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Best AV Receiver For Music 2023: The Secret To Amped-Up Audio!

Which brand AV receiver is best? Here's why expensive AV receivers are worth it...

The best AV receiver streamlines your whole home audio setup.

It’s that piece of HiFi equipment that does an awful lot, yet very few actually understand what it actually does. In fact, an AV receiver is in many ways, the central hub of your entire music system. Think of it as a supersized audio interface, with a lot more ports, power and the capability of even processing 4K video!

Yep – audio receivers are the hidden secret behind many a home cinema. That’s because they’re essentially a HUGE processor and amp, which enables you to usually hook up anywhere around 3 to 7+ devices! Therefore, if you’re an avid gamer, film critic or music fanatic, you can control all elements of your gadgetry from one place. That includes multiple TVs, games consoles, surround sound speakers and even some of the Best Studio Monitors.

And if that wasn’t enough, most professional AV receivers even come with built-in WiFi, so they can also be used alongside a Google Assistant/ Amazon Alexa! So as you can imagine, invest heavily in a set of speakers and snazzy TV, only to then ‘cheap-out’ on your AV receiver, is pretty much shooting yourself in the foot. Therefore, to help you maximise the performance of your audio and visuals, we’ve compiled a list of the 14 best AV receivers for sale today.

After the best AV receiver on your budget? Or just curious which brand AV receiver is best? Use the menu below to get all the answers you need in 1 click…

av receivers been hooked up to a cinema system

NOTE: If you’re interested in AV receivers, then it may also be worth checking out our guides to the Best Theatre Power Managers + the Best 8 Inch Studios Monitors.

With AV receivers been orientated primarily towards sound (as you can imagine), there’s a LOT of AV receivers that work well for music. So many in fact, that once you consider the sheer amount of variants + the fact that all AV receiver brands are known for different USPs, whittling them down can actually be quite a struggle.

Oh, & if all that’s not enough, some AVs only work best for certain setups, while others are solid all-rounders. Bonkers stuff!!

No that you need to worry though, as we’ve done 90% of the legwork for you & whittled down what we think are the best AV receivers for music that you can buy today. Want to supercharge your audio setup? Read on…

1: Pioneer 5.1 Channel AV Receiver

2: Denon AVR-X2700H 8K Ultra HD Home Theatre Receiver

top of a denon av receiver reflecting in a window

3: Cambridge Audio CXA61 Integrated Stereo Amplifier

4: Marantz NR1711 7.2 Channel AV-Receiver

5: Yamaha AV Receiver RX-V6A

review of the best av receivers for sale today

6: Marantz SR5015 8K Ultra HD AV Receiver

7: Sony STR-DA5400ES AV Receiver

8: Onkyo TX-8270 4K Studio Reciever

beginner trying to work an av receiver

As a beginner, the best AV receiver is likely to be slightly different.

Being a newbie to audio the last thing you want is to be overwhelmed by an abundance of technical features – not to mention pay for them when they’re probably not even going to be used. Remember: you can have all the fancy gismos in the world but if you don’t know how to use them, they serve little purpose.

And it’s for that reason that we suggest dialling it down a notch. So while the AVs above are pretty dense in terms of features, we think this pick from Yamaha is just right for someone who’s after better sound, without the same geeky level of gismos. Call it a very -plug-in-&-play’ + arguably the best AV receiver for beginners you can buy today…

9: Yamaha Elektronik Europa

For those looking for the best AV receiver, the choice is actually quite extensive as there’s pretty much an AV receiver for every situation. That being said though, there is one AV that really stood out to us…

Denon AVR-X2700H 4K UHD AV Receiver = Best AV Receiver 2023

Reason being that this AV receiver is so well-specced. 7 ‘HDMI in’ ports and 2 ‘HDMI out’ ports don’t lie. Neither do 2 subwoofer pre outs or this receiver’s compatibility for Dolby Atmos & DTX. It’s also no slouch in terms of build quality either. No part of this device feels budget or ‘bargain-basement’. Exactly what you need if you’re after an AV receiver that will last the test of time.

The screen is nice and clear too, and doesn’t dazzle you with 10,000 options. A feature we really dig when ti comes to Denon AV receivers in general. They’re techy, but you don’t have to be some sort of supernatural ‘tech wizard in order to operate them. As far as AV receivers go, they’re incredibly user friendly, especially when teamed with Alexa or a Google Assistant. Not to mention the Audyssey room calibration, which even for tech virgins is easy to get your head around.

And if you’re looking at the X2600H thinking: “I don’t have 7 gadgets to feed this AV“, then we’d advise you to still take it into consideration. Look at how fast technology is eeking its way into our lives and we suspect it won’t take you long to find a use. So basically what we’re saying is when you’re spending a decent chunk of money on an AV receiver, you’d be wise to buy more than you currently need.

That way you avoid having to shell out more money on a future upgrade. Call if future-proofing your audio setup and (in the long run) saving yourself money + an unnecessary shopping trip. In fact, the only reason we can see why you wouldn’t buy a high-end AV receiver like the X2600H, is if you’re looking to invest in an 8K TV later down the line. In which case a budget AV would be a good way to prep yourself for the main event.

