A small stereo receiver is one of the best purchases you can make if you are looking for a high-quality sound system that doesn’t take up too much space. There are many options available to consumers, but not all best small stereo receivers are created equal. In this post, we will be discussing which ones made our top 9 list!
Here are the top 3 Small Stereo Receiversto check at a glance if you are in a hurry:
9 Best Small Stereo Receivers Available In The Market
Buying Guide For The Best Small Stereo Receivers
1- Type of Connections Supported.
Small Stereo Receivers usually support RCA and sometimes 3.5mm connections. If your speakers or headphones require a specific connection type, make sure you match them with the ones supported by your devices first. If the inputs don’t match, you could end up buying extra adapters which will increase the cost of your purchase and also take space on your desk as well as connectors which will be useless unless you have that particular connection type as well as making it harder to connect other devices as those adapters limit the number of available connectors.
2- Type of Amplification Supported.
Stereo receivers usually provide two channels of amplification, one for the left speaker and another for the right. Sometimes you can find devices that provide 4 or more independent channels but they are usually bigger and cost a lot more than this kind of device because they can be used in professional audio equipment such as mixing consoles and presentations systems. If your speakers don’t require amplification to drive them, then it’s better to save money by not buying an amplifier at all and getting something like line level converters instead which will split the signal coming from your audio device (desktop computer, mp3 player, etc.) and feed each channel with the correct signals without amplifying any of them so if you lose one channel, you don’t lose the whole signal. However, if your speakers are too large for your device to drive them properly or they require amplification itself to work properly, then it’s better to buy an amplifier before considering any other devices because amplifiers are one of the most important pieces of equipment when it comes to sound reproduction and processing.
3- Signal Type Compatibility.
A small stereo receiver often provides only two channels of amplification but that doesn’t mean that both channels have to be driven by the same type of signals. Sometimes you can find devices that allow you to split 2 mono signals into 4 mono ones (bypassing an internal mixer) or 4 mono signals into 8 mono ones (bypassing an internal mixer with a built-in divider) and drive each output with a separate signal from your input source. This comes in very handy when you have a device that provides more than 2 channels of amplification, but only 2 output types (RCA and 3.5mm jacks). As an example, if you have a device that allows you to split a stereo signal into 4 mono signals and then split those into 8 mono signals. At this point, you can connect the first set of outputs to the amplifier inputs on your speakers, the second set of outputs to two RCA inputs on your small stereo receiver and use its third 3.5mm jack for connecting the headphones. In this case, even though your desktop computer or mp3 player provides only one channel of amplification (RCA) and one channel of output (3.5mm jack), you can still connect your speakers and headphones to it by using the splitting capabilities offered by that device and your small stereo receiver.
4- Snob Appeal
This is a hard bit to explain but it’s very important in this kind of device since they are usually not seen as high-end equipment by most users, which means that they don’t provide the same level of features or design compared to higher-end devices such as power amplifiers or studio consoles. An example would be having an amplifier with a built-in radio tuner while a stereo receiver just provides two RCA connections for connecting other audio components without any additional functionality whatsoever. However, there is a big downside to this as well, which is the fact that small stereo receivers such as those described above don’t offer nearly as many audio processing features as most amplifiers do, and sometimes you can even find some amplifiers with more functionality than your receiver. If you need certain audio processing capabilities then it’s better to check if they are available in your device before buying anything or you will end up having something that doesn’t meet your expectations regarding sound quality and performance.
5- Connectivity Issues.
This one isn’t always important but can cause problems when not considered beforehand. Small stereo receivers usually provide between 2 and 4 connections for connecting other audio devices such as CD players, turntables, or another amplifier such as RCA connections (stereo). Since they are not designed to be connected to speakers with more than two channels of amplification, it’s important to find out beforehand if your speakers provide all the connections that you need or if you will have to invest in connecting cables as well. As an example, you might want to connect your speakers with banana plugs so each speaker has 3 connections for attaching itself to the amplifier and 2 additional ones for attaching itself to another device such as a subwoofer or another pair of speakers which won’t be powered by this particular amplifier but still attached using those 2 extra connections.
3 Benefits Of Small Stereo Receivers
At its core, this benefit is simply how much money you save by choosing the second option. You can expect to pay around $300 or less for a decent mid-sized receiver that produces great power and has enough power to drive bigger speakers, as opposed to paying thousands for a high-end amp and speakers. This benefit also extends into the future; you probably wouldn’t want to buy another amplifier or pair of speakers in the next five years, but that is quite likely with your receiver.
There’s something to be said about having a simple and easy-to-use device without too many buttons and knobs (sometimes literally). With most receivers, you can pretty much plug it in and turn it on without worrying about carrying out any tedious setup tasks. All you need is a speaker wire run from your receiver’s speaker terminals to the respective wires on each individual speaker. Even more advanced receivers such as ones with surround sound still don’t require an overwhelming amount of time to initially set up.
If 4K HDR or advanced surround sound is your priority, small stereo receivers probably aren’t for you. However, the simplicity of these devices means that they are relatively easy to upgrade/customize by adding additional speakers and subwoofers to produce 5.1 or even 7.1 channel surround sound systems with added tweaks such as equalizer knobs on many models. This isn’t very easy to do using an amplifier because all the extra dials and buttons allow for more room for error which can lead to damage if done improperly.
We hope you have found this list helpful and informative! If not, check out our other posts on small stereo receivers. Have a wonderful day!