Yamaha Has New Receivers and Speakers
Yamaha probably doesn't get enough credit as a speaker manufacturer, so let's start with the new NS-700 line with their gleaming black gloss enclosures. I especially like the truncated-pyramid shape of the 300-watt NS-SW700 sub ($800). Other models include a tower ($800/each), monitor ($400/each), and center ($500/each). All have aluminum tweeters and PMD woofers. Sometime I'll have to get Yamaha to tell me what PMD is. Of course Yamaha is also a major power in receivers. New ones include the second from top-line RX-Z7, with 140 watts times seven, Anchor Bay video processing, and web browser for $2700. There's an RX-V3900 with the same power spec and fewer features ($1900), though like its higher-priced sibling, it is Sirius/XM-ready, and boasts both internet radio and free digital over-the-air HD Radio reception. Another notable feature is a new HD-savvy GUI that I'd really like to have a look at -- Yamaha has been stuck in 1980s-style monochrome graphics for too long. There's an RX-V1900 with 130 watts times seven ($1400) and more modest feature set. Yamaha also showed the YAS-71, a 2.1-channel soundbar with 70 watts times two plus a further 70 watts for the sub channel.