April 15, 2021

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Connecting People

Yamaha RX-V6A review: The future sound of entertainment

The waters around AV receivers drift instead than rage. When compared to TVs and soundbars, adjust arrives slowly and gradually to these massive black bins. The Yamaha RX-V6A ($850 at Amazon) is a refreshing splash in a pool that has stagnated in recent decades. With rounded fantastic appears to be reminiscent of superior-stop brands like Classe, paired with a laundry listing of futuristic options, this is the most forward-searching receiver I have noticed in a long time.

Like

  • Excellent appears to be (for a receiver)
  • Sounds partaking with music and films
  • Up-to-date function set and connections

Will not Like

  • Lcd show can be tricky to read
  • No developed-in Chromecast

Appears are not nearly anything with no the effectiveness to back it up and the RX-6A served up fantastic sound excellent in my listening check. This midpriced receiver RX-V6A offers Dolby Atmos playback and a great deal of music replay possibilities too, producing it as snug with an episode of The Mandalorian as it is with impromptu dance events.

It truly is obtained some quirks — the speaker outputs are arranged in an strange buy and that Lcd show is tougher to read than an LED — but total this Yamaha is just more enjoyment than its competitors. I am hopeful that the RX-V6A is the spark that ignites a rethink on AV receivers and allows bring the class back into the mainstream.

Link all your stuff

The RX-V6A is a seven.one.two-channel receiver with Dolby Atmos and DTS:X playback, and one hundred watts for every channel. But the specification sheet isn’t the to start with thing that catches the eye.


Ty Pendlebury/CNET

The Yamaha RX-V6A’s rounded, glass-like fascia is a serious departure from the black shoe bins of Sony, Denon and Onkyo. The edges are curved in a way I have never noticed in advance of, but it isn’t going to glimpse ostentatious. The front residences a centered quantity command and superior-res Lcd show that appears to be wise but isn’t all that vibrant. It truly is off-centered so if you happen to be sitting down off to the left it is even more complicated to read even at maximum brightness. I like the LED readouts observed on competitors.

This receiver couldn’t be “the future” with no a comprehensively up to date spec sheet and the RX-V6A isn’t going to skimp. It includes 7 HDMI inputs, 3 of which are 8K-suitable HDMI two.one ports ports created to support the entire output abilities of resources like the Xbox Sequence X, PlayStation five and Laptop graphics playing cards such as the Nvidia RTX 3090. Yamaha statements this is more two.one ports than any other model, and they present such goodies as auto low latency method and rapid media switching. The receivers also support for a longer period HDMI cable operates with a bolstered energy provide. 

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Ty Pendlebury/CNET

Yamaha also built variations around back. Most receivers, like earlier Yamahas, spot the L/R speaker output at the left of the panel, which is followed by the heart and then the rears. For no matter what rationale the RX-V6A places the front pair in the center rather of the left, which could be puzzling — specially if you happen to be bent more than it in a darkened theater environment. It will not just take long to recall which output is which, and after you get your speakers linked it is not a massive offer.

The RX-V6A might not be as totally loaded when it arrives to Wi-Fi streaming support when in comparison to our existing Editors’ Alternative winner, the Onkyo TX-NR696, but it still offers some thing for most people. Yamaha’s MusicCast multiroom system is a single of the finest built-in techniques, and it also permits the use of Yamaha wise speakers as rears. The receiver offers AirPlay two, Spotify Link and Bluetooth too, whilst it lacks Chromecast developed-in. IT can be controlled by using Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri-enabled products, but the instructions are mainly essential — generally quantity, input and upcoming/prior observe controls.

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Ty Pendlebury/CNET

The receiver arrives with a distant command that offers a wide range of functions, like a committed Bluetooth button. It truly is vibrant and cheery as well as offers a zone two command switch for more adaptability.

Though the aesthetics have been soundly enhanced, the on-display show is a compact step back. The interface options blocky white and blue icons, whereas competitors such as Sony present more person-pleasant interfaces with even bigger icons and far better hand-keeping for newcomers.

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Ty Pendlebury/CNET

This is the future of sound

I in comparison the Yamaha RX-V6A towards one more new receiver, the Denon AVR-S960, and observed myself returning to listen to the Yamaha more normally. Although the Denon is relaxed-sounding, the Yamaha offers more dwelling theater thrills and pep when listening to your most loved tunes. Simply set, the Yamaha appears more enjoyment.

I begun my screening with an underrated common — the Iron and Wine/Calexico collaboration EP, In The Reins. When streaming by using Roon to the Oppo UDP-203 ($3,999 at Amazon) and then allowing the receivers decode, the Yamaha experienced a reliable, 3 dimensional sound. By way of it Sam Beam’s voice was more firmly rooted in room, and the backing vocals a little a lot easier to discern than on the Denon. 

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Ty Pendlebury/CNET

Receivers that are tuned for films are almost never fantastic with music — they can sound extremely harsh and tiring — but the tambourine-forward sound of Spoon’s You Obtained Yr. Cherry Bomb sounded fuller on the Yamaha than the Denon. The song’s chugging bass underpinned the percussion in the hands of the V6A and the full output sounded significantly less thrashy and more composed. The Denon was a shade subtler but didn’t make me sit up in my seat in the exact same way.

Turning to dwelling theater with Avatar, the Yamaha driving a pair of Bowers and Wilkins 603 S2 speakers sounded even bigger and more effortless than any soundbar I have read. The opening dialog of the Thanator chase scene was more intelligible too, and certainly far better than the JBL Bar two.one Deep Bass ($300 at Amazon) soundbar, for example. It might not have experienced the exact same booming outcome on the creatures’ footfalls, but this was very easily tweaked by using the Yamaha menu. 

Just after that tweak the Yamaha experienced bass consequences I could essentially sense with my toes and, in comparison to the Denon, I observed it sounded more atmospheric, but the bass still was not as impactful.

Need to you obtain it?

If you happen to be striving to choose concerning the Yamaha and the Denon, both equally sound excellent and options come into perform. The Yamaha offers an further HDMI port than the Denon and more 8K-compliant two.one ports too. The RX-V6A also appears to be far better and appears more entertaining. 

The receiver didn’t get almost everything correct — that Lcd show is a misstep — and I still like the Onkyo by a nose due to the fact of its outstanding streaming possibilities and far better show. Although there are more receivers coming in mid-2021, if you want some thing that offers a degree of future proofing and superior-excellent sound correct now, the Yamaha is an excellent selection.