The 7 Best High-End Home Theater Receivers

Best High-End Home Theater Receivers

The 7 Best High-End Home Theater Receivers

A home theater system changes how you experience movies and video games. Besides the standard layout, you can add an AV receiver and make it the backbone of your entire system. You can also set up several speakers around your home theater receiver for the ultimate cinematic experience.

However, with many home theater receivers on the market, prospective buyers often wonder which option best suits their needs and sound requirements. Moreover, some people don’t know what to look for when comparing home theater receivers.

This article focuses on the best high-end home theater receivers on the market today. Let’s get to it! Here are our top seven picks for the best high-end home theater receivers:

Best Overall: Denon AVR-X8500HA 13.2 Channel

Best Overall
Denon AVR-X8500HA 13.2 Channel
  • Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization, DTS Virtual:X, DTS:X Pro, IMAX Enhanced, and Auro-3D
  • Dedicated 8K input that supports 8K/60Hz or 4K/120Hz video pass-through
  • Denon's proprietary AL32 Processing Technology
  • Features 8 HDMI In / 3 Out, 2 Digital, 6 Analog, 2 Coaxial, and 1 Phono Input
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The Denon AVR-X8500HA is the best overall home theater receiver on the market today. The receiver is quite pricey; however, it offers value for money. 

A major selling point regarding the Denon AVR-X8500HA receiver is its unique 13.2 channels. This AV receiver allows you to power 13 speakers without affecting the sound quality. Such a home theater receiver is ideal for large settings that require more sound intensity.

The Denon AVR-X8500HA receiver also has IMAX-enhanced technology. This allows you to optimize pictures when using HDR screens; the technology boosts your display’s aspect ratio. Additionally, this home theater receiver has the Audyssey Room Correction Technology that balances your room’s sound, especially when listening to loud music. 

The Denon AVR-X8500HA also has seven HDMI ports. Among the seven, you will get a 2.1 HDMI port that supports 8K and 4K videos. Gamers can also use this port to connect their gaming consoles. The remaining HDMI ports support simultaneous connections to multiple devices.

For instance, you can connect your home theater receiver to multiple TV screens and a projector. Ultimately, the receiver’s advanced technology and specifications justify its selection as the best high-end home theater receiver.

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Best for Music: Marantz SR8015 11.2 Channel

Best for Music
Marantz SR8015 11.2 Channel
  • 8K upscaling 
  • 10 HDMI ports
  • Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization Technology
  • Dimensions: 18.11 x 17.32 x 7.48 inches
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When operating a home theater receiver for music, you want a device that will amplify the sound while allowing you to appreciate the artist’s vocal range. As such, the best receiver for music is the Marantz SR8015. 

The SR8015 is ideal for music as it can power 11 primary and two additional preamp speakers while maintaining sound quality. That means you can enjoy your favorite music from most, if not all, rooms in your home.

Additionally, the Marantz SR8015 has three audio zones. In simple terms, audio zones refer to areas where speakers rely on the same sound source. With this receiver, you can play music from three different sources.

Compatibility with virtual assistants like Alexa, Siri, and Google Assistant allows users to control the entertainment unit hands-free. On the other hand, featured streaming services like Spotify, Tidal, Pandora, Apple Music, and TuneIn ensure access to your favorite songs and music playlists.

Another feature that makes the Marantz SR8015 ideal for music is its numerous technologies, which provide surround sound, creating an immersive experience. They include DTS:X, Dolby Digital, DTS-HD, Dolby Atmos, and Audyssey LFC.

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Best for Gaming: Yamaha RX-A8A Aventage 11.2 Channel

Best for Gaming
  • HDMI with HDCP 2.3 and eARC (7 in / 3 out)
  • 4K60, 4K120AB (40gbps), 8K60AB (40gbps), HDR10plus and HDMI 2.1
  • Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization and DTS:X with CINEMA DSP HD3
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When gaming, having a lag-free experience is crucial; otherwise, it interferes with the game’s entertainment value. That is why every gamer should consider an AV receiver like the Yamaha RX-A8A for a seamless connection between all devices, guaranteeing fun-packed gaming sessions. 

