Onkyo’s dedication to top quality video and audio has been widely endorsed by the media and home theater enthusiasts. The release of new flagship models is always greeted with intense interest.
Onkyo new flagship model, the TX-NR5008 replaces the highly regarded TX-NR5007. Priced similarly as the outgoing model, the TX-NR5008 comes with additional functionality like 3D video playback and support for iPhone/iPod streaming via USB.
Latest Update: The Onkyo TX-NR5008 is now shipping and on sale at Amazon.com
Design & Connectivity
In terms of looks the Onkyo TX-NR5008 looks very much like its predecessors. The thick brushed aluminum faceplate and sturdy chassis gives it a solid feel. At 55 lbs it is a heavy unit. So make sure you have a sturdy entertainment rack for this receiver.
The large info display is flanked by the Master Volume control on the right and the rectangular power button on the left. This arrangement has been adopted by most manufacturers and ergonomically it feels right.
Just below the display is a series of buttons with one of them on the far left just below the power button serving as the “Pure Audio” button. The rest of the other buttons on the center are primarily for changing the input source.
The lower section, behind a flip-down panel, consists of tuning/preset buttons, zone select buttons and several useful inputs – one HDMI, composite video in, USB that is iPod/iPhone compatible and a headphone jack.
As expected of a flagship receiver, the TX-NR5008 offers an extensive array of both digital and analog A/V connectivity options. There are a total of 8 HDMI inputs (7 rear and one front) and 2 outputs. Other video inputs include 3 component video and 5 composite video. For analog audio there are 7.1 multi channel inputs and a full 9.2 channels of line level outputs for those who wish to use external amplification. An Ethernet port is provided for internet connectivity. In addition there is a Sirius port and a Universal port that can be used for connection of optional Onkyo dock for iPhone/iPod or HD Radio tuner.
Onkyo appears to have pull out all stops to include as many features and latest available technologies as they can. Making their products sound good is also high on their agenda. The quality starts at the very foundations: a massive toroidal transformer, 22,000 µF capacitors, gold-plated terminals, and separate transformers for audio and video processing.
The TX-NR5008 has 9 amplified channels and dual subwoofer outputs making it a 9.2 design. The amplifier channels are configurable as height or width channels using Audyssey DSX or height channels using Dolby Pro Logic IIz.
The 8 HDMI ports give enough room for all kinds of sources like a blu-ray player, cable or satellite tuner, video gaming consoles, and other portable devices. The 2 HDMI output ports allow connection to both a TV and a projector. The HDMI 1.4a specification that the TX-NR5008 conforms to allows it to provide compatibility with 3D video and includes an Audio Return Channel (ARC).
For A/V processing, the TX-NR5008 uses advanced 192kHz/32bit Burr Brown DACs for audio processing and HQV-Reon VX for video processing. The audio DSP is augmented with Onkyo’s proprietary Vector Linear Shaping Circuitry, which is said to smooth digital audio converted to analog, and PLL jitter-cleaning circuit technology. The TX-NR5008’s Reon VX video processing can upscale sources to 1080p, providing deinterlacing, artifact filtering, mosquito and block noise reduction, and color enhancement.
All the latest HD audio formats are supported. It includes Dolby TrueHD and DTS Master Audio with additional A/V processing that includes THX Neural Surround, Audyssey DSX, and Dolby PLIIz. The TX-NR5008 also features a host of audio and video calibration features. The receiver includes Audyssey MultEQ XT to provide acoustic room correction. Video calibration on the TX-NR5008 comes in the form of ISF based video calibration for each independent video channel. All of the processor functionality is handled by a new overlaid OSD menu system that does not require the user to exit out to make setting adjustments.
The Ethernet port on the back of the receiver has several functions. On the basic end, it is used to connect to the Internet to update the receiver’s firmware. The other primary function is to access internet radio from web services including Pandora, Rhapsody, Sirius and many others.
