AV receivers are the heart and brains of your home entertainment system. With the advent of high end Blu-ray audio formats (Blu-ray Profile 3.0) and an ever expanding range of surround sound technologies, it just might be time to upgrade your receiver. I did some of my own research and I determined that if you’re going to be taking advantage of Blu-ray’s superior audio formats, your best bet is the Yamaha RX-V663. Read the full review to find out why.
Price - $380 to $500
When the Yamaha RX-V663 first hit the market, it was priced at around $500. A few years have passed and it’s still on the shelves. This is good news for two reasons: one, for an older model, it still remains popular, reliable and relevant. And two: the price has come down quite a bit. After some cursory comparison shopping, I found it for as low as $380. That’s a great price for an AV receiver of this caliber.
7.1 Channel Surround
The Yamaha RX-V663 has built-in decoding for the DTS-HD Master Audio and Dolby TrueHD high resolution surround –sound formats. This is the format that’s used in Blu-ray movies, which means that the Yamaha RX-V663 will help you get more out of your audio video setup. It also supports Dolby Digital and DTS, which means you can also enjoy high quality surround sound with your DVDs and HDTV shows and movies.
Even the best speakers in the world won’t sound good if they are configured improperly. For most users, the science of setting speaker levels is beyond their skillset and knowhow (which is why many choose to hire an installer). But with the Yamaha RX-V663, you can get a little help from the receiver itself. It uses auto-calibration circuitry and microphones to automatically set the speaker levels in your room for the best performance. That’s not only impressive, it’s handy, too.
The Yamaha RX-V663 is Sirius and XM satellite radio ready. Not a main selling point, but a nice perk all the same.
Dual Audio Sources
With the Yamaha RX-V663, you are, in a way, getting two receivers for the price of one. The Yamaha RX-V663 lets you send a separate audio source to another room.
Don’t just take my word for it—the Yamaha RX-V663 is also critically acclaimed. Consumer Reports rated it as one of its highest recommended AV receivers, with an overall score of 71 out of 100. It scored a “very good” on amp performance, front panel ease of use and remote ease of use. Given the price range (AV receivers can cost much, much more), that’s a very decent score.