My three favorite brands for AVRs (Audio/Video Receivers) are “in no particular order”:

  1. Sony ES (5-Year Warranty)
  2. Integra (3-Year Warranty)
  3. Elite (3-Year Warranty)

However, in this post I am going to talk about the Integra DRX-3.3 and the Elite VSX-LX304.

Like Denon and Marantz are “brothers” in regards to Denon being a Toyota and Marantz being the Lexus, both the same with Marantz having more options and luxuries. You could say, Marantz did a little better then his brother financially and could afford these luxuries 🙂

The same could be said with Integra and Elite. But, these would be the luxury “cousins” to their “brothers”, Onkyo and Pioneer.

Both being “cousins”, both having pretty much the same features and sound quality… What makes the Onkyo Integra DRX-3.3 $200.00 more then the Pioneer Elite VSX-LX304 and why did I chose these two models?

These would be the first in their respected lines that offer 9.2 channels of amplification. Perfect for a great 5.2.4 Dolby Atmos or DTS:X surround experience!

Below is a chart showing the similarities and differences of both AVRs in regards to specifications (High Level):

 

 

What is Onkyo’s *AccuEQ Advance 9-Point Calibration with subwoofer EQ and AccuReflex™?

  • AccuEQ is a room acoustic calibration solution featured on select Onkyo A/V receivers. It fine-tunes every speaker in your home cinema, even if they are not symmetrically placed, creating a harmonious sound-field in your room. The receiver analyzes data and calibrates audio response to optimize speaker performance in unique listening environments. Your speakers work together to form a cohesive and spatially seamless soundstage. Directional sounds are convincing, bass is taut, and details resolve clearly. AccuEQ unifies the sonic picture so your listener is comfortably immersed in the movie soundtrack. After unboxing the receiver, connect your speakers, plug in the supplied mic, and launch the on-screen guide. First, AccuEQ detects the presence of speakers and evaluates the impedance of each. Next, it pinpoints their distance relative to the main listening position using the mic and sets suitable sound-pressure levels. Then it selects the optimal crossover frequency so that deeper bass rolls smoothly off to the subwoofer. Finally, AccuEQ performs frequency response equalization based on room-acoustic and speaker data collected via microphone. The sound-field is now tailored around the listening position, resulting in a more immersive and realistic in-film experience.

What is Pioneer’s *MCACC Advanced?

  • Pioneer’s exclusive Multi-Channel Acoustic Calibration System (MCACC) delivers an easy-to-use, automatic sound adjustment system to precision-tune your Pioneer Elite receivers with minimal effort. Every MCACC system comes with a microphone to measure and analyze reverb characteristics. The equalizer optimally adjusts sound parameters to fit the size and shape of your home cinema while maintaining the integrity of high-resolution playback without any degradation to the quality of your music. Simply, power-on your receiver, plug in the microphone, activate the MCACC system, and sit back while the MCACC system fine-tunes your home theater to compensate for differing speaker arrays, furniture, and even ceiling height and shape.

 

In conclusion, the $200.00 upcharge will give you more flexibility with legacy devices with Integra’s signature aluminum front panel. Additionally, Onkyo’s AccuEQ Advance 9-Point Calibration with subwoofer EQ and AccuReflex, a correction solutions that is viewed as better option to Pioneers MCACC.

However, I have the Pioneer Elite VSX-LX303 myself (the predecessor to the 304) and wow is it a great receiver that offers everything I need in a Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 if your not needing legacy device compatibility.