Yamaha Expands AirPlay

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Buena Park, Calif. - Yamaha filled out the upper end of its RX-V series of A/V receivers (AVRs), expanding its selection of AVRs with Apple AirPlay, 4K by 2K video passthrough over HDMI, and iPad-certified front-panel USB.

The top-end $849-suggested RX-V773WA and $649-suggested RX-V673 will also be the company's first AVRs announced to date with 4K by 2K HDMI up-scaling. They will be available in June and May, respectively.


Both are 7.2-channel networked models that follow the launches of three other RX-V models at a suggested $299, $449 and $549. The $449 and $549 models were the company's first AVRs announced with AirPlay, 4K by 2K passthrough and iPad USB.

In the 2012 RX-V lineup, networking starts at a suggested $399, down from last year's suggested $549. Networking features include DLNA 1.5 networking certification, Windows 7 certification and ability to stream Internet radio stations via vTuner.

All 2012 RX-V models are the company's first with a new Eco mode to reduce power consumption by 20 percent. Eco mode reduces power consumption even when the AVRs are playing, not just when they are in standby.

Compared with their lower priced counterparts, the RX-V773WA and RX-V673 add a suite of multizone installation and setup features usually found in higher-end models, the company said. Both AVRs feature seven assignable amps to direct two output channels to surround back, front-height, or Zone 2 speakers without changing speaker connections. The two channels can alternately be used to biamplify the front left-right channels or doubling the output to the front left-right channels.

Both AVRs feature a Video Direct mode to bypass video processing chips to speed up video by 2 fps and eliminate play-action delays. Both also feature DLNA 1.5 networking certification, Windows 7 certification, ability to stream Internet radio stations via vTuner and ability to stream FLAC 96kHz/24-bit audio.

The $849 flagship adds Zone B dual-HDMI output and included Wi-Fi 802.11 adapter to stream music from the Internet and a networked PC.

Both models have enhanced Yamaha Parametric room Acoustic Optimizer (YPAO) room-calibration technology called YPAO Reflected Sound Control, which automatically analyzes room acoustics and calibrates system equalization to deliver best sound no matter where the speakers are located. It also provides DSP Effect Normalization, which varies the Cinema DSP parameters according to the reflected sounds.

The $849 flagship analyzes room acoustics at multiple points in a room, whereas the $649 takes room-acoustics measurements at one point.

Like the AVRs starting at $399, the two new AVRs are compatible with the company's free AV Controller app, which turns Apple, Android and Kindle devices into a Wi-Fi remote that controls such A/V receiver functions as source switching, AM/FM tuning, accessing networked content, engaging DSP and modes, and adjusting volume and on/off. The app also enables users to distribute music to multiple rooms.

Both models also feature virtual presence function to deliver front-height channels without front-height speakers, and they feature a dialog-lift function to raise the height of dialog to match the TV screen's height.

Both AVRs' include Adaptive Dynamic Range Control, which automatically adjusts the dynamic range of the sound according to the volume level to ensure dialog and sound effects at comfortable listening levels, the company said. It also reduces the level of loud TV commercials.

For one-touch AVR startup, the two models have four programmable Scene buttons (BD/DVD, TV, CD and radio), which activate the receiver's appropriate inputs and other settings, including surround modes, for the selected source.

Other features common to both include a subwoofer level adjustment, which lets users increase bass without output without changing the crossover point, and high-speed HDMI switching function, which remembers the settings of all connected sources to eliminate the time it usually takes for the HDMI port to adjust to the selected source.

Both also feature six HDMI 1.4a inputs (one on the front panel). The single HDMI 1.4a output on the $649 model and the dual HDMI 1.4a outputs on the $849 model have audio return channel.

All RX-V AVRs offer Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD Master Audio, Dolby Digital Plus and DTS-HD High Resolution Audio surround decoding. All also offer 3D-capable HDMI 1.4a inputs, 1.4a outputs, Cinema DSP with multiple DSP modes, Silent Cinema to play back surround sound through ordinary headphones, and proprietary Compressed Music Enhancer technology, which restores lost detail and high-frequency sounds in compressed music files. All also feature Virtual Cinema DSP technology, which delivers surround sound without setting up surround speakers.

The $649 model is rated at 7x90 watts into 8 ohms with 0.09 percent THD with two channels driven. The $849 model is rated at 7x95 watts into 8 ohms with 0.09 percent THD with two channels driven.


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