Onkyo has just announced four new entry-level AV receivers, including three with network capability, including one with THX certification. The line includes the world’s first AV receivers to employ Silicon Image’s InstaPrevue and Mobile High-Definition Link (MHL) technologies. Furthermore, the three network capable models are the world’s first AVRs to include music ‘cloud server’ access via MP3tunes.
The four new models consist of the Onkyo TX-NR616 THX-Certified 7.2-Channel Network Receiver, TX-NR515 7.2-Channel Network Receiver, TX-NR414 5.1-Channel Network Receiver and TX-SR313 5.1-Channel Home Theater Receiver.
Onkyo’s powerful WRAT (Wide Range Amplifier Technology) is now implemented throughout the line. This low negative-feedback topology reduces signal noise and guarantees superb performance with minimal distortion. Even the entry model TX-SR313, Onkyo now uses this discrete-component output stage rather than lower cost integrated circuit amplifiers.
The TX-NR616 is most powerful model in this release, and it is backed by a THX Select2 Plus guarantee of cinema-quality sound. Achieving this demanding certification standard for audio quality is made possible partly by the use of Onkyo’s three-stage inverted Darlington circuitry.
The TX-NR616, along with the TX-NR515 and TX-NR414 are the world’s first to include InstaPrevue, which provides on-screen video thumbnails to show the content currently available on HDMI-connected components making input source selection easy. The TX-NR616 and TX-NR515 are also the first to include MHL, an interface protocol that facilitates the playback of 1080p video and stills with 7.1 channels of surround sound over HDMI from MHL compatible smartphones and other portable devices.
Whether using the hard-wired Ethernet connection or wireless networking via an optional Onkyo UWF-1 Wireless USB adapter, these network receivers allow users to enjoy a vast selection of internet radio stations, stream from services such as Spotify or MP3tunes ‘Cloud’ services or connect to computers and other devices on the network. Users can control all network AVRs with an iPod touch/iPhone or Android phone with a free Remote App. A slick GUI makes setting up, controlling input sources, and streaming music from the handset (Android phone only) a stress-free experience.
The front-panel USB port on all four receivers also provides a direct digital connection of an iPod/iPhone or flash-memory device. The TX-NR515 and TX-NR616 have an additional USB port on the rear panel that can be used for the optional UWF-1 adapter leaving the front-side USB free for iPod and iPhone.
The TX-NR616 and TX-NR515 also offer superior video performance thanks to on-board Qdeo processing technology by Marvell. This provides analog video upscaling to 1080p, and up to 4K (4096 x 2160 pixels) scaling when used with a compatible 4K display.
When it comes to home theater audio, these two 7.2 channel models feature Dolby Pro Logic IIz expansion to incorporate Front Height channels, and to convert stereo sources to surround sound. The TX-NR616 also includes Audyssey DSX expansion for additional Front Wide or Height channels. Both systems provide a more realistic movie or gaming experience. Users can also connect two subwoofers via parallel pre-outs in a 7.2-channel set-up. Naturally, Audyssey 2EQ room acoustic correction ensures the best possible performance in any listening space.
To help support the increasing numbers of HDMI devices available, Onkyo has given the TX-SR313 four HDMI inputs while the TX-NR414 sports six. All support 3D video, Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio decoding and ARC all through an easy-to-use interactive OSD. The top models incorporate eight inputs plus two outputs for connecting a TV and a projector. A ‘Q’ remote button overlays a ‘Quick Set-Up’ menu on the program being watched via HDMI. Furthermore, Hybrid Standby allows HDMI pass-through to the HDTV while the receiver is off, allowing the user to quickly catch the news, weather, or kids’ TV without powering up the whole home theater system.
All models have connections for legacy analog and digital audio technology. Additionally, the TX-NR515 offers distributed audio with Powered Zone 2, while the TX-NR616 adds Powered Zone 2 and a Zone 3 line-out.
Later this year, Onkyo plans to release the UBT-1 USB Bluetooth Adaptor which will allow even better integration between electronic devices and Onkyo network receivers.
The TX-NR616 will be available in April and the TX-NR515, TX-NR414 and TX-SR313 will all be available in March. In Canada, the respective prices will be $729.99, $599.99, $499.99 and $329.99.
For more info, please visit www.onkyo.ca.