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AV RECEIVER REVIEWS

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Apr 20, 2009 0 comments
Price: $1,900 At A Glance: Dizzying array of music networking features • Superb video processing from Anchor Bay • Eight-point auto setup and room EQ

Of Tea Leaves and Logos

An A/V receiver isn’t just a product. It’s a series of diplomatic handshakes. Sure, manufacturers develop some of the technologies that go into their products, but they also license a lot of the technologies from other outfits—which enhances their products with the fruits of many different R&D labs. The Yamaha RX-V3900 is a beefy powerhouse on paper, rated at 140 watts times seven, but if you check out Yamaha’s Website, you’ll more likely notice the sheer profusion of logos. I counted no fewer than 24 different ones. You can read them like tea leaves.

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Oct 27, 2008 0 comments
Price: $350 Highlights: Five channels times 105 watts • HDMI with high-resolution PCM • Includes Yamaha’s YPAO auto setup

Home Theater Out of the Box

Why would anyone buy a budget receiver and satellite/subwoofer speakers instead of a simpler home theater in a box system? To the uninitiated, the HTIB seems like a no-brainer. It spares the consumer the rigors of equipment matching and sometimes even throws in a disc drive.

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Dennis Burger Posted: Feb 08, 2013 4 comments

Yamaha RX-V473 A/V Receiver
Audio Performance
Video Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
 

Yamaha RX-V573 A/V Receiver
Audio Performance
Video Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
Price: $450 (RX-V473); $550 (RX-V573) At A Glance (both models): Really fantastic sound quality for the price • Apple AirPlay, DLNA, Internet radio, and app control • Lean on streaming and other features

Conventional wisdom amongst us A/V geeks who put audio performance above all else is that there’s no such thing as a good $500 A/V receiver anymore. At least not from the big, well-known manufacturers whose wares you’d find at the typical electronics store. This mythical beast did exist before the dark days, before the Features Wars, but given that even a mid-priced offering these days is expected to sport all sorts of streaming audio and video goodies, something had to give. And sound quality has traditionally been that something.

So it’s something of a novelty for me to be sitting here with not one, but two good $500-ish receivers from Yamaha. The company’s RX-V473 and RX-V573 look identical from the front and both fall within $50 of that target price point—the former fifty bucks down, the latter fifty bucks up.

Filed under
Dennis Burger Posted: Jul 10, 2013 0 comments

Audio Performance
Video Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
Price: $450 At A Glance: Great sound for the price • MHL-enabled HDMI • Tricky setup

In a world so mixed up, muddled up, and shook up that we can’t even depend on Superman to wear his red Underoos outside his pants like a proper superhero, it’s heartening to know that tax evasion and mortality aren’t the only certainties in life anymore. If anything, a new slate of A/V receivers from the big names in consumer electronics is even a surer certainty, with high-end features from last year’s offerings trickling down a model number or two and support for the latest connectivity features from the middle of the line on up.

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uavKim Wilson Posted: Jun 11, 2008 0 comments

New technologies have a way of becoming less expensive over a shorter period of time with each passing year. Case in point—the RX-V663 A/V receiver from Yamaha, which provides a complete 7.1-channel system (95Wpc) with some of the most advanced features available in an AVR for less than $600.

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Feb 27, 2014 0 comments

Audio Performance
Video Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $850

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Wi-Fi adapter supplied
AirPlay built in
iOS-USB and MHL-HDMI
Minus
Bluetooth adapter is optional

THE VERDICT
Great sound and no-extra-charge Wi-Fi functionality for well under a thousand bucks.

“There may be said to be two classes of people in the world; those who constantly divide the people of the world into two classes, and those who do not.” Robert Benchley’s Law of Distinction might also apply to audio/video receivers as they vie for the attention of two warring tribes, the Apple tribe and the anything-but-Apple tribe. For Apple loyalists, the Yamaha RX-V775WA offers AirPlay wireless connectivity, a front-panel USB jack into which you can plug any recent iOS device, and an iOS-speaking control app.

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jul 21, 2008 0 comments
Making receivers easy. Well, easier.

The Consumer Electronics Association recently kicked off a “Convert Your Mom” campaign to advance the transition to digital television. One thing your mom will probably never want is a surround receiver. Sure, no home theater buff in her right mind would relegate audio functions to TV speakers. But, although the receiver is the nerve center for many systems, it’s also a stumbling block to many potential users. Receivers just do too many good things—entailing setup and adjustment hassles along the way. Make them simpler, and you lose capabilities. Make them full featured, and you get an instruction manual that’s like War and Peace (minus the literary merit).

Filed under
Mark Fleischmann Posted: Dec 14, 2011 0 comments
Audio Performance
Video Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
Price: $900 At A Glance: Clean, smooth amplification • Direct USB input and app for iDevices • Bluetooth, DLNA media access

Some manufacturers of audio/video receivers offer two different lines. There’s a value-oriented line for the hardheaded consumer who wants as many features per dollar as possible. And then there’s a higher-end line for the consumer who also wants a full feature set but is willing to pay more for better build quality and higher performance. Yamaha goes a step further, dividing its 13 receivers into three lines.

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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Feb 19, 2003 0 comments

I've always appreciated the quality of Yamaha receivers; in fact, my very first "serious" stereo receiver was a Yamaha. So it was with eager anticipation that I agreed to review the company's current flagship receiver, the Rx-Z1.

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David Vaughn Posted: May 07, 2008 0 comments

According to Wikipedia, a flagship is the lead ship in a fleet of vessels that is usually the fastest, largest, newest, or most heavily armed. In terms of home-theater electronics, a flagship model is the company's top-of-the-line design, with cutting-edge features, capabilities, and technologies.

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Fred Manteghian Posted: Aug 11, 2008 0 comments
More canals than Venice.
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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Jul 26, 2010 0 comments
Price: $2,700 At A Glance: Numerous networked music options including Rhapsody • Anchor Bay VRS video processing • HDMI 1.3 connectivity excludes 3D

Features, Performance, or Both?

In Akira Kurosawa’s classic film Rashomon, a violent crime is followed by several markedly variable versions of the same story as told from the viewpoints of four different characters: the criminal, two victims, and finally a relatively neutral observer. In the same manner, readers may finish this review with wildly divergent ideas of what’s important and whether the Yamaha RX-Z7 is right for them.

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Fred Manteghian Posted: Oct 16, 2004 0 comments

A cross between a torque-driven Datsun Z and a rev-happy Mazda RX was the first thing I thought of when I read the model designation of Yamaha's new flagship receiver: RX-Z9. I wasn't far off. This baby is a beast of a receiver with enough horse under the hood to drag you kicking and spitting into a 21st-century home theater beyond reproach. The list of standard features is as long as a dragster's tailpipes, but starting with the 170W to each of seven primary channels (and another 50W for two Presence channels), Yamaha's intentions are quite clear: This is all the receiver you need!

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Ultimate AV Staff Posted: May 24, 2006 0 comments

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