On music the Marantz proved an equal delight, because its core sound strikes a fine balance between transparency and detail on the one hand, and a powerful yet easygoing and natural-sounding presentation on the other. Rather than striving for false clarity or a hyper-detailed sound that might impress in the showroom, the SR8001 handles textural and transient details with elegant, understated refinement, while serving up eerily good 3D imaging.
More than many A/V receivers, this Marantz can transport you from your living room right into the world of the recording space.
I listened to jazz guitarist John Abercrombie, bassist Eddie Gomez, and percussionist Gene Jackson’s Structures [Chesky, Multichannel SACD] through the Marantz, and was floored for two reasons. First, the SR8001 did a great job with the distinctive timbres and textures of each of the instruments.
Second, the receiver created the spooky illusion that the walls of my living room had “melted,” leaving me to enjoy the master jazz musicians at play within the quiet interior St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in New York City—the site of the original recording. One of the joys of owning a receiver this good would be experiencing the signature sounds of far flung recording venues across the globe.
Marantz’s SR8001 is a superb mid-priced receiver—one geared to please videophiles and audiophiles alike. While the flagship SR9600 may enjoy a slight edge in absolute sonic purity, the SR8001’s versatile MultEQ system makes it the better overall choice for many listeners, and at a much more manageable price. TPV