Buyer’s Guide : The gift theme in home theater and stereo
Here are a few tips to make a good gift in the hi -fi and home theater, valid for both the Christmas season and for a good occasion like a birthday ” important.”
Fourth appointment with our Guides for tech gifts : after exploring the mobile universe with some accessories of note , back in the home to satisfy our passion for good music and good ” home theater ” . At least as a matter of size , it is difficult to Christmas gifts you a TV , easier to opt for some separate component, maybe the excellent quality / price ratio . But first of all ask ourselves : stereo or home theater ?
Home theater : first involvement
Although the technological evolution in the field dedicated to home theater has not seen the big news in the last period , Christmas may still be a good opportunity to renew some piece of existing systems or to take the plunge for the first plant . For example, you can choose an amplifier with a network connection or a Blu-ray player with new content for Smart TV .
Home Theater Receiver Yamaha RX -S600
List Price: 549 €
A / V receiver 5.1 small only in size , because the functionality and performance are those of the models with standard dimensions. We find the power of 5 x 60 watts (8 ohms / 0.09% THD) , complete decoding Dolby and dts , 17 DSP programs , dedicated app for network functions , AirPlay , wide versatility of the inputs, MHL input and automatic optimization with microphone frequency response of the room.
Why we chose it : finally a home theater receiver that takes up little space and does not upset the decor, ideal for family quarrels do not burst . And it’s a Yamaha , that is a security when it comes to home theater and DSP.
Blu-ray Player Sony BDP-S790
List Price: 180 €
It might seem like an antique as it is last year, but if Sony left it in the list so far as its top of the range there will be a reason. Meanwhile, we appreciate the versatility and quality of playback: has its own little section Smart TV with Wi-Fi built-in, reads SACD, analog audio output has now disappeared on many competitors and dual HDMI, it is very compact, and most importantly ago very good job of blu-ray.
Why we chose it: it is a product that has reached maturity and therefore allows a good savings compared to the latest top of the range, however it already offers what you need – dual output HDMI and analog stereo outputs – and what you will – as the 4K upscaler.
Blu-ray Player Oppo 103/105
List Price: $ 499 / 690 €
This brand has gained in a short time a specific space on the multi- player market , as well as the Blu- ray player can play CDs and SACDs . Even its multichannel analog outputs have become a rarity and are much sought after by those who have high-level receivers but now dated and lacking HDMI inputs for this . The most expensive version 105 is the one with the best audio converters (ESS Sabre 32) , it has the 7.1 analog audio outputs and digital inputs for other sources .
Why we chose it : it is one of the few multi- player who is able to satisfy fans of the film and the music . The most expensive model 105 is ideal for those rare audiophiles who want to play the SACD surround track .
Blu-ray player Panasonic BDT 330
List Price: 199 €
Do you want a Blu-ray player with a little more, maybe with Smart TV , DLNA compatible , with Miracast for Android devices and with its dedicated app to guide them easily from your smartphone ? Here is the solution. And it’s also very nice to look at, compact and slim design will not clutter up too . Among the features rare to find on other models the input for cameras SD card and dual HDMI output.
Why we chose it : it is a quality product for those who do not want to compromise in terms of performance with Blu-ray and video files stored on the home server , it also has the right flexibility for most situations . The attractive design then will peace in the family.
HT Receiver Denon X4000
Price: 1,499 €
The love for the cinema and surround sound systems increasingly pushing to form complete with speakers and to follow the latest news on the subject of the old 5.1 surround sound encoding may not be enough anymore. This Denon solves the problem with a solution 7.2 from 125 watts per channel (8 ohms, 0.06% THD) , compatibility with 4K and services Spotify, all encodings latest Dolby and dts , extremely wide versatility in connections , and AirPlay a dedicated app for network functions .
Why we chose it : The classic A / V receiver that provides plenty of power for the most complete speaker systems but it does not cost a fortune , destined to last because it was already full of everything you need . A good investment for your home theater
Stereo audio , a tradition that never goes out of fashion
There are always so many people who have not forgotten the good old uncompressed music and have tens or hundreds of Compact Disc. For them it is always worthwhile to invest something to hold fast to the memory of good music . The Christmas then can be the good opportunity to bring young people closer to the music with a system for their room , or buy a good record player to listen cheap worthily an old vinyl collection ended up in the cellar.