The RX-A8A can power 11 speakers, helping create the right environment for gamers to immerse themselves in their crafts. Moreover, the RX-A8A has zone 2, zone 3, and zone 4, meaning several gamers can enjoy multiple games separately without interrupting each other’s play.

The receiver also has surround sound processing technology like Dolby Atmos, Dolby Surround, DTS-HD, DTS: X, Dolby TrueHD, and Surround: AI, among others. In addition, the Yamaha RX-A8A has HDMI upscaling, which enhances video resolution to 4K or 8K. On the other hand, HDMI upconverting reduces the number of input sources needed to improve video connections.

The Yamaha RX-A8A can also match the frame rate from your gaming console or PC, thanks to the variable refresh rate (VRR). When discussing graphics, frame rate comprises the number of images that can be displayed per second; it impacts image clarity and video quality.

Most games have high frame rates, making VRR essential as it allows the Yamaha RX-A8A to refresh images effortlessly. In addition, the receiver has auto low-latency mode (ALLM), which switches off in-built video and image processing features in your TV. This allows your console to take over video and image processing, resulting in better visual effects.

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Best for Watching Movies: Marantz Cinema 60 7.2 Channel

Best for Watching Movies
Marantz Cinema 60 7.2 Channel
  • 8K connectivity and 3D surround sound
  • 8K/60Hz or 4K/120Hz pass-through
  • Dolby Vision, HDR10+, Dynamic HDR, HLG, HDR10
  • Supports QFT, QMS, VRR & ALLM for lag-free gaming
  • Immersive 3D surround sound with Dolby Atmos and DTS:X
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As with gaming, everyone likes high-quality visuals and sound when watching a movie or TV show. The Marantz Cinema 60 7.2 Channel ensures you have an immersive visual and audio experience.

The surround sound technology in the Marantz Cinema 60 drastically enhances the sound quality of our devices, ensuring viewers experience every vibration and tone. It includes Dolby Height Virtualization, Dolby Atmos, Dolby TrueHD, DTS: X, DTS Neural: X, and DTS Virtual: X.

The Marantz Cinema 60 receiver supports up to 7 speakers, ensuring users experience clear sound. On the other hand, the 6 HDMI inputs and 2 HDMI outputs help users set up all the devices necessary to enjoy a movie, including a Blu-ray player, TV, or projector.

Moreover, the Marantz Cinema 60 has HDR, which enhances the illumination of bright colors and the depth of dark colors, resulting in life-like images. 

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Cheapest High-End Receiver: Denon AVR-X2700H

Cheapest High-End Receiver
Denon AVR-X2700H
  • Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization and DTS Virtual:X
  • 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz pass-through
  • Variable Refresh Rate (VRR), Quick Frame Transport (QFT), and Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM)
  • Dynamic HDR and HDR10+
  • 8 HDMI ports (6 In/ 2 Out) with HDCP 2.3 processing
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Everyone likes having an immersive experience when engaging with visual and audio media, hence the need for home theater receivers. However, most receivers cost at least $1,000, which is out of the price range for many consumers. Not to worry; manufacturers like Denon offer affordable receivers like the Denon AVR-X2700H.

The Denon AVR-X2700H supports 8K resolution at a 60Hz refresh rate and 4K resolution at a 120Hz refresh rate. As such, it is an ideal entry-level AV receiver that will work with other devices that offer 8K and 4K support, like TVs and gaming consoles (eg. PlayStation 5 and Xbox X Series).

Moreover, it can power seven speakers and two preamp subwoofers. It also has surround sound formats like Dolby Height Virtualization and DTS Virtual: X to enhance sound output. Similarly, HDR formats, like HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision, and Dynamic HDR, boost the receiver’s visual output.

The Denon AVR-X2700H has VRR, ALLM, and quick media switching technology to reduce lag time, as well as virtual assistants like Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant. Overall, the device offers value at an affordable price.

