Customer Review

115 of 148 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars RX-V375: Best Sound for the Buck!, April 3, 2013
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This review is from: Yamaha RX-V375 5.1 Channel 3D A/V Home Theater Receiver (Black) (Electronics)
I just acquired this item today and noticed chip model numbers are not disclosed within the literature. Since it's a recent item, not seeing much within Internet searches either.

--- IC Chip Listing ---
A few so far that I can visibly see through the top of the unit.

PCM 1681 (TI 105dB SNR 8-Channel Audio DAC with TDM Mode)

PCM 9211 (TI Integrates a stereo ADC, S/PDIF transceiver with up to 12 multiplexed inputs and 3x PCM inputs to allow other audio receivers to be multiplexed along with the analog and S/PDIF signals to a digital signal processor.)

Cinema DSP (Yamaha's chip model number ?. Provides a more fuller surround sound, when the Enhanced button is depressed on the remote. See "WHAT IS CINEMA DSP" on the Internet.)

(Feel free to post chip model numbers within the comments if you beat me to them.)
--- End of IC Chip listing ---

FORWARD, AND ON WITH MY INITIAL ASSESSMENT!

Why would I want to know these chip model numbers?

Because I have an ASUS Essence Xonar STX with Brown-Burr DAC (PCM 1792A) computer sound card documented to perform Industry-leading 124dB SNR and am wondering the best method of wiring the receiver into my current computer setup without degrading audio quality. I can only do this properly if I either know the exact SNR db levels or I examine the chip specifications.

Which Yamaha Reciever? (RX-V375, RX-V475, RX-V575, ...)

If you're an old timer like me in his mid-40's, we just want the basics, and done well. I researched these series of RX-V* receivers and found, most within my age group and older, would be adequately satisfied with just the basic RX-V375 unit. You will only benefit from the RX-V475 if you have a mess of gadgets with lots of copies of digital music files, something a teeny bopper would do, but I would see no need to explore the more expensive receivers (or > RX-V475 models) unless you have increased wattage or increased port requisites. Even though I consider myself a computer programmer (AKA computer geek) in my free time, I vowed not to go with the RX-V475 as these higher models lacked complete computer control via the web browser and/or Ethernet port! Streaming music via Ethernet is also more resource demanding then just using a USB memory stick. Internet radio also doesn't offer me much. (ie. See Pandora Wikipedia.) Since complete control (changing frequencies or volume) wasn't shown within the web browser interface, I definitely decided the RX-V375 would satisfy my needs. None of the other features of the >= RX-V475 would be useful, and at almost twice the cost. Nor am I investing in new speakers. My current 15+ year old speakers are just fine. ;-)

NOTE: The RX-V375 cannot read FLAC media via USB media. Only >= RX-V475 receivers can. Whether this justifies the $150 increase for the RX-V475, shrugs. Personally, I get a little worried with things sticking out at floor level! Media can likely be navigated more easily via a computer, and be played via an HDMI or SPDIF/Toslink with similar quality.

NOTE: The RX-V375 can only playback 16 bit Microsoft PCM WAV via USB media! Only the RX-V475 and higher models will also playback 24 bit Microsoft(?) PCM WAV files via USB media. I have no idea if any of the other models will play PCM-5.1 WAV via USB media. Most Blu-ray audio albums provide 24 bit tracks.

