AV Receivers

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Danny Phillips  |  Aug 28, 2013  |  0 comments

Onkyo’s success in the AVR market stems from its ability to hit the sweet spot between value and performance, and this 7.2-channel model looks to offer more of the same with a load of features and a nice price.

Mark Craven  |  Aug 09, 2013  |  0 comments

AVR manufacturers are obsessed with matching their TV counterparts and introducing a gamut of new models each year, despite bona fide audio developments being few and far between. As such, Pioneer's VSX-923 represents a revamp of the VSX-922 (itself a revamp of the VSX-921), sharing many of the same features and design. In fact, apart from doing away with the drop-down flap on the front which hid the USB input and setup mic jack, the front of the VSX-923 is identical to its forebear. This equates to a nice big display flanked by two hefty knobs (volume and input selection), all set off by a brushed black chassis that will match the other noir components on your rack. It's kinda stylish, in a discreet sort of way.

Steve May  |  Aug 08, 2013  |  0 comments

The STR-DA5800ES is an AV receiver unlike any other. With it Sony has avoided the obvious – there’s no AirPlay or Bluetooth streaming – but pushed the envelope when it comes to leading-edge signal processing and usability. It’s remarkably forgiving of your living space but offers uncompromised audio quality. For many AV enthusiasts this will sound like very good news indeed.

Richard Stevenson  |  Jul 10, 2013  |  0 comments

Sitting in the shadow of Yamaha’s flagship Aventage receiver, the £1,500 RX-A2020 is a big and hefty lump of AVR goodness. The range build and cosmetics are superb, even if there is a serious hint of Harman Kardon about that full-width black Perspex screen, and the display is bold, bright and large enough to see from the other side of the room – even if you live in a sports hall. The rest of the fascia is pleasingly minimalistic and the sculptured knobs, different sizes at that, have a cool and solid feel to them.

Martin Pipe  |  May 26, 2013  |  0 comments

Occupying the lowest rung of Yamaha's elite 'Aventage' range, the RX-A820 is a versatile beast with DSPs galore (an area where Yamaha has a rich history), a claimed 7 x 130W of amplification at your disposal and no fewer than eight HDMI ports. With its £850 price tag it's aimed at those who want something more than just a basic AVR.

Richard Stevenson  |  Mar 31, 2013  |  0 comments

Somewhat dispensing with the preamble, Denon’s AVR-4520 takes the AV receiver market by the scruff of the fascia and gives it a good shake. This flagship model does cost a significant chunk of money but it is one of the most flexible, well-featured and cleverly thought-out AVRs ever made. Add to this a stunning sound quality that strikes the perfect balance between detail and dynamics, and you have a product that will absolutely delight movie and music fans. We love it.

Steve May  |  Mar 28, 2013  |  0 comments

AV receivers are too big, too complicated and too damn old school. That’s the unspoken truth for a generation weaned on portable devices and wireless widgets. While home cinephiles will rightfully defend an opposing view, the fact is that for many, 
AVRs have simply become an irrelevance.  

Richard Stevenson  |  Mar 11, 2013  |  0 comments

There is something right about using 
a BD player and AVR that have been designed together as an holistic partnership. One can expect not only matching cosmetics but a synergistic duo, like Bonnie and Clyde or Sooty and Sweep. And not only should their performance exceed the sum of the parts, they won’t look like a car-crash into a Richer Sounds shop-front on your kit rack, either.

Danny Phillips  |  Jan 20, 2013  |  0 comments

When it comes to AV receivers, Onkyo campaigns to be the people’s champion. Every year its entry-level models come packed to the hilt with features, sporting a competitive price tag and, more often than not, a nailed-on sound quality, too. This commitment to value has made Onkyo the best-selling home cinema receiver brand for four years running, which kinda tells you everything you need to know.

Adrian Justins  |  Jan 19, 2013  |  0 comments

Pioneer's SC-2022 AV receiver proudly ditches the VSX prefix of its predecessor (the VSX-2012) to join the more illustrious company of its SC-toting brethren, although it doesn’t quite make it into the elite LX club, falling short 
in its construction and lacking Air Studios calibration. It gains its SC credentials largely through the adoption of an all-digital Direct Energy HD amplifier, which uses shorter signal paths and has more efficient cooling, leading Pioneer to claim a better performance and lower power consumption.

Steve May  |  Dec 02, 2012  |  0 comments

Boasting an armoured build that would do Tony Stark proud, Onkyo’s new TX-NR5010 receiver is a mouth-watering proposition - a 25kg home cinema heavyweight boasting state-of-the art audio/visual processing and unbending muscle.

Richard Stevenson  |  Oct 27, 2012  |  0 comments

May saw Pioneer doing its traditional launch of a new range of AV receivers. As usual, the lower- and mid-range models break cover first – and the VSX-922 is one of the latter.

Steve May  |  Oct 26, 2012  |  0 comments

The STR-DA5700ES is an important product for Sony’s home entertainment division. Not only does it represent a concerted effort to retake ground lost at the upper end of the AV market, it comes with refinements that we’ve not seen before, and some bold new ideas. This is Sony reinventing home theatre for the network era.

Richard Stevenson  |  Jul 18, 2012  |  0 comments

Fresh from scooping the industry equivalent of an Oscar for technical innovation at this year’s CES, Lexicon’s DD-8 power amplifier comes to the test bench flaunting the looks of a size-zero super-model – wistfully thin, lithe and lightweight, and sexily wrapped in cat-walk style designer clothes. Unlike most supermodels there is more than airspace between its rack-mountable ears, too. Using some clever proprietary amplifier technology, Lexicon’s DD-8 packs eight channels of 125W into that slimline chassis.

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