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Best Design: Marantz NR1711 8K Slim 7.2 Channel

Best Design
Marantz NR1711 8K Slim 7.2 Channel
  • Auto Eco Mode reduces power consumption without compromising on sound
  • 8K HDMI upscaling, aHDR10, HDR10+, Dynamic HDR, Quick Media Switching (QMS), and ALLM
  • Supports Dolby Atmos, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization, DTS:X, and DTS Virtual:X
  • 6 HDMI In / 1 output
  • Built-in HEOS Wireless Multi-Room Technology
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Most home theater receivers have large and bulky designs that go against the design aesthetics of most modern devices like TVs, gaming consoles, Blu-ray players, and home theatre systems. Some also have exposed input and output ports at the front, which is often unappealing. 

However, the Marantz NR1711 8K Slim 7.2 Channel is different. Its dimensions are 7.87 x 2.16 x 3.35 inches. The compact size ensures it does not stick out next to other devices. Moreover, it only has three ports, a sleek display screen, two adjustment knobs, and several other buttons at the front. Therefore, it looks more presentable than most AV receivers.

The Marantz NR1711 also has ALLM and VRR, which minimize video lag time and vastly improve gaming. Lastly, the receiver can connect to Wi-Fi, supporting access to most streaming services, including Netflix, Spotify, Tidal, Amazon Prime, Deezer, and TuneIn.

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Best for Streaming: Pioneer VSX935 7.2 Channel

Best for Streaming
Pioneer VSX935 7.2 Channel
  • Dimensions: 17.13 x 6.81 x 14.59 inches
  • HDMI 2.1 with 8K (8 HDMI ports)
  • Features Featuring Ultra HD, HDR10, HLG, and Dolby Vision pass-through
  • Support for HDCP 2.2
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The Pioneer VSX935 is the best home theater receiver for streaming, as it works with platforms like Amazon Music, Tidal, Pandora, Spotify, and Deezer. Streaming has disrupted the entertainment industry, especially in the last five to 10 years.

People no longer need to buy Blu-ray discs or CDs to watch their favorite movies or listen to their favorite artists. In contrast, streaming platforms like Amazon Music, Spotify, and Tidal have experienced exponential revenue growth as more people opt to stream music on their smart devices.

The shift in music consumption behavior prompted electronic manufacturers to integrate streaming apps into their products. 

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How to Pick the Best High-End Home Theater Receiver  

Given that there are many home theater receivers on the market, picking the best one can be challenging. Here are various factors to consider when comparing the best high-end home theater receivers:

  • Price,
  • Channels,
  • Connectivity,
  • Multi-Room Capabilities.

Let’s discuss these factors in detail.


Home theater receivers vary in pricing from several hundred to thousands of dollars. The wide price range allows customers to buy a device within their budget. However, the narrative changes when considering high-end home theater receivers.

Most high-end home theater receivers cost at least $1,000, depending on their features. Therefore, price is not the primary concern for any customer capable of paying such prices. For such customers, the price often accompanies quality as a consideration.

An expensive home theater receiver has to justify its price tag by having unique features and specifications that improve your entertainment experience. No one wants to overpay for a product that will not deliver on its promises. Therefore, ensuring functionality accompanies a home theater receiver’s price is prudent. 


The term “channel” in a home theater receiver refers to the number of speakers it can power. For instance, a seven-channel home theater receiver can power seven speakers. That makes the number of channels crucial when deciding which receiver will meet your needs.

Today, most receivers have between five and thirteen channels. You can purchase a five-channel receiver if you have few speakers and live in a small space. However, buying a receiver with the most channels is advisable when you’re on a large property and want to connect it to a surround sound system.

Some home theater receivers can process more channels than the amplifiers on board using pre-amp-outs. However, you have to connect the non-powered channels to an external amplifier for them to generate high-quality sound.


Connectivity refers to the number of input and output ports on a home theater receiver. A receiver with multiple input and output ports is more than welcome in today’s world.

