60 of 65 people found the following review helpful
on January 1, 2013
Coming from the highly regarded Harman Kardon avr 330 and needed hdmi support as well as Dolby digital plus for my Roku. I adore the powerful sound of my 330 and was concerned i would have to lose that classic h/k sound.
The 1700 still has that h/k sound... Its sound is colourful, weighted and powerful! The imaging and detail with music in 2 ch stereo is exceptional and is better than my 330. Movies in 5.1 is impressive as well. Ezset eq did a great job setting my speakers. I never liked my sub all that much but the avr1700 automatically eq'ed my sub and it'sa much tighter sound.
I love the simplicity of this avr. Its a huge value because your not paying for all the nonsense frills you pay for in other avrs. Its a powerful amp with all the audio decoders you need. Video and 3d is passed through so your tv can handle the processing.
Excellent sound quality!!! Warm and detailed sound
All the modern hi-rez audio decoders
HDMI works great (arc, 3d pass through, etc...)
EZset/Eq - Eq's all your speakers including the sub based on your room's acoustics.
Absolute silent operation...starts up immediatley with zero sound
GUI is excellent - a simple to use menu overlays your screen
Plain 2 channel stereo imaging and detail is exceptional
Logic 7! Don't think I could ever give that up
Networking / air...although I use my connected squeezebox instead
Your wife will now expect you to pay very little for your audio equipment.
$346 here is a great value. Best buy has been going back and forth between $299 an even $199... which is the best bang for the buck receiver you'll find! I would have been happy if I paid $599 full retail for the sound and reliability alone.
169 of 205 people found the following review helpful
on March 8, 2013
I am (well, I was until I purchased this AVR) a fan of Harman Kardon gear. This was my third one. It was supposed to replace an old but faithful HK AVR 235. The old one did not have any HDMI inputs or latest decoders. Otherwise I wouldn't have upgraded to AVR 1700.
I purchased it from a brick and mortar store. First feeling after unboxing the receiver is that it is too light. But I have heard that HK is moving towards green hardware, hence the lightness. I thought "well, if it sounds as well as the old AVR 235, this light weight is only a plus". Still, looking at the new AVR left me with an impression that it was some cheap imitation, not the real thing. It looked like an in-store fake i-phone or Bluray player. You know what I am talking about: the empty look-alike shells that stores put on the shelves for loss prevention. The amount I paid for the AVR 1700 told me otherwise - the price was right there on the receipt!
The remote control left me puzzled. No backlighting? It looked like a replica of a replica of my old AVR remote. The AVR back connections look ridiculously simple, almost bare. But after a closer look you notice that everything you would need in a base model AVR is there, except for one or two composite inputs, may be. Some source gear doesn't have HDMI outputs, but still has composite ones. One might argue that composite outputs are obsolete, but the AVR 1700 has analog video plugs, which are even older. But still, this is not a major loss. There are enough HDMI inputs here for a modest home theater installation.
After connecting it I decided to calibrate it. The AVR did an excellent job configuring itself. I connected my XBOX360 and an HD DVR.
The movies and TV broadcasts are fine, except for one very annoying feature. The AVR is supposed to sense what sort of signal it is receiving. It then decides which decoding algorithm to use, then it shows on from panel what the signal is going to be, for example 3/2/0.1 or something like that. This wouldn't be a problem, except my DirectTV receiver transmits a half a second long silence between commercials or TV programs. Now, the AVR itself takes 2 seconds to decide whether it is going to abandon PL 2 (most commercials are) in favor of DOLBY DIGITAL (most new DirectTV movies are - not Blurays though). So, these 2-3 seconds of silence while picture is already moving every 10-15 minutes with messages flickering on AVR front panel are annoying. Still, this is not a biggie. If you watch one long commercial-free movie on a premium channel - HBO for example - or a Bluray movie, this is not a problem at all.
Now for the most important part. Only 20% of my AVR use is video. The remaining 80% is music. Here is my setup. An XBOX360 is connected to a pretty fast PC which acts as storage for music and movies. The XBOX360 is connected to AVR via HDMI. My first attempts to play music are disappointing. Stereo mode sounds like my speakers have been downgraded to a "white van" brand. The lows are missing, the highs are there, but sound like a hornet's nest in a tin can. I switch to a five channel set up. Dolby sounds good, but highs are cut by 40% (I measured at 16kHz). I switch to PL 2. Now the highs are there (still sound unnatural), but the lows are MIA. I have to adjust my subwoofer to +5dB to get an illusion of adequate music. Then, after switching back to movies the extra subwoofer volume shakes the house like an earthquake. I have to remember to re-adjust my speakers every time I listen to music? What sort of upgrade is this?
