Once an afterthought, your AV receiver has now become the centerpiece of your sound system. Gaming, surround sound and streaming music services have opened up an endless array of possibilities for home entertainment. All of these rely on sound as an integral part of the experience. As more media formats and components get added to your sound system, your A/V receiver must keep pace with the quantity and demands of the system elements.
Quality Comes at a Price…or Does It?
Consumers are constantly having to weigh cost versus quality when making purchase decisions, and the choice of audio/visual receivers is no exception. With so many makes and models on the market, you need to weed out the elite systems from the poorer quality ones right away. The discerning buyer can use a few key features to distinguish products and make the smart and value-driven selection on an AV receiver.
- Dolby Atmos® & DTS:X® Enabled
As the two most prominent object-based surround sound technologies on the market, they both support full three-dimensional sound, including height channels. If you want the theater experience at home, you want a receiver that supports both.
- IMAX® Enhanced Certification
Yes, the immersive sound technology that’s used by IMAX is available in the most elite AV receivers. IMAX Mode reproduces sound at the highest levels and delivers lMAX® Enhanced content as the filmmakers intended. And, yes, you’re going to want it.
- Multi-Zone Capability
Everyone wants great surround sound, and today’s receivers deliver. But what if you’re not using all seven or nine channels in your home theater setup? Why not put those unused receiver channels to work—powering speakers on the patio or in a different room? If this sounds like a feature you want, look for a receiver that supports two or three separate zones. This will allow you to play music on the patio while watching a movie in full surround inside.
- Supports Smart Home Technology
Technologies are getting more advanced by the second, so you want an AV receiver that can keep up. Even if you’re not using Alexa or Google assistant today, chances are you might down the road. As smart home technology becomes more commonplace, you’ll want the most powerful sound system in your house to support those devices.
- High Current Capability
Any receiver can power a speaker that’s easy to drive. However, if you have speakers that are rated 4-ohms, they require a lot of power at high volumes. So you need a receiver that can deliver high current to meet these demands. Look for receiver models that are rated to handle 4-ohm loads and deliver high current.
Here’s the good news: Today’s AV receivers are packed with advanced technology and flat-out cool features. The bad news is that cutting through the product details, specs and buzzwords can make the research and buying process more challenging than ever. By knowing a few of the key features and advancements to look for, you can find the right balance of cost and sound quality.
If you’re looking for an elite AV receiver, don’t forget to consider Pioneer. We’ve created the best quality audio equipment since 1938. Check out our leading AV receivers today.