home theater receivers?
Yamaha AVENTAGE® RX-A710 Home Theater Receiver
A good value for the money
I'm the proud new owner of a Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A710 7.1 home theater receiver. I was in the market for a new home theater receiver because my older Sony receiver had no HDMI inputs/outputs and lacked many of today's new features, such as USB input and Internet connectivity.
I wanted to purchase a quality receiver without breaking the bank. Like most folks, I was looking for a good value — not the cheapest, not the most expensive, but a receiver that met my needs at the right price. After a lot of research, I landed on the Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A710.
The Yamaha RX-A710 is part of the Yamaha AVENTAGE (pronounced Ah-VEN-Taj) series of A/V receivers. It's the entry-level model to Yamaha's high-performance line-up, yet it's anything but entry level.
The RX-A710 had everything I was looking for — HDMI connectivity, Dolby® TrueHD & DTS-HD™ surround processing, analog-to-HDMI video upconversion, iPod®/iPhone® support, a Network connection, and great build quality. Everything my older receiver was missing.
Simple speaker calibration
The included Yamaha Parametric Acoustic Optimizer and
microphone makes it easy to adjust your speakers properly.
The receiver's YPAO (Yamaha Parametric Acoustic Optimizer) and microphone made setup easy. It guided me step-by-step though my speaker setup and automatically adjusted the RX-A710 for my room's acoustics.
And what's even nicer, is that even after the receiver finished auto-calibrating, it still let me come back through and fine tune the system to my personal preference.
Once I had everything connected, my wife and I had to have my brother and his girlfriend over for movie night. We watched Thor, and the difference in sound quality between the Yamaha RX-A710 and my older receiver was like night and day. My brother and his girlfriend noticed it immediately.
The surround sound was so much more enveloping and the bass had way more extension and punch to it then we were used to with my old receiver. And the RX-A710's Cinema DSP modes let me tailor the sound to the type of movie we were watching for an even greater home theater experience.
I probably listen to music more than I watch movies though. So the receiver I got had to sound good in stereo too, and the RX-A710 did the job. I own a set of Polk tower speakers and was never able to bi-amp them before (see Dave's article about the advantages of bi-amping). But with the RX-A710, I was able to do so, and it made a noticeable difference in the sound coming out of my front speakers.
The bass, midrange, and highs were simply richer and clearer. And the RX-A710's Compressed Music Enhancer feature made a huge difference when playing back my iPod/iPhone's music library and when listening to satellite or Internet radio.
That's right, the RX-A710 let me plug my iPod and iPhone directly into the unit's front-panel USB port. And it has an Ethernet network connection to listen to online content from PANDORA® Internet radio, Rhapsody, Napster, and SiriusXM.
My older receiver just didn't sound good with compressed music file content. It was flat and not in a good way — it was just missing something. The RX-A710 made those same compressed music files come back to life with greater detail.
The only thing I wished the receiver had was a built-in Wi-Fi® network connection (but that can be worked around). All-in-all, though, I've been very happy with my Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A710 receiver. I've had it for about a month now, and would confidently recommend it to anyone.
Crutchfield Product Research Team