That is because the average household has numerous devices to connect to a surround sound system like a TV, gaming consoles like PlayStation and Xbox, a cable or satellite box, and a Blu-ray player. Therefore, one should buy a home theater receiver with numerous ports.

For instance, it should have at least four HDMI input ports and two HDMI output ports. In addition, buying a receiver with several connecting ports saves you money as it ensures you do not have to buy another receiver if you have more connecting devices than the receiver can handle.

Multi-Room Capabilities

Prospective buyers should consider different receivers’ multi-room capabilities before choosing the best-fit option. However, let’s start by defining what constitutes a great multi-room speaker system.

In layman’s terms, a multi-room speaker setup provides autonomous control to individual speakers in different rooms. For example, users can choose to play music on specific speakers depending on where they are and what they are doing.

You can choose to play music on your bedroom speaker, while other speakers are on standby mode. Alternatively, you can play your preferred music on one speaker while other house occupants play different music on other speakers.

Always choose the receiver that offers the best multi-room capabilities; it is especially handy when in a house with multiple occupants. A multi-channel receiver with multi-room capabilities means you can place a speaker in different rooms and play different songs simultaneously.

What to Know Before Buying a High-End Home Theater Receiver

Buying the right receiver will save you time and money and help you avoid a disappointing entertainment experience. Therefore, you should consider the following factors.

The Receiver Should Be Sufficient to Power the Speakers

Before buying a receiver, you must consider the size of your property and the number of speakers you want to install. More speakers mean more power requirements. Thus, buying a receiver with more than enough wattage to power the speakers is important.

The Receiver Should Support Multiple Channels

The more channels in a receiver, the better because they afford you room to increase the number of speakers. Therefore, consider how many ear-level speakers, overhead speakers, and subwoofers you will need before buying a receiver.

The Receiver Should Connect to Multiple Devices

You must also consider the number of devices you want to connect to a home theater receiver. Most households will connect a TV, Blu-ray player, and gaming console to a receiver.

However, your receiver should have room to connect more devices, including PCs, laptops, mobile phones, and projectors. Therefore, the receiver should have multiple HDMI and USB inputs, among other input ports.

The Receiver Should Have Essential Built-in Features

The ideal high-end home theater receiver should have built-in features that support most content streaming platforms. It should also have wireless connections such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi to connect with mobile devices and enable streaming.

Using a High-End Home Theater Receiver: What It’s Like

We all know how frustrating it can be to watch a movie or play a game with inadequate video quality, or listen to music with inferior sound quality. Luckily, you can avoid all these annoyances and inconveniences with a high-end receiver. 

High-end receivers create an immersive environment that allows you to drown out distractions and focus on the content. Moreover, support for multiple speakers ensures you are in a perfect sound field, no matter your seating position. Overall, high-end home theater receivers help mimic a cinematic experience in the comfort of your own home.

The 7 Best High-End Home Theater Receivers FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

What is the lifespan of a home theater receiver?

Home theater receivers are durable, with most expected to last 20-40 years. However, rapid technological advancements limit the lifespan to 5-10 years, as most people upgrade their receivers to improve their audio experiences.

Why are home theater receivers important?

Home theater receivers are vital because they receive audio signals from different sources, process and decode the audio formats, and clean and amplify the audio before relaying it to external speakers. They also accept and process video signals.

Should you go for a sound bar over an AV receiver?

The choice between a soundbar and an AV receiver depends on several factors, including the size of your living area. For a small apartment, a soundbar is enough to meet your audio needs.

However, for larger properties, it is advisable to get an AV receiver because most receivers have better amplifiers than a soundbar, guaranteeing better audio quality.

Does an AV receiver affect video quality?

Yes, an AV receiver can affect video quality by influencing aspects like resolution, frame rate, and color depth.

Do home theater receivers have HDMI ports?

Yes, home theater receivers have HDMI ports. Most receivers have four or more HDMI inputs that connect to Blu-ray video players, gaming devices, and satellite boxes and one or two HDMI outputs for connecting to a TV or projector.

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