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Not so bad!
on June 11, 2010
I am writing this review in response to an earlier reviewer's comment about the hiss problem with this receiver.
I purchased this unit 6 months ago because I needed a receiver for under $700 that could handle a pair of 4ohm speakers. I was a bit skeptical about just how well this would work, but for less than $100 I believed it would be worth a shot.
Initially, I encountered a similar difficulty with the hiss (as well as some clipping and distortion).
However, as soon as I switched out the 4ohm speakers for an 8ohm Bose set, the receiver sang just fine. A keeper!
(Note that some minor amp hum is to be expected with *any* receiver. The only time I can hear it on this model is when I place my ear directly in front of the speakers. That said, I have noticed over the years that some reviewers can be quick to growl at equipment when the real problem is poor speaker placement. There are several good articles on the web that provide details on how to avoid the audible consequences of positioning speakers too high or at incorrect angles.)
That aside, here are a few other perks of the Pyle PT-260-A:
- At level 10 (out of 40) it provides good background sound. At 20, it can fill a large room and be heard clearly in the next room. At 30, it becomes uncomfortable to the ears.
- The EQ controls are programmed to handle a significant range, with the bass creeping as low as 40Hz (not always the case in cheaper model receivers, which usually only stretch to 60-80Hz). Meantime, the treble only reaches as far as 15kHz, which is actually a strength considering the depth of the bass (cheaper models tend to exaggerate the high end, which is why they tend to be characterized as sounding tinny). All that said, one slight twist of the EQ knobs can make quite a difference. Be sure to play around with different combinations until you land on just the right sound for your speakers and your setting.
- The mic inputs work great for karaoke. Not my cup of tea, per se, but wonderful for children who want to sing along with a CD. (They also will have a lot of fun with the echo control!)
And of course all equipment has quirks:
- For my needs (with only one component connected), the PT-260-A serves its purpose quite well. However, if you intend to input more than one component, there is only one selector switch on the unit itself (though there is a separate button for CD, Aux, Tuner, etc. on the remote). In addition, the unit sets to Tuner each time it powers up (which then blasts the room with radio static if you don't have the antenna connected).
- If you plan to use a turntable with this receiver, you will need to pick up a phono preamp (there is no powered input).
- The display is a bit cheesy. The EQ meter simply dances a preset light pattern that has nothing to do with the music being pushed through. (Though it can be amusing to watch it bounce out of rhythm with the music!)
So the verdict:
This receiver costs less than $100. For a model that operates on par with more expensive models, it is worth learning to live with a couple of minor bugs.
If you are on a budget, or have children who express an interest in listening to music, this is *the* way to go. If only a receiver of this quality had been available at this price when I was in high school! (In the early 1990s, the cheapest comparable model would have cost $250-350.)