Onkyo has announced that its most capable 9.2-channel network home theater receivers yet—the TX-NR5009 and TX-NR3009—will be available in early September. These THX Ultra2 Plus-certified receivers deliver a caliber of power, performance, audio/video processing and connectivity that A/V enthusiasts demand and home network users expect.
Both receivers contain major upgrades from last year’s models, including the latest HQV-Vida and Marvel Qdeo video processors with 4K up-scaling, new DTS Neo:X dimensional surround processing, Dolby Volume and new streaming Internet radio channels.
The TX-NR5009 and TX-NR3009 each contain eight HDMI inputs and two outputs, as well as a full range of conventional analog and new media connections. The latter includes an Ethernet jack, two USB ports, a Universal Port for Onkyo peripheral devices (specifically, the UP-HT1 HD Radio Tuner and UP-A1 Remote Interactive Dock for iPod) and a VGA input for passing through video content from an attached PC. Onkyo also offers an optional UWF-1 wireless LAN adapter that provides a Wi-Fi link to your network. The receivers are Digital Living Network Alliance 1.5 certified for streaming content stored on your network. Alternatively, you can plug in a USB-compatible portable music device or play music directly from a USB flash drive.
Both receivers are designed to connect to a plethora of Internet radio stations and the latest iteration of user-customizable streaming music services such as Spotify, Pandora, Last.fm, Rhapsody, Napster, Mediafly, Slacker, Aupeo, Sirius XM and vTuner. The receivers can handle a wide variety of audio formats including MP3, WAV, FLAC, WMA Lossless, AAC, Ogg and, for audiophiles, Super Audio CD.
You can download and install free apps from Onkyo that morph your Android phone, iPod touch or iPhone into a full-function Wi-Fi remote to control the receiver. Onkyo includes a full-size infrared remote if you’d rather keep the phone in your pocket.
Given the similarities between the two receivers, why would someone step up to the TX-NR5009 instead of the less pricey TX-NR3009? According to Onkyo, the TX-NR5009 incorporates a higher-end power supply with a heavy-duty toroidal transformer.
Note: According to Onkyo, a 9.2-channel amplifier can be exploited in a variety of ways. It can be used as a normal 5.1-channel speaker system with the addition of surround-back and front-height speakers to create ambient, non-directional effects. Alternatively, listeners could add surround back- and front-wide speakers, or add front-height and front-width speakers without putting in surround-back speakers. In a 5.1-channel setup, the extra amp channels could be employed to bi-amplify speakers or drive speakers in another room. In any scenario, the “.2” supports two subwoofers.