Suggestions on new Receiver

I have been using THR for a few years now but I am looking to upgrade my receiver. I currently have a Pioneer SC95 and wrote my own plugin to support this device; however, the network adapter on this receiver is no good. I have replaced it 2x but at this point I am over it. I am looking for something which has support in THR via built in plugin. Looking for suggestions from the community. A few key items I am interested in:

  • Can support 2 zones.

  • Supports at least 4 HDMI inputs and 2 HDMI outputs

  • Can be managed via app (will use THR normally but configuration via app or solid on-screen option)

I do not have a budget but anything under 2-3k is good. Thanks so much!

I have a Yamaha RX-A2040 which meets your requirements. There are a few things I don’t like about it

  1. HDMI passthrough when the receiver’s power is off is only supported on the Main zone.
    You need to power on zone 2 to have HDMI output to the zone 2 TV. I worked around this by pushing the Main zone output to my zone 2 tv with the use of an HDMI matrix switch when the receiver’s zone 2 power is off.

  2. Zone 3 does not support digital media. The workaround is to use party mode off the main zone input and mute the main zone and zone2.

  3. I could never get Album Art to display in Home Remote. Bill had looked into it and it seems that Yamaha uses some proprietary image format for album art on certain receivers. Apparently it does work for some Yamaha receivers. The workaround for me is using my Kodi media server web interface embedded in my Home Remote interface which is more full featured anyway than Yamahas offering for media navigation and control.

The images for new Yamaha receivers are no longer encrypted. I think it was only a year or 2 they did that. I believe it was their 2014 & 2015 models. I had the RX-A1040 & it also used those custom encrypted YMF images. I’ve now got a RX-A760 which uses standard JPEG files.

I am pretty sure my receiver goes back to 2009 because I bought it shortly after I bought my house. For me it is not really an issue since my Kodi implementation fits the bill for me.

The receivers Marantz/Denon are putting out are really great. Because they’re the same company, it leaves you open to a lot of options… Both Denon and Marantz use the same serial protocol (and probably IP protocol too?), so they would be easily interchangeable to HR. HR also officially supports them.

They have an app that is decent. I have an older Marantz SR6011 that checks all your boxes. Not quite sure how the second HDMI out functions exactly because I use an HDMI matrix but, it probably outputs whatever you set zone2 to. The SR6011 is discontinued now but, this receiver was in the $1400 range. Find a comparable one.

I have a Denon 3805 (which is practically an antique) with a Global Cache IP2SL.
And the Marantz SR6011 over IP and another IP2SL.

I second Denon. HR control is rock solid. You could get what you want for $300-700.

Another vote for Denon. I also have their HEOS Link, and I love it. High quality equipment that integrates well together.

Thank you this is helpful. Just to confirm, is it accessible via IP when in standby mode? Also thanks for adding item #1 up there that is very important for me.

For those suggesting Denon, do you know if the newest receivers supported by HR?

Denon, Integra, Marantz, Onkyo, & Yamaha receivers all support IP control in standby mode.

Yes, the Home Remote supports the newest Denon receivers. One thing to note is that for their new receivers they now use 2 apps. Denon AVR is used for standard on/off power control, HDMI input switching, & sound mode control. THe HEOS app is used for control of network sources like Pandora, Amazon Music, Spotify, etc. They both use completely different APIs so that means you will actually be using 2 different device sources in Home Remote as well, Denon & HEOS. There’s nothing really bad about that. The only downside is that if you plan to use some of the new template & Tile based features, you are going to have 2 tiles instead of 1.

I have not yet used the templates & tiles. Every device I have had so far didn’t have a pre-set device which necessitated it. I am interested in utilizing your code rather than rolling my own but if push comes to shove i’ll do my own. Thanks for the info I am going to go with a Denon.

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Posting this for anyone else looking at a new receiver. I purchased the Marantz 7015. Some findings which may help guide you:

  • Zone2 does have video output; however, when Zone2 has a different source than the MainZone, audio is HDMI only and not through the speaker connections for Zone2. This means you cannot have separate ‘shows’ in multiple zones while also utilizing the receiver’s speaker outputs for each Zone independently.

  • Zone3 is limited in which sources can be applied. It can provide audio from the MainZone (Source) but depending on the audio setting (ie Dolby etc) it may not produce sound. One way to make this work is to set the “Stereo all” setting which turns all zones in to Stereo. Note: THR does not have a way to set Stereo all from within the default Marantz plugin. I am making an “Marantz Extensions” plugin to handle some of the things missing.

All in all its a very nice receiver; however, using it to manage two Zones as completely separate devices has limitations so I will be purchasing an additional receiver (Marantz NR1711) to manage Zone2.