First and foremost: in this particular context, a receiver is an individual device configured to receive audio signals from a turntable and perform sound enhancement and amplification for subsequent output.
Depending on the design itself, the signal can take the following steps: detection, multi-stage processing, which includes frequency signal filtering, amplification, frequency transformation, certain amplitude constraints, as well as the process of digitizing the signal for its further software processing, and signal conversion into analog form.
Best AV receiver 2020: which home theater receiver should you buy?
Amplifier vs. Receiver
To make the right choice between an amplifier and a receiver for high-quality audio, you need to know the following information.
An av receiver with phono input is a solution that performs all aforementioned tasks regarding signal handling. While some receivers traditionally comprise radio tuners, their main components nowadays are signal amplifiers, decoders, and digital signal processors . A built-in preliminary amplifier in an AV-receiver performs signal expansion to get the signal to an additional power amplifier or to the speakers. These receivers meet the requirements of surround sound standards; more precisely, each channel should have matching dynamics.
What is the best option for your media system?
This media equipment not only enhances audio signals but is completely compatible with modern formats, such as 4K video and Dolby Atmos, giving you incredible effects and superb surround sound when watching movies with friends.
If you appreciate the sound quality and you are an expert in it, you should choose a receiver in order to create a modern stereo system for your home. Your better option is to use a separate record player amp for quality listening, so that you could enjoy the highest possible power for your home speakers and get expensive modern technologies that suit your musical tastes best.
What about a phono preamp?
If you are using a stereo system purchased from a store, you most likely do not know what role a phono preamp plays. Special sinusoidal and technical diagrams are used in professional sound engineering in order to determine if a phono preamp is needed for its rational use and whether it is needed in the system at all. However, without this device you may not get any sound at all or if you try to use an ordinary power turntable amplifier, you will receive a sound of an extremely low quality. If you need a preamp for your microphone as well, consider buying the best microphone preamp.
Many large speakers use a phono preamp and work perfectly. It is easy to use because it lowers the requirements for connecting wires. Besides, there are fewer potential problems that may arise while connecting the system. That’s why most vinyl enthusiasts who listen to their recordings at a professional level prefer to use an external phono preamp.
Best receivers for the turntable review
We analyzed different variants in order to choose the best receiver for the turntable. Also, we considered the TOP 13 receivers for the turntable, which in our opinion are some of the best in the market. Each model is able to catch the interest of average listeners and music experts based on its technical and functional characteristics. The best receiver for vinyl has high parameters to provide users with the quality and purity of their favorite music tracks.
This entire review is divided into four parts, and contains information on various functions, different criteria, advantages and disadvantages of each model, as well as the analysis of features.
Best Receivers with Phono Input
#1 Yamaha R-N303BL – Powerful Soultion for Your Vinyl
Yamaha uses modern ideas to improve its stereo receiver with phono input tending to modern wireless communication with vinyl and with an input port for the phone. The Yamaha R-N303BL is a modern combination of technology and quality.
This stereo receiver offers 100 Watts of minimum output power per channel, which ensures high performance of the speakers. The built-in AirPlay and Bluetooth player allow you to stream music from different devices such as computers, mobile phones, and tablets. Through Ethernet connection, you can transfer music from the Internet and share content with network devices that support DLNA technology. MusicCast provides managing the device from your smartphone.
The R-N303 contains a powerful, high-quality record player amplifier that has one discrete configuration while providing the maximum power of 140 Watts per channel – 8 Ohms. The device affords an increase in the length of audio paths by locating the power supply near the amplifier to reduce the energy loss that is used mainly to improve the sound quality.
The Yamaha R-N303BL uses special circuitry to split the analog and digital signals into completely separate units in order to provide lower noise levels. The network module in the Yamaha R-N303BL is designed for high-precision work to increase the quality of high-definition sound and reduce noise.
This 2-channel receiver allows you to play your favorite music stored on your computer, and play music from smartphones or tablets using a wireless connection, as well as via Bluetooth or AirPlay, or by transferring music from streaming services or FM radio.
