running fan. Then a couple of months ago my right rear speaker began to output static. The one month ago the front right speaker began to do the same thing. I agree that when it works it sounds great but my experience is that it is no where near the money we all paid to have these ongoing issues and like the other fellow that is just posting what he experiences, well I am doing the same. I want my money back so I can get a piece that actually works well. Another note is that the dealer I bought it from has dropped all Arcam products as well because of what we all are complaining of.
Anthem is the way to go.

Also, those comments about how any brand and type of products will have issues -- you forgot about Yamaha.  They're the only ones that show it's possible to make essentially bullet proof receivers.
I'm probably a bit late to the party here, but I own an A/V integration company in Atlanta and sell a lot of Arcam products, so I thought I'd chime in to share my experiences with the brand. To start off with, I'll just cut right to it: the AVR600 platform did, unfortunately, have a lot of problems, and people who were new to the brand at that time were understandably turned off after the terrible ownership experience that some of them had with this particular model.

However, I think it's important to remind everyone that virtually every company in every industry has had issues with at least one of their products at one time or another, and anyone who is familiar with the brand will know that outside of this unfortunate blip in their history, Arcam has an excellent track record and in general makes an outstanding product. I have personally owned several models over the years - many of which were purchased as a consumer before starting my own company and selling the brand, and I have always had great experiences with them.

While I don't expect this to persuade a former AVR600 owner to consider purchasing another Arcam unit after their experiences with the brand, I would strongly urge anyone new to the brand to not make the mistake of assuming that because they had one troubled model that everything they make is therefor a poor quality product because that is simply not the case. Furthermore, their current platform (AVR390, AVR550, AVR850) is extremely well-reviewed and features the best room correction software on the market right now (Dirac Live).

So in closing, I would like to say to those who have owned the AVR600 and had a poor experience with the brand that I'm genuinely sorry for the frustrations you have incurred, and you have every right to feel the way that you do. However, I would encourage you to try to be open minded about the brand going forward and to remember that your experiences are not an accurate representation of the brand as a whole and will not be shared by the majority of their customer base.

Kind regards,

David Campbell
President - Southern A/V Direct, LLC
404-948-8585
www.SouthernAVDirect.com
Thanks! for sharing- David.