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Key features to look for while buying an AV receiver

AV receivers are indeed beasty performers, and the that would make choosing them a real pain in the neck. An AV receiver is what would serve as the hub for all your connections and other features of your home theatre. There are several tasks that it performs.

Choosing the right kind of AV receiver is what can consume a whole lot of your time considering the features and functionalities that it packs in. We will guide you on the best features you need to look ahead to in your AV receiver. If you are looking for some comprehensive guide on how to choose the best AV receiver then check out for the same. 

The connections

That should be one of the major features of AV receivers what makes it what it is. It does come with several of them – both inputs and outputs. You can connect a host of devices depending upon what your AV receiver is capable of supporting.


HDMI is turning into the standard connection for most of the home theatres and even smart TVs. A receiver can come with a variety of options when it comes to the number of HDMI connections. Ideally, your receiver should have a minimum of 4 HDMI connections for a standard functionality. Ensure that your new AV receiver comes with a proper standard. HDMI 1.4 is the latest standard and supports 3D video and return audio. HDMI 1.3 which is quite common handles 3D video at 1080i resolution. The older HDMI 1.2 does not support 3D.

AV receivers

Video Connectors

Even though they have been going into oblivion, we find them on older devices. They would be essential on your AV receiver if you have older devices that do not come with HDMI connectivity options. There are multiple video connections available. The component connections will be helpful in obtaining 1080i HD video reception. You may also need to look for the composite RCA connections and S-Video connectivity for connecting camcorders, VCRs and similar other devices. One or two of these connections would be desirable enough.

Audio Connections

These connections can be helpful if you do not have HDMI devices. If you are looking for a surround sound option, a connectivity option that comes with a component video and optical audio options. Then a couple of connections for Coaxial stereo RCA would be desirable enough.

Miscellaneous Connections

There are a few other connections you would need for hooking up to other devices. Ethernet ports, USB connections and other similar options would be a must to make the connectivity easier for your devices. A few other connections you can consider include IR blasters, receiver and RS232 serial connection.

Video Functionality

AV Receivers have been specifically designed for audio functionality. However, there are a few aspects that you may need to look ahead to in terms of video functionality. There are a few receivers that promise a 1080p resolution, but upscale a lower resolution to 1080. This will not yield good results. A dedicated 1080p feed would be one of the most important requirements in today’s scenario. If your receiver is high end, it would be practical to go with as they will support both analog and digital HD feed. They would indeed be the best to go with.

Yet another important aspect you would need to go with would be a good interface. If you are opting for a low-end receiver, you may end up getting a text-based menu. High-end receivers offer graphical interface which can be quite good to work with.

Audio Functionality

The most important feature of an AV receiver is the audio processing that it is capable of. Apart from being able decoding several audio formats, you should also be able to get the equalizer and surround sound effects.

The output is one of the features that would need immense attention. Most of the AV receivers in the high-end genre should be able to offer a 7.1 channel functionality. Some may even offer you a 9.2 channel service. The choice should be dependent upon what you are looking ahead to.

An additional feature that would be worth mentioning would be the Dolby Pro Logic functionality. This is a feature that would convert the stereo audio into surround sound effect. Most of the AV receivers do come with the Dolby Pro Logic. Check if the receiver you have chosen comes with the Dolby Pro Logic II which incidentally is the latest standard from the company.

Network Functionality

Staying connected is the name of the game, and that should hold true for the AV receiver as well. If your receiver comes with the Ethernet port or does support WIFI connectivity, you would be able to get better connectivity with both local and global networks.

DLNA has been one of the latest trends in the connectivity sphere. If you choose a receiver with the DLNA certification, you would be able to access any other DLNA device over the network. If you have any compatible computers, smartphones and other devices, you can stream your content through them.

Check if your receiver can access content that is available on the public internet. Some receiver manufacturers enter into strategic partnership with select players in the arena to offer customized content to the users.

A few other parameters to Consider

Power in the context of AV receivers would mean the sound volume that your AV receiver can produce. The power of an AV receiver would determine the ability of a receiver to provide dynamic sound performance. If you choose an AV receiver with a high wattage, you would get better sound performance even with less power.

Speaker calibration can be one of the features you should look ahead for. This will help you analyze the properties of the connected speaker and arrive at the right kind of sound quality. This will help you get a targeted sound quality in tune with the speakers you have connected.

The Parting Thoughts

Well, those are a few points you need to ponder over while you are at the store to buy your new AV receiver. Prepare a list of what you should be looking for and then compare with the best AV receiver available. Please note that your final choice should, in fact, boil down to your exact needs than just opting for a high-end receiver only because it packs in the latest features. Who knows, you may end up NOT USING a host of those features!

Check out the essential features we have mentioned and choose the right AV receiver for you. Enjoy your entertainment to the fullest!

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