The Yamaha R-N303BL is equipped with optical and coaxial inputs. The optical input provides reception of sound from a display, and the coaxial input arranges reception of audio from the Blu-ray player. The audio is on a digital domain, thus providing a clean dynamic sound. The best stereo receiver for the turntable guarantees high-quality stereo sound in all conditions. If you need an optical cable, check out our best optical cable review.
- Simple, yet modern design
- Two channels with the 100-Watt power output
- It has both optical and coaxial audio inputs
- Access to music environments such as Pandora, Spotify, SiriusXM, Tidal, Deezer
- Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity
- Phono Input allows you to play vinyl recordings
- High-quality sound
- Supports various music devices
- Optimal price
- Some materials are not of good quality
- The instructions for use are not clear
#2 Sony STRDH190 – Vinyl or Digital? Doesn’t Matter
A stereo device with a Phono input and Bluetooth connectivity, the STR-DH190 allows you to play the high-quality sound of vinyl and digital music.
The STR-DH190 contains four analog audio inputs and one output for quick connection of various audio equipment. The power amplifier is used to minimize distortion and to increase power that results in better sound.
The reinforced frame of the chassis and the design itself are used to minimize the vibration from the sound pressure of the speaker to provide clear. This candidate for the title “best turntable receiver” meets all your sound requirements and wishes.
- Function A + B enables connection of two sets of front speakers
- Four analog audio inputs and one output
- Discrete amplifier for increased power and high-quality sound
- Reinforced chassis frame
- Minimum vibration
- Wide range of supported phono formats
- Powerful transformer
- Flexible installation of speakers
- A large number of entrances
- Affordable price
- Ability to control low and high frequencies
- Easy to install
- Ability to support different speakers
- Instructions are not clear to the average user
#3 Onkyo TX-NR575 – Quality Receiver with Dolby Atmos and DTS: X
This premium receiver will be useful to any user, regardless their preferences, whether they prefer classical music or mainstream popular music, or the are prominent fans of movies and computer games. The TX-NR575 incorporates the latest technology in video and audio processing.
HDMI inputs provide 4K / 60p signal passage, and there is the ability to decode the sound through Dolby Atmos and DTS: X. The system also supports Hi-Res audio in the multi-channel DSD format and 192/24 stereo playback. It is possible to use the network and analog sources to transfer audio to compatible wireless speakers using the latest FireConnect technology.
It also includes special network management for music tracks through Android and iOS smartphones, as well as AirPlay, Spotify, and dual-band Wi-Fi.
- Supports Dolby Atmos and DTS: X
- Six HDMI inputs and one output that support 4K video content
- Chromecast and DTS Play-Fi
- Modern FireConnect Multi-Room Technology
- Contains a digital-analog converter with a capacity of 384 kHz
- Wi-Fi support, AirPlay network services, Spotify, Deezer, Pandora, TuneIn
- Bluetooth wireless technology
- Tone control
- Available USB port
- Phono input (MM)
- DSP modes for various games: Sports, Action, and RPG
- Available headphone jack
- 32-bit digital signal processing
- There is a synchronization of management
- Non-informative screen
- Some materials of its body are not resistant to mechanical damage
#4 Yamaha RX-V683BL – Wide Network Possibilities and Ultra-easy Setup
The Yamaha RX-V683BL excels in providing almost every possible connectivity option, such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, MusicCast, as well as several network functions, including playing the content from a NAS storage of a home computer. It also supports Spotify, Pandora, AirPlay, Internet radio, and other network media sources.
The whole range of functionality can be easily managed via the Yamaha AV Controller App available for both Android and iOs smartphones and tablets. The software is intuitive and supports 23 languages to bring you the ultimate convenience.
This 7.2-channel device offers advanced surround sound technologies, such as Dolby Atmos and DTS:X. It also includes a photo output to please the connoisseurs of the vintage analog sound. The RX-V683BL offers full support of 4K video content and is compatible with the HDCP 2.2 standard.
