New Onkyo home theater systems include nearly all of the newest features you could ask for in a system, including 4K video upconversion (via an Marvel Qdeo video processor), 192 kHz/24-bit DACs, networking capabilities and Audyssey 2EQ.
The HD-S6500 ($799) is a The HT-S6500 is a 80-watt per channel 5.1-channel system with compact satellite speakers and a 120-watt powered subwoofer. Around the back are six HDMI inputs with an Audio Return Channel. A front USB port offers direct digital connection for an iOS device. A USB Wi-Fi adapter can also be plugged into this port for wireless network features. A USB Bluetooth adapter is also on the way.
Built-in streaming music sources include Pandora, Rhapsody, Slacker, SIRIUS XM Internet Radio, Last fm, vTuner, Spotify, and AUPEO! The HD-S6500 also can connect to PCs or networked drives via DLNA and it supports MP3, WMA, WMA Lossless, FLAC, WAV, Ogg Vorbis, AAC, and LPCM audio files.
Audyssey 2EQ is included to correct room acoustics, Audyssey Dynamic EQ provides for loudness correction, and Audyssey Dynamic Volume to maintain optimal listening levels and dynamic range. Audyssey configuration is incorporated in the new Initial Set-up program.
The HT-S7500 $899 includes all the same features as the HS-S6700 but adds two more satellites for a 7.1 system, and replaces the front speakers with compact towers. It also features one more HDMI input and has a powered Zone 2.
Both systems include Silicon Image new InstaPrevue, a source selection technology that provides a picture-in-picture display of programs available on connected HDMI devices.
Control apps are available for iOS, Android and Kindle Fire.
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Grant Clauser has been covering home electronics for more than 10 years with editorial roles in several consumer and trade magazines. He's done ISF-level damage to hundreds of reviewed products and has had training from THX, the Home Acoustics Alliance, Control4 and Sencore. He's also the author of the book The Trouble with Rivers
. Follow him on Twitter @geclauser.