After all this switching and adjusting I finally got fed up. A question popped up in my head. Is this really an upgrade? On paper (the receipt) it is. In actuality I got a receiver that pretends to be an HK, but most likely isn't (I mean it is sold by the same company, but designed and made god knows where!) I feel embarrassed having had bought it. It produces good treble in one mode, bass in another, cuts off dialog every 15 minutes.
If it cost a hundred bucks it would have been a decent buy for a basement or garage audio set up. But for an HK fan this was a clear and intentional deception. I understand the company needs to conserve costs, but at least some of these saving should be passed on to the consumer. Instead, I was fooled by this "beauty and sound" routine, thinking I will get a decent upgrade to my good old AVR 235 which by that time already had been sold for $79. I called the guy who bought it from me and begged him to sell the 10 years old HK back to me for a hundred. He wouldn't hear of it. A smart man.
I came to my senses and returned AVR 1700 after 2 weeks. The brick and mortar store had a special on an elite VSX-53 for only $150 over this inglorious bastard of a receiver. The elite replacement didn't even pretend to be going green (very heavy). The sound was perfect with the same speakers and the sub, I couldn't believe how easy the setup was. One more detail. The elite receiver also did self calibration and found that three of my speakers (the most important ones - L, R and C) were out of phase. It wouldn't continue the calibration until I reversed the connections on those particular speakers. Why couldn't Harman Kardon AVR 1700 tell me this one "minor" detail? The wiring has not changed at all! The elite remote control actually made me proud. It looked and felt like a good remote should, like it was designed by Stephen Hawkins and simplified for all of us mortals by Mr. Neil deGrasse Tyson. It wasn't the laughable Fisher Price toy remote that I found in the HK box. This elite AVR had enough substance to pretend to be simple. The Harman Kardon AVR 1700 I wisely returned pretended to be something it will never be - its own much respected back in the days grandfather. I don't know how else to put it!
Anyway, if you want to upgrade your old Harman Kardon AVR just for the sake of upgrade - move on to other AVR makers. Harman Kardon has been too busy installing their best in BMWs, Land Rovers and Mercs. Their approach is to show how luxury their AVR line up is by supplying stereos for the luxury auto makers, while their actual AVR equipment languishes behind of every one else's. We are not their priority anymore. Its time we grew up. HK isn't what it is used to be, unless all you do with it is watch Blurays all day long. I know I will get blasted by all the satisfied owners. I am happy that their experience was better than mine. Still, I couldn't keep it knowing full well that from an upgrade perspective this AVR 1700 is one step forward and two steps back. I can't imagine one reasonable person who in their right mind will.
68 of 86 people found the following review helpful
on December 14, 2012
Having issues with a previous receiver, I decided it was time to upgrade. Only in technical terms this was not an upgrade, rather a horizontal move more towards having an internet connected receiver and some of the more recent sound decoding qualities available.
First, it is paired with a Bose Acoustimass 6 system, which now sounds BETTER than it ever did on a higher end receiver that uses Audyssey tuning. This is only a 5.1 system, and frankly there aren't many movies out that even have 7.1, so when it comes to watching something like The Rise of the Dark Knight, it sounds amazing.
If anyone knows why this one sounds better, I am all ears, because the Denon AVR 1907 now sounds sweet with my friend's high end large speaker set up.
There is something of a confusing element to this receiver that people may not realize; that the HK does not use a traditional transformer and therefore weighs a lot less. This is a deliberately GREEN approach in sound production that in no way takes away from the power or quality.
Connecting to iTunes is done wirelessly of course, as long as you have the receiver connected directly with a router port via ethernet, or an adapter, the latter of which I am unsure is compatible.
Once connected, the little AirPlay symbol in iTunes makes the connection. It is SO easy once you've got it figured out. Yes, the manual is online in PDF.
One of the best things is the high quality internet radio streaming from stations all over the world. I've listened to German Klassics, Dub, Christmas music in a wide variety, and Christian stations from which there are a plethora to choose.