- An extremely easy setup process and good compatibility with various devices, from TVs and game consoles to turntables and Bluetooth speakers
- Incredible audio quality, enhanced with the YPAO optimization, and support of modern surround sound formats and other Hi-Fi content technologies;
- Can manage audio in up to nine additional rooms thanks to MusicCast.
- The unit is heavy (22 lbs) and requires well-thought placement
- Bluetooth devices may start to disconnect periodically. Restarting the receiver solves the problem for a while
#5 Yamaha AVENTAGE RX-A870BL – A Reliable and Powerful Receiver
The Yamaha Aventage RX-A870 is a 7.2-channel AVENTAGE series receiver that has powerful features and a modern anti-resonant technology from the Yamaha manufacturer. The features include the support for Dolby Atmos and DTS: X, MusicCast, as well as HDMI with the ability to support the 4K 60p format, as well as the input for a vinyl record player.
The front panel is made of aluminum and contains switches and volume controls. The RX-A870 contains protection circuits against external interference and various electromagnetic emissions, ensuring optimal parameters and different sound characteristics in the widest range of conditions of the system’s location.
The AV receiver in conjunction with DTS delivers clear and clean multi-dimensional sound. This potentially best receiver for a record player supports the latest audio formats, which in turn allows you to increase the depth of sound.
The AV receiver provides full support for up-to-date HDMI standards. The ability to play 4K video with a frame rate of 60 fps at an output gives you a clear and high-quality image without apparent deterioration. It is compatible with HDCP 2.2 video signal protection technology. Also, a supported HDR format works to increase detail.
The built-in Wi-Fi module provides a direct connection with the router, which allows your home system to connect to network streaming music services quickly. The Wireless Direct function, which provides streaming music from a phone or laptop using the MusicPlay application on the Android operating system or AirPlay on the iOS operating system, is managed by the AV Controller app.
By connecting the receiver for record player to the Internet, you can use Spotify, Pandora, JUKE, Napster, and others as well as listen to your music tracks stored on your computer’s drive. The AV Controller application provides a way for managing various system functions from your iPod, iPhone, or from another phone or tablet that runs on Android.
Also, there is support for AirPlay technology that accesses audio files from iPod touch, iPhone, which provides the user with the ability to listen to their favorite music from mobile devices through the amplifier. The turntable receiver display shows various additional information, such as the album names and tracks currently playing.
- Anti Resonance Technology Wedge minimizes vibration
- AirPlay technology support
- AV Controller application
- Built-in Wi-Fi module
- Wireless Direct function
- Ability to play 4K video at 60 frames per second
- HDMI with 3D
- Supports Dolby Atmos and DTS formats
- Bluetooth support
- Compact size
- Manual doesn’t answer all questions
- Small screen
#6 Yamaha RX-A2060BL – Optimal Stereo Receiver with Phono Input
The RX-A2060BL provides an anti-resonant technology that, in turn, minimizes the effects of fluctuations on sound quality. The aluminum front panel of Yamaha allows it to look sophisticated and modern.
It should be noted that the Yamaha RX-A2060BL contains an Apple-compatible USB connector, a jack for your headphones and an additional HDMI input. This receiver also includes a nine-channel amplifier for working with multiple audio areas to provide surround sound.
The manufacturer has developed and implemented in this model an advanced technology for volume processing, called Cinema DSP HD3, that is a guarantee of a better sound. Wi-Fi and Ethernet enable streaming music with MusicCast Controller anywhere in your home. AirPlay, Bluetooth, and DLNA allow you to play music from smartphones, laptops or tablets.
The Yamaha RX-A2060BL provides audio to the Bluetooth speakerphone or headphones. Great functionality ensures you enjoy such features as built-in Spotify Connect, Napster, and vTuner. The amplifier provides support for high-speed 24-bit / 192 kHz WAV and FLAC files. The HDMI supports Ultra HD 4K / 60p and HDR, as well as HDCP 2.2 technology.