Pros:
1) Does what a basic receiver should do! Performs as a high quality DAC (using Brown-Burr chips) for your speakers.
2) Provides Dolby/DTS for Movies, while providing basic two channel stereo or 4+ speaker output for music.
3) Provides plenty of input ports such as HDMI, SPDIF/Toslink, and two channel analog.
4) Basic five speaker plus sub-woofer output. (More than two speakers is only required for Movies. Even then, you watch the Movie once, and don't care much about the quality of sound as you would for music!)
5) Pretty much, pull the receiver out of the box and the menu system is ready to do the work for you.
6) Sounds great! Better range than me old 15+ year old synthetic Dolby (DSP) Carver system. A lot less costly too!
7) Hearing Sony had a new receiver with good reviews, but people were stating Sony had a weak sound, turned me to Yamaha. I knew from experience, Yamaha equipment display a more full range of frequencies.
8) The speaker auto adjustment feature is extremely useful due to my more manly placement of speakers. (ie. YPAD Mic) In other words, I place the speakers any place I'm able to find room! On the floor, back-side down, table tops and sideways on tops of TV's. This feature makes calibrating much easier for my unique setups. Required not just for Dolby/DTS, but also for mono and two channel stereo output.
9) Has a basic Treble and Bass settings. (I rarely, if ever use these. I find if I do, the equalizers tend to make a mess of the music quality. Only useful for adjusting less bass, but not needed here as I do not have a sub-woofer.)
10) Has some hall effects. (I use these once in a great while, nice to have. Think Yamaha provides some excellent effects, while other manufacturers' sound generic.)
11) Has power saving features. (Now I can leave the thing on, and it'll turn itself off.)
12) Seemingly only uses 24-28 watts electricity. Far less then a computer.
13) Favorite DSP mode for 5.1 or 7.1 speaker system when playing music, or Stereo TV, or 2.0 Dolby Music encoded TV show, is likely 5-channel Music DSP mode; simply duplicating all front channels to the rear channels. I atypically find the rear channels are very weak and simply duplicating the front channels more well simulates the original environment. This problem of sound reproduction become more vivid when having a larger sitting area, as Dolby/DTS is focused on one sitting position for optimal listening. It's already been said, music lovers simply find stereo still the best method of reproducing the original product, and duplicating the front to rear channels is best. This means, over the air DVB TV might also benefit from using 5-channel Music mode versus selecting Dolby/AC3 DSP mode.

Cons:
1) Manually setting the presets for FM/AM stations, was a little confusing because I found the memory function appeared to save the station into two memory locations, instead of just one memory location. (Workaround, just use the auto preset for FM!)
2) No auto search for AM radio stations. (Don't even try as the receiver will auto scan/preset your FM radio stations instead, again, causing you to have to clear them.)
3) Once you start a task, there appears to be no cancel button on the remote for when you make a mistake. (ie Try auto scan/preset AM radio stations and then realize it's doing FM stations again. ;-)
4) Advanced Settings menu can only be activated and navigated by the front panel.
5) Radio Data System (RDS) seems to lack implementation. Lacks the Song Title and Author info; and only provides Frequency, DSP Program and Audio Decoder information. I believe this may be a bug within the firmware. (To the best of my knowledge, I already know Traffic information isn't available in my area - but the tuner should also state Traffic Unavailable instead of being completely omitted within the menu settings.) I just read within the manual, for "U.K. and European Models Only." Shrugs, guess no RDS for US models. Not a feature that's going to stop me from buying a quality product. (Likely laws mandate RDS in other countries, unlike the US.?)
6) I think there should be an Ethernet port, capable of controlling the receiver's complete line of settings. I usually have my receivers near floor level, and am always at my computer typing. Would be much easier using a web browser instead of hunting for a remote. Unfortunately, as previously mentioned, the >= RX-V475 models appear to lack a more complete implementation of controlling all the features of the receiver, including tuning to AM/FM presets. I have already EMailed their support department asking for a more complete listing of features concerning the remote control by computer web browser. (From what I can see from the current data on the Internet, tuning AM/FM stations might only be possible with IPOD and other handheld devices?)
7) USB Memory Devices; FLAC, Vorbis, or anything other than 16 bit Microsoft PCM WAV and MP3 files cannot be played with the RX-V375. FLAC and 24 bit PCM WAV requires RX-V475 or higher model numbered receivers! I was able to connect an iRiver portable music device containing an internal notebook hard drive, and the RX-V375 navigated and played MP3/WAV files, along with other external hard drives. (Any other 16 bit Microsoft PCM WAV file, such as aiff, aifc, sun, raw or 24 bit PCM files cannot be played on the RX-V375, even if renamed to a .wav extention!) The lacking of FLAC isn't such a bad thing, as I prefer PCM WAV files due to quality. However later Blu-ray audio media usually contain greater than 24 bit recordings (or high definition audio) and will likely require HDMI cables using an external (software or hardware) media player. I do notice somewhat of a significant improved audio quality when playing USB media versus HDMI/Toslink! This might be one reason to definitely choose the RX-V475 which includes USB 24 bit PCM WAV playback ability versus the RX-V375 only being able to playback 16 bit Microsoft PCM WAV files!
8*) There's a small annoyance within the current firmwware when switching AM/FM bands, the previously listened to station is either incremented by one (preset) or forgotten, causing to again, navigate to the previously listened to station. Also, listeners should have to again navigate through the AM band of stations, after switching to the FM band, or vice versa. (Also note, the previously noted frequency incrementation occurs when setting the memory presets somehow. It's one of those weird bugs.)
9) An HDMI connection requires a video feed and if the video DPMS sets the diplay to off, the audio will also be canceled! Hence, use SPDIF/TOSLINK for music. When connecting a computer to a receiver with HDMI, the screen will have an invisible screen off to the right of the screen, causing the cursor to fall off the screen when using a browser. HDMI was engineered for copy right restrictions only, and not for ease of use! I will continue to use S/PDIF Toslink instead. HDMI is plainly dumb and annoying.
10*) I think I've noticed another bug with the receiver, on AC3/Dolby (Movie) streams, the center channel is omitted from the center speaker channel and the way to enable the speaker channel is to quickly press each of the Movie, Music, Sur. Decode, Straight buttons on the remote, without scanning the sub-menu items. (To avoid scanning sub-menu items, press the previously mentioned buttons for which are not the current decoder.) Once this is done, I now have audio on the center speaker after using this hack. (Because using these menue and sub-menu options are initially confusing, people may easily confuse this bug with the Sur. Decode encoding.) The bottom line, when a stream is sent to the receiver, the receiver should select which decoder to use automatically, instead of giving priority to the previously user selected decoder. (ie. A previously selected 2-channel or 5-channel stereo, instead of playing a AC3/Dolby 5.1 channel audio.) These priorities are quite common within many programming operating systems and languages, giving priorities to certain user provided variables before resorting to other environmental variables. Again similar to the software media player, mplayer, the receiver should automatically select the decoder, but then allow the person to select their preferred decoder -- similar to what the RX-V375 display showing the (AC3/Dolby) decoder being used already does on this receiver, but the decoder used doesn't appear to occur at the stream level when sending a AC3/Dolby stream.

