Best AV Receiver Under $500 on the market. A buying guide to help you discover the best AV receivers taking into account their functions and audio quality.
The best receivers can turn your humble living room into a real movie theater. Buying the best TV on the market is certainly a significant added value but if you want high-end sound to make the most of your 4K TV, you will also need to buy an AV receiver also called a receiver.
Best AV Receiver Under $ 500
Table of Contents
Best AV Receiver Under $ 500 | Comparison Table 2023
|Yamaha TSR-700 7.1 Channel AV Receiver with 8K HDMI and MusicCast (Renewed)||YAMAHA||Check Price|
|Pyle 7.1-Channel Hi-Fi Bluetooth Stereo Amplifier - 2000 Watt AV Home Theater Speaker Subwoofer Surround Sound Receiver w/ Radio, USB, RCA, HDMI, MIC IN, Supports 4K UHD TV, 3D, Blu-Ray - PT796BT||Pyle||Check Price|
|Donner Bluetooth 5.0 Stereo Audio Amplifier Receiver, 4 Channel, 440W Peak Power Home Theater Stereo Receiver USB, SD,FM, 2 Mic in Echo, RCA, LED, Speaker Selector for Studio, Home-MAMP5||Donner||Check Price|
|500W Karaoke Wireless Bluetooth Amplifier - 4 Channel Stereo Audio Home Theater Speaker Sound Power Receiver with AUX IN, FM, RCA Subwoofer Speakers OUT, USB, Microphone IN with Echo - Pyle PTA44BT||Pyle||Check Price|
|Sony STR-DH790 7.2-ch Surround Sound Home Theater AV Receiver: 4K HDR, Dolby Atmos & Bluetooth Black||Sony||Check Price|
|Denon AVR-S750H Receiver, 7.2 Channel (165W x 7) - 4K Ultra HD Home Theater (2019) | Music Streaming | New - eARC, 3D Dolby Surround Sound (Atmos, DTS/Virtual Height Elevation) | Alexa + HEOS||Denon||Check Price|
|5.2-Channel Hi-Fi Bluetooth Stereo Amplifier - 1000 Watt AV Home Speaker Subwoofer Sound Receiver with Radio, USB, RCA, HDMI, Mic In, Wireless Streaming, Supports 4K UHD TV, 3D, Blu-Ray - Pyle PT694BT||Pyle||Check Price|
|Pyle Wireless Karaoke Bluetooth Stereo Receiver - 4 Channel Power Amplifier w/ USB, Headphone, 2 Microphone Input w/ Echo, Talkover for PA Great for Home Speaker System - PTA42BT||Pyle||Check Price|
|Denon S650H AV Receiver, 5.2 Channel (150W X 5) 4K UHD Home Theater Surround Sound (2019) | Music Streaming | HEOS Built-in | eARC and Upgraded HDCP||Denon||Check Price|
Best AV Receiver Under $ 500 | 2023 Products Overview
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Best AV Receiver Under $ 500 | Unrivaled Guide 2023
What is a Receiver
A receiver looks like complex audio equipment, but it’s really just a way to control your AV setup. AV receivers take the audio track from any TV show, movie, CD or video game you are playing or watching, to process the audio and send it to any connected speakers you have in the house.
AVRs are the only way to power 5.1 and 7.1 speaker configurations outside of a soundbar , plus they house a number of ports that allow you to keep all your devices connected at all times.
The best receivers are ultimately the central base to which all entertainment equipment can connect and communicate.
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How to choose the best AV receivers
Resolution and frame rate support
Do you need 8K or High Frame Rate HDMIs? If your AV receiver is unlikely to have a games console connected then the answer is no. In which case there’s some great deals to be had on AVRs with regular HDMI 2.0 inputs.
More and more devices are now Bluetooth-enabled, making it extraordinarily easy to connect your device to your A/V receiver,
if the latter itself is Bluetooth-enabled. While not an essential function for your receiver to operate, all of the A/V receivers under $500 we reviewed are Bluetooth-enabled.
Almost all A/V amplifiers adopt a rectangular, box-like shape, but you’ll need to place this box somewhere easily accessible at the front of your home theater system. That’s why it’s worth having a location in mind and measuring its dimensions before choosing an amplifier.
