Customer Review

203 of 207 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good receiver with lots of inputs and features, May 2, 2011
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This review is from: Onkyo TX-NR509 5.1 Channel Network A/V Receiver (Discontinued by Manufacturer) (Electronics)
I recently upgraded from an Onkyo HT530 receiver to the TX-NR509 for its HDMI and some of the fancy extras (networking, USB playback, etc.)

Some thoughts on the receiver:

HDMI issues from last gen of Onkyo receivers?
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Doing a little research before buying, I was worried that the HDMI handshake issues that popped up for the TX-SR508 and TX-SR608 owners would be present here, but so far so good. Currently using it with a PS3, no issues so far. Will definitely update this if I come across issues.

Easy Setup
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The old receiver didn't have the Audyssey EQ configuration, using it was interesting. The set up process ended up pretty darn accurate in terms of automatically configuring speaker distance and values I'd normally have to put in by hand on my old receiver. +1 for painless initial setup!

Great On-screen display
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The OSD is actually pretty clean and makes the menus easy to navigate. I'm not used to being able to configure so much without staring at the receiver's built-in display (which is actually pretty cool to look at). The OSD for network-based playback is a bit simple, but it gets the job done.

Mediocre Network-capabilities (Fixed via new firmware!! See update below)
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A large part of spending a little more for this model over others I was considering was the networking capabilities. It was very cool to have it connect online and download a firmware update. Hopefully this means there will be an improvement on the next part: the DLNA playback for the receiver. This is where I have the most trouble.

I have PS3 Media Server set up on my home server and it diligently serves media to the PS3 via the gigabit network without problems. The TX-NR509 is able to see it and connect to it, but that's when the problems start. I haven't pinpointed the cause of it yet, but from what I've noticed, folders that contain "lots" of sub-folders or files (I'm just talking about over 20-30 here) cause the receiver to error out and force you to go up a directory/level and try again. Some directories only containing 1 file refused to open (I couldn't figure this one out). Letting it sit there and populate the contents of the folders didn't help either.

I was hoping I could play music off the server without turning on the PS3 and television, so the DLNA problems I'm experiencing are a little discouraging. Luckily, it's possible that Onkyo can remedy this through a future firmware update.

From Rodney's review, I tried the free Android app OnkyTroller on my phone to control the receiver. It does the job, but the app looks pretty ugly and seems somewhat limited in terms of functionality. Still, very cool idea. I noticed simply browsing through DLNA directories using my phone caused skips in music when playing from the network (too much network activity for the receiver to handle?).

Additional thoughts
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-The TX-NR509 only gets warm after hours of use (way cooler than my old HT530)

-I love the 'Dynamic Volume' function of the receiver, it prevents opening theme songs of TV shows from blasting and helps us hear softer dialogue without fiddling with the remote

-This receiver is pretty tall compared to the one it replaced, plan accordingly if space is limited

Update: January 2012
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Onkyo has been pushing out several firmware updates since my review in May 2011. The small bugs in the DLNA network playback capabilities have been ironed out and I'm able to navigate through all directories on the server with no issue. That was my biggest issue with the receiver that made me give it 4/5 stars, so I've updated my rating as well.

Lastly, I highly recommend grabbing the free, official Onkyo Remote app for Android. Not only can you push music from your device to the receiver, you can use it as a remote to visually navigate through your network or Pandora/music stations without turning on your TV. The official app is available for Apple devices as well, but it's slightly different/stripped down, making the Android version the more robust of the two.
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Comments

Tracked by 4 customers

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Showing 11-17 of 17 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on Feb 6, 2012 7:08:22 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 6, 2012 8:15:50 PM PST
I also have the SR606 that failed about an hour ago. My 606 simply turns itself OFF after 2 seconds. Neither the factory Reset nor the "disconnect everything, wait an hour" steps fixed it. The NR509 is getting good reviews here, but I'm a bit upset with my Onkyo.

There are numerous capacitor issues with the 606, including DIY repairs on youtube. Lots of complaints about Onkyo quality. I think I'll wait a few days before deciding whether or not to get the 509.

Edit -- My SR606 is ded ded ded. So I just ordered the NR509!

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 26, 2012 9:53:25 AM PST
www.ps3mediaserver.org It can even play ISO and FLAC files from your computer wirelessly it is a freeware that does uccept donations by way of paypal. I personally donated because it is a great resource.

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 9:03:47 AM PDT
Frank says:
Great review "E"! Pretty much answered all my questions except for one specific one - maybe you can help. I need to set up wireless headphones such that when I plug in the headphone system the regular speakers connected to the system DON'T shut off. Recently I shelled out some money for a nice Yamaha tuner/amp, only to find that when I plugged in the headphones, the external speakers shut off!
What does this Onkyo do in this situation? Thanks!
p.s. So why do I need this? So I can hear the TV without deafening my wife who for some reason objects to my cranking up the speakers. Also I am finding the dialog harder to hear with all the @#$@ background music that seems the rage these days.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 20, 2012 3:42:02 PM PDT
E. Van says:
Sorry to hear that about your 606. Hope you are enjoying the 509!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 20, 2012 3:55:50 PM PDT
E. Van says:
Great, glad you found the review useful! Unfortunately, the 509 behaves the same way when you plug in headphones via the front port; the speakers shut off and all sound is piped through the headphones. However, in your situation, it sounds like you would want to take advantage of the 'Zone 2' option, where you would hook up your headphones to Zone 2 outputs and run it independently of Zone 1 (your regular speakers in living room, for example). I think the original intention of the second zone was for you to hook up audio to other rooms so you could simultaneously push audio through, but I don't see why you couldn't get it to work with your headphones instead of another pair of speakers. Zone 2 outputs are RCA (red and white) connectors.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 20, 2012 5:46:15 PM PDT
Frank says:
Great idea, E.Van! I will give it a try

Posted on Oct 27, 2013 10:35:36 AM PDT
The handshake issue was most common in the SR models and not in the NR models... the differences in quality are night and day and worth every penny. Most of the newer SR models were made to go in the HTIB setups that can be had for cheap. I'm on my 3rd NR model right now (3 diff rooms) and have had an overall excellent experience.
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