After testing several stereo receivers over the time period of one week, we were able to pick the best stereo receivers for you, along with a detailed buying guide. If you are searching for a particular option urgently, we recommend the Onkyo TX-8160 Network Stereo Receiver for superior performance and advanced connectivity features.
Stereo Receivers Reviews
A stereo receiver is often called an AV receiver and surround sound receiver. It’s a single piece of equipment that comes with several capabilities. You can expect a lot from a stereo receiver, whether it is about producing a complete audio or audio-visual system, depending on how they will serve as the central linking hub for components. While looking to purchase a stereo receiver, you might get confused with the numerous options available on the market.
Therefore, you need to have a system based on your requirements. It will let you easily upgrade components on the system without having to purchase a separate unit later on. Consider a stereo receiver as headquarter of your home theatre system. To make your job easier, we tested several radio receivers from various companies.
After evaluating different models for a week, we asked for professional recommendations. Also, we read online reviews to have insights regarding the experience of customers concerning certain standards. The entire process lets us put together a short list of the top 5 stereo receivers based on their design and overall effectiveness. If you don’t have sufficient time to explore a lot of options, you may consider our top picks featuring excellent connectivity options along with an easy usability interface.
On the other hand, if you want to look for other models, we have included a professional and unbiased buying guide for you. The buying guide will communicate significant information that you must know before purchasing a particular stereo receiver. As soon as you read the guide, you will be able to make an informed choice that will serve you in the long run.
Top 5 Stereo Receivers
Best Home Stereo Receiver – Onkyo TX-8160 Network Stereo Receiver
The Onkyo TX-8160 Network Stereo Receiver is known for its exact and dynamic sound. The unit features a high-end amplification technology mechanism along with an audio image that is highly focused and realistic.
The model comes with Airplay, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth capabilities, thus offering you a variety of streaming options. You can conveniently stream from any server or Bluetooth-compatible device. Using the Onkyo remote app, you can have access to Spotify, Internet Radio, Pandora and much more. Further, the device has a digital-to-analogue converter, which reveals the audio format and plays back it with the highest quality. Also, you will find four presets, high-resolution precision and high-current intensification. All these features enable the best sound quality you can receive.
If you are fond of streaming radio or music using the internet connection on mobile devices, this receiver will provide you with almost every source to maintain a realistic quality sound. Finally, the Onkyo TX-8160 Network Stereo Receiver comes with six audial inputs and one output, two numeral audio inputs and one output, one USB input and speaker connectors.
Best Bluetooth Stereo Receiver – Yamaha RX-V383BL Stereo Receiver
- 5.1 Channel surround sound
- Bluetooth for wireless music streaming; Dynamic Power / Ch (Front L/R, 8/6/4/2 ohms) : 110 / 130 / 150 / 180 W
- 4K Ultra HD pass through with HDCP 2.2 Supports; Dynamic Power / Ch (Front L/R, 8/6/4/2 ohms) : 110 / 130 / 150 / 180 W
- High dynamic range (HDR) and BT .2020 compatibility
- YPAO sound optimization Tuning for your home
The Yamaha RX-V383BL is among the best budget-friendly stereo receivers that offer clean and sharp sound. It’s a user-friendly design boasting 5.1 channel power sound along with a high dynamic range and BT.2020 compatibility.
If you like deep-toned sounds, you will surely enjoy the rich low-voiced reproduction that efficiently enhances the receiver’s bass output. The Yamaha RX-V383BL Stereo Receiver comes with a traditional design that provides you with an easy usability interface. You will find a standard display of controls and dials to increase or decrease volume, input, and pre-settings.
Another excellent feature is the remote, which is only laid out and spontaneous to operate. You will have various connectivity options, including four HDMI inputs and one output. The model is also compatible with 4K streaming. Though it does not come with built-in Wi-Fi, it does offer Bluetooth to streamline smoothly.