*Items marked with an asterisk above appear to be firmware/software bugs with this receiver!

NOTE: Make sure you have the unit set to the correct speaker impedance ohm settings for your speakers, using the advanced menu. The default is 8 ohms, but I think for my speaker setup, the 6 ohms setting (also for 4 ohm speakers) was more appropriate.

CONNECTING THE RECEIVER TO A COMPUTER
The likely preferred method of integrating a computer with a ASUS Xonar Essence ST/STX sound card to the receiver, is to route the two channel stereo analog output (124dB SNR of the Xonar ST/STX card) into a pair of the available two channel analog inputs. (ie. AUDIO 2). Consider using this for simple stereo encoded music and stereo media when using a sound card outputting a very high 124dB SNR. For movies containing Dolby/DTS or other media containing Dolby/DTS/AC3, route into the receiver using HDMI as HDMI handles all channels uncompressed. I'll also likely route audio from the ASUS Xonar using SPDIF/Toslink for games containing the Dolby/DTS compressed sound. From what I read, this was the likely preferred setup for receivers prior to the RX-V*5 series, and these RX-V*5 series may just be pushing ~125dB SNR, making the sound cards DAC sort of useless. Still, there's likely a very good benefit of using the dedicated sound card's SPDIF/Toslink implementation versus the motherboard's integrated/onboard solution. Also, I recently read the integrated/onboard sound cards sometimes or always lack compressed Dolby/DTS output, unlike the dedicated cards. (We shall soon find out. ;-) One additional tip, use either ASIO or Jack/Alsa, and transmit the audio without resampling. Most software media players automatically resample, while JACK/Alsa and ASIO avoid this, unless you prefer the feature of mixing more than one sound at a time versus quality.

HDMI or TOSLINK?

I have found a compressed Dolby Digital 16 bit?/48 kHz at 448 kbit/s DVD audio will loose it's center (voice) channel when using SPDIF TosLink connection, even though I don't think this should happen as S/PDIF should be able to handle the compressed stream identically to HDMI according to specifications? (Be advised when comparing HDMI with S/PDIF connections using this Yamaha RX-V* series of receivers, each connection remembers it's Movie, Music, Surround Decode, Straight and Enhancer settings!)

(See Con list number nine above.)

From the Dolby Digital Wikipedia, "5.1-channel 16-bit/48 kHz Dolby Digital format at 640 kbit/s and transports it via a single S/PDIF cable"

Nor do I see any difference in mplayer stdout. Shrugs. However, I see this Movie used "Dolby Digital Surround EX" encoding, which means some information might be loss over S/PDIF connections. S/PDIF seems to only support plain "Dolby Digital Live" or "Dolby Digital Plus".

