The best home theater receivers priced at $399 or less v gashi

This receiver has a powerful five-channel amplifier (80WPC-measured with two channels driven) and a preamp output for connection of a powered subwoofer. Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD Master Audio decoding is provided, as well as AirSurround Xtreme-based Virtual Cinema Front audio processing for listeners who would rather place all their speakers in the front of the room. This setup is convenient for those who have limited space.

The RX-V483 can also wirelessly access iTunes and additional music streaming from an iPod Touch, iPhone, or iPad via Apple AirPlay. However, in addition, the receiver can access internet radio, music stored on USB flash drives, and PCs connected to a compatible home network. The RX-V483 provides both Ethernet and Wi-Fi.

Another added bonus is the inclusion of Yamaha’s MusicCast system. After downloading the MusicCast App, you can not only stream music from Pandora, Spotify, Deezer, TIDAL, and Sirius/XM, but you can also incorporate the RX-V483 into a wireless multiroom music system using compatible Yamaha MusicCast-enabled wireless speakers.

The STR-DH770 is rated to deliver enough power for a small- to medium-size room. Audio support includes Dolby TrueHD/DTS-HD Master Audio decoding, as Dolby Prologic II/IIx and DTS-ES audio processing. For added audio connection convenience, Audio Return Channel is also included, along with two subwoofer outputs.

You also have the added flexibility to assign the surround back channels (channels 6 and 7) to function in a front Speaker B, Bi-Amp, or front height setup. However, the 770 does not have Dolby Atmos or DTS:X decoding, so the height sound effects are generated generically by the receiver’s own home-grown audio processing.

For video, the STR-DH770 features four HDMI inputs and one output that support 3D, HDR, 1080p, and 4K pass-through, but has no additional video processing or upscaling. Either your source (DVD/Blu-ray Disc Player/Media Streamer/Cable/Satellite box) or your TV/video projector has to perform any needed video upscaling or processing.

On the other hand, one added bonus is the inclusion of built-in Bluetooth (with NFC), which allows direct streaming from compatible smartphones and tablets. However, Ethernet and Wi-Fi connectivity is not included, which means that the receiver cannot directly access internet-based streaming content. But if you have downloaded Sony’s SongPal App to a compatible smartphone, via Bluetooth you can control the receiver, as well as access select music files that you have stored on your smartphone

The Onkyo TX-SR373 packs in a lot for not a lot of money. Starting with core functions, the TX-SR73 provides a 5.2-channel configuration that delivers 80 watts-per-channel (measured with two channels driven), combined with Dolby TrueHD/DTS-Master Audio decoding, as well as Audio Return Channel, 3D, HDR, 1080p, and 4K pass-through (no additional video processing or upscaling) via four HDMI inputs and one output. Also, the 5.2 designation means that the TX-SR373 allows connection of up to two subwoofers.

Other bonuses include built-in Qualcomm-enhanced Bluetooth with Aptx Audio, which allows improved direct streaming from compatible smartphones and tablets, as well as a front-mounted USB port for convenient access to music files stored on flash drives.

For novices, the Onkyo TX373 provides a rear connection panel that not only provides the connections but also includes etched-in images of the types of devices that you can plug into each connection, as well as a visual speaker layout diagram example.

For an initial suggested price of $349, the Onkyo TX-SR373 offers the core basics you need for a modest home theater system. If you are on a limited budget or are looking for a receiver to serve as the hub for a second room system, the TX-SR373 may be just right for you.

In terms of home theater receivers, the Pioneer VSX-S520 veers from the large traditional box design with a stylish, slim profile cabinet that is only 2.76 inches high, and an 8.8-pound weight. Despite its slim profile, the VSX-S520 actually incorporates quite a bit.

Standard speaker terminals are provided for connection of both speakers and a passive subwoofer, and subwoofer preamp line outputs are provided for connection of a powered subwoofer. A dedicated passive subwoofer connection option is very rare.

The VSX-S520 also incorporates network connectivity via Ethernet or Wi-Fi, providing access to several internet music streaming services, as well as access to hi-res audio files via local networks and USB. AirPlay, Bluetooth, and Google Chromecast support is also provided.

However, as much as the VSX-S520 packs in, there is a​ trade-off with its similarly priced, larger cousins. One example is the modest power output (approximately 50wpc per channel), which is fine for a small room, but a little lean for a large room.

For the price of the VSX-S520, some home theater receivers offer a 7.1-channel configuration, more power output, and the inclusion of Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, but if space is at a premium, the Pioneer VSX-S520 is definitely worth consideration.