Best High-End Stereo Receiver – Yamaha R-S202BL Stereo Receiver
- Advanced circuitry design.Speaker selector for 2 systems. Input Sensitivity (CD): 500 MV/47k ohmsHead phone terminalAuto power standby functionSpeaker selector and speaker terminals for two systems
- Bluetooth to your favorite streaming music services
- 40 station FM/AM preset tuning; Frequency Response: 10Hz – 100kHz (0 plus/ minus 0.5 dB / 0 plus/ minus 3.0 dB)
- Brushed aluminum finish and simplistic design
- Speaker selector for 2 systems. Input Sensitivity (CD): 500 MV/47k ohms
The Yamaha R-S202BL Stereo Receiver comes with a high-end integrated circuit design to provide you with maximum performance. The unit features 40-Station FM/AM preset tuning and 100 watts per channel output for efficient streaming.
The model has Bluetooth compatibility, which allows you to stream music from your smart device instantly. This receiver lets you connect to distinct sets of speakers so you can quickly shift between two outputs. Further, you will receive a handy speaker selector, so you either tune into one speaker system or both of them together. As far as the dimensions of the stereo receiver are concerned, it measures 17-1/8 x 5-½-inch and weighs only 14.8 pounds.
The Yamaha R-S202BL Stereo Receiver does not have a sleek and minimalist design; instead of its power regulating function, make sure you use minimum energy by automatically swapping to standby mode. The standby mode consumes only 0.5 W, which makes it a highly energy-efficient unit. The model has become quite a popular choice in a short while for its’ great value. People around the globe appreciate the unit for its excellent output power and sound.
Best Quality Stereo Receiver – Pioneer VSX-531 5.1 Channel AV Receiver
- Ultra HD (4K/60p/4:4:4) pass-through with HDCP 2.2
- Advanced Sound Retriever for dynamic response from compressed music
- Built-in Bluetooth
- 140 watts/channel amplifier (6 ohms, 1 kHz, THD 1.0 %, 1ch Driven)
If you are searching for a simple yet highly-effective unit, the Pioneer VSX-531 5.1 Channel AV Receiver can be a fanatic choice. This budget-friendly model offers an excellent base to anyone who is new to sound systems. The 5.1 channel receiver consumes 140 W per channel with a clear and sharp audio reproduction.
The unit comes with Bluetooth wireless technology, thus letting you connect numerous devices, including Blu-ray disc players, cable packages, and gaming devices. Featuring HDMI inputs, it is capable of supporting 4K Ultra HD. Also, you will find a USB input on the front panel. The Pioneer VSX-531 stereo receiver includes a phase control technology which minimizes lag and enhances multi-channel sound without any distortion. It makes sure to provide you with a clear and consistent sound. The advanced stereo receiver allows two-channel listening and recreating little details that might lose during the compression process.
If you are purchasing your very first stereo receiver and are not willing to invest a lot of money, the Pioneer VSX-531 is a smart choice. You will surely enjoy several features that might cost a lot on other models, along with real power and flawless Bluetooth connectivity.
Best Stereo Receiver with HDMI – Denon AVR-S510BT Stereo Receiver
- 5.2 channel A/V Receiver with 70W per channel
- 4K Ultra HD/60Hz full rate pass through with 3 designated HDMI inputs and full HDCP 2.2 support
- Built in Bluetooth
- Dolby TruHD, DTS HD Master Audio
- IP control capability with the HEOS Link turns any stereo system into a wireless zone (HEOS LINK sold separately)
The Denon AVR-S510BT Stereo Receiver offers you superior sound quality than your expectations. The 5.2-channel radio receiver comes with 70 W per channel, two-channel performance for excellent music, surround sound and wireless streaming from mobile devices.
