Best AV receiver 2018: which home cinema AV receiver should you buy?


If you want to transform your living room into a cinema that you don’t have to pay ticket prices to visit,  you need to pick up one of the best AV receivers. 

Why? Because even with the best TV, if you’re stuck with the poor speakers that are often built into TVs, you’ll have to settle for a sub-par audio experience. Do yourself, and your favorite movies and games, a favor – buy an AV receiver instead.

When you’re out shopping for the best AV receiver, it’s crucial to consider how many and what types of ports you need. Trust us, no one wants to constantly move 15 cables around just to use your PS4. 

This is critically important because the best AV receivers are essentially the central base that all of your entertainment equipment will need to connect and communicate with. Even if you have a ton of devices, this means that the transition between devices will always be seamless – no matter what you’re trying to play, watch or listen to, you’ll always get an amazing entertainment experience.

If you’ve already jumped on the 4K bandwagon you should look for a receiver that has a wealth of HDCP 2.2 compatible HDMI ports. And if you want to get really high-tech, and invest in multi-room streaming, you need to think about which wireless speaker system is best for you – Chromecast, Heos, or even Yamaha MusicCast. Even if you’re not immediately planning on using this technology, what’s the harm in future-proofing your entertainment setup?

For many people, Dolby Atmos will be the killer app. This 3D audio system has become the gold standard in immersive audio. It may be available on soundbars, but only an AV receiver offers true overhead Dolby Atmos audio. You only need to decide if you want a seven or a nine-channel system. (However, that said, you may not need Dolby Atmos at all, in which case a standard 5.1 sound system will fill your surround sound needs nicely.) 

So, if you’re shortlisting a new AV receiver, you’ve come to the right place, so let’s dive into the best AV receivers you can buy today.

Best AV receivers under $699

Onkyo TX-NR676

A budget receiver with excellent features and performance

Power output (claimed): 9 x 100W per channel | Dolby Atmos: Yes | HDMI: 7-in, 2-out | AV inputs: 2 x composite; 2 x digital audio | Weight: 27.6 lbs. (12.5 kg)


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