CelsusSound AV receivers Best AV Receiver Under $1000 Reviews

Best AV Receiver Under $1000 Reviews

Have you decided to replace your old receiver with a newer model, or are you just planning your first purchase of such a device? Of course, you hope to spend not too much money and still get excellent results. That’s why today, let’s talk about the average price range. I decided not to focus on only one brand and selected the best receivers under 1000 dollars from different manufacturers. I think it will be much more helpful for you to compare models of the same class from different brands and then choose the one that will satisfy you the most.

Our pick
Denon AVR-X1700H
Denon AVR-X1700H
Best AV receiver under $1000
Designed for 4K or 8K setups, the AVR-X1700H delivers the ultimate 3D audio home theater/gaming experiences and supports the latest HDMI specifications. Read the full review.

AV receiver under $1000 comparison table

Name Channels Power output HDMI in/out Bluetooth/Wi-Fi Review
Denon AVR-X1700H best overall 7.2 80W/8 Ohm, 120W/6 Ohm 6/1 yes/yes Review
Yamaha RX-A2A also a great choice 7.2 80W/8 Ohm 7/1 yes/yes Review
Denon DRA-800H stereo 2.2 100W/8 Ohm, 120W/6 Ohm 5/1 yes/yes Review

What to expect from home theater receivers under $1000?

Now, there are many receivers for every taste and color on the market. And sometimes, it can be a little hard to make sense of it all. So, let’s take a closer look at what the devices offer under $1000.

First, you must understand that, unlike budget models, most receivers in this price category are already 7-channel. If you need even more channels (for example, 9), you have to pay more. A good option is the Pioneer Elite VSX-LX305 9.2-channel unit, which I have also included in my list.

Second, mid-range receivers generally offer more HDMI ports and pre and line channels. Available video technology should also please you. As a rule, you can find not only 4K resolution but also 8K with eARC support for transmitting a full-resolution signal without losing quality.

Also, top AV receivers under $1000 can offer Dolby Atmos and DTS:X. They allow you to discover three-dimensional sounds which budget devices can’t deliver. As for the newer surround sound technologies, such as DTS:X Pro and Auro-3D, they are very rare among this class of models.

In general, receivers under $1,000 will meet most people’s needs. They completely cover the needs of beginning audiophiles and film fans, supporting most modern audio and video formats. In addition, many devices have various useful and interesting additional features.

Best AV receiver under $1000 reviews

Jump to

Denon AVR-X1700H – best overall

Denon AVR-X1700H

Let’s first look at the best home theater receiver under $1000 that is, in my opinion – the AVR-X1700H. It was released by Denon in 2021 and is the most affordable model in the X series. In addition, the X-Series models support virtually all 3D audio formats, thereby discovering the perfection of surround sound.

So, what does the Denon X1700H offer us? The 7.2 channel unit has an amplifier with 80 watts per channel (8 ohms, 20 Hz – 20 kHz, 0.08% THD, and 2ch drive). It also features discrete high-current amplifiers with low-impedance drive capability. Its 32-bit D/A converters allow high-resolution audio decoding, providing low distortion.

Denon AVR-X1700H back

Pictures in 8K/60Hz resolution will appeal to large screen owners. This model offers quite a lot of modern technology for comfortable and high-quality movie viewing. The image looks vivid, clear, and dynamic, thanks to the latest HDR support. And technologies such as QMS, VRR, ALLM, and QFT can take your console game to a whole new level.

The AVR-X1700H has 6 HDMI inputs (2.1), three of which support 8K resolution and 1 HDMI output with HDCP 2.3 and eARC support. Interestingly, the model uses an updated version of the HDMI 2.1 chip, which provides up to 40 Gbps of throughput. As for connection methods, at your disposal, there are two subwoofer outputs, Ethernet ports, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth.

Denon AVR-X1700H photo

Separately, I want to talk about the sound itself. The model has full support for 3D audio with virtual surround sound. While watching the films, I liked that the receiver can boast an excellent deep frontal soundstage, and its sound effects had fairly accurate panning. In addition, it also has two multi-room zones and support for multiple streaming services. Sound calibration is done through Audyssey MultEQ XT, which allows you to fine-tune the sound you want. But keep in mind the app has a one-time fee.

Unfortunately, the device does not come with a detailed manual, so you will likely spend a lot of time on the Denon website learning how to properly set up and use the receiver.

