With home theater buffs placing much attention on sound quality, Yamaha’s set of receivers is likely to be a good choice, especially those from the RX lineup. Meet the flagship model of the AVENTAGE division in the RX series, the Yamaha RX-A3000. For $1900, it promises great support for very large home theater systems, while providing excellent audio and video quality complete with stability.
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Being the top of the line in the AVENTAGE division, the RX-A3000 is large and heavy as it incorporates a good number of features. The front panel is minimalistic since majority of the functions are hidden beneath the bottom panel. Opening the bottom panel reveals most of the functions normally seen in high-end AV receivers. The four SCENE buttons promise easy functionality, as each button is optimized for a certain purpose such as DVD Viewing or Radio Listening. Zone 2, 3, and 4 support is also provided. A number of jacks to allow easy connectivity is built in too, such as an HDMI in and S-video connector.
The design is also made with stability in mind. Underneath the receiver lie 5 footers to keep the receiver in place rather than the standard four. The center leg represents Yamaha’s Anti-Resonance Technology Wedge which adds even more stability to reduce vibration.
While the 980 watts of output power clearly show that the Yamaha RX-A3000 is ready to power the biggest setups, the optimized power amplifier layout still manages to reduce the power consumption when the device hits standby mode. This configuration is good enough to handle 8 different devices that use HDMI along with a TV for the HDMI output. A projector or other screen can be plugged into the extra HDMI output as well. All HDMI ports are v1.4a so users will encounter no issues in plugging in 3D ready TVs and Blu-ray players.
CINEMA DSP technology is also built into the RX-A3000, and it provides all the audio decoding goodies that movie enthusiasts and gamers need from Dolby TrueHD all the way up to DTS Neo:6. It even has enough power to handle 11.2 channels if an external amp is hooked up.
Once hooked up to an HDTV, the receiver provides a gorgeous user interface on the TV so users can perform several tasks like using the YPAO sound optimization system to automatically calibrate each speaker in the room. It features advanced technologies such as Reflected Sound Control and multi-point measurement so all kinds of speakers get the perfect treatment once the microphone is placed in the right spot. iPhone users can even control the interface using a special application by Yamaha.
Ultra Low Jitter circuitry is used to clean out the sound even more making it richer. It also uses the HQV Vida processor for upscaling standard-definition sources to Full 1080p HD. Even analog devices can get a respectable boost in video quality.
Users can also access the Internet or listen to Internet Radio, SIRIUS Satellite Radio or HD Radio. The Yamaha RX-A3000 is DLNA certified as well so it can stream from other computer and mobile devices. The USB port allows playback support for MP3, WMA, and WAV files stored in flash drives.
On the Sting Live in Berlin blu-ray, visuals were stunning. The RX-A2000 delivered the concert video with well saturated colors, exceptional clarity and excellent details. All the performers’ faces and clothes were brilliantly rendered, up to the finest aspects. With every frame being sharp and clear, it was as if you were physically there at the O2 World Arena.
The receiver’s decoding of the DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack was also breathtaking, with flawless positioning of the band and orchestra around Sting in the soundstage. It was extremely engaging and immersive. Vocals and the orchestra were correctly steered towards the front speakers by the receiver, while the rear speakers recreated the atmosphere and ambience of the live venue.
On the blu-ray release of Despicable Me, visuals were likewise impressive. Whether it was the details of Gru’s minions or the textures of his machines and devices, all were fully displayed in great length by the receiver. The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack also brings us further into the movie by providing a strong but subtle surround activity. It is further enhanced with the receiver giving it a big powerful bass.
The RX-A3000 is a fantastic AV receiver that provides a lot of power and is ready for next generation of devices. Although it costs more than a mid-range HDTV, the Multi-zone support adds to the possibilities and Yamaha’s audio technologies really make a big difference.
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