The Yamaha RX-A2060BL provides users with a reliable YPAO calibration system and a microphone to provide high-quality sound from speakers. You can control the key features of the device through the MusicCast Controller for iOS and Android. For advanced settings, it’s worth downloading the Yamaha AV Controller application.
- Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and Ethernet connectivity
- Cinema DSP HD3
- Apple-compatible USB connector
- Optional HDMI input
- Powerful amplifiers
- Ability to work with video at 4K resolution
- YPAO calibration system
- It’s heavy, almost 40 pounds
- The display is small and not bright, which makes reading quite difficult
#7 Onkyo TX-8140 — 2-Channel Network Stereo Receiver With Phono Preamp
The Onkyo TX-8140 has a simple design with an easy-to-read indicator and easy-to-understand user control. The front panel has a headphone jack, a USB port, menu navigation and volume controls. Also, the tool includes rotary knobs to adjust bass with high frequencies. The TX-8140 has such dimensions: about 17 x 6 x 13 inches in width, height and depth, respectively, and the weight of the device is 18.3 pounds. This potentially best receiver for vinyl brings clear and high-quality sound to your speaker system.
The Onkyo TX-8140 has the power output of 80 Watts per channel, which is quite sufficient for small and medium-sized rooms. This device includes six sets of analog stereo inputs and one set of linear outputs used to record the sound, as well as a special input for the phono, to ensure the connection of a turntable.
This potentially best turntable receiver contains two digital optical and two digital coaxial audio inputs. However, it’s worth noting that these inputs only support dual-channel PCM and do not support Dolby Digital or DTS Digital Surround, since there are no built-in Dolby or DTS decoders.The Onkyo TX-8140 provides subwoofer connection and contains standard AM / FM receivers.
This record player receiver delivers the highest quality of audio with the help of a digital-analog converter called the Asahi Kasei AK4452 DAC. To facilitate the device management, you can use the remote control app called Remote Onkyo, which is available to users on iOS and Android.
The Onkyo TX-8140 retains the usual stereo experience for many users and has added an advanced, cutting-edge technology for listening to digital and streaming music sources. If you can connect audio outputs from video devices, TVs, Blu-ray / DVD players and others, it’s worth knowing that the TX-8140 does not support any video connections – this device was specially designed for dual-channel music listening.
- Ethernet and Wi-Fi connection
- Available network features such as TuneIn, Pandora, Sirius, Slacker, and Spotify
- Modern, cutting-edge technology
- Contains a USB port and a headphone output
- Simple design attractive for users
- Light weight
- Low price
- Two digital optical and two digital coaxial audio inputs
- Special input for phono
- Built-in Bluetooth
- Six sets of analog stereo inputs and one set of linear outputs
- Apple Airplay features are not supported
- The device does not have any video connections
- No built-in Dolby or DTS decoders
- Does not include an input for an MP3 player
- Buttons are hard to read
#8 The Sherwood RX4508 – A Great Receiver to Play Your Vinyl
The Sherwood RX-4508 receiver has an AV amplifier, with an output power of 2×100 Watts (8 Ohms, CRIs of less than 0.08% in the operating range of 40-20000 Hz), with the advanced technology of the amplifier Discrete Amplifier Stage (DAS). It contains a built-in modern phono corrector for connecting a vinyl MM-type player, two linear stereo inputs and two outputs, as well as one headphone out.
Though this device is simple in its design, it allows users to enjoy the excellent sound of any composition, including the surround sound and high-quality stereo, at a quite an affordable price.
The RX-4508 has two analog inputs, an AM / FM tuner, and an RDS tuner that can play around 30 radio stations. The receiver does not have a digital input, however, it is not needed here as it has Bluetooth wireless technology.
Features of the Sherwood RX-4508 consist in the classic performance of various musical compositions with the ability to adjust the volume and timbre of the musical composition by digital control.