Apart from that though, we’d say that for 80% of you reading this, the X2600H is all the AV you need. It’s packing enough inputs and output to keep you happy for a long while, and yet unlike 8K receivers doesn’t cost an astronomical sum of money. Hence why we’d say the best AV receiver for sale today is the Denon AVR-X2600H.

Enjoy our review of the best AV receiver for music & eager for more? Be sure to check out our latest Reviews Of Audio Gear, as well as our Knowledge Of Music Production. Recently, we also published an article on the Best Reference Headphones, as well as another running through the Best Studio Monitor Controllers, which may also be worth a read.

the bright power button of an av receiver

Or, if your heart’s fixed on an AV receiver, keep reading to delve even further into AV receivers + establish what to look for when trying to find the Best AV receiver for you…

If you’re setting up a home cinema or just want to have all your gadgets hooked up to one device, an AV receiver is a ‘must have’. Especially if you’ve plans of buying independent surround-sound speakers or subwoofers. Long story short, if you’ve got a lot of gadgets and aren’t content with the stock built-in speakers on your TV, then you really need an AV receiver.

And while we could write and essay on why, we’ll just let Techno Dad tell you himself…

* By the way, if you’re an audio fanatic, his channel is definitely worth a sub!

AV Receiver is actually a pretty simple acronym meaning Audio Video Receiver or Audio Visual Receiver.

That’s because it’s in essence what an AV receiver does. It receives audio and visual signals (via your inputs), processes them and then sends them out to your chosen device. So this could be your fancy new set of speakers or a screen as part of a home cinema.

While Sony comes a close second, the best AV receivers you can get your hands on come from Denon.

The build quality you get with a Denon AV is second to none. They’re built like tanks! On top of that, they’re also user friendly to the point at which you don’t need to be a tech geek to operate them. Even parts of the setup that are actually quite complex, like the room-calibration are super easy to wrap your head around. Not to mention the level of buttons, which unlike some high-end AVs isn’t too daunting. Even on the most pricy Denon AV receivers, the controls are nice and minimalist.

Now granted, the best AV receiver may in your situation not be a Denon, perhaps because of price or usage. But as far as AV receivers go from a technical & user-friendly standpoint, we’d say Denon take the crown.

Whether expensive receivers are worth it really depends on your setup.

If you have 2-3 gadgets to use with an AV and don’t plan on expanding your setup anytime soon, then a small AV receiver would likely do the job. However, notice we said ‘small’ and not ‘cheap’. That’s because with AV receivers, a lot of what you’re paying for is the quality of the preampfification and processing.

So while a budget AV receiver may give you all the functionality (i.e. ports) you need, you could actually bag yourself better picture quality and sound by investing in a slightly more pricy, but compact AV. Think of it as an audio interface is to a mic. You can have the Best Condenser Mic in the world, but if your audio interface is budget, then your sound can still end up being sub-par.

MORAL OF THE STORY: If you’re investing a decent chunk of money into improving your setup, be sure that it’s enough to get you a quality piece of kit.

Yes – we would say that Marantz AV receivers are a better option than those made by Yamaha. Although which is suited to you, will depend on the size/ type of your space + your requirements from an AV.

It’s worth noting though that Marantz and Denon AVs are actually made by the same company. And as you’ve probably gathered above, Denon AVs are no slouch. In fact, they’re arguably the best AV receivers that you can buy today. Think of a Marantz & Denon AV receivers as Seat or Skoda are to VAG (Volkswagen Automobiles) Group. Underneath they’re much the same, just made to appeal to a different audience.

So if you’re hunting for your first AV receiver, a Marantz wouldn’t be a bad place to start!

So while AV receivers don’t improve the quality of your sound all that much, they do allow you to hook up devices that will.

By that we mean a set of external speakers or some high quality studio monitors. All of which are a HUGE sound upgrade, especially in comparison to built-in speakers. Dedicate specific parts of the audio to specific speakers and you can drastically enhance the depth of your audio. Ideal for getting the best experience out of a Action or Horror flick.

However, AV receivers do help you improve your sound in terms of setup. When you first hook up an AV receiver you’ll be presented with some sort of auto-room correction. And while these systems do have a stigma around them, particularly when integrated into cheap speakers or studio monitors, those in AV receivers tend to be rather accurate.

Out of all the room-correction systems, we’d say the Audyssey system you get with Denon/ Marantz is the best out there. With this system you’ll be asked to place a mic (included) in 8 different positions around your room. In each position the AV will them pump out some form of pink noise and almost calibrate itself to your room.

While AV receivers can affect picture quality, it’s not always for the best.

That’s because while AV receivers process audio and can upscale your picture quality, there’s also a chance they unnecessarily process certain parts of the video signals that don’t actually need processing at all. Most AVs come with a built-in ‘bypass’, which you can turn on to stop this from occurring. In other words, preserve the original video quality.

However this is something we would advise checking out before swiping your card. But with that being said, if you buy a quality AV receiver this shouldn’t be a problem. You can also minimise the likelihood of this happening by buying an AV that’s slightly more powerful/ well specced than you currently need. That way you shouldn’t end up in the situation where you setup requires more power than your AV is capable of delivering.