Pro-Ject turntable Elemental
List Price: from 219 €
Even the very young are rediscovering vinyl records of their fathers and grandfathers , perhaps relegated to the basement , but with so much good music engraved . This turntable seems to be the best choice for them ascolare seriously without spending too much. Wanting is the version with preamp for direct connection to audio systems without the proper input . You can choose between the finishes black , silver or red .
Why we chose it : it is the easiest way to play vinyl records with the right quality and without the risk of damaging them. In addition comes ready to use with no need for complex installations.
Amp and SACD Denon 1520
List Price: 1.390 euro each
A brand that is now a safety for fans renewed its flagship models of the mid-range , without changing the content ( remains the phono input with MC and MM cartridges ) and the solid appearance but adding functions that are fundamental to the player as the front USB input for the iPhone and rear inputs for other digital sources like the notebook. They open the door to the music but not the liquid close to the physical sources accumulated over time .
Why we chose it : this couple rekindles love for the music with more modern solutions than in the past but retaining the ability to play CDs and SACDs already accumulated in the nightclub over the years .
Audio system Pioneer X- CM31
List Price: 229 €
Playing music should be easy and enjoyable , just like this system that easily adapts to an environment like the kids room or play the part of the main system . The power is 2 x 15 watts ( 8 ohms , 10 % THD ) and can play CD’s, has a dock for iPhone and iPod (only those with the old connector ) , has a USB jack for iPad or USB with MP3 music and speakers two-way are included in the scope . Also on the back there is an input for other sources and do not miss the headphone jack . The choice of colors is very wide : in addition to the usual black and white you can have yellow / green , brown and red to satisfy both the classic flavors , and modern .
Why we chose it : are rare compact audio systems that allow you to choose the color and then the variations are often only black and white. Here, however, you can choose from many colors, including most vibrant like yellow for the kids room . Of course then makes her work worthy even of a music player.
Audio connected, the gift “2.0”
The step towards the liquid music is inevitable for even the most orthodox , a passage that does not mean the abandonment of the CD, but rather the integration of smartphones and tablets as new music sources. Even access to the radio via the web app dedicated new equipment can be a way of discovering music of any kind, even those less popular . The compact systems then are the ideal choice for a gift to the kids that will surely be appreciated.
Stereo Receiver Yamaha R – N500
List Price: 459 €
Devices like this are very rare to find, it is a stereo receiver 80 watts per channel (8 ohms, 0.04 % THD ), which in addition has a network connection to listen to music stored on your home server liquid , or the services, web radio and music streaming to be controlled by the dedicated app to download on smartphones and tablets . It has the front USB port and digital inputs for connecting your TV or Blu-ray player and there is even the entrance to the turntable.
Why we chose it : it is a handyman in stereo version to please the purists who are wary of multichannel . It also has all the charm of aesthetics Yamaha handed down to us from the 70s , elegant and technology at the same time .
System Denon Ceol Small
List Price: 549 €
Whether you want to delete the old and bulky stereo system , whether you want to start from scratch for sound to the music of the boys, this compact system is a great solution . It connects to the network to access the streaming services or to listen to the radio using the handy web app , you can connect smartphones and tablets , there is the stereo input for a possible CD player and speakers are already there . Also you can choose black or white for not upset anyone .
Why we chose it : It is a compact system of the excellent quality / price ratio that results in a small space with good design and the need to play music quality liquid from their smartphone or home server .
Audio System Panasonic SC- PMX9
List Price: 499 €
It is certainly not the cheapest on the market stereo system and even the aesthetic is conventional . But it goes back in the scope and versatility. It can play the radio and compact disc , connect the network with Wi-Fi and is equipped with Air Play, dock for iPhone and iPod with the latest generation Lightning connector and the USB socket for USB with mp3 and FLAC . He lacks the dedicated app for remote control from your smartphone . Beautiful speakers with glossy black lacquer finish .
Why we chose it : If you’ve read to our test in July, you already know this , but for others it suffices to say that it is a pleasure to listen with good speakers that hold without any problems from the music cd or flac to 96 kHz. It has some ingenuity in practical procedural but is overcome easily. Credit : dday.it