Your home audio and video systems are controlled by the top mid-range home theater receivers. Your TV or projector, streaming devices, surround sound speakers, subwoofer, and gaming consoles may all be connected to one central location using a receiver.
As a result, controlling the volume and inputs is simple because everything is set up and prepared for usage. For anyone establishing a home theater who doesn’t want to spend a fortune on a high-end solution, they’re a wonderful fit.
The number of HDMI ports on receivers should be sufficient to accommodate your full setup. All of the speakers in your system should be able to be connected to and amplified by them. Since some receivers only offer 5.1-channel surround sound, if you have a 7.1 surround sound system, for example, you’ll need a receiver that supports that kind of setup.
Additionally, you’ll want to confirm that your receiver is compatible with the video and audio standards you intend to use, so look for 4K support and other audio standards like Dolby Audio. Hi-res audio, video switching and processing, and 4K upscaling are signs of a great receiver.
The Denon AVR-S960H is the best mid-range home theater receiver we looked at because it offers 8K pass-through, up to 7.2 channel compatibility, and other premium features at a mid-range price. If the AVR-960H is not for you, we have also included our top recommendations in other categories, such as the finest solutions for various surround sound systems and the best A/V receivers under $100.
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The AV component design from Marantz has a timeless elegance to it. The small porthole display and curving fascia speak of history and traditional musicianship. But don’t be fooled; this AV receiver is also a cutting-edge movie beast. Its audio performance impressed us much, and the soundstage was effortlessly controlled. Sonic placement never feels rushed and is always accurate.
It is a model with 9 channels that can be set up for 7.1.2. Additionally, it is certified for IMAX Enhanced, which means that when it detects flagged content, the bass control handling will automatically alter to deeper bass. There is also Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization and Virtual DTS: X. The receiver has a single HDMI 2.1 input that can support 8K resolution, and it supports AirPlay 2 and Alexa smart features.
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The Sony STR-DH190 is not like the other radios on this list and is a very cost-effective alternative. It isn’t for gaming, Netflix binges, watching anything in particular, or even watching a game. This is a receiver for music, and vinyl collectors may particularly enjoy this model due to its clear sound and little distortion. One percent is the total harmonic distortion rate. Some of the other models on this list clocked in at rates that are ten times higher.
The STR-DH190 has one analog audio output and four analogs (RCA) audio inputs. The phono input has a connection for your turntable, and there is also one for headphones. The two-channel receiver supports Bluetooth, but it is devoid of Wi-Fi, HDMI, and a number of other features found on a home theater receiver intended for watching movies or playing video games. But if you’re a music enthusiast who values pure sound, this model might be worth considering.
Anyone can benefit from the Denon AVR-960H’s features; gamers, movie buffs, and sports enthusiasts can all enjoy them. In order to provide the finest gaming experience, it supports 4K/120Hz pass-through, as well as varying refresh rates and an auto-low latency option. Six HDMI-in connections and two HDMI-out ports on the receiver allow you to connect devices, and movies may be watched in up to 8k resolution.
The six input ports allow you to connect your PS5, FireTV stick, Blu-ray player, and other devices while still leaving three additional HDMI ports open. Only one of the HDMI inputs supports 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz video pass-through and upscaling (this port also supports eARC).
Up to 7.2 channels of surround sound are supported with the AVR-960H. It features a discrete seven-channel amplifier with 90 watts (8 ohms) per channel and dual subwoofer outputs for powerful bass. You may enjoy a theater-like experience at home if you connect a suitable projector and surround sound system.
The 960H is compatible with Dolby Atmos, Dolby Vision, and a number of other audio and visual standards. Additionally, you may benefit from Wi-Fi, Airplay compatibility, and voice assistant control via Alexa, Siri, or Google Assistant. You can’t go wrong with this Denon receiver if you’re searching for one that allows you flexibility.
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Consider the Sony STR-DN1080 if you want a feature-rich receiver that offers excellent value. With a 7.2-channel speaker configuration or a 5.1.2-channel Dolby Atmos or DTS:X arrangement, this device features adaptable surround setup options. There are more solutions available for individuals with limited room.
With Phantom Surround, you can get a seven-channel surround sound experience using just five speakers. With just two front speakers, S-Force Virtual Surround offers a restricted surround sound experience. The STR-DN1080 includes Hi-Res two-channel audio listening from local and USB-connected sources together with its surround sound capabilities for watching movies.
Six 3D, 4K, and HDR-compatible HDMI inputs and two HDMI outputs are available on the receiver for video, all of which are suitable for current 4K video sources and external media streamers that give users access to 4K streaming material from services like Netflix.
The STR-DN1080 also supports network and online streaming access via an Ethernet connection or built-in Wi-Fi, in addition to the essential audio and video functionality. For direct streaming from compatible portable devices, it also offers Bluetooth and Airplay. The STR-DN1080 is a great option if you’re searching for a low-cost home theater receiver with flexible connection/content access for a range of settings.
5. Arcam AVR30
When it comes to home theater, Arcam is frequently mentioned as the expert’s preference. This powerful receiver comes with both Auro-3D compatibility and IMAX Enhanced certification in addition to the standard list of immersive codecs. The AVR30 is a 7-channel receiver, but if you’re willing to add more amplification, there is processing headroom for 16 channels.
Due to Dirac Live, which does a first-rate job of tailoring the AVR’s output to your listening space, calibration is best in class. Less remarkable is the incompatibility with 2.1; Arcam is proposing a complete board switch, but this is an unaffordable repair. However, the AVR30 makes up for its lack of modern conveniences with performance, demonstrating its ability to produce sharp highs and robust lows. Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, Google Chromecast, and AirPlay 2 are all included in the wireless support.
What Home Theater receivers are the best ones?
Our ranking of the best Home Theater receivers features the Denon AVR-X47000H at the top for a number of reasons. To begin with, this bad guy is expertly built. Nearly all audio formats are supported, and an audio calibration system is included to guarantee the maximum level of accuracy.
Additionally, this 9-channel amp creates a rich, layered sound that transports you to movies, sporting events, soundtracks, or anything else playing on the TV. If you want a somewhat more expensive, louder-sounding option, take a look at the Denon AVR-X4700H.
The Denon AVR-X2700H offers a cheap starting point for the company’s 2021 X-series Home Theater receivers while also offering exceptional value. Although the price tag suggests budget-friendly elements, it defies expectations by taking place in a cozy viewing area rather than a huge theater.
A 7-channel Dolby Atmos receiver, the Marantz NR1711 is perfect for smaller rooms and can fill them with spacious, dramatic audio. Nearly any kind of audio source can be connected to by listeners, and it even supports Bluetooth headphones for private listening. We really adore the receiver’s sleek casing, which gives it a high-end appearance.
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How Home Theater receivers are examined
We play a variety of media, such as movies, music, and games, when testing devices for inclusion in our top Home Theater receivers page in order to assess overall sound quality performance. We evaluate the ease of setup and usage of each receiver with a reference speaker system, as well as any companion software that might be included with a Home Theater receiver. The many connectivity choices are among the other elements we take into account because they all affect how well it will integrate with your home entertainment system.
Along with these factors, which have a significant impact on how each speaker will sound in your living room, we also consider power output, the number of supported audio channels and subwoofer outputs, available processing software for decoding movie soundtracks, and their capability to handle music sources. After testing is complete, we assign a rating of 1 to 5 using our five-point scale to each Home Theater receiver. An Editor’s Choice label is given to a product if it nearly meets all criteria.