My understanding is that you are getting HK sound quality every bit as much as their higher end receivers, in this newest model that offers simplicity and media connectivity (iPod), in a package that leaves a smaller carbon footprint, and produces friendly user interface technology, with a look that adds value to your entertainment system.
30 of 37 people found the following review helpful
on July 16, 2013
Worked well with my Polk speakers, was able to handle the plethora of inputs I required just fine. Sound quality was good and provided ample power to my floorstanding speakers. However, the receiver simple stopped functioning under normal load. I live in an apartment building, I do not have the luxury of playing my music loudly. Under normal levels it just stopped outputting sound to all channels. I tried different speakers, rewired, tried the speakers with a different receiver, everything pointed to the receiver malfunctioning. This is maybe 1 month into owning the receiver. Harmon Kardon customer service is a NIGHTMARE. You DO NOT want to deal with them, ever, for any reason. I first spoke to a rep who seemed to be outside in some sort of typhoon, he could not hear a word I was saying. I tried calling back and this time I was simply hung up on, no warning, just a click and he was gone. I went on the website and submitted a request, the site said I would receive a response within 24 hours. I received a response over a week later. I sent over the paperwork that was required (they asked me to fax it over...) and did not receive a response until I sent a strongly worded letter to customer service. I received a robot email saying that my request was accepted and I should mail my unit over within 30 days. Here is the best part, they had not updated the form email to list their new warranty facility, instead they had me send the package to the old facility which no longer existed. So after struggling with UPS to get it sent, and adamantly telling them that the address could not possibly be wrong! I received it right from the manufacturer! I ended up contacting Harmon Kardon who very brusquely told me that I sent it to the wrong address, please get it sent to the right address. No apology, the tone was simply "you are an idiot, fix this and we might send you a new one if you're lucky". Now the 30 days from the warranty acceptance is up, I have to pay out of pocket again to get it sent to the right facility with no guarantee that I will even get a replacement unit. At this point I am completely fed up with H/K, I have only gotten apathetic, lax and totally unsympathetic responses for my nonfunctioning unit. Needless to say, I have accepted this as a sunk cost. It cost me over $300 to learn the following extremely valuable life lesson: do not buy any Harmon Kardon products again. They might be excellent products, look great, function great, but if the smallest thing goes wrong, they literally do not care. I would not recommend any Harmon Kardon product to anyone reading this review, unless you are feeling lucky and think yours might not have any issues within the warranty period. Good luck.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on September 16, 2013
If you are expecting a standard off-the-shelf A/V receiver for tape, turntable, AUX inputs and other analogue device controls, look to other receivers. If you are looking for a VIDEO controller that provides augmented audio control for the video devices, this is THE receiver. If you use modern speakers, BEWARE; the power and volume control must be heavily gain-ridden, until a satisfactory level can be achieved; order speakers of less efficiency can handle the power well, but will occasionally "rattle" in the treble if high silibence is reproduced over other than a really short time period.
The automatic acoustic "presence" values (Dolby, Dolby Pro II, etc.) are really outstanding in most areas: Exception: Old Black-and-White "Perry Mason" series were automatically decoded as Dolby Pro II Hall, with some shows at 480p and others at 720p - none of which produced satisfactory results and had to be manually adjusted - quite easily, I might add. All modern Movies and TV shows worked great; however, Blu-Ray 3D "Jurassic Park," and "Avatar" blew me away, especially once I had the speakers set up spatially.
HDMI cabling is the primary means of connecting external video components. Composite video, S-Video, etc. connections are available, but the primary use of HDMI cabling is what a potential buyer/user should plan on. Additional USB 2.0 connections and other connections are available as well as HARD Wired Internet. Wireless is not available on this unit (since I am a security freak, this is not a problem, but might be for some who want to wirelessly connect their internet router to the receiver).
Harman-Kardon products have been a favorite of mine since the Citation V amplifier, and the High Power integrated amps, my last one dying after 37 years of continuous faithful service; so it can be said that I am partial towards H-K products, and thusly, this review is slightly biased toward them; however, I am reviewing a product I researched quite extensively before purchasing. I recommend going to the Harman-Kardon International website and reviewing the unit's specifications and connections before purchasing. However, This unit was exactly what I was looking for and it fit the bill ---- stupendously!!!
