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Yamaha RX-V663 A/V Receiver Preview

Yamaha RX-V663 AV Receiver

Yamaha RX-V663 AV Receiver


  • Product Name: RX-V663 AV Receiver
  • Manufacturer: Yamaha Electronics
  • Review Date: February 28, 2008 13:10
  • MSRP: $549.95
  • First Impression: Gotta Have It!
High Sound Quality
  • HD Audio format support: Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Digital TrueHD, DTS-HD High Resolution Audio and DTS-HD Master Audio
  • 7-channel 665W powerful surround sound (95W x 7)
  • Digital ToP-ART and High Current Amplification
  • Pure Direct for higher fidelity sound reproduction
  • Burr-Brown 192kHz/24-bit DACs used in all channels
  • Assignable amplifiers for bi-amp connection
Advanced Features
  • 4 SCENE buttons offering greater operating ease (with 18 preset SCENE templates)
  • XM ready with XM HD Surround powered by Neural Surround
  • SIRIUS Satellite Radio ready
  • Improved YPAO for automatic speaker setup
  • iPod compatibility via Yamaha Universal Dock
  • Bluetooth (A2DP) compatibility with Yamaha Bluetooth® Wireless Audio Receiver (YBA-10)
  • Superior multi-zone control compatibility
High Picture Quality
  • 1080p-compatible HDMI (2 in/1 out)
  • Supports Deep Color (up to 36 bit), x.v.Color, a double speed Refresh Rates of 120Hz and 1080p/24Hz transmission, and Auto Lip-Sync compenzation
  • Analog video to HDMI digital video upconversion and deinterlacing with TBC
Surround Realism
  • Fine-tuned CINEMA DSP and Adaptive DSP level
  • Improved Compressed Music Enhancer
  • Adaptive DRC (Dynamic Range Control)
Other Notable Features
  • XM Satellite Radio ready with XM HD Surround powered by Neural Surround
  • SIRIUS Satellite Radio ready
  • 40-station preset tuning / Auto preset tuning
  • HD Audio LPCM 7.1-channel reception (up to 192kHz)
  • High dynamic power and Linear Damping
  • Low Jitter PLL Circuitry
  • Assignable amplifiers for bi-amp connection
  • Initial Volume and Maximum Volume Setting
  • iPod song titles displayed in English and Western European languages ISO 8859-1 (Latin 1) on the front panel and on-screen display
  • Dialogue Lift for dialogue to screen center
  • Preout terminals for front, center, surround and surround back, and dual mono subwoofer out
  • 9 selectable subwoofer crossover frequencies
  • Subwoofer phase select
  • 8-channel or 6-channel external input
  • Speaker A, B, A+B selection
  • Preset remote unit

One thing I always say when making recommendations on AV equipment (on AV Rant or other places) is to set priorities. If you know what you need versus what you want (or what you think you want based on what other people tell you you need), you're in a much better position to buy. You might want to re-read that last sentence again. The Yamaha RX-V663 has many of the same features as the RX-V863 but with some notable omissions. First the similarities:

Both decode all the latest audio formats including Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, and DTS HD. Both have HDMI 1.3 inputs and plenty of analogue connections (including 3 in / 1 out component video). Both have 17 surround modes, YPAO auto calibration, and are XM and Sirius ready. While the RX-V663 is sporting 10 less watts per channel, you'll probably never notice. They both have two subwoofer outputs which is a very desirable feature in our book. Quality Burr-Brown 192kHz/24 bit DACs and ADCs are in use and your rear channels can be assigned to zone two or to bi-amp your mains. In fact, the two receivers are more alike than dissimilar.


So where does your extra $450 go? Sure there are some extra connections on the RX-V863 (2 more optical, one more HDMI) which takes up a little of it. The RX-V663 lacks an HD radio tuner and SRS circle surround II (another matrixing algorithm) and probably a bigger power supply and transformer but that's not really $450 is it? No, it's the lack of 1080p upscaling for 480i/p analogue video sources.

While for some, this is not a deal-breaker, for others it very well may be. Upconversion and scaling is not cheap and if you are looking for a quality external scaler, $450 might not seem that unreasonable to you. Now if your sources are usually a Blu-ray player and a high def digital cable box, you may not see the need for internal scaling (and you'd be right). But if you are still holding on to that old VHS collection or perhaps just want your home movies to look as good as possible on your new big screen, the internal scaling might be very attractive to you. In our experience most displays do a fine job without the AV receiver lending a hand.

Regardless, the RX-V663 looks to be a very feature-laden receiver for very little cost. The two subwoofer outputs are especially attractive as is the internal decoding of the high definition dts-HD and Dolby TrueHD audio formats. As you are working through your "wants" and "needs", make sure you take a close look at this receiver. For more information, please visit www.yamaha.com/yec or check it out online at store.audioholics.com.

Unless otherwise indicated, this is a preview article for the featured product. A formal review may or may not follow in the future.

About the author:
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As Associate Editor at Audioholics, Tom promises to the best of his ability to give each review the same amount of attention, consideration, and thoughtfulness as possible and keep his writings free from undue bias and preconceptions. Any indication, either internally or from another, that bias has entered into his review will be immediately investigated. Substantiation of mistakes or bias will be immediately corrected regardless of personal stake, feelings, or ego.

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