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Advantages of a Receiver-Based Home Theatre System

What is a receiver-based home theatre system?

TVs come with built-in speakers, but for the best sound when watching video, you want something a lot better. While a soundbar is a step up, the ultimate in-home theatre audio is a receiver-based system. And the most convenient way to upgrade to this setup is a receiver-based home theatre system, that usually includes everything you need in one box.

At the heart of the system is an A/V receiver. This is the amplifier that all the components such as the TV, video game console and Blu-ray player plug into. The AV/Receiver then processes the audio signal from these devices, amplifies it, and outputs it to connected speakers. Typically, a receiver-based home theatre system will include the receiver, the speakers, a subwoofer and often colour-coded speaker wire for easier setup.

What are the advantages of a receiver-based home theatre system?

Receiver-based home theatre systems require a little more planning in terms of room layout, and they require a little more effort to set up than simply plugging in a TV or a single-cable soundbar. But the results are more than worth it, and they are easier than a do-it-yourself approach of collecting and assembling individual components. With one of these systems, you get true “home theatre” audio that’s more immersive and can rival the sound you enjoy in a movie theatre.

While it’s possible to put together a system yourself, a receiver-based home theatre system includes all the components you need. The manufacturer makes sure they are matched in terms of capabilities and they usually share a design theme, so they not only sound great, they look great as well.

What features should you look for?

There are a number of key features you should look for in a receiver-based home theatre system.

One of the most important is surround sound formats. Most people are looking for more than 2-channel stereo sound. Look for a system with an A/V receiver that supports audio formats you want, such as Dolby Digital, or Dolby Atmos. You’ll also want to make sure the system includes the speakers required for that format: you may be looking at six or more speakers. A subwoofer is critical for low end performance. 4K and HDR video support is a must-have these days.

The power rating of the receiver is important, as you need to ensure it’s powerful enough to deliver the volume you expect. And you’ll also need to pay attention to inputs on that receiver (HDMI, optical and others), making sure it has all the inputs needed to connect not just your TV, but any other devices and accessories you might use.

There are other features that some advanced receiver-based home theatre systems offer, including a wireless subwoofer, colour-coded speaker cables, a microphone for automatic speaker setup, video upscaling, wireless audio support (Bluetooth and Wi-Fi) and support for multi-room streaming audio.