|Overall||Amplifier||Audio features||Connectivity||Streaming services||Extensive connection||Multi-room||Additional features||Video features||Multichannel surround|
|Denon AVR-X4400H||9.4||10||10||8||9||10||10||10||9||9||See price|
|Denon AVR-X4500H||9.4||9||9||8||10||10||10||10||10||9||See price|
|Marantz AV7703||9.4||9||10||9||9||9||10||10||10||9||See price|
|Marantz SR7012||9.4||10||9||9||8||10||10||10||10||9||See price|
|Denon AVRX4400H||9.2||9||9||7||9||10||10||10||10||9||See price|
|Marantz SR6014||9.2||9||10||8||9||10||8||10||10||9||See price|
|Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A2080||8.6||8||9||8||8||9||10||10||9||7||See price|
|Yamaha RX-A2070||8.5||9||8||9||7||8||10||10||9||7||See price|
|Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A1080||8.3||8||9||8||8||9||8||10||8||7||See price|
|Sony STR-ZA2100ES||6.5||7||7||6||0||7||8||7||10||7||See price|
|Sony STR-ZA3100ES||6.3||7||7||6||0||9||8||6||7||7||See price|
Many manufacturers of audio equipment on the market presented their flagship receivers with impressive features. However, the market is crowded, and every year there are new models that are somewhat similar to their predecessors, but still have a whole range of innovations and improvements. And of course, users had the problem of choosing the best AV receiver under 2000.
This is absolutely understandable since the receivers in this segment are modern sophisticated technical devices that are equipped with the latest technological innovations in the world of audio technology. And this review is aimed at examining those functions that users actually use and those with which they will fully immerse themselves in the atmosphere of a home theater. In this price range are the serious Hi-END devices that provide the clear seamless sound with surround effects that will satisfy even the most demanding music lovers.
However, not only sound is an advantage of receivers. Each of the models has on-board technologies for working with video signals. These are technologies whose work is aimed at improving the resolution of the video stream, its color correction, and even giving the 3D effect. The review presents the most interesting ones from leading manufacturers that have improved technical specifications and wider connectivity options, which can provide maximum performance even for future years.
The rating is grouped by brand (all models of one brand, then the next one and so on). We emphasized the best av receiver under 2000 of each brand. The preference was given to new models, but if the older one is still relevant and deserves attention, then it is also presented.
The Denon AVR-X4500H AV receiver owns a 9-channel configuration. It is equipped with all the latest audio/video technologies. The unit develops a rated output power of 120 W with a load resistance of 8 Ohms and is based on proprietary 32-bit D.D.S.C. technology. HD Digital. A power transformer with a notable current margin is installed in the power supply unit of the AV receiver. Thanks to this, Denon AVR-X4500H confidently copes even with complex speakers.
The AV receiver is implemented with decoders for all existing surround sound formats. They are DTS:X, Dolby Atmos, and Auro 3D. The system arrangement based on the Denon AVR-X4500H for reproducing object-oriented 3D formats can be configured as 7.2.2 or 5.2.4. This is suitable to fully sound even a big room. For audio processing, the AV receiver employs a DSP based on four robust SHARC processors and a proprietary AL32 processor, as well as a DAC on 32-bit AKM AK4458VN chips in all channels.
All eight HDMI inputs of the AV receiver support 4K video transmission (HDR, Dolby Vision, HLG) and HDCP 2.2. In addition, the Denon AVR-X4500H processor can convert video from analog and digital sources to 4K resolution. The AV receiver has three HDMI outputs, which provides significant flexibility in building a home theater system, and also allows you to transmit a signal to an additional zone.
All eight HDMI inputs (including one on the front panel) and three HDMI outputs support HDCP 2.2 compatibility, as well as the latest HDMI specifications, including 4K Ultra HD 60 Hz video, 4: 4: 4 Pure Color color sub-sampling, high dynamic range (HDR) and video format 21: 9, 3D and BT.2020. The AVR-X4500H even has an Enhanced Audio Return Channel (eARC) for playing 3D sound through Smart TV applications. Denon AVR-X4500H has the ability to play Dolby Vision and HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma). Dolby Vision literally transforms your viewing experience with amazing brightness, contrast, and color, and HLG offers HDR technology when playing broadcast content.
Audyssey MultEQ XT32 auto-calibration system makes it easy to adjust the ambient sound depending on the parameters and placement of acoustics, as well as the characteristics of the room. In addition to a full range of analog and digital inputs (including the input for connecting a vinyl player), the Denon AVR-X4500H has Bluetooth, as well as network functionality with support for Ethernet and Wi-Fi. Supported playback of files with parameters up to 24 bit / 192 kHz (PCM) and DSD 2.8 / 5.6 MHz.