Yamaha AV receivers are not as sold in online stores as Amazon.es like the other brands in our ranking.
Nor do they stand out for their advanced design or performance. However, the brand has AV receivers that are interesting in price and reliability. Especially in the economic field.
Denon is the most popular in Spanish online stores. Maybe it’s because of his. a wide variety of models . Or your high connectivity, thanks to the multi- chamber and brand reproduction systems. In addition, the design of your audio and video receivers is taken care of. The downside: Its components aren’t as robust as Onkyo/Pioneer’s, and its receivers are priced high.
Onkyo, for its part, bought Pioneer’s audiovisual sector in 2023. Currently, the two brands therefore go hand in hand in this area.
The company is less commercial than its competitor Denon (which also has a higher turnover). But the batteries have been installed over the last year in wireless connectivity and new technologies. And its sound quality and build don’t disappoint.
Power and audio channels
5, 7 or 11 audio channels? Until recently, the standard was 5.1 sound systems. That is to say, composed of five speakers and a subwoofer. However, currently 7.1 or 7.2 have gained strength.
The reasons ?
It is ideal for supporting Dolby Atmos or DTS:X technologies that recreate a more realistic sound. Of course, the more speakers you have, the more capacity you have for full sound. But this task requires knowledge, time and money.
AV receivers with 9 or more channels are still a minority. Keep in mind that you will need to locate each speaker conveniently and you will need enough space to do so. In small to medium sized rooms, we do not recommend using a system higher than 5.1 or 7.1/7.2.
This question is directly related to that of the power station . Most AV receivers support 100 to 200 watts per channel. As with the number of speakers, you should choose a higher or lower number depending on your budget, the space, and the speakers you currently have or are going to buy in the future.
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Supported video and audio formats
All current AV receivers support video in 4K and 3D resolution . In terms of sound, if you are an audiophile, make sure that the audio amplifier accepts lossless formats (also known as lossless: FLAC, ALAC…).
Today, with a medium-high range receiver, you can play this type of audio. also wireless . Companies got to work to avoid quality loss and reduce sound compression.
Some interesting playback technologies are AirPlay, aptX, Chromecast audio, Play-Fi or the HEOS system.
Integrated audio and video technologies
The most common are Dolby Atmos and DTS:X. They not only represent sound by channels, but they take into account the individual sound of each object you see on the screen, creating a three-dimensional sound space file .
You will find them in more and more devices, not only audio and video receivers: also consoles, mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets …
Looking for an audio amplifier ready for the latest TVs, consoles and content? Then it is important that you have HDMI support for HDCP 2.2 and Dolby Vision or HDR10.
Do you already have speakers or do you need to buy them? Check, in any case, that the minimum impedance of the audio amplifier corresponds to that of the loudspeaker.
This way you will take full advantage of its sensitivity and not force the amplifier. On the other hand, all current AV receivers have the following essential connections: HDMI, USB, digital audio inputs and outputs (coaxial and optical).
But it is not superfluous to check the number of connections, so it is enough to connect your Blu-Ray player, TV, speakers, console, etc. If you often watch TV and don’t always want to use the receiver, choose an amplifier with Pass Through function . For example, you can listen to the TV through your own speakers while keeping the audio amplifier in hibernation.
When turned on, it automatically cancels sound from the TV and sends it to the connected speakers. Do you use your PC or mobile devices to play video and audio? Your next audio amplifier must have Internet connection (if possible, Ethernet and Wi-Fi) and Bluetooth .
Finally, the most recent AV receivers on the market also have their own wireless playback system. Associated with stream services (Spotify, Deezer, Tidal…) and with the possibility of using wireless speakers. multi-chamber . Additionally, brands have developed their own apps that you can use in your smartphone , tablet or PC apps as an operations center.
4K HDR compatibility
You want to make sure your new receiver can keep up with the latest televisions and video equipment. Standards change all the time, but the bare minimum right now is support for(at least or better). All of these models support 4K and HDR video.