As I said at the beginning of the review, this is the best AV receiver under $1000. It is pretty powerful, reliable, and has the most modern technologies, such as 8K pass-through, improved gaming capabilities, full 3D audio, and so on. A clear leader that can compete with more expensive models.

Key specs

  • Channels: 7.2.
  • Power output: 80W/8 Ohm, 120W/6 Ohm.
  • HDMI inputs/outputs: 6/1.
  • Video functions: 8K/60Hz, 4K/60Hz, 4K/120Hz, HDMI Upscaling up to 8K.
  • Bluetooth/Wi-Fi: yes/yes.
  • Streaming services: AirPlay 2, Spotify, TuneIn, Deezer, Tidal, Netflix, Amazon Prime.
  • Supports: HDMI ARC, HDMI eARC, HDMI CEC, HDCP2.3, HDR10+, Dolby Vision.
  • Surround sound: DTS:X, DTS Virtual:X, Dolby Atmos, DTS HD Master, Dolby TrueHD.

Pros

  • Advanced 8K resolution.
  • Supports latest HDR formats.
  • Gaming oriented receiver.
  • There is full 3D audio support.
  • 2 multi-room zones are present.
  • Low distortion.

Cons

  • Audyssey application has a one-time fee.
  • No detailed instructions.

Yamaha RX-A2A – also a great choice

Yamaha RX-A2A

The Yamaha RX-A2A is the most expensive device in my selection, but it is here for a reason. It was released by a Japanese company in 2020, ushering in the RX-A series. A year later, this model was replaced by the RX-A4A.

The receiver is equipped with a 7.2 channel amplifier with a total power of 100 watts (8 ohms, 20 Hz – 20 kHz, 0.06% THD). It’s also important to consider that Yamaha only supports pre-amp out for the left and right front channels.

If we talk about the picture, it looks clear, moderately contrasty, and has good detail of individual elements. The device supports 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz, HDR10+, as well as gaming features (ALLM, VRR, QMS, and QFT). In this case, according to user feedback, there is sometimes a problem with unstable signal transmission and, consequently, interruption of the picture. But, during the model testing, I did not notice this; therefore, I can not consider it a weakness of the model.

Yamaha RX-A2A back

You can calibrate the sound thanks to an exclusive YPAO development. Once the speakers are connected, it measures the distance between the speakers and the listener position and then automatically optimizes the speaker settings according to the parameters of your room. Tuning is easy enough and accurate.

The receiver has 7/1 HDMI ports (2.1) with HDCP 2.3 and eARC support. Among the available connection methods, you can find two subwoofer outputs, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, USB inputs, and network ports. Is it enough? Absolutely!

Those who have purchased this AVR get a typical 7.2 channel sound setup, or in the case of Dolby Atmos – 5.2.2 channels support. Thus, modern surround sound formats and older formats (for example, DTS HD Master and Dolby TrueHD) are available to you.

Yamaha RX-A2A photo

Two multi-room zones are also among the valuable features. I would also like to mention the presence of Yamaha Cinema DSP 3D. This is a sound environment technology developed by Yamaha. It allows you to recreate the acoustics of concert halls and music clubs. Doesn’t it sound interesting and intriguing? After listening to a few songs using this technology, the sound seemed artificial and overly processed. I can’t say that I was disappointed, but I was definitely expecting more.

Sometimes you may notice that the software lags and some applications freeze, as in my case with HBO Max. However, after a quick AVR restart, everything started working perfectly again.

Overall, it’s a great AVR under 1000 dollars. This model has absolutely everything a modern receiver should have. Yes, there may be some minor drawbacks, but who doesn’t have them?

Key specs

  • Channels: 7.2.
  • Power output: 80W/8 Ohm.
  • HDMI inputs/outputs: 7/1.
  • Video functions: 8K/60Hz, 4K/60Hz, 4K/120Hz, HDMI Upscaling up to 4K.
  • Bluetooth/Wi-Fi: yes/yes.
  • Streaming services: AirPlay 2, Spotify, TuneIn, Deezer, Tidal, Netflix, Amazon Prime.
  • Supports: HDMI ARC, HDMI eARC, HDMI CEC, HDCP2.3, HDR10+, Dolby Vision.
  • Surround sound: DTS:X, DTS Virtual:X, Dolby Atmos, DTS HD Master, Dolby TrueHD.

Pros

  • 8K resolution.
  • CINEMA DSP 3D is available.
  • Amplifier with high slew rate.
  • Easy setup thanks to YPAO.
  • 2 multi-room zones are present.
  • Breathtaking sound with DTS:X and Dolby Atmos.