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on February 9, 2014
First of all I apologize for the lengthy review, but since some people really use reviews as input to their analysis on whether or not to purchase specific item, I decided after reading my first review that I needed to adjust it for clarity concerning my particular case, and to be fair with the product manufacturer.
My general level of satisfaction is good to very pleased with the H/K AVR 1700, once its outputs were connected to my current TV Set, and my 5.1 speaker system, and the sources of media connected to its input ports is very good to great, as compared to what I was getting from my old Home Theater/Entertainment center (as you please to call it).
Let me start by describing my particular Home Entertainment Center location and setup:
Placement: An approximately 130 square ft. living area with darkly tinted panoramic windows, a couch (viewing and listening position) a couple of side tables where the surround left and right Speakers sit. 6,5 feet across from all those there is a set of floor to ceiling wooden bookshelf where the rest of the 5.1 speakers sit on their respective positions. Also that is the place for the AVR, a BD/DVD player, a CD player and my SD (Standard Digital) DirecTV Satellite TV box. All those are connected as part of the Home Entertainment System.
Equipment connected and connection capabilities:
-Center, Surround Left & Right Spks: MTX MP52B 3-Way, 5", power up to 105W RMS, with connection type RCA to RCA 16 gauge +/- (Red/White) cable
-Front Left & Right Speakers: JBL ES10BK 3-Way, 4", power up to 200W RMS, with connection type RCA to RCA 16 gauge +/- (Red/White) cable
-Subwoofer: Yamaha YST-FSW050BL2, 100W dynamic power, with connection type RCA to RCA Coaxial cable for subwoofer (using dual shielded)
-BD/DVD Player: Sony BDP-S3100E Multizone Wi-Fi DVD Blu-ray Player, with output connection type HDMI
-CD Player: Sony CDP-CE500, 5 disc changer with output connection type Digital Optical to Digital Optical (Toslink) and Analog Audio Out RCA to
RCA L/R (Red/White) cable
-Digital Satellite TV Deco: DirecTV Standard Digital Decoder L12L-V-700, with connection type analog RCA to RCA L/R audio (Red/White) and
Composite Video (Yellow) cable(s)
-Current TV Set: Samsung LN26C350 LCD TV HD ready (720p @ 60Hz) with Analog Composite RCA to RCA Audio Video Input [R/L (Red/white) audio and
Yellow Video] cable and HDMI to HDMI Input.
-Harman/Kardon AVR 1700: To handle your Home theater components has:
.2 Analog RCA Audio Input (Right/Left = Red/White) labeled Analog Audio IN (Analog IN 1 & Analog IN 2) and corresponding RCA Composite Video
(Yellow) Labeled COMPOSITE Video 1 & Video 2
.3 Digital Audio Inputs labeled: Digital Audio Coaxial 1, Digital Audio Optical 1 & Digital Audio Optical 2
.6 HDMI Input ports labeled HDM1 thru 6
.1 HDMI Output labeled HDMI Out (goes to TV in my case)
.1 Composite RCA to RCA Video output (yellow) labeled Monitor (TV)
.1 RCA to RCA Coaxial output for the subwoofer labeled Subwoofer Pre-OUT
.One of each RCA to RCA (+/-, respectively red/white or red/black) for the Front Left, Right, Center, Surround (rear) Left and Surround Right
.One RJ45 Network Connection (To connect your AVR 1700 to your home network Router)
.One of each AM (1 wire plus ground) and FM (coaxial) Antenna connector.
.One IR IN 3,5mm jack and one Trigger OUT 3,5mm jack for handling infrared remote signal on enclosed cabinets and triggering on/off on other
devices (I think)
.Finally and RS232 input for connecting video from PCs.
Provided or Downloaded user guide: Is not really friendly, especially if you, like me want to connect source devices with different types of connecting cables (not all HDMI for instance). This is the main reason for not giving it the fifth star. For starters, the manual states that the setup menu can be displayed on your TV Screen as long as it is connected to the AVR 1700 by the HDMI Out cable. What the manual doesn't states is that if at the same time you have connected the AVR Analog Video Out to the TV AV In with the yellow cable the display of the setup menu will not appear on your TV Screen. If like I, you have various device sources with different types of output (inputs tom the AVR), and have basic to merely moderate knowledge of Audio/Video electronics and experience setting up multi source inputs to a AVR, the manual is of little help and puts you on a trial & error and guessing process to get the whole Home Entertainment system working nicely.