At least four HDMI inputs
With most TVs and set-top boxes supporting HDMI, you should buy a receiver that has as many inputs and outputs as possible. The front-mounted HDMI ports are kind of like appendages – unnecessary, since most users don’t hot-plug HDMI devices – which makes the number of rear inputs what’s most important (how will you hook up your otherwise Blu-ray player,, soundbar and all your other devices.The Yamaha has at least four, while Sony and Onkyo have the most, at six.The Sony also offers a second HDMI output for Zone 2. You should also make sure you have an extra HDMI cable or two.
You don’t really need Dolby Atmos ‘height’ speakers
The Yamaha is the only model here that doesn’t supportand , but the effects they have on your home theater movie viewing can be subtle, or in most movies: non-existent. In other words, don’t worry about missing out on these new formats if you don’t install the extra speakers. Mounting rear wireless surround speakers high on the wall will get you halfway there in terms of quality immersive sound.
Most mid-range receivers have built-in Wi-Fi network connectivity for wireless music streaming. There are many standards for wireless streaming services, but the most universal are Appleand Google Chromecast (and sometimes Spotify Connect) built-in. If you’re looking to build a multiroom system with a variety of AV systems and speakers with wireless connectivity, these are the two flavors to aim for. The Onkyo and Sony are the only two that support both. Denon models lack wireless streaming via Chromecast, but top .
Dolby Atmos compatibility is a given (and by default that means you’ll get DTS: X too), but how many channels do you need? Given the option, 9 channels always trump 7, because it opens up more speaker options (5.1.4 or 7.1.2) …
Don’t have a full Dolby Atmos home theater loudspeaker set up? Look for a model that offers height virtualization technology, so you can enjoy an immersive audio experience even when you don’t have a full set of physical speakers…
Power isn’t just about roof-raising volume-Even if you’re not lucky enough to have a dedicated movie room, a model with big amplification makes sense. A high power output means an AVR can deliver dynamic transients, and pressure load a space without clipping or strain.
Which receiver is on the way?
Of the current receiver models I’ve tested, the Onkyo TX-NR696 is my favorite . The receiver offers excellent usability, excellent surround sound with plenty of head room, solid optics and most importantly many current functions. The Onkyo costs more than $ 500, but is regularly offered for it. Even for $ 580, the TX-NR696 is worth a lot.
Thealso performed well despite 2017, as did the 2019 Denon AVR-S750, which offers even more sophisticated performance than Sony and Onkyo. I rated all three as “excellent” because little daylight separated the overall CNET score. They are all great performers and as prices fluctuate regularly, you should choose one that is significantly cheaper than the others.
Best AV Receiver Under $500 | Video Explanation
How to set up an A/V receiver
Once you have your new A/V receiver in hand, how do you set it up? The first step is to find a new location for your receiver, somewhere where it can get enough air circulation to prevent overheating and where the speaker wires and HDMI cables can be easily connected. Once the device is in place, you can use HDMI cables to connect your TV via the HDMI output port. Most A/V receivers display an on-screen instruction guide to help you through the rest of the setup process. You can also connect HDMI cables for any cable box or gaming device into the HDMI input ports at this time.
Installing the speakers requires a long coil of speaker wire – each speaker will be plugged into one of the audio output ports on the back of your receiver, the number of which should match the number of channels supported by your receiver. Also connect the subwoofer at this time to the subwoofer output port. Once the speakers are connected and placed in the room where they perform best, you can calibrate the system using the built-in room acoustics calibration software or by carefully moving the speakers around the room while you are seated at the main listening position.
Summary & Conclusion
Looking for the Best AV Receiver Under $500 we believe the Consumer Winner is a good recommendation that you should consider when comparing products. In particular, due to the large number of products and manufacturers, we recommend reading various reviews before purchasing. In addition to the Consumption test ratings, reviews from other magazines (such as Consumption) are in most cases available. If you find a number of reviews, it makes sense to compare the respective best AV Receiver by conducting practical tests.
Regarding the published rankings, the year of publication should always be taken into account (relevance of the current word). If you work with old Av Receiver rankings, you may not find the best product due to outdated information. Therefore, our final tip: Always look for information on the current year’s test winner, at best, in combination with a detailed review.