Currently, I'm using TOSLINK for everyday uncompressed PCM (ie. music or computer audio) and games, while reserving HDMI for Movies. Another option is to save all your music files to PCM WAV files on a USB memory device. An HDMI connection requires a video feed and if the video DPMS sets the diplay to off, the audio will also be canceled! Hence, use SPDIF/TOSLINK for music.

I'm also recently finding playing media straight from USB storage media sounds significantly better than using HDMI, S/PDIF Coaxial or S/PDIF Toslink! I think I should have gone with the RX-V475. :-/

2013.06.10 Added note concerning only able to play 16 bit Microsoft PCM WAV files via USB. Only >= RX-V475 can play 24 bit PCM WAVS! Negated one star rating because Yamaha didn't adequately notify consumers using simpler comparison methods. Most Blu-ray audio now contain 24 bit audio, and the best method of playing audio is via USB versus HDMI/Toslink.

2013.09.07 - I think I've noticed another bug with the receiver, on AC3/Dolby streams, the center channel is omitted from the center speaker channel and the way to enable the speaker channel is to quickly press each of the Movie, Music, Sur. Decode, Straight buttons on the remote, without scanning the sub-menu items. (To avoid scanning sub-menu items, press the previously mentioned buttons for which are not the current decoder.) Once this is done, I now have audio on the center speaker after using this hack. (Because using these menue and sub-menu options are initially confusing, people may easily confuse this bug with the Sur. Decode encoding.) Added this bug, along with denoting all firmware/software bugs with an asterisks for users to see. Added notes about the engineering of HDMI being engineered for only enforcing copyright, and plainly being just dumb.

2013.11.24 - Add favorite DSP mode for Stereo TV or TV 2.0 Dolby Music encoded show listening, is likely 5-channel Music DSP mode, duplicating all front channels to the rear channels. I atypically find the rear channels are very weak and simply duplicating the front channels more well simulates the original environment. (It's already been said, music lovers simply find stereo still the best method of reproducing the original product, and duplicating the front to rear channels is best.)
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Comments

Tracked by 3 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 18 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 11, 2013 9:58:43 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 11, 2013 10:16:15 AM PDT
Fee says:
What? Later bluray audio may require hdmi connection of a external hardware/software player but you found it to be a somewhat significant improvement over hdmi/toslink? Clarify please. You typed this thing as it flowed from your mind didn't you ?

Edit: okay I see your edit saying you added the info, forgive me but I don't understand, are you saying an hdmi connected or toslink connected hardware bluray player cannot play 24bit audio and I should instead look to a USB connection. This baffles me, thanks for any input.
Edit edit: I am assuming the 24bit comment only pertained to audio files not bluray movies but the bluray player remark throws me off.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 12, 2013 2:12:58 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 12, 2013 2:34:31 AM PDT
Roger says:
Here's the full extract. " however later Blu-ray audio media usually contain 24 bit recordings and will likely require HDMI cables using an external (software or hardware) media player. I do notice somewhat of a significant improved audio quality versus HDMI/Toslink!"

This was an old quote during my first experience and I later found out the HDMI was toggled to a surround Dolby/DTS effect when playing PCM WAV streams versus Standard/5-Channel effect when playing through TosLink. I thought I removed most of my quotes stating this about HDMI. If the display of the RX-V units would display all the information, I would have known the HDMI method were playing through a Surround effect instead of Straight/5-Channel -- and this took a week or so getting used to, ensuring Standard/5-Channel effect was enforced on all (HDMI, TosLink, ...) transport methods.

I think I also have a typo there. Likely obviously meant to state greater than 24 bit audio! Yup. It's fun having an ability to type fast, but sometimes typos sneak in, even after I've proof read several times.

Personally, I'm not a fan of HDMI. I prefer the TosLink as it's separate from the video feed wires. I am not a fan of copy right protection, hindering honest consumers from enjoying the media they've purchased. A lot of this HDMI and Blu-ray technology is still new to me, however it seems it's more geared for copy protection. Stuff I do not need, as I'm an honest person and it will only hinder my enjoyment. Although I do understand the need for copy protection.