Calibration & Setup Process:
- Speakers: This is perhaps the easiest and most straight forward step of the process, once you have connected each your speakers and subwoofer
to its appropriate output port on the AVR. That, if you have your AVR to TV HDMI properly connected and use the EzSet/EQ calibration step of
the AVR setup and can use the setup menu viewing it on the TV screen, and the provided Micrphone connected to the headphone port in the front
of the AVR and the mic placed at the ideal listening position (let's say top center of the couch). At the end you will know if every speaker
is connected on the correct output on the AVR (front left to front left, center to center, etc.) since during the calibration the menu will
display which speaker is being calibrated and you will hear the sounds coming from them. You'll also get the each speaker distance to the
listening point, Equalization parameters, etc. I choose to let the AVR do the calibration process automatically and setup the necessary
parameters for the speakers.
- Source Components: If unlike myself al your components have HDMI output ports and you have 6 or less of them (not including the AVR)
connecting them is a very straight forward process, just connect one to each HDMI input port on the AVR, and if you are going to use a TV to
display Satellite TV, Movies or Video Games, connect the HDMI out on the AVR to the HDMI in on your TV set (the manual has a table with
proposed default connections for each HDMI input port in the AVR. The all you have to do next is go through the set up menu and selecting each
of the sources and set them up (I.e. which Port is receiving video signal, if any, which is receiving the audio signal, what surround mode you
want, and entering the title (name you want to assign to the each port for display purposes: BD/DVD, Sat TV, CD Player, etc.). Besides
when you are setting up a source device connected to an HDMI port and you select that port number for video signal input, the same port will
be by defect be used for audio signal input.
If, however, you have some source devices with different output types (HDMI, Composite Analog audio/video, Digital Optical Audio or Digital
Coaxial Audio, the connection is tricky and the manual doesn't help much. For instance, beware that if you use any type of input on the AVR
labeled 1 (Analog Audio 1) then you cannot connect any other device to any other input port on the AVR labeled 1 (i.e. HDMI 1) because you'll
won't get audio, or image or any of them for one or the two source devices. So the input ports on the AVR, regardless of type, with the same
number are MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE. That I learned after many hours of trial and error because it's not on the manual. Furthermore, the source
setup procedure is more complicated, since the audio signal may be coming from one source (Optical Audio IN) and the video Signal through the
RCA Composite Video (yellow) IN. Other nuisance is the capability of the AVR 1700 to combine the RCA Composite Video Signal and RCA Analog
(Left/Right) Audio Signals into one HDMI output. For instance, in the case of my SD Satellite TV Box, the input to the AVR went through RCA
Analog Audio IN 1 (left and Right = white and red connectors), and RCA Composite (yellow connector) Video IN 1, then when output to the TV is
only made through the HDMI OUT in to the TV HDMI In, you won't get the Satellite TV image displayed (I don't use the TV Speaker but I'm
guessing that the audio signal from the DirecTV box will not make it via HDMI to the TV set), and will hear the audio through the AVR
connected speaker system.
Networked Media Sources: Easily connected the AVR to our home Network by a CAT 6 Ethernet cable to our WiFi router with access to the Internet via DSL modem, just as explained briefly in the provided manual. So, we have been able to play media (Music, Podcasts, Videos) form our iPads with Air Play feature, using Harman/Kardon Play App downloaded for free from the App Store. However, we have not been able to play media using the H/K Remote App downloaded from Google Play for our Android smartphones, we have only been able to use some features of the remote control. We have also connected and tested playing media thru the AVR connecting our iPads and iPods via cable to the USB port provided for that purpose on the front of the AVR. And, finally, we have been able to listen to Internet radio via our connection to the home network. I have yet to test the Server source which I haven't got around to check how it works, what additional equipment, or subscription, if any, are needed. In conclusion, except for the Android App everything using the network was easy. Mind though, I am an ITC professional and our network is properly set up to include new equipment, without compromising security.