To build a multi-room system on the basis of Denon AVR-X4500H, you can use special outputs, go turn on the device in the proprietary HEOS system. To control the Denon AVR-X4500H, it is convenient to use an intuitive mobile application.
Marantz SR6014 is a 9.2-channel device that produces 185 W per channel at 6 Ohm load and gives object-oriented 3D sound thanks to supporting for Dolby Atmos and DTS:X formats (7.1.2 or 5.1.4). When you connect an additional power amplifier to the Marantz SR6014 receiver, you can build a 7.1.4-channel system. When organizing a simpler surround sound system, you can connect speakers in an additional zone to two free amplifier channels. The device works with Ultra HD resolution and can scale the video to 4K.
The Marantz SR6014 AV receiver has features similar to the low-end model in this series but is equipped with nine channels of sound amplification. Thus, on the basis of the Marantz SR6014, you can create home theaters in large rooms, where an increased number of channels will allow you to create a uniform sound space. In addition, the Marantz SR6014 complies with the IMAX Enhanced standard, which guarantees excellent image and sound quality when viewing the corresponding content.
Marantz SR6014 is equipped with all the new technologies that are in demand in a modern home theater. There are Dolby Atmos and DTS:X decoders, as well as processors for generating surround sound in the absence of ceiling speakers. If the system needs to use a larger number of channels, then you can connect external amplifiers to the Marantz SR6014 through an 11.2-channel output from the processor. The AV receiver circuit uses HDAM amplifier modules, as well as select components in the sound circuit. For digital-to-analog signal conversion, it uses 32-bit AKM AK4458 DACs. The output stages in the apparatus are made on discrete elements, due to which the load provides a high output current necessary for working with complex acoustics.
The Marantz SR6014 is equipped with eight HDMI inputs (one located on the front panel) and three outputs, supporting 4K / HDR10 / Dolby Vision video and HDCP 2.3. The AV receiver also has a full range of digital and analog connections, including for a turntable. Also, in the Marantz SR6014, there is a full range of streaming services, and the network connection is made to Ethernet or Wi-Fi. This model also provides a direct connection of wireless devices via AirPlay 2 or Bluetooth.
Marantz SR6014 has the support of popular voice control systems Alexa, Siri, and Google Assistant, which allow you to search for the necessary information and content. The AV receiver can also be controlled using a proprietary application that provides the ability to fine-tune all its parameters. You can use HEOS proprietary technology to integrate the Marantz SR6014 into a multiroom.
The Marantz SR6012 is a model with 9 built-in amplifiers and 11.2-channel audio processing. The receiver offers the support for Dolby Atmos and DTS: X in 7.1.4 configuration, which makes this model a good home theater receiver. Marantz SR6012 in 11.2 channels configuration can also serve as a preamplifier. However, this device has slightly lower power indicators than the above considered receivers - 185 W per channel at 6 Ohms. Alternatively, you can add a 5-channel or 7-channel amplifier to control L/C/R, while the built-in AVR amplifiers process the height channels. The SR6012 has discrete amplification with an output power of 110 Watt per channel. The Audyssey MultEQ XT32 auto-calibration system takes care of sound correction depending on the room. In terms of video, the SR6012 is compatible with the latest 4K HDR formats. All HDMI inputs and outputs support the specifications of HDCP 2.2, which allow to process video signals Ultra HD/60 Hz, 4: 4: 4, and there is also a sub processor for HDR image processing in 21: 9 aspect ratio in full 3D. These specifications make the SR6012 compatible with modern Blu-ray Ultra HD, Dolby Vision, and future Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG) HDR firmware updates.
The presented model has extensive network capabilities. Wi-Fi, AirPlay, and Bluetooth are supported. When the device is connected to the network, this AVR can work with NAS (network-attached storage devices), Internet radio, Pandora, SiriusXM, and Spotify Connect. There is compatibility with HEOS, which provides streaming audio in a multi-room system that means the SR6012 can integrate with other HEOS products so you can enjoy your favorite music anywhere in your home. Explore, browse and play your own music library, as well as access to streaming music services and thousands of Internet radio stations using the free HEOS app, while Bluetooth and AirPlay support allow you to stream music directly from any compatible device. Receivers can handle hi-res audio formats including DSD (2.8 / 5.6MHz), FLAC, ALAC, AIFF, and WAV. The RS232 port and IP control make the Marantz SR6012 optimal for custom installations.