Thanks to its simple design and high-quality materials, the Sherwood RX-4508 delivers the best sound for its class. The speaker system is characterized by its high-quality sound. The receiver is suitable for vinyl record fans, thanks to the built-in MM-type phonocorrector, as well as connoisseurs of modern technologies, for built-in Bluetooth.
- Good sound
- Low price
- Good quality of materials
- Radio availability
- Bluetooth availability
- Modern design
- High output power
- 1-year warranty from the manufacturer
- Contains remote control
- Creates background noise in connected speakers
- No switching capabilities
- The sound quality via Bluetooth is not high
- The rear panel is not of high quality
The Best Amplifier with Phono
#1 The Onkyo A-9050 — Premium Receiver with an Integrated Stereo Amplifier for Phono
The Onkyo A-9050 uses WRAT Broadband Enhanced Technology to provide users with clean Hi-Fi while being in the category of equipment with the most affordable prices. This device incorporates discrete elements that provide low output impedance; besides, there are capacitors in the audio circuits. Output transistors are equipped with aluminum heatsinks, which quickly and perform the heat removal process in different situations.
With the presence of digital and analog inputs, a phono corrector and a useful Wolfson digital-to-analog converter, the device is popular among music listeners and connoisseurs. The housing itself contains: the circuit, which is built from discrete elements with low resistance, radiators, and capacitors, which are located in the power supply for the production of large currents without any distortion and noise. This possibly best amplifier for turntable provides a high level of sound.
The Onkyo A-9050 is a premium class system, which includes: high-end amplifiers, an independent power-amplifier for headphones, gold-plated column connectors, convenient switch selector knobs, timbre and volume controls make the system multi-functional and popular.
If you are a fan of vinyl, if you like to listen to a high-definition audio, or you want to become the owner of a universal amplifier: from listening to vinyl recordings or CDs to enjoying movie accompaniments or TV programs – the Onkyo A-9050 is the right system for you. This candidate for the best receiver for a record player gives you the opportunity to enjoy your favorite music.
Due to the location of control elements, the amplifier with phono input is convenient and ergonomic. The digital-analog converter can decode the PCM stream with the following parameters: up to 24 bits / 192 kHz. The contact surfaces of the connectors located on the back panel are gold-plated. A reliable screw terminal is used to connect the speaker systems,; its design and parameters allow the optimal transmission of significant peak currents. Its settings allow you to provide the best possible level of sound
- Modern WRAT technology
- A large set of analog and digital inputs
- Modern Remote Interactive technology for managing multiple systems via one remote control
- Built-in phono corrector and digital-analog converter Wolfson
- Discrete elements with low resistance
- Automatic activation and timer function
- Effective heatsinks made of aluminum
- High-quality capacitors of the output stages
- Built-in independent amplifier used for headphones
- Gold plated terminals
- Powerful sound
- Not versatile
- The instructions do not contain clear information
- Big size
The best receivers without phono
#1 Sony STRDN1080 — Budget Receiver without Phono
The Sony STR-DN1080 receiver is configured mainly to play audio and video files in the best possible quality. This system is suitable for those users who want to get a versatile home theater.
This system provides users with the ability to play 4K video. Modern Dolby Atmos technology can simultaneously handle up to 128 audio tracks and automatically divide them into 64 output channels, making the sound incredibly clear and rich.
The Sony STRDN1080 is equipped with a large number of ports, including six inputs and two HDMI outputs, to ensure that you can connect any device to the system.