Remote Controls: The provided remote control is a little complex given that it is instrumental on the setup and control of the H/K AVR 1700 and that is also capable after some complex programming with little info but the discrete codes for the vendor of some of the devices connected to the AVR, to control them too, thus ALMOST doing away with the need to use at the same time, in my case, 5 remotes (TV, AVR, DirecTV, BD/DVD and CD) the manual if of little help regarding the programing of the remote for every device that it can control, or at least it is to me because I never have tried this before. So far I can turn on and off all connected devices, but the Sony CD and that's because Sony doesn't provide the remote IR discrete code for the CDP-CE500. I also can scroll or change channels on the DirecTV box and the TV, and adjust the volume. What I haven't been able to accomplish is to show the DirecTV Programming Guide using the AVR 1700 provided remote.
You can also use remote control functions using the from iPads/iPhones and Android devices using Harman/Kardon Remote App from the App Store or Google Play (Android). I have not tested if I can use this remote App on the other devices.
In conclusion, after everything got connected and setup I am very happy with the output quality of the AVR 1700, given price and space dedicated to Home Entertainment Center. And I will definitely recommend it to anyone with a similar space, moreover if all their devices have HDMI output. I can tell you that I have ordered a 3 RCA Composite Audio Video (L/R, Yellow) signal converter to HDMI output (up to 1080p @ 60Hz) that I expect will solve my issue with the DirecTV signal, by going first into the converter and then the HDMI output as input to the AVR. I will update this as soon as I get it along with the new Full HD (1080p @ 120Hz) 32" Led TV. I'm also evaluating the possibility, affordability and technical aspects of purchasing a Universal remote like Harmony or any other brand to work around the multiple Remotes issue.
One final word, you will have to go to similar process and situations as described here, regarding connection and setup issues with other brands of AVRs with similar features and advertised performance,and the difference would probably be how good the user guide or manuals are to help you handle multi Brand and multi input format devices. All in all, after all that process described I have a working Home Theather of very go0od quality, based on the H/K AVR 1700, good quality speakers, source devices, cables and setup.
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on January 16, 2014
The unit worked well for the first month and managed my Klipsch speakers respectfully. But the unit turned off after one month while watching a movie and now the unit doesn't send a signal to my tv. I will also say that Harman Kardon has the worst customer service I have ever encountered. The technical support staff are rude and abrupt with their communication. I asked the tech rep what his name was and he responded, "C'mon man just respond to my email!", I was shocked. I'm currently in the process of sending my receiver for a replacement. I really just want a refund, but since it was a gift I will have to settle for a replacement.
13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
I've had numerous receivers over the years, mainly sticking with Onkyo as they offered the best bang for your buck. I outgrew my Onkyo SR605, as it only had 2 HDMI inputs. I have never owned any Harman Kardon (HK) products before, but decided to take a chance on this receiver when it was on sale for $199. Boy, am I glad I did!
First off, you will notice this receiver is less than half the weight of a "normal" receiver. That's because it uses a new power supply, that switches to the active input instead of having a separate supply for each input. This drastically reduces the weight and energy consumption. Another benefit is that this unit stays very cool. My Onkyo literally used to heat up the room it was in while watching a movie. At times we would have to open the windows, even in the winter because that thing cooked our room. Not with this HK - this is as cool as it comes for a receiver.
I like the simplicity of this unit. It's got 6 HDMI inputs, all on the back, with 2 optical, 1 coax, and 5 speaker inputs. That's it. There are L/R aux analog inputs on the front, but no other analog inputs. The speaker terminals are extremely close together, so banana plugs are recommended. You can buy sets of them here or from Monoprice (mine are from the latter and work perfectly). The front has a USB input (for Iphones and USB music files), and and headphone out jack (that also serves as the calibration mic input).
Once set up, you use the on screen menu (OSD on the remote) to calibrate your inputs. You can assign any HDMI/optical/coax input for any source. For instance, I have the "Game" source using coax in for the Belkin Bluetooth HD Music Receiver for my phone (this BT receiver is unbelievable!). And Aux is set to HDMI 5 for audio and video in. It's very customizable. And you can rename any source to what you want (e.g. PS3, Roku, etc.).
The included remote is OK, but I use a Logitech Harmony for everything. The Logitech is not foolproof - it can be challenging to set up correctly with this receiver. I still have to have the HK remote lying around for the off times I need it.
The receiver comes with a mic to EQ all your speakers. I use this with the Bic Acoustech H100 and BIC America FH-56 Surround Sound Bar, and the sound is unbelievable. I had also tested this with my full BIC Acoustech 5.1 surround sound setup, and it was stunning. The sound quality of this unit compared to my Onkyo SR605 is night and day.
