Here at Home Theater Review, we do our best to keep you up-to-date on the latest home theater and entertainment news. One thing that is always interesting to us is what type of receiver you should purchase for your home theater. This request was made by a number of our readers who saw the article ‘5.1 vs. 5.2 receivers: Which One Should You Buy?’
If You Are In A Hurry, Here Are The Suggested 5.2 Receivers For You:
Top 9 Best 5.2 Receivers Reviewed
5 Things To Consider Before Buying The Best 5.2 Receivers :
1. The Number of Channels
For a 5.1 system, you will need at least five channels (front left and right, center, and two surround left and right). For a 5.2 channel system, you will need six channels (front left and right, center, and two surround left and right). This extra channel is used to deliver the height information to your speakers in the ceiling or wall.
2. Surround Sound Formats
You can purchase an A/V receiver that supports all of the most popular surround sound formats: Dolby Digital, DTS 5.1, Dolby Pro Logic IIx with Neo: 6 (if you are using a 7 speaker system), DTS-ES Discrete 6.1 or 7.1 (if you are using an 8 speaker or 9 speaker system respectively), DTS-ES Matrix 6.1 or 7.1 (if you are using a 10 speaker system), Dolby TrueHD/Dolby Digital Plus/DTS-HD Master Audio (5+ channels) with any number of speakers from 2 to 11 channels in your home theater setup (5+2 for 2 speakers in each of the five main zones + 2 subwoofers and 5.2 for 3 speakers in each of the five main zones + 2 subwoofers).
3. What is Your Budget?
The price range for an A/V receiver can vary greatly from $100 to $5,000 or even more depending on a number of factors such as the number of channels, power output, type of surround sound technology supported (Dolby TrueHD vs. DTS-HD Master Audio), connectivity options (HDMI 1.4a vs. HDMI 2.0), features and build quality.
4. Do You Need HDMI?
If you are using a newer HDTV with HDMI connectivity, then you will absolutely want to purchase an A/V receiver that has at least one HDMI input and one HDMI output (for connecting your cable/satellite receiver and Blu-ray player). If you are going to be connecting older components such as VCRs or DVD players that do not have HDMI inputs, then it is not necessary to purchase a receiver with an abundance of HDMI inputs since all you’ll need are two or three in order to connect all of your devices together into one place.
5 . Aesthetics
Perhaps the most important factor in deciding which A/V receiver would be best for your home theater setup is its aesthetics because it will be sitting right next to your television and media equipment cabinet(s) where it will be out in the open for everyone to see! Some receivers have a modern, sleek look while others have a more classic design. Color is also a factor because you want to match the receiver with your other home theater components.
3 Advantages Of 5.2 Receivers
1. More Flexibility
5.2 channel home theater receivers are more flexible than 7.2 channel receivers because they can be used to create a 5.1 surround sound setup with any number of speakers (7, 8, or 9) in your home theater room and then you can also add an external 2-channel amplifier/processor and a pair of speakers to create a 7.1 or even an 11.2 channel Dolby Atmos surround sound system in the future if you decide that you want to upgrade your home theater system later on down the road.
2 . Better Performance
5.2 channel receivers are capable of producing higher quality sound than 7.2 channel receivers since there is less circuitry in 5 channels than there is in 7 channels (especially if the receiver has been designed with high-quality parts). With fewer circuits, there is less noise and interference which results in clearer audio reproduction and better dynamic range (the difference between the softest and loudest sounds). The downside is that they are less powerful than their larger counterparts but they are still powerful enough to drive most loudspeakers to very loud volumes with crystal clear clarity!
3 . Lower Cost
5.2 channel A/V receivers cost far less money than 7.2 channel A/V receivers so if you have a smaller budget and don’t need all of those extra channels for surround-back speakers, then a 5.2 receiver would be perfect for your home theater setup!
The Bottom Line
We’ve distilled the decision down to simply this: if you have a soundbar, then a 5.2 receiver is the way to go. If not, and you have a home theater or projector that doesn’t support Dolby Atmos or DTS:X, then it’s better to invest in a 5.1 receiver.