Cons

  • The software lags.
  • No HDMI port on the front panel.
  • The front display of the receiver is hard to read.

Marantz NR1510

Marantz NR1510

The Marantz NR1510 is number three on my list. This device was released in 2019. The AVR belongs to the NR line, where it stands next to a 7.2-channel receiver NR1711 and a 2-channel stereo model NR1200.

The NR1510 is a 5.2-channel unit with about 50 watts per channel (8 ohms, 20 Hz – 20 kHz, THD: 0.08%). One of the main advantages is its compact and slim design. The front of the panel has two big rotary knobs on each side for volume and input selection. There is also a small central display with a slightly outdated user interface. The model legs are made of metal. Overall, it looks pretty stylish and minimalistic.

Marantz NR1510 back

As for the picture, it supports 4K Ultra HD at 60 Hz. I tested it on a 65-inch TV and was pleased with the result. Everything looks quite clear and bright. By the way, although you can find a lot of information on the Internet about the problem of connecting the receiver to the TV through an HDMI cable, in my case, everything went smoothly.

But I had time to face a completely different situation, namely the periodical disconnection from the network. I had to reboot the receiver for the model to recognize Airplay. I don’t know if I’m the only “lucky” one or if someone else had this situation too, but I didn’t like it very much. In addition, even though the device channels are designed for 4-16 ohms impedance, I cannot recommend you connect the complete set of 4-ohm speakers to this model. You have to be careful even with a single pair of 4-ohm speakers.

Marantz NR1510 photo

The Marantz has six HDMI inputs (2.0) and one HDMI output (2.0) with HDCP 2.3 and ARC support. You can connect to the model due to 2 subwoofer outputs, Bluetooth, Ethernet Ports, Wi-Fi, and Phono (MM) In.

Unfortunately, this receiver cannot boast an exciting surround sound because there is no DTS:X and Dolby Atmos.

The Marantz NR1510 is a receiver with a rich set of inputs and functions which remains as slim and compact as possible. It’s great for small rooms and undemanding use. But if this is not your case, then I would consider other options.

Key specs

  • Channels: 5.2.
  • Power output: 50W/8 Ohm, 60W/6 Ohm.
  • HDMI inputs/outputs: 6/1.
  • Video functions: 4K/60Hz.
  • Bluetooth/Wi-Fi: yes/yes.
  • Streaming services: AirPlay 2, Pandora, Spotify, Napster, SiriusXM, TIDAL, Deezer, Qobuz, Amazon Music.
  • Suppots: HDMI eARC, Dolby Vision, HDR 10.
  • Surround sound: Dolby Atmos, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Surround, Multichannel Stereo.

Pros

  • 4K Ultra HD.
  • Slim design.
  • HEOS technology is available.
  • Supports Hi-Res audio.
  • Phono (MM) input is present.

Cons

  • No Dolby Atmos and DTS:X.
  • HDMI version 2.0.
  • Trouble connecting to the network.

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX105

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX105

The penultimate model that deserves your attention is the Pioneer Elite VSX-LX105. It was introduced at CES 2021 as the most affordable device in the VSX-LX series (US market only). Its older brother is VSX-LX305.

The receiver is equipped with a 7.2-channel amplifier with about 100 watts per channel (8 ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, THD 0.08%). With this model, you don’t have to worry about coming across a defective device because the VSX-LX105 has been profiled as Roon-Tested. Thus, you will definitely receive a quality and certified product.

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX105 back

As for the video reproduction capabilities of the Pioneer, it supports a picture in 8K resolution at 60Hz, as well as all modern technologies such as Dolby Vision, HDR10+, and others. As a result, the images have incredible clarity and contrast and can be viewed from different angles.

Also, here you will find two multi-room zones. But it is essential to consider that only Zone 1 supports 8K pass-through.

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX105 photo

In terms of connectors and connection methods, the receiver has 6 HDMI inputs (2.1) and 2 HDMI outputs (2.1) with support for HDCP 2.3 and eARC. Available connectivity options include 2 subwoofer outputs, standard Ethernet, dual-band Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth. You’ll also find DTS Play-Fi, Flare Connect, and AirPlay2.

The Pioneer Elite VSX-LX105 is a surround sound receiver because it is equipped with technologies such as Dolby Atmos and DTS:X in 5.2.2 configurations. After simply calibrating the unit with the MCACC automatic room tuning technology, the sound playback was at a very good level. While watching the film, I could feel myself in the middle of the events. Everything that was happening had a nice soundstage with breathtaking depth.

