Carver Audio AV-405 Amplifiers

AV-405

5-Channel Home Theatre Amp - 100W Left/Right, 110W Center, 50W Rear

User Reviews (14)

Showing 1-10 of 14  
Mike   AudioPhile [Sep 20, 2016]

Good little amp for midrange and treble rear surround. Separate subwoofer internally amplified for bass. All Carver....Front is $20,000 ALS Loudspeakers and silver seven 700 monoblocks ($30,000) rears are my trusty old Amazing silver editions with tfm 75 750 w/ amp and the 405 5 CH/ amp for mids and highs in rear. Plus the separate sub no one desires more bass in the room. Only wish to attain the Infinity IRS V found for $60,000 system for front, use Carver ALS for rear and relegate the sides for the Amazings. Through my Krell 707 SSP should be pretty theatrical and make my opera and classical awesome. Led Zeppelin..... Forget about it!

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
ntgeek   Audio Enthusiast [Dec 07, 2009]

I have had ground isolation hum come from HK so its not just Carver that can succumb to such things. In the case of the HK, the service manual suggested a design flaw and had you replace a bad cap with a higher capacity one. 99 cents to parts express and I was golden.

I added the carver to my setup and was very delighted by the quality of the sound reproduction. Some low priced amps can distort at higher volumes. The Carver so far does not run into this problem. It does need to warm up for it to produce the best sound, I just leave it on. For the $200 pricepoint I think I did okay. I also noticed that if I do need work done there are still some places that can repair it.

Anyhow, great sound, plenty of power for home use. 5 stars. you can't go wrong with this one.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Canuxican   Audio Enthusiast [Aug 16, 2004]
Strength:

Dependability

Weakness:

middle of the road power at best (front and center) with underpowered rears. Not recommended for two channel music.

This little amp is fine for the 1st step up from mass produced AVRs. It isn't the best effort Bob Carver ever came up with, not by a long shot, but then, I doubt that was the intent. If you are looking for something with greater clarity and depth than a stock AVR this is for you. If you really want to improve the dynamics of your home theater move up the the Sunfire or Bryston multi-channel line. Of course the price is substantially increased as well. The next best option would be multiple amps for each function (my preference) money and space providing.

OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
3
Thaluza   Audio Enthusiast [Jul 28, 2003]
Strength:

Plays loud.

Weakness:

Needs line filter, harsh sounding, Carver went bankrupt.

I have owned several amplifiers, receivers and integrated amps, including the Carver AV-405, Harman Kardon PA-5800, Marantz MM-9000, NAD 7100 and Musical Fidelity A-300. The Carver AV-405 is definitely the worst sounding component in this group. The HK is similar in price but sounds w-a-a-a-y better. The Carver has inadequate noise filtration. I had to buy a line filter to reduce the very annoying hum produced by the Carver. The HK does not require a noise filter when plugged into the same outlet that the Carver uses. Moreover, the HK is much smoother sounding and less fatiguing. The Carver does play loud, but it is not very listenable in my opinion. It is very harsh sounding. One more thing: Carver was in bankruptcy in the late 1990's (I'm not sure what the company's status is currently). With Carver in bankruptcy, service and parts for repairs are hard to find. I ended up giving the Carver away to Goodwill. If you are looking to spend under $300 for a five channel amp, seriously consider the HK PA-5800 over the Carver AV-405. You might also want to consider the NAD 906/916 or a Rotel amp. Stay away from Carver, IMO.

Similar Products Used: Harman Kardon PA-5800, Marantz MM 9000
OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
2
Andrew Edmonds   an Audio Enthusiast [Feb 26, 1997]

I just recently bought this 5 channel amp. It's an extermely good value especially for entry level home theater for people with separates. I got a demo model for around $350, I think it lists for $600 new, but you might find it for $450. Either way it's still a good value. It puts out 100 watts left and right, plud 110 center, and 50 watts to the rear. It also has power steering technology so it can boost any particular channel if it needs it. I'm an entry level hi-fi person right now, so I can't compare it to some high end amps. But I can say this amp performs well, has excellent features, and is worth the money. The only step up I could recommend from this amp would be the $800 Carver 705x THX amp. This amp works very well though for home theater and music. It's clean and accurate, I can't think of any complaints, even minor ones. Good amp, good value. 5 stars for its category and price range. Recommended.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
Chung Tam   Audio Enthusiast [Dec 17, 1999]
Strength:

Low price on the used market, good sound for the money

My reciver is the Pioneer Elite VSX-07TX which is THX 100W/channel which I used to power my Paradigm MKIII 11SE fronts, CC350 center and Atom rears. I wasn't very happy with the sound so I decided to try a seperate amp instead of replacing the 2 months old receiver. I didn't want to spend too much as it was only an experiment. I found a Carver Av405 used and hooked it up to the pre-outs of the Pioneer. The sound improved quite a bit. The highs were crisper and more focused and the bass was much deeper. On very loud and deep effects, the Pioneer used to distort, but the Carver had no problems. Which is odd and unexpected as the Pioneer is rated at 100W vs the Carver's 80W for the fronts. I tried the Carver as a Stereo music only amp and again the sound was much better than expected. I have since upgraded to Marantz MA500/700's for more power and flexibility but I still kept the Carver as a backup. I would highly recommend that you try this amp as you could pair it with an inexpensive seperate surround processor for about the same money as a receiver and get better sound and flexibility.

Similar Products Used: Acurus DIA100, CODA system 100, Marantz MA500/700
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
Mike Little   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 02, 2001]
Strength:

Good sound, excellent sound staging and depth

Weakness:

A buzz I could never get rid of

A versative performer that serves an excellent substitute for most AV receiver amp sections or with entry level separates. It has a clean if somewhat "solid state" sound. Build quality is very good. I did encounter transformer hum particularly when the unit was warming up. A greater annoyance was grounding buzz of which I never could seem to rid the unit. Still it performed well with movies and music.

Similar Products Used: Parasound HCA-806, Rotel RB-985 Mk. I
OVERALL
RATING
3
VALUE
RATING
4
Kevin Miller   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 25, 1999]
Strength:

Good solid power

Weakness:

None noticed

Picked up the AV-405 used and have been very pleased. Good solid power with plenty of reserve. A great amp for home theater or music. Very solid build.

Similar Products Used: Carver CT-29V
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Phil Engel   Audio Enthusiast [Jan 25, 2002]
Strength:

Have had this amp for about 6 years and have had no problems
yet. The sound is great!

Weakness:

None that I can tell

This has been a great amp, but I am ready for something new - I have been waiting for something to happen to this
amp, so I could justify buying a new one, but I think this thing will be around longer than me.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Tommy Guerin   an Audio Enthusiast [Mar 06, 1997]

I auditioned the av-405 last weekend for my home theater, and I was very disappointed. This amp was a floor model from Circuit City. The price was $799, but the salesman made a call to his manager and let me have it for "only" $783 including tax. The sound from this amp was nothing like I imagined it to be. I felt it sounded worse than the old Sony receiver I owned several years ago. I am unsure as whether the unit was abused on the floor or not, but I would not buy this unit if it was half of the price. The sound from my Sony ES receiver is much better that from this amp. I returned the unit. I have since purchased an Acurus 100x3. Will post a review in the coming weeks. I would give this unit a zero if it was an option.

OVERALL
RATING
1
VALUE
RATING
Showing 1-10 of 14  

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