The ultimate home cinema experience is not possible without a set of surround sound speakers and an AV receiver. So, if you don’t have these two devices and still want to enjoy a good movie at home, make sure you get them as soon as possible. However, looking for a new device isn’t an easy task, especially if you have a limited budget. Therefore, we decided to list the best AV receivers under $500 in 2021.
Within this price limit, there are a huge number of models and brand available to choose from. In fact, you can buy a sturdy model for less than $500 and enjoy your home cinema. The devices we listed are sophisticated, modern and come with plenty of exceptional features.
The Denon AVR-X1300W is an exceptional device and it definitely deserves to be the first one on our list. It doesn’t only deliver an astonishing 3D immersive sound for the ultimate home cinema experience, but it also features the best of today’s AV technology. The unit comes with full 4K ultra HD 60Hz video and Bluetooth features, as well as, HDMI 2.0a and HDCP 2.2 specifications on all six HDMI inputs.
Additionally, this model comes features multi-room support, discrete high current output devices, and wireless connectivity. What most customers seem to love is the Denon remote app you can use to control the device from your smartphone or tablet. You can download the app via iTunes and Google Play. This versatile model also comes with a remote and all features you could dream of are included.
If you want a home cinema amplifier with breathtaking video support, then the Yamaha RX-V681BL is the perfect model for you. This 7.2 channel unit comes with 4K UHD support, 145-watt output and two audio zones, Party Mode and Main Zone sync. Moreover, it has one HDMI port, a built-in phono input for vinyl records, wireless connectivity via Bluetooth, AirPlay and Yamaha’s MusicCast, and supports high-resolution audio files. One of its most astonishing features is its ability to work with Alexa for voice control and offer easy sharing of music throughout the home with MusicCast. Each of these features makes Yamaha RX-V681BL the best video-supported amp in its price range.
Sony STRDH590 5.2
This surround sound amplifier comes from a renowned brand and provides a bigger and clearer picture than ever before. The Sony STRDH590 5.2 comes with a high dynamic range 4K pass signal pass and an additional shadow detail. Moreover, it is a 5.1-channel receiver with two subwoofer pre-outs, with Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio decoding. It provides up to 145W per channel at 6 Ohms and has Bluetooth connectivity for wireless connection to compatible devices. Thus, the Sony STRDH590 5.2 is the perfect AVR too choose if you are more of a videophile than an audiophile.
Pioneer Elite SX-N30
The Pioneer Elite SX-N30 features Wi-Fi connection which works through 2.4 GHz, while the Bluetooth connectivity operates with an SBC codec. This model offers a powerful 2-channel sound, a built-in AirPlay, a USB port, two coaxial, two optical, six RCA, and a dedicated phono input. You can control this amp from an Android or iOS smartphone or tablet via the free app or the SR remote control. Some of its best features include a built-in AM/FM with 40 presets, DLNA & internet music streaming, and up to 80W Per Channel at 8 Ohms. It is a great value for money with its high-end audio and the exceptional convenience of a fully connected unit.
Sherwood RX4508 200W
The Sherwood RX4508 200W is a superb AVR which is equipped with some of the best technologically advanced features. It comes with 3 audio inputs, 2 audio outputs, and a phono input. Moreover, it produces a stunning sound and features 200W AM/FM stereo receiver, Bluetooth connectivity, headphone output jack, digital encoder volume control, fluorescent display, system illumination control and sleep timer. The Sherwood RX4508 200W is compatible with all mobile devices and game consoles via the 3 audio inputs and 2 outputs.
The Onkyo TX-NR686 comes with some of the best characteristics within this price limit. It is the best alternative unit in case the Denon AVR-X1300W sold out or if you don’t need the additional channels and power. This AV receiver offers a decent sound and there is a possibility to add speakers in an additional zone. Additionally, there are two subwoofer outputs and it supports Atmos, DTS:X, and DTS Neural:X surround sound options. There is also a dual-band Wi-Fi, DTS Play-Fi, music, Spotify, airplay, Tidal, Deezer, Pandora, tune in and Chromecast built-in, which allows you to control music playback on your TX-NR686 by voice.
Yamaha RX-V683BL 7.2
The Yamaha RX-V683BL 7.2 is another unit from the well-known multinational conglomerate company. It doesn’t only work with all mobile devices and gaming consoles, but also with all Apple devices due to the AirPlay feature. It also works with Alexa for voice control and had 7.2-channel surround sound with Dolby Atmos and DTS: x. You can enjoy 4K video quality with contrast, smooth tone and rich, bright colors and without degradation with this home cinema amp. Furthermore, it provides many incredible network functions and comes with built-in Wi-Fi, a phono input for vinyl playback, Wireless Direct feature, four HDMI ports, and Yamaha AV controller app.
This 7.2-channel home theater receiver has a slimline design and an exceptional sound quality. The Marantz NR1608 comes with a built-in Wi-Fi, Apple AirPlay 2, Bluetooth, and HEOS, which allows access to all of your music from your personal library, internet radio, and popular streaming services like Pandora, Spotify, and TIDAL. What’s great about this device is its Harmony remote which functions perfectly, the precise sounds its high-current discrete power amplifiers on all seven channels and the fact that it works with Amazon Alexa-compatible voice control assistants. However, the main downside to this home cinema amplifier is that it has no second HDMI output, especially if you want to use wireless headphones.