If you're looking for an A/V receiver that avoids all the hassle, the HEOS AVR could be your best bet.
In June, Denon gave Digital Trends an early look at its upcoming HEOS AVR. While the company has released other receivers using its HEOS wireless multiroom technology, the HEOS AVR is a minimalist take on the A/V receiver that aims to do away with the rat’s nest of wires usually associated with a home theater setup. Now, the company has announced that the product will ship in April.
As our first look at the HEOS AVR had us suspecting, it uses a 5.1-channel configuration, ruling out using object-based surround sound like Dolby Atmos or DTS:X, but it should be more than enough for watching movies with traditional surround sound. Unlike most A/V receivers, this one is designed to be easy to set up and use, with the company comparing ease of setup to that of a soundbar.
As the name implies, what sets the HEOS AVR apart from other receivers is Denon’s built-in wireless streaming and multiroom functionality. With this capability, you don’t even need to plug your surround speakers into the receiver, as any HEOS-enabled speaker can be used. If you do want to plug in your favorite speakers, the receiver’s built-in class D amplifier offers 50 watts per channel.
Denon has aimed to cut wires wherever possible, and part of this means supporting the streaming of a huge range of audio formats, including lossless formats like WAV, FLAC, and ALAC. High-resolution audio is supported as well, including DSD up to 5.6 MHz. For connecting your Ultra HD Blu-ray player, streaming boxes, and other gear, the HEOS AVR features four HDMI inputs, all of which support HDMI 2.0a and HDCP 2.2, meaning 4K Ultra HD and High Dynamic Range are supported.
When we saw the HEOS AVR, Denon said that the price would be around 900 to 1,000 euros — or $1,020 to $1,130 — and that estimate proved to be correct. When the HEOS AVR is released, it will sell for $1,000. For more information on the HEOS AVR, see our initial impressions.