Anthem MCA 50
Outlaw Audio 755
Anthem MCA 50
Outlaw Audio 755
I had a similar setup, Denon AVR-4802 which has a power output of 125 wpc versus your AVR-3806 which has 120 wpc. I was using Paradigm Studio 20 v3 speakers on the front
channels, a Paradigm center, Mirage speakers on the rear channels and a Paradigm Reference Servo-15 sub woofer. I found I got much better results running the system in 4.1 mode using the phantom setting. I have since ditched the center channel speaker, moved the Studio 20s to the rear channels and got much better speakers for the front channels. I also added a good 2 channel amp (Simaudio W-3; 120 wpc @ 8ohms, 240 wpc @ 4 ohms) for the front channels. In this configuration the receiver is only powering the rear 2 speakers. I went this route after demoing the Anthem MCA 50 in my system, while it worked well in surround mode I felt it was lacking when running in 2 channel stereo mode. I like the results when setup like this but as they say.....YMMV!
Before getting a new amp you might also want to try Bi-Amping your front speakers using your Denon 7 channel receiver. All this will cost you is the time to set it up and a pair of interconnects.
Bi-Amping on a Denon Receiver
[from audioholics review of a Denon AVR-5803]
After some thought, Denon tech support gave me the info on how to accomplish the bi-amping task. Here is how to do it. Note this will only work if you don't plan on using the amps for surround back channels or multi zone 2 applications.
Bi-Amp Configuration of Main Channels
Step #1: Connect a pair of analog RCA cables from the preamp outs of the "Front" channels to an unused input of the AVR-5803 (In my case, I chose VDP).
Step #2: Select the chosen input as the source for Multi Zone 2.
Step #3: In the Multi Zone Control menu, select power amp assignment for "Multi Zone 2".
Step #4: Using the internal test tones of the AVR-5803, position the SPL meter (slow response, C-weighted) at the listening position and increase the master volume control until each speaker reads about 75dB.
Step #5: Disconnect the speaker level connections from the "Front" channels at the AVR-5803 and reconnect them to the appropriate "Multi Zone 2" speaker level connections.
Step #6: Repeat Step#4 while varying the "Multi Zone 2" volume level. I found nearly unity gain correlation between the "Front" channel and "Multi Zone 2" amplifiers to be at the "Multi Zone 2" volume level setting of +2dB.
Step #7: Remove the jumpers on the back of the main speakers (you would be amazed at how many people forget to do this, Yikes!)
Step #8: Connect a set of wires from the "Front" channels of the receiver to the highs section of each of your front speakers and a set of wires from the "Multi Zone 2" channels of the receiver to the lows of your front speakers.
Note: It would have been nice if the channel trim for this volume level control had +/-0.5dB precision, as all of the other channel trims of this receiver had, for better precision. Better yet, it would have been even nicer if Denon had a unity gain strap for this exact application so I could have avoided the pains of this set-up. Hint Hint. During my operation of the receiver in this set-up, I was always a little concerned if the wife or my daughter were to accidentally press a few wrong buttons on the remote and screw things up. However, if I couldn't audibly notice if this problem occurred, then I probably didn't deserve to worry about it.