As a manufacturer of some of the world’s best pianos and guitars (it also makes recorders, but we’ll forgive them that) Yamaha trades heavily on its audio credibility when it comes to spruiking its electronics products. And so it is with the new Aventage AV receiver line-up, which Yamaha’s says has an “acoustic signature that delivers all the emotion of a musical performance”.
All such waffle aside, the Aventage (pronounced Avent–arge) RX-A1000, 2000 and 3000 provide a combination of engineering and features that sets them above the company’s RX range, including a symmetrical amplifier design for better separation of left and right audio signals, high quality Burr Brown DACs, 1080p video upscaling, HQV video processing, web browser control, and a what Yamaha calls an ‘ART Wedge’, or fifth leg.
The middle fifth leg can be seen clearly, as well as all of the connections from the rear of the RX-A3000.
This an additional foot located in the middle of each unit to provide support for the extra-rigid double-bottom chassis below the heavyweight power supply and heat sinks. It’s a simple feature, but one Yamaha says reduces vibration from the chassis to help eliminate resonances and sound colouration.
So this range is pitched at audiophiles, and to emphasise the point, each model is controllable by the AMX, Crestron and Control 4 systems used by professional custom installer/integrators. The units also offer web browser control via an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch, which is nice, but not as convenient as app-based control, which Yamaha says is in development.
The three models have HDMI 1.4 for full 3D compatibility, advanced versions of the company’s YPOA calibration system, PC music streaming with DLNA v1.5, additional zone support, eight HDMI inputs and two outputs to feed a pair of HD monitors simultaneously, plus support for all the HD surround formats. Each also comes with a YSD-12 iPod dock, valued at $179.
The RX-A3000 leads the range at $2799, and can be configured to provide up to 11.2 channels of surround, with power rated at 7 x 140 watts and a staggeringly low 0.06% THD. The RX-A2000 provides 2 x 130 watts for $2199 and the RX-A1000 delivers 7 x 105 watts for $1799.
Available in November is Yamaha’s first 3D Blu-ray player, the BD-A1000 (above). A cosmetic match for the Aventage AV receivers, it supports YouTube via a wired Ethernet connection (wireless would be more in step with the times), SACD, DVD-Audio Divx Plus HD and USB. Pricing has not yet been announced, but we expect it to sell for around $600.
The Aventage AV receivers come with a four-year warranty and a one-year replacement warranty, and are exclusive to specialist electronics retailers.