Upper Saddle River, N.J. - Two TX series AV receivers (AVRs) unveiled today by Onkyo will expand its selection of AVRs with InstaPrevue and MHL (Mobile High Definition Link) and bring down the opening price of DTS Neo:X surround processing and Audyssey MultEQ XT32 room correction.
The $999-suggested TX-NR717 and
$1,199 TX-NR818 will be available in May. Both are 7.2-channel networked AVRs
with Windows 7, DLNA, and THX Select2 Plus certification. Both stream Internet
radio stations and Internet music services, and they upscale any video source
to full 4K (3840 x 2160) resolution. The $1,199 model adds ISF video calibration
technology and DTS Neo:X surround post-processing.
To date, the company hasn't announced adoption of Apple AirPlay in its AVRs.
With the launches, Onkyo is bringing DTS Neo:X's opening price in the TX series down to $1,199 from last year's $1,399 and Audyssey MultEQ XT32 room correction down to $1,199 from last year's $2,199.
Audyssey MultEQ XT32 gathers data from more than 10,000 points across eight listening positions to adjust response to compensate for a room's sonic deficiencies. DTS Neo:X post-processing technology upmixes stereo and multichannel audio programs to create as many as 11 audio channels, which include a pair of front-height channels and pair of front-wide channels. In the TX-NR818, it is used to add two front-height or two front-wide channels to deliver a total of seven channels. In last year's $1,399 9.2-channel AVR, Neo:X could be used to power front-height and front-wide channels simultaneously.
The two new AVRs will join four other TX series AVRs
at suggested retails of $299, $499, $599, and $699. The three models starting at $499 were the company's first models announced with InstaPrevue, and the $599 and $699 models were the first with MHL-enabled HDMI inputs.
InstaPrevue delivers live picture-in-picture thumbnail previews of video sources connected via HDMI and MHL-enabled HDMI inputs, including video from Blu-ray Disc players, game consoles, set top boxes, and MHL-enabled tablets and smartphones. The technology makes it unnecessary for consumers to remember whether a particular source is labeled HDMI 1, HDMI 2, or HDMI 3.
MHL-enabled HDMI inputs enable an MHL-compatible smartphone or tablet to stream 1080p HD video and 7.1-channel surround sound from the mobile device via cable to a home theater system. The AVR's HDMI port also charges the portable device, and consumers can use their TV or AVR remote to control the playback of content streamed from their MHL-enabled mobile device. MHL technology is also planned for TVs.
In announcing the latest two AVRs, Onkyo said both would be compatible with its first USB Bluetooth adapter, which will be unveiled sometime in the future.
Onkyo also plans to announce its first remote app for the Kindle Fire and a new iPhone remote control app that, like before, controls a networked Onkyo AVR but will add such new features as streaming music from an iPhone. Details were not revealed.
As for other features in the two new AVRs, both models offer many of the same features as their immediate predecessors, including eight HDMI 1.4a inputs, two 1.4a outputs with audio return channel, iPod/iPhone-compatible front USB port for music playback, and compatibility with an optional UWF-1 Wireless LAN Adapter for the rear USB port.
Carryover features at both price points also include the Audyssey DSX and Dolby Pro Logic IIz post-processing technologies. Audyssey DSX is used to add two front-wide channels to a 5.1 system, and Dolby Pro Logic IIz is used to add two front-height channels to a 5.1 system.
Both also feature a new 1080p GUI with an overlaid Ã¢â‚¬ËœQuick Setup' menu that provides access to frequently used settings. Both AVRs also feature three-zone audio via dedicated line-outs or by allocating surround-channel outputs to the second- and third zones. Both also enable speaker biamping and feature 4K2K upscaling, which in this year's TX series starts at a suggested $599.
Playback control is available from anywhere in the house via the Remote App 2 for iPhone or Remote App for Android phone.
The 717 features Audyssey 2EQ for room correction, and the 818 adds more sophisticated Audyssey MultEQ XT32room correction, 9.2-channel preamp outputs for adding an outboard amplifier, and an onboard Digital Crossover Processing Network to cancel frequency interference when speakers are biamped.
The 818 also adds ISF calibration, which makes it possible to individually optimize video signals for each video source connected to the AVR without resorting to complex cable routing and customized remote-control macros that make system operation more complex for consumers.