Connecting the TX-N5008 to the router puts the device on the network map too. It can access and decode audio files of various formats including FLAC, MP3, WAV, Ogg Vorbis, WMA, WMA Lossless, AAC, and LPCM. It is even easier to stream files to the receiver if any of these devices have Windows 7 installed and are DLNA 1.5 certified. The USB inputs located on both the front and back serve as another way for connecting your iPod and iPhone.
“Excellent receiver, set up is a breeze, the performance is unparalleled. After doing some research for the best receiver out there, it all came down to this baby. And trust me this is the best value right now. It’s amazing at how quickly it recognized everything I plugged through HDMI. The internet radio gives you a lot of different stations to choose from. I can’t keep describing all the features because I’ll never finish this review. This is a replacement for another Onkyo receiver the TX-NR905, I’m not new in the home theater world and so far this is the best receiver I’ve owned. This receiver got 5 stars in the Home Theater magazine review on the December edition which are 4 or 5 categories value, performance, ergonomics, features etc and it got 5 star on each of them. Just check around you all will see!!” – P.Juarbe Jr. (FL,USA)
The feature sets of the TX-NR5008 and TX-NR3008 are nearly the same, but the performance is a different story especially on the audio end. Exclusive to this flagship model are the four independent power supplies that delivers a more powerful and cleaner sound. The massive toroidal transformer allows high current drive and increased efficiency.
The video processing technology is just as impressive as it can upconvert any standard definition signals to the maximum 1080p without the signal noise. The Vector Linear Shaping Circuitry technology works with the HQV Reon-VX technology to take care of the bulk of the video processing.
In the Monster House 3D blu-ray disc that came with a pristine 1080P/AVC MPEG-4 transfer, the flagship receiver showcases the incredible depth and realistic textures of 3D playback. Characters that are far apart feel as if they have distance between them. A scene in which water is shot toward the camera is certain to give you a jolt. Such is the realism of 3D. With the accompanying DTS HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack, dialogue is abundantly clear, while the surround and action effects are impressive. In scenes where the house comes to life, listen closely and you can clearly hear the sound of wood squeaking on the porch and glass breaking in other parts of the house.
The more 3D intensive title like Monsters vs Aliens 3D is exceptional. The 3D effects in the the introduction sequence by Dreamworks is jaw dropping deep. Aside from excellent depth and textures, the TX-NR5008 also does very well with color reproduction. Overall, the video quality is very clear with some artifacts that are not very obvious and audio quality that is true to the THX name.
Although the Onkyo TX-NR5008 is not a huge upgrade in features from the previous model, it does have several worthwhile additions. The HDMI standard has been upgraded to version 1.4a for 3D video capability, iPhone/iPod compatibility, and it has been DLNA certified for Windows 7. So if you are looking for top performance with the latest features, the TX-NR5008 comfortably makes the grade without an increase in price.
More user reviews:
• “The new flagship unit is more refined and user friendly with many of the rough edges ironed out. The OSD is a big improvement – you can make adjustments on the fly for audio and video. The older version 5007 for me was freezing up not letting speaker output and you were forced to do resets which involved unplugging unit and thus loose all your previous settings. Not good. This unit is heading in the right direction but I feel still has some catch up to do with how fast things are changing in the AV world and tech in general. The performance is wonderful with quality components and some well needed refinements that were required for a flagship. All in all, a good purchase.” – M.J.Fink (FL,USA)
• “I am happy to report it sounds better than anything I have ever had, it has easy access to its features, it supports both 7.2 set-up and Bi-amping of my main speakers. I love music when it is well-reproduced, and I also love good sound-effects when watching a DVD; this machine delivers it all for a good price. I would not hesitate to order this again, I am happy with it in every way. For an incredibly capable and complex box, it really is easy to grasp and use. I would happily and honestly recommend it to anyone, and I promise I am not being compensated for this review in any way.” – D.Elliot Jr. (CA,USA)
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