With this year’s CEDIA Expo ramping up, Anthem has unveiled an update to its vaunted MRX series A/V receivers. Each brings a host of new features, from Dolby Atmos and DTS:X surround sound, to top-tier 4K UHD passthrough, for a future-proof home theater system ready for the next era of sight and sound.
MRX 520 5.1-channel ($1,399)
Replacing the MRX 310 at the entry to Anthem’s new lineup, the new MRX 520 offers a simple-yet-powerful set of features, including 5.1-channel surround output with pre-amp outputs for each channel, and seven HDMI inputs to link up your entire home theater system. The device also offers dual parallel HDMI outputs, including one with ARC, which allows audio from your TV to be passed back to the receiver to your surround system over a single HDMI cable.
Like all of the new MRX receivers, the 520 also adds conversion 4K UHD passthrough via HDMI 2.0a, which allows for top-tier 4K resolution at 60fps, along with support for HDR in preparation for the new generation of 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray players coming down the pike. It’s a nice bit of future-proofing that makes the 520 a great starter component. But hardcore home theater enthusiasts looking to take part in the latest surround sound formats, Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, will want to move up to the MRX 720 — that’s where the real action starts.
MRX 720 7.1-channel ($2,499)
While its price jump of $1,100 from Anthem’s base model is certainly substantial, the 720 delivers on your home theater devotion with a bevy of new features. That starts with the aforementioned DTS:X (via a “future software update”) and Dolby Atmos object-based surround sound decoding, allowing users to add overhead speakers to their system for a hemispheric explosion of surround sound awesomeness. Users can leverage two of the amp’s seven channels for overhead speakers in a 5.1.2 surround setup, or add a separate amp for a total of four overheads in a 7.1.4 channel configuration.
Also on board the 720 is DTS’ Play-Fi multiroom wireless streaming, which allows the receiver to transmit high-resolution audio (24bit/192kHz max) to a litany of wireless speakers and sound bars from multiple brands, including Definitive Technology, Polk, Harman Kardon, Pardigm, Martin Logan, and others. Other features include the same top-tier 4K UHD passthrough mentioned above, and the company’s Anthem Room Correction system for easy setup.
MRX 1120 11.1-channel ($3,499)
At the top of the food chain is Anthem’s new 1120, which tops off aforementioned features with 11 channels of amplification supported by a massive Toroidal power supply to fill your room with a bounty of rich surround sound. Along with top 4K UHD passthrough and Play-Fi, power users can setup a 7.1.4 channel Dolby Atmos surround sound setup right out of the box, or a 5.1.4 Atmos setup with a dedicated second zone for the kitchen or family room.
Anthem’s new MRX lineup will be shown for the first time on the floor of the CEDIA Exop in Dallas today, with shipping expected to begin in January.