- Mar 9, 2004
It has been a long time since I shopped for home audio equipment. I have had a Harman/Kardon AVR 230 since 2004, and it has been a fine receiver. I currently have a 5.1 speaker setup, with Polk speakers for everything but the sub, which is made by SVS. I use a PS3 for my blu-ray player and games, and also have an X-Box 360 and a Wii. After doing some remodeling and having to disconnect all of my electronics, I realized just what a pain in the rear it has been not having HDMI on the receiver. I started researching receivers, and as usual, the choices are overwhelming. What I would like is a receiver that has great audio and video with HDMI inputs. I just received an Ipad as a Christmas present, so I don't have much experience with it yet, but Airplay sounds like it would be a really cool feature. Being able to connect to internet via wi-fi or cable. And though I have made do without it, I would like to have a phono input as I have a Pioneer turntable that I would love to start using again. Having an easy front input for an Ipod would be nice also. I also see several AVR's with THX certification, and don't know how important that is, if at all. There is an Onkyo, the NR809 that seems to be a good deal, at Amazon right now for $646, but it does not have Airplay. The Sony STR-DN1030 is getting good reviews for the most part, and is pretty inexpensive given the features it has. CNET also recommended the Onkyo NR616 as a really good value, but they mention there are concerns about Onkyo reliability in their review. I have never really thought about Sony for receivers, so don't know what their reputation is in that area. I have liked the sound of my H/K, but from the reviews, it seems there are some issues with their products the last few years. I would like to stay below $800, if possible. What models would you recommend? Thanks in advance!