The choice of receiver you end up with depends on your budget, the features you are looking for and how you intend to use it. For those that are looking simply for audio, a more basic route would suffice, but if you are looking to bump up the sound of a home theater as well, you will need a more diverse receiver, which will also be at a higher range price-wise.
Since we are living in a technology era, features like Bluetooth and HD capabilities are considered basic requirements, and a receiver would be considered a poor design if these features are not included. However, there is a select population who still require AM/FM capabilities and the ability to play from CDs and tapes. Depending on the make, these vary in price.
The list below outlines a mix of receivers with different features suited for different kinds of buyers. There is definitely something for everyone.
10. Sony STRDH550 5.2 Channel 4K AV Receiver
This Sony receiver is an improved model from the previous Sony STR-DH540. It is priced competitively with an array of features including 4 HDMI 2.0 inputs and a USB port which is usually a forgotten feature in many other models. If you have a lot of music in different formats, this receiver can decode MP3, AAC, WAV and WMA files flawlessly. It also has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capabilities. The sound quality however has often been brought to question. It is a good option for small to medium rooms. In comparison with some of the newer models, it does not allow for multiple balance modes in one setting.
09. Yamaha RX-V379BL 5.1-Channel A/V Receiver with Bluetooth
The Yamaha RX v379BL is considered an entry level receiver with no Wi-Fi. This means internet radio or streaming is a no-no. It has 4 HDMI inputs as well and is reviewed to have great sound quality. However, it doesn’t have a USB port for those who carry their music on the go. The Yamaha sister models have often been criticized about their difficult to understand remote control. This model has an ‘easy to use’ remote with a sleek design. You can also set the speaker levels using the incorporated microphone feature. This model clearly has some really good features but left out some basic ones.
08. Denon AVR-S710W 7.2 Channel Full 4K Ultra HD AV Receiver
Denon is a powerhouse company when it comes to high quality receivers. This model is no exception. It may be a little pricey but makes up for it in its features. It has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and even connects to a computer using Air Play or Windows 8. It has 6 HDMI ports with ultra HD capabilities. In place of a remote, Denon has an App that is IOS and Android compatible. This receiver can also deliver also be accessed from a separate room within the household. To top it off, it is Energy conscious and will save you some money in the bill department.
07. Yamaha R-S201BL 2-Channel Stereo Receiver
This Yamaha receiver has 40 stations FM/AM preset tuner. It has no output for a subwoofer, but the sound has low distortion. It only has 2 pairs of speaker outputs with 100 watts per output channel. It is a very basic, simple design receiver. If you’re not looking for frills or high features, then this receiver will work for you. It has a simple design remote and a headphone terminal. However, it doesn’t have a stereo jack
06. Sony STRDH130 2 Channel Stereo Receiver
The Sony STRDH130 is also another basic feature receiver but has high quality sound and worth it’s buck. It has 5 Analog Audio Inputs, AM/FM Tuner. It also features an audio jack for headphones or perhaps a phone or portable music device. As a basic model, It has no Bluetooth However, if all your looking for is great sound and compatibility in a medium sized home then this receiver is for you.
05. Sherwood RX4508 200W AM/FM Stereo Receiver with Bluetooth
The Sherwood RX4508 is an inexpensive and durable receiver with high quality sound. It has a 30 station AM/FM tuner with sound quality controls like bass. It has 3 audio inputs, 2 outputs and is designed with a 100W output. It is also Bluetooth equipped and would work well in any setting. It stands out from other receivers in that it has a unique and modern design. A far cry from the standard rectangle designs that most, if not all receivers take.
04. Yamaha R-S202BL Stereo Receiver
The Yamaha R-S20BL has Bluetooth connectivity as its only digital input and has a 40 channel AM/FM tuning. It also has an output for your headphones. It doesn’t have any other audio listening modes that enhance the sound quality. Only basic sound quality adjustments such as bass or treble are in this model. There are however, conflicting reviews about the sound quality. It has been stated that the sound lacks warmth; however, others have said that it does well in smaller spaces. The pricing is modest and therefore matches its capabilities and features.
03. Sherwood RX5502 100 Watt x 4 RMS Dual-Zone Stereo Receiver
The Sherwood RX5502 can be set up with 4 sets of speakers in two different areas in your home. It has AM/FM tuning however, it has been known to only pick up signals that are within 50km of big cities. Other reviews have also stated that setting up particular station is difficult in this model. However, for its price range, it does its job by offering a good quality of sound.
02. Yamaha R-S300BL Stereo Receiver
This is a first model in this line of Yamahas; it is ideal for small rooms and perfect for the receiver ‘virgin’. It has 2 audio channels with 50 Watts per channel, a dock for wireless and mp3 power capabilities and an output port for a subwoofer. It doesn’t come with any HDMI ports’ meaning it is only for audio and not TV. Its base is also designed to minimize vibration during use. The price is affordable and matches its capabilities.
01. Sherwood RX-4109 200W Stereo Receiver
This Sherwood receiver is also pretty basic. It has 5 audio inputs, AM/FM capabilities and an inbuilt amplifier. This Sherwood is basic and inexpensive and would do well in a medium sized room. It has the option of adding an additional 2 speakers to enhance the sound. Some users have said that it is a tad difficult to navigate and could be made to be more user- friendly. All in all, it is easy on the pocket and has no major flaws.
From the list above, the receiver that is highly equipped with modern capabilities is the Denon AVR-S710W 7.2. For the basic designs, the Sony STRDH130 2 Channel Stereo Receiver would be my first choice. The receiver choice as earlier stated is entirely dependent on individual circumstances.
Use the list above to kick start your process and remember to stay true to your needs. Enjoy your new Receiver!