I have this set to auto-select the best audio setting for the source. You can manually select as well using the remote (stereo, virtual surround, full surround, etc.). I LOVE the HK Logic 7 EQ setting for most things (it auto selects this). It takes the signal and produces a very nice soundstage. This is fantastic for music!
When you run the EQ, it's best to leave the room and let it do its thing. The sounds get VERY loud, so definitely don't do this while anyone is sleeping!
One very nice feature of this unit is that it's dead silent. My Onkyo made a loud click every time I turned it on/off. This one makes no sound whatsoever, which is SO nice.
This HK has pretty good power for most setups. I maxed out the volume once just to test it out, and it was too loud to listen to. I can't imagine needing more power.
This is a network enabled unit that works with Apple AirPlay. I don't own any Apple products (I'm an Android guy), so I can't comment on that. However, once hooked up to the network, you can download the HK app from the Google Play store and control the unit with your phone! You can also listen to radio stations online from around the country (and world). This is a really cool feature that I didn't think I'd use, but now use all the time. The sound quality is excellent and the variety is fantastic. You can set up your stations online or using the receiver itself.
Keep in mind that this unit will not stream video from any networked source - ONLY AUDIO.
The receiver itself is pretty to look at. Some complain about how bright the volume knob is (this can be adjusted with the remote), but I like it. It's far prettier than my old Onkyo.
My only gripes: occasionally my phone disconnects from the receiver, and then it no longer works. I have to unplug the ethernet cable and plug it back in, which is annoying. My other complaint is that after fast-forwarding through commercials on our DVR, there are several seconds of silence before it starts picking up the sound. So the video is playing but there's no sound for a few seconds. I guess it takes a few seconds for it to detect the audio signal, which can be a bit annoying. Overall though, it's not a big deal.
I considered MANY other receivers prior to purchasing this one. Namely, the Yamaha V373, V473, Onkyo 515, Denon 1612, Marantz 1402, and several others. Dollar for dollar, this was the best bang for my buck. And I hate paying for things I don't need (e.g. 6 different analog inputs when I don't own any analog products).
If you can find this unit on sale for $199, it's the deal of the year. Even at its current price of $343, it's worth the price. The features and quality of this unit are unbelievable. Highly recommended!
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on December 31, 2012
Bought this receiver on sale at BestBuy for $169 as an open box item after Black Friday for set up on a second TV/ Home Theater system downstairs. I connected AVR 1700 to a 50 inch LG Plasma and a set of Polk RM 6750's and I am a happy camper. The whole setup cost about $1000 and I doubt I could ever find better value in any of the components. Over the past 2 years the AVR 1700 has exceeded all my expectations and eliminated any doubt I had from reading some other reviews. Yes, it is light but it packs a good punch. Honestly, I can barely tell any difference between this set up and our main setup in the family room which cost twice as much.
Highs: Good bass, great sound, easy setup, intuitive GUI, plenty of power, and outstanding value for the price paid. I think the test of any system is how much power you have to use to listen to movie dialog and this AVR delivers well on its promise.
Lows: No compressed music enhancer (for iTunes), there are no virtual sound effect modes, no auto volume control for moderating the sound of commercials, and the Logic 7 sound mode produces terrible sound and is beyond worthless.
Bottom Line: This is probably the best receiver you can buy at this price point. The AVR 1700 as all the main features you need, plenty of connectivity, and enough power to deliver a good home entertainment experience.
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on January 3, 2013
I had an all in one surround sound system. Crappy speakers and lots of issues. A handy friend recommend that I set myself up with a receiver so that I could upgrade pieces/parts as needed. We set out to buy a Sony unit. Once we got to best buy we saw that this one was on sale for $199! I was pretty much sold on it right away since it was so heavily discounted (usually $499 according to the label) but couldn't put it into my cart fast enough once I saw that it had airplay.
So more about the unit... In short its fantastic. I'm technically retarded and this is really straight forward. It has great features, airplay being one of them and best of all its really intuitive to use. My friend set it up, but I've had no trouble using it and switiching between inputs. I paired it with a decent subwoofer and two new speakers, reusing the center and surround speakers from the old unit. I have FANTASTIC sound, even with airplay. No more sound delay that I used to get with the old system. 5 stars for this all the way.