The USB connection on the RX-V units provides the receiver the ability to play directly from portable hard drives or USB flash media, by passing any HDMI or S/PDIF cables which may reduce quality or inhibit resampling or downmixing, etc. The difference I hear is audible here, and USB does sound much better versus HDMI or TosLink. However, this RX-V375 receiver will only play 16bit Microsoft PCM WAV files (and I think MP3 files), while the RX-V475 is also able to play 24bit Microsoft(?) PCM WAV files. I dinged a star for this recently because I unfortunately just found this out, and wasn't advised within a comparison table of the units. And also recently finding most Blu-ray music provide 24/96 encoding, further forcing me to use HDMI instead of USB media for playback on these particular 24 bit music albums, although I could also down mix to 16 bit PCM WAV.

Anyways, I'll try to reedit that sentence for clarity. I know, lots of info here... but didn't want to omit any useful info. And to also mention, not like I'm being payed to write hours of reviews! ;-)

2013.06.12 01:20 - OK, I finished reediting those sentences and think the reason for confusion was because that particular item contained several sentences from many different days. Sentences were inserted here and there, creating confusion. More like my chicken scratch notes when researching something, containing many bits of facts needing trimming later on. But best to have the information, rather than nothing. Let me know if it makes more sense now. That particular item is somewhat an essential topic with 16bit and 24bit PCM WAV USB media playback, as Yamaha omits many specifics about it. I'm still wondering if any models can play PCM-5.1 WAV files via USB, but am very doubtful although this should and could be EASILY DONE!

Posted on Aug 5, 2013 8:48:03 PM PDT
Travis says:
Hi Roger, I am completely new to AV receivers, but am looking into purchasing one. I have a Xonar ST and I am wondering about the specifics of connecting my PC to this AV receiver. I have HDMI output on my video card and was wondering if it was possible to run HDMI from my video card to the receiver and have that video sent to my monitor while sending audio to my sound system using the SPDIF/Toslink output on the Xonar card. The reason I ask is because I would prefer to route all my video/audio from various devices through the receiver, but looking at the back panel of this receiver in pictures seems to imply that the SPDIF inputs are paired with an analog video connection. Can the video and audio outputs be managed individually? To be more specific, if I were to turn on "HDMI 1" on the receiver, would I be forced to use the audio from that HDMI connection, or could I instead choose the output from my Xonar ST?

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 6, 2013 8:33:56 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 6, 2013 8:35:19 AM PDT
Roger says:
I do not have any HDMI monitors/displays to play with here.

I speculate, you'll be forced to listen to both the audio & video of the channel selected on the receiver. (ie. HDMI 1) And, the receiver, will likely only let you listen to one channel at a time. (Very likely similar to most other receivers?) And, the HDMI channels appear to be on a separate bus from the S/PDIF/TOSLINK channels too.

Per the HDMI spec, the spec requires both an audio and video feed in order to listen, and likely to watch. As such, and likely similar to you, I am not a fan of HDMI. Think you'll encounter this with most receivers you find within the consumer market due to the (copyright protection/DMCA) preference for HDMI.

This is probably a question that should be clarified by the manufacturer(s)! Yet it maybe possible, or they may have a workaround for all I know. If you do get a response (from Yamaha), be sure to follow-up here as I too am curious.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 6, 2013 6:11:11 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 7, 2013 7:59:20 AM PDT
Travis says:
I sent an email to Yamaha, I will let you know what they say. I have used my PS3 to watch HDCP content (blu ray movies) with the audio being routed through the red and white audio cables to my Xonar line in, and video being routed through HDMI out on the PS3 with an HDMI to DVI adapter connected to my monitor. There is no audio being passed through the HDMI out, as I have to switch the settings back if I want to watch Blu Rays with my PS3 on a TV with a standard HDMI cable. This implies to me that there is some leeway in the HDMI spec on a device to device basis, since in my case the HDMI is clearly only transmitting video.

This solution has worked well for me, but interference from my PC causes some faint noise that I would prefer not to have. As I understand it, digital signals (like HDMI and optical) do not suffer from this problem. Additionally, I am looking into devices which do not have different ways to send audio other than HDMI, like android devices via slimport or Chromecast. This is why I am looking into an AV receiver.

EDIT: Just got a response. Audio input can indeed be chosen separately from the HDMI input.

Posted on Aug 17, 2013 5:05:21 PM PDT
RTech says:
Thanks for such a detailed review.

I am considering this receiver for my setup and I am concerned with the TOSLINK issue you mentioned. I would be using this with my Mac and I am not sure if HDMI is required to use it, as my main use-case would be for Movies/TV.

For output from my Mac I can use TOSLINK or HDMI for digital audio and Thunderbolt/Mini-DisplayPort or HDMI for video. For input on my monitor I am limited to DisplayPort and DVI.