The VSX-LX105 will accompany you for years to come. Thanks to its multi-channel and network audio capabilities, it is an excellent solution with sufficient power even for large rooms. In addition, the receiver is easy to use, multifunctional, and supports modern video and audio technologies.

Key specs

  • Channels: 7.2.
  • Power output: 100W/8 Ohm, 210W/6 Ohm.
  • HDMI inputs/outputs: 6/4.
  • Video functions: 8K/60Hz, 4K/60Hz, 4K/120Hz, HDMI Upscaling up to 8K.
  • Bluetooth/Wi-Fi: yes/yes.
  • Streaming services: AirPlay 2, Spotify, TuneIn, Deezer, Tidal, Netflix, Amazon Prime.
  • Supports: HDMI ARC, HDMI eARC, HDMI CEC, HDCP2.3, HDR10+, Dolby Vision.
  • Surround sound: DTS:X, DTS Virtual:X, Dolby Atmos, DTS HD Master, Dolby TrueHD.

Pros

  • 8K pass-through.
  • Dolby Atmos and DTS:X technologies are present.
  • Discrete zone 2 HDMI switching.
  • The receiver profiled as Roon-Tested.
  • There are 2 HDMI outputs.

Cons

  • Sometimes the model can overheat.
  • No front-wide channel support.

Denon DRA-800H – stereo

Denon DRA-800H

Finally, we came to the last model, the DRA-800H. Denon released this device in 2019, which is still relevant today. In addition, it is such a successful model that it can challenge even AV receivers.

The receiver has a 2.2-channel amplifier with 100W per channel (8 ohms, 20 Hz – 20 kHz, 0.08% 2ch Drive). It is equipped with the advanced AKM AK4458 DAC, allowing you to extend the dynamic range and reduce noise.

Denon DRA-800H back

Although the DRA-800H is more than anyone else focused on music, it gives quite a good quality video. The picture in 4K resolution looks clear and detailed on TV with different screen sizes. Among the supported technologies are the standard HDR10 and Dolby Vision. Even ALLM pass-through for gaming is also present.

Now, let’s talk about formats. The receiver is Hi-Res Audio certified for FLAC, WAV, and ALAC files at up to 192 kHz/24-bit and DSD at 2.8 or 5.6 MHz. By the way, note that AIFF files are not recognized, which will cause parts of your high-resolution library to stop playing, as it did in my case.

Denon DRA-800H photo

The model has 5 HDMI inputs (2.0) and 1 HDMI output (2.0) with ARC/HDCP 2.3 support. Available connectivity options include 2 subwoofer outputs, Bluetooth, Ethernet Ports, and Wi-Fi. But it is worth noting that Bluetooth does not support LDAC, only SBC, which sounds awful.

I tested the sound with the Tekton Pendragon, and I can confidently say that this AVR has an incredible sound. Both the music and the movie playback clearly and dynamically. I was pleased to see support for 2 multi-room zones. The only downside, the play HEOS buffer is limited to 300 songs.

In short, it is the best stereo receiver under $1000. For a very reasonable price, it offers good audio and video playback. In addition, the Denon DRA-800H has a wide enough range of features for a stereo receiver to meet most of your needs.

Key specs

  • Channels: 2.2.
  • Power output: 100W/8 Ohm, 120W/6 Ohm.
  • HDMI inputs/outputs: 5/1.
  • Video functions: 4K/60Hz.
  • Bluetooth/Wi-Fi: yes/yes.
  • Streaming services: Airplay 2, Pandora, Spotify, Napster, SiriusXM, TIDAL, Deezer, Qobuz, Amazon Music.
  • Supports: HDR, HLG.

Pros

  • Voice control is available.
  • Maximum focus on sound quality.
  • 2 multi-room zones are present.
  • Support Hi-Res audio.
  • HEOS technology.

Cons

  • Doesn’t support AIFF files.
  • All HDMI version 2.0.
  • Bluetooth does not support LDAC.

FAQ

How many watts per channel is enough for a receiver?

Beginners most often ask this question. Believe me, 70 to 100 watts per channel is more than enough for most applications and will work for most rooms.

Which brand of AV receiver is most reliable?

It all depends on the specific receiver model. No brand produces devices that don’t break or last more than 50 years.

How much do I need to spend on an AV receiver?

It depends on your goals and objectives. But if you want a receiver that provides good sound and supports modern formats and technologies, you will have to pay $1000 or more.
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About Heath Bray
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