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Jameson Young
Jameson Young

Amp Bluetooth Receiver Best Buy

The size of the speaker system you have (or hope to expand to) will typically dictate the price point of the AV receiver that you consider, as brands will tend to decrease the number of channels with each step-down model. More expensive AVRs will have more power and be able to drive more speakers for larger Dolby Atmos and DTS:X set-ups or speakers in additional zones.

amp bluetooth receiver best buy

Most entry-level AVRs from the past two years offer at least seven channels of amplification which means they can handle a traditional 7.1 configuration compromising full range left, centre, right, side left, side right, rear left and rear right speakers as well as a subwoofer (the .1 represents processing for dedicated active subwoofer). Or, if a receiver supports Dolby Atmos (which most do), those seven channels can be rearranged into a 5.1.2 layout with the rear speakers swapped to be front height channels.

Typically, home theater receivers sport at least seven HDMI inputs, which should cover the majority of a user's streaming sticks, consoles and Blu-ray players. If not though, more expensive models will sometimes offer one or two more, and if you'd like to hook up both a TV and a projector, make sure that there are at least two HDMI outputs.

While most home cinema receivers from the past two years will have at least one HDMI 2.1 output with eARC, some entry-level models only offer HDMI 2.0 input ports. But, unless you are a gamer, for most people, HDMI 2.0 will meet all their film-watching needs as it supports 4K signals at up to 60 frames per second, which no movie source currently goes beyond.

In 2020 several newly released gaming-friendly AV receivers were hit by a significant HDMI 2.1 bug that caused a black screen for users with next-gen consoles trying to play 4K games at 120Hz via an Xbox series X and Nvidia card. This problem may have only been an issue for a select group of users, but it was a significant blow for those who had eagerly purchased one of the latest and greatest AVRs for gaming set-up.

The impacted AV receivers include: Marantz's SR range (SR5015, SR6015, SR7015 and SR8015), Denon's X-series range (AVR-X2700H, AVC-X3700H, AVC-X4700H, AVC-X6700H) and Yamaha's RX-V4A, RX-V6A, RX-A2A, TSR-400 and TSR-700.

Regarding its older, affected models, Yamaha began a hardware upgrade programme, beginning in Autumn 2021, to update the HDMI board on select 2020 AV receivers to allow 4K/120Hz signal transmission for Xbox Series X and NVIDIA RTX30 GPU-based devices.

Yamaha advises owners of the RX-V4A, RX-V6A, RX-A2A, TSR-400 and TSR-700 AV receivers to register their devices with Yamaha to ensure that they receive direct communications on the programme and a 24-month complimentary upgrade offer.

AV receivers have many different monikers: AVR, surround sound amp, home theater receiver, Dolby Atmos receiver - but all these names refer to a multichannel amplifier that can decode surround sound information while also acting as a video and streaming hub for AV input sources and output devices.

The most crucial thing to consider when buying an AVR is matching it to the size of your surround system and deciding whether to allow for expansion in the future. Plenty of AV receivers now include Dolby Atmos and DTS:X support for adding even more sound channels with the addition of height channel speakers. Sometimes, these channels can also be deployed as a second zone.

Modern AVRs have become real home entertainment hubs and can bring a host of features such as Bluetooth, Apple AirPlay, multi-room streaming and DAB to your system, making it truly versatile and multi-functional. But most of all, the best AV receivers deliver brilliant, room-filling sound. Below you'll find our pick of them, all tried, tested and star-rated in our dedicated testing rooms, along with an AVR FAQ at the bottom of the page.

When hunting for an AV receiver or amplifier, it can be hard not to get caught up in the battle of the tech specs and those who become too focused on comparing spec sheets may well overlook last year's 2022 What Hi-Fi? Award-winning JBL Synthesis SDR-35.

While its format support is thorough, its amplification for just seven channels and current lack of HDMI 2.1 connections (all of the sockets are 18gbps HDMI 2.0s but a hardware upgrade to HDMI 2.1 will be offered towards the end of 2021) are trumped by Denon receivers costing around a sixth of its price tag.

Yamaha considers the RX-A6A the best-value AVR in its current line-up as it boasts a near-identical feature set to the flagship (and much more expensive) RX-A8A but with changes to its internal circuitry and two fewer channels of amplification.

Sonically the AVR31 puts in a lustrous performance with a clean, controlled clarity that unearths nuance and depth in film soundtracks and music alike. If future-proofed features are equally as important to you as having the very best sound quality, and your pockets are deep enough, then the AVR31 is an ideal choice for your home cinema.

We are always impartial and do our best to make sure we're hearing every product at its very best, so we'll try plenty of different styles of films, and TV shows that show what each AVR is capable of with both advanced and standard audio formats. We'll check all the features on board, including music playback with a variety of genres and allow for plenty of listening time as well as running them in before we begin reviewing.

If you have a high-end audio system or would prefer a Bluetooth audio receiver with digital audio outputs, the iFi Audio Zen Blue V2 was without question the best-sounding Bluetooth receiver we evaluated in our latest round of tests. Connection-wise, it has you covered with both optical and coaxial digital audio outputs, as well as a 4.4 mm balanced audio connection and stereo analog RCA outputs. The Zen Blue V2 is also a great choice if you need more signal range than most Bluetooth receivers can provide. All the rest of our test units either became unstable or lost connection somewhere within the 1,518-square-foot suburban home in which we did our testing, but the Zen Blue V2, fitted with the supplied long-range antenna, maintained a stable connection from an iPhone located all the way in the far corner of the backyard. Combine that with easy setup, reliable and near-instantaneous reconnections, and an attractive form, and the Zen Blue V2 is the best pick for demanding audiophiles, despite its lofty price tag.

To whittle the list down even further, we focused on which Bluetooth codecs each receiver supported. Since the most affordable model we definitely intended to test (the $40 Monoprice 38071) supports the AAC, aptX, aptX HD, and aptX Low Latency codecs, there was simply no excuse for more expensive models to omit those formats. For pricier Bluetooth receivers, we also gave preference to those that supported more advanced but less common codecs like LDAC and LHDC/HWA. This criterion eliminated a lot of potential competitors.

Lastly, we knocked receivers out of contention if Amazon had delisted them, which is never a good sign. The retailer has removed several companies that make inexpensive Bluetooth devices from the site for trying to manipulate their ratings.

I did not have access to an ABX switcher box to allow for complete brand concealment in my testing, but I still did my best to obscure the connections to remove any of my own biases from the equation. I also changed the name of each Bluetooth audio receiver in my iPhone and iPad to some non-identifying string of nonsense numbers. All of the receivers were connected to a Rotel A12 MKII integrated amplifier (itself connected to a pair of Paradigm Studio 100 v5 tower speakers), and I compared the test units against one another two at a time, taking notes on performance before tracing the cables and updating my notes with the actual model name of each device. 041b061a72


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