Based on everything I've read I should be going Mac (HDMI) -> Receiver -> Display (HDMI -> DVI). This should carry all of the audio channels to the receiver over HDMI and not have any issues? The other option for my setup is Mac (TOSLINK) -> Receiver for audio and Mac (Mini-DisplayPort) -> Display (DisplayPort) for video. However this would drop the center channel?

Am I understanding this all correctly, or could you provide more clarification?

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 17, 2013 8:17:02 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 17, 2013 9:00:20 PM PDT
Roger says:
I think you have everything correct.

Yes, doing S/PDIF Toslink to receiver will drop the center channel on Dolby/AC3/DTS compressed feeds from my experience here. I'm not sure if this is because of the software S/PDIF specification, or if it's something with the software media player and/or receiver implementation. (*NOTE: S/PDIF specification is limited and may not change for some time, but TOSLINK can now almost handle as much of a stream as HDMI but is limited by the previously mentioned S/PDIF specification implementation.) Think you'll see the center channel being dropped on most other receivers, but few have noticed it as most don't play around with the audio as much as I do. Also, most people just use HDMI for Movies which contain the compressed Dolby/AC3/DTS streams, and/or S/PDIF for PCM WAV audio.

About the only lacking with this receiver than the higher model numbers, are 24-bit WAV PCM audio and FLAC support are not available on this RX-V375 unit. If I were to buy this receiver again, I would likely choose one of the higher model numbers (ie. RX-V475) with 24-bit PCM WAV audio support. (There are some audio only Blu-Ray media that contain 24-bit 2-channel and 4-channel PCM WAV streams, including a 16-bit DTS stream, such as Led Zeppelin's Celebration Day and also including a basic 16-bit 2-channel PCM WAV stream.) I believe S/PDIF Toslink can send a maximum of 24-bit audio, but as to whether you can hear the difference between 16-bit and 24-bit is a per user experience, as the maximum a human ear can distinguish is 24-bit!

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 17, 2013 8:28:37 PM PDT
RTech says:
Thanks for clearing that up.

What are the limits of HDMI audio? To keep things simple it would be nice to only hook that one wire up. To get 24-bit (in the RX-V475, for example) would I have to use Toslink instead of HDMI for 24-bit?

I'm confused because the product page says that this has 192KHz/24-bit DACs - when are those used then?

Or is the 24-bit issue that you mentioned strictly for USB? If so, I don't plan on using a USB drive with this and that shouldn't be an issue.

USB *would* be helpful if it acted as an audio device for a computer, though. But I don't think any receivers have that option.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 17, 2013 9:09:05 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 17, 2013 9:14:15 PM PDT
Roger says:
HDMI can stream just about anything. S/PDIF Coaxial or Toslink is limited by the S/PDIF specification, but Toslink has recently been able to handle almost just as much as HDMI can, but is again limited by the S/PDIF spec.

Shrugs as to how the 192KHz/24-bit DACs are implemented. I think the limitation of 16-bit only PCM WAV files was at the USB flash drive. So if you had a 24-bit PCM WAV file (whether 2-channel or 4-channel) the receiver would not recognize that file on the USB flash drive. USB flash drives are now almost as large as my entire PCM WAV music collection, 100GB. So unless you enjoy having to always turn on your computer or other device to listen to your music collection, a USB flash drive (or external hard drive such as Seagate's Freeagent having power sleep capability) is probably a really good idea!

Yup. Can't attach a computer to the USB port for streaming audio, as that would likely be too competitive with the HDMI spec! Now, how many would desire to use USB (or even S/PDIF TOSLINK) versus HDMI, and I'm sure you'll get a majority response in favor of USB or S/PDIF! HDMI was obviously entirely engineered around copyright protection, with little more to do with the consumer and reducing a few cables. (ie. The cable industry is probably loosing money due to the fewer cables sold.) Also, no audiophile is going to enjoy HDMI, as HDMI requires both, an audio and video stream, to be able to stream audio while the tiny wires are bundled quite closely around each other. Got to get my gripe in here somewhere. ;-)

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 16, 2013 9:51:11 AM PDT
Mr. Middle says:
going to Toslink will not drop the center channel. It will restrict you to Dolby Digital and DTS as best audio and you cannot do TrueHD for example.

If you're playing MP3s, those are 2-channel anyway, so there would/should not be a center channel.
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