Sony provides a range of AV receivers for home theaters. When you shop for a home theater system and most particularly the receiver you want to know you are getting the best value for the price. It is hard to know that if you are not able to test the system or talk with someone who has. Here is a review of the Sony STR-DA5500ES to help you make an informed decision. You should note that there are a variety of different types of AV receivers out there from Sony, so you may find this receiver has more specifications than you are looking for. For example, this particular Sony receiver offers internet radio capabilities, while the 3500ES does not. You also have 5.1 channel receivers, which have less performance, but they are also more cost effective. All of this matters when looking over the design and performance that will be discussed in this review.
Latest Update: The Sony STR-DA5500ES is now on sale at Amazon.com
The Sony DA5500ES is a 7.1 channel receiver with an internet radio, and the ability to play vinyl or CDs. It can be used for stereo music as well as the internet radio options out there. It has a six in and two out HDMI set up with video processing. Unfortunately, it is worth mentioning the design is almost identical to the DA5400, another in the Sony product line for AV receivers. It has a larger black box than most AV receivers in order to perform all of the functions it has. You will find the design comes with a readable display with a bright backlight in order to see it, even in darker rooms. You have the same knobs and buttons for controlling the machine as there were on the DA5400. You also have two remotes that come with the product to ensure easy use from across the room. One remote is for the main room and the small one is for remote capabilities in other parts of the house. It offers a wireless function in order to ensure this.
The design includes 120 watts per channel with the best technology support for the surround sound. It will handle Dolby Pro Logic IIz, as well as other HD surround sound options. The set up is easy because of the design. You just need to plug in your various components in the many inputs it comes with. By now you are wondering what the ES in the design refers to since we have mentioned its other capabilities. The ES is elevated standard, which means it is a non standard receiver. A standard receiver would have a tuner for AM/ FM, component hookups and work with a certain line of speakers. An elevated standard means it has more capabilities than the standard receiver. You see this in the 7.1 channels, and the internet radio with the STR-DA5500ES. However, it is also an elevated standard due to the MP3, iPod and other components it will work with. Not all receivers have docks for these “walkman” machines. You can also use camcorders, and video game consoles with the design of the DA5500ES.
“I am very pleased with the STR-DA5500ES. I have always loved Sony’s products especially the ES line. This one won’t disappoint.” – I.A.Qurie (FL,USA)
Performance is imperative when purchasing any AV receiver like the Sony STR-DA5500ES. It provides an easy to follow setup regarding your components to ensure the highest quality of sound. You just need to go through the auto connect menus to determine what type of amp you want with the sound. Performance wise, you will find little trouble switching from one radio to another type of media. In the performance of this receiver you will note the surround sound is not as strong as some of the other Sony products. Its DLNA streaming is limited for the cost. During tests, the sound modes were changed to test the digital sound processor, which is when it was found the Full Flat EQ was best for vocals and stereo positioning helped increase the performance.
After testing the performance and examining the design, it is clear to say for the price of the Sony STR-DA5500ES, you will have a lesser performance than you might desire. This receiver is sold for around $1000.00 at most retailers, so you would want a higher quality surround sound, especially since it is a second generation machine. Despite the capabilities it has with internet radio, there are still a few things missing to make the STR-DA5500ES worth the increase in price from the 5400. What you are paying for is the internet radio because the rest of the design is the same.
More user reviews:
• “This is a very good receiver. When it comes right down to it, audio quality is the most important feature of a surround sound receiver. The STR-DA5500ES does not disappoint. Quality is far above what I would expect from a receiver at this price point.” – Dennis (USA)
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