Using the four quick controls, you can have access to your favourite input sources. The device provides you with 4K Ultra HD at 60 Hz with three HDMI inputs and HDCP 2.2 support. It comes with five HDMI inputs in total. Further, you will find two correspondent inputs, three numerical inputs, and two subwoofer outputs. Also, there is a USB port on the front. The Denon AVR-S510BT Stereo Receiver does not include an Ethernet port or built-in Wi-Fi capability; however, it does have Bluetooth for connecting to various devices. You will find most of the controls of the unit available on iOS and Android apps.
What’s more? You will receive Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD master audio that makes sure to provide you highest quality sound and optimal performance in any setting. Overall, the model offers excellent details, thus giving you an exhilarating listening experience. With nicely balanced audio, you will always receive a great sound without worrying about instrumental effects on the voice quality.
Stereo Receiver Buying Guide
How to Choose
The HDMI factor
Today, most of the everyday use devices in homes and workstations make use of HDMI. Therefore, the number of HDMI inputs an AV stereo receiver features is one of the most significant factors to consider. There is no fixed HDMI number to rely upon, as some devices require three, whereas others can go up to 6. Any number in this range will make for a good option.
The most important thing to keep in mind is always to have an additional HDMI input that you might require later. Also, you can look for options that let you increase the HDMI inputs via the HDMI switcher. However, this solution might not last for long. Consider using a universal remote as a substitute. With the technical progression, you can have 4K resolution and streaming. If this is your requirement, then look for a stereo receiver model that offers 4K compatibility. In this way, you will get access to 4K content for high dynamic choice.
Built-in Bluetooth and Airplay Features
You will find a lot of stereo receiver models on the market that are consistently advancing their features. Look for a radio receiver that provides you with Wi-Fi, Airplay and Bluetooth facilities, as these features have become an everyday necessity. They allow you to stream your favourite music from your smart device to the receiver in no time. Most of us have music on our smart devices, and here these features can be quite helpful.
Besides, Bluetooth and Airplay can offer excellent performance for both IOS and Android products. Using a stereo receiver offering these features will help you directly connect them to an external device which will keep you away from the worry of purchasing extras.
Most people who have just started often face some problems while setting up the system at home and connecting all the required components. Today, many stereo receivers come with a simpler and easier design. The best radio receivers are equipped with automatic speaker calibration, which analyzes the work and fine-tunes the sound automatically from the connected speakers. This system operates in a way where your receiver will be capable of figuring out the size of the speaker and the distance between the speaker and the listener. Also, knowing if all the components are connected in the right manner.
There is a misconception that the power of a receiver links to its volume. In reality, power is the ability to understand the receiver’s proficiencies to bring out the dynamic and subtle sound. It is as simple as the stereo receiver with great sound quality will have high watts.
Another important consideration to keep in mind is that the radio receiver should be strong enough to accommodate the speakers and the receiver, whether they are in similar or different locations or spaces. The required power is dependent on the speaker’s sensitivity. The speaker having high sensitivity will require minimum power. Also, if the area surrounding your AV system is small, then it will need less power.
The easy interface is a crucial consideration that most of us usually ignore. What if your stereo receiver is among the best models on the market but very complicated when it comes to included features? You will surely have some real trouble while operating the device. It won’t be simple and straightforward to navigate, which can be quite frustrating as well as time-consuming. You will never want to be in such a situation. Therefore, before purchasing an individual model, be sure about its easy usability interface, which will help you understand and operate the functions effortlessly.
Today stereo receivers offer great connectivity options at a more reasonable price than ever before. By picking up the right receiver, you can easily navigate specifications that are suited to your preferences. We will like to say that this is the ultimate guide on stereo receiver buying. Keeping in mind every person has different requirements, we tried to compile a general guide on how to shortlist your choices while considering important features that your favourite model must own.
Further, you can use our reviews on bestseller stereo receivers to quickly have a look at various receivers and their features that might meet your requirements. Once you make a choice based on significant aspects, you will be more than happy to have this handy device serving multiple purposes for a lifetime.