In terms of sound output, the receiver produces high-quality sound that can satisfy a demanding audiophile. The receiver can masterfully handle both quiet scenes where you can hear even the tiniest sounds with great clarity and the environmental ambient sounds become the main attraction without interfering with the dialogue as well as the most bombastic action scenes where it feels like it punches you in the face from multiple directions and never let go until the action stops. A lot of receivers tend to create an uncontrollable cacophony when they are given a busy soundtrack not being able to handle very good separation of sound layers, not here as the SR6012 passed the test with flying colors.
This receiver operates by applying 7.2 channels to distribute the sound stream at an output power of 175 W per channel at 6 Ohm. This model certified by THX. THX Certified Select guarantees the sound level as you can feel at a commercial theater in your home. Wired connection with other devices is provided due to 8 HDMI-connectors. At the same time, 2 of them are frontal. The latest model of the digital-to-analog converter which is equipped in this home theater receiver, allows the listener to guarantee a natural, but at the same time multi-dimensional sound with many audio tones. Featuring special high current amplification and state-of-the-art processing that preserves the integrity of the signal from the source, this receiver provides superior sound reproduction in your media room and beyond. To provide the current needed to instantly respond to dynamic signal changes, Onkyo uses a fully customizable massive transformer and huge sound-quality capacitors. Even at high volume, the TX-RZ920 never feels tense or unbalanced due to complex musical passages and dynamic movie soundtracks.
The RZ920 is equipped with 7 HDMI inputs and at the front panel, there is another HDMI input under the plastic flap. One of the features its availability of pre outs for all 11 channels including the height used for Atmos.
Connecting the device wirelessly is traditionally carried out through Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. In addition, the receiver supports the AirPlay interface, the Spotify streaming audio server, and can play music broadcast by Internet radio stations. The network capabilities of the model allow streaming music from popular network services like TIDAL, Deezer, Pandora, and TuneIn. Moreover, there is the support of FireConnect, Chromecast built-in, and DTS Play-Fi platforms, or distribute audio in up to three zones via powered and pre-/line outputs.
The RZ920 is built on a premium 32-bit/384kHz digital-to-analog converter that delivers pure and clear sound. Also, a significant contribution to the reproduction of high-quality sound makes the Dynamic Audio Amplification feature which brings immense power with low distortion for hair-raising movie sound effects. For a natural reproducing of the bottoms, technology is provided the Phase-matching Bass Enhancement, which produces deep, low-frequency effects without distorting vocals and dialogue.
The design of the RX-A3080 is made in the familiar Yamaha style and does not present anything new. However, it is not bad. The glass panel covers about a third of the front of the receiver. A large display is hidden behind it, on one side of which there are a power button and AI pointer, and on the other - a Pure Direct button.
On the left side of the front panel is the source selection knob, and symmetrically to it on the right side is the volume control. In the middle between them is a large metal cover, under which the menu and connection buttons are hidden. We will consider them later in this review.
The A3080 case is made of metal and tightened securely - the build quality is excellent. The front panel is made of aluminum, giving the receiver strength and a noble look.
The model uses anti-resonance technology in the form of a fifth leg in the center of the bottom panel, designed to damp out possible vibrations. The A3080 receiver is available in two colors - black and silver.
For new users, the rear panel of the model with a huge number of connections can seem intimidating. However, everything is organized in a logical way. Each type of connection is grouped next to similar types. So, all HDMI connectors are located in the upper part. Below them, there is the component input, then to the left are the analog inputs, and below are the pre-amplification inputs. The network and control inputs are located in the upper right, XLR connectors in the lower left, and the rest of the space is reserved for speaker connections. There is definitely logic in this arrangement. However, there is no color coding as in Denon devices, so you need to be careful when connecting.
So, the A3080 has seven inputs and 3 HDMI outputs. All of them are compatible with the HDCP 2.2 standard and have a bandwidth of 18 Gb / s with support for 4K resolution at a frequency of 60p, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG formats. Three outputs can be simultaneously connected to different displays in one or different rooms, for example, for zone 2, in order to view different programs. The first output is compatible with ARC technology.
As for the power, the manufacturer did not disclose its value when all channels work, but for two 8-ohm channels, this figure is 150 watts per channel. For Yamaha, the quality of digital-to-analog converters has always been a priority when creating the best av receiver under 2000 dollars. So the A3080 uses the ESS SABER PRO ES9026PRO Ultra DAC for the main channels and the SABER ES9007S for the rest. They utilize special noise reduction technologies, providing clear and crisp sound from any source.