Yamaha Revamps Flagship Aventage AV Receiver Line

Yamaha’s flagship Aventage line of A/V receivers is undergoing its most significant upgrade since the line was introduced 11 years ago.

Specific launch dates were not offered but the AVR stalwart last week announced plans to launch three models this summer: the 11.2-channel RX-A8A (shown), 9.2-channel RX-A6A, and 7.2-channel RX-A4A at $3,000, $2,200, and $1,300, respectively. The A8A and A6A deliver 150 watts per channel into 8 ohms with 0.06% THD and the A4A 110 watts per channel (all rated with two channels driven).

Hailed as the brand’s “most innovative AV receivers to date,” the new AVRs share a streamlined design with a large, centered volume knob, updated vibration-resistant chassis, support for Dolby Vision high dynamic range (HDR), seven HDMI 2.1 inputs, three HDMI outputs, and artificial intelligence (AI) that harnesses 64-bit quad-core processing to analyze content in real time for an “optimal surround effect.” A future update will enable support for 8K/60, 4K120, and HDR10+ on the HDMI connections.

Yamaha says the use of AI is a first for A/V receivers. At the core of the AI engine is Qualcomm’s QCS407 smart audio platform.

All models boast three flavors of surround processing: Dolby Atmos with height virtualization (for systems that lack height speakers), DTS:X with Neural:X spatial remapping, and an updated version of Yamaha’s signature Cinema DSP HD3 mode, designed to heighten realism through the use of a front presence speaker and rear virtual speaker. Auro-3D surround processing will be added to the two top models with a firmware update promised for the future.

Other standard features include support for Yamaha’s MusicCast multiroom platform, Apple’s AirPlay 2, Spotify Connect, and Bluetooth in addition to Yamaha’s YPAO automated calibration system, which detects speakers, measures distances between them and multiple listening positions, and uses equalization to compensate for room acoustics to optimize the sound; the updated system also boasts a new low-frequency mode. All models are also equipped with a phono input.

High-performance gameplay is supported through HDMI 2.1’s auto low latency mode (ALLM), variable refresh rates (VRR), quick frame transport (QFT) and quick media switching (QMS) features. Voice control is possible through the Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, and Google Assistant platforms.

Technical features include a high-slew-rate amplifier built to respond to rapid changes in input level, a symmetrical circuit layout to reduce noise and cross-channel interference, an isolated transformer, and the use of Sabre’s Premier Audio digital-to-analog converters (DACs) for “up to 120 dB dynamic range.”

Onboard streaming services include Amazon Music HD, Deezer, Napster, Pandora, SiriusXM, Spotify, Tidal, Qobuz, and internet radio.

For more information, visit usa.yamaha.com.