March 19, 2012
| by Grant Clauser
Pioneer’s latest home theater receivers are the VSX-522 ($249), VSX-822 ($379), VSX-1022 ($449) and the VSX-1122 ($599),and they pack in a ton of connectivity and processing features. The VSX-822 and up all include Airplay. When connected wirelessly, album art and meta data are shown on the connected TV. Those same three models also include Bluetooth and are DLNA certified so they can wirelessly play content from your PC or a networked DLNA smart phone. Internet music from vTuner and Pandora are also including on the VX-822, VSX-1022 and VSX-112.
All of the models include a front USB connection for your iDevice . WAV and FLAC files up to 192kHz 24-Bits
The VSC-1122 is the model with all the best features, so if you like to tinker with settings or need a connection to pretty much anything, then check out that one. The VSX-1122 accepts seven HDMI inputs so you won’t likely run out of places to plug your latest component. There’s also a new HDMI Standby Through mode that allows high definition audio and video to pass through the receiver while in the Standby mode. A premium control app provides advanced sound features such as Sound Explorer, which displays more than 18 sound adjustment functions, and Virtual Speakers, which allows users to create their ideal sound field, even when real speakers are not set up. An interactive setup system called AVNavigator works on a PC or iPad to guide the user through the setup process. Finally, the model offers an Advanced Video Adjust suite of high definition video adjustments and 1080p/24fps video conversion plus a proprietary Stream Smoother feature that enhances low bit-rate video sources (such as streaming video from Netflix or Amazon).
For the VSX-822 and VSX-1022 Pioneer offers the ControlApp with gives users access to the most-commonly needed feature (through an iApp) including volume, inputs and internet radio or DLNA content.
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 audio training from Home Acoustics Alliance and Sencore. He's also the author of the book The Trouble with Rivers
. Follow him on Twitter @geclauser.