- Modern audio technologies Dolby Atmos and DSEE HX
- Adaptive speakers
- S-Force PRO Front Surround massive and crisp sound
- Automatic calibration
- 4K quality
- Great dynamic range
- Supports high-definition audio formats, including DSD
- Chromecast, AirPlay and Spotify Connect support
- Six inputs and two HDMI outputs
- Compatible with the Sony | Music center application
- Can connect to Wi-Fi
- Digital-to-analog converter
- High-quality capacitors
- Resistors that provide clear sound
- Presence of a power amplifier
- High-quality quartz resonator
- High-performance enclosure to provide users with superb sound
- Powerful transformer
- Three high-quality processors for digital signal processing
- Digital printed circuit board
- Ability to perform 32-bit signal processing
- Radiator system for heat exchange
- Ease of use thanks to the simple and understandable graphical user interface
- Bad firmware
- When setting the image automatically, the screen image is not synced with the sound in the speakers
- There is no sound recording when turned on
- Inconvenient management through the menu
- Quickly heats up
- There are no network services
- Difficult access to basic functions
- Inability to calibrate sound using Music Center
- Noise from the built-in pulse power supply
#2 Denon AVRS730H – Non-Phono Receiver From Quality Materials
The AVR-S730H is a 7.2-channel AV receiver with powerful features and a set of options for connecting various audio decoders. The power is not too large; however, the price is also not too high. According to the manufacturer, this device should be one of the best today on the market.
The AVR-S730H has a low power level that equals 75 Watts per channel. This is substantially below average; however, it’s also worth noting that this model is one of the most affordable AV receivers.
The AVR-S730H contains a 7-channel amplifier, as well as decoders for Dolby Atmos and DTS: X that support the latest audio formats, allowing you to achieve a great depth of the surround sound. These formats are not so popular, so it includes Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD decoding, which allows you to mix stereo sounds.
There are Bluetooth technology and Wi-Fi technology that allow you to wirelessly transfer an audio signal to your system from your smartphone, tablet, laptop or computer. AirPlay and DLNA Wi-Fi support makes it easy to connect your Apple- or Android-based device to your home Wi-Fi network.
All six HDMI inputs are compatible with 4K and 3D video, as well as with HDCP 2.2, which is required for Blu-ray and DVD-protected media.
The control process is carried out in three ways: from the front panel, via the remote control and with the help of the application. In our opinion, the best management option for users is an application for smartphones. The application is easy to navigate and cannot be lost, unlike the remote control.
The AVR-S730H is equipped with a sufficient number of features and relevant parameters to become one of the finest choices at the manufacturer’s recommended price.
- Affordable price
- 4K / HDR compatibility
- High-quality sound
- Six HDMI inputs and one output
- Auto calibration
- Supports Dolby Atmos and DTS: X technologies
- Competitors sound better
- The system is not easy to operate
- Low output power
The Best Amplifiers without Phono
#1 The Marantz MM7025 – Best in The Price Segment without Phono
This is a dual-channel amplifier with a power of 140 Watts with its 8-Ohm dynamic resistance. It can process frequencies up to 40 kHz. This system comprises the metal chassis, which has anti-vibration properties. The Marantz MM7025 can be a good solution for updating your existing stereo system. There are only two ports for acoustic connection: two pairs for two speakers.
The front panel has a display with a backlight function. There is a possibility of choosing a direct connection option, and it is also possible to use the automatic power-off function. The set of ports contains two pairs of acoustic outputs, a RCA / XLR input, as well as the trigger input and output.
To avoid overheating of the output transistors, there is a built-in fan, and so there is a constant flow of warm air from the inside. Before buying the best amplifier for the turntable, you need to have a look at the specifications and options in detail to ensure that your device meets your requirements and needs.
Aluminum and plastic are used for the manufacture of the front panel. The display is located in the center of the panel for ease of use and can be highlighted in blue, which makes it easy to use in the dark. For backlighting, the system of LED indicators is used, which has the automatic shutdown function.
Innovative design and high-quality components ensure the operation of the device and positively affect the clarity of sound in the speakers.
- Appropriate construction of the front panel, which corresponds to modern trends
- High power of 2 x 140 Watts per channel at 8 Ohms
- Capacitors with an output capacity of 30,000 μF
- An amplifier circuit with the possibility of feedback
- Reliable operation
- High-quality EI Power Transformer
- 5 XLR and 5 RCA inputs
- IR-Flasher input
- Gold-plated audio terminals
- Only two ports for connecting speakers
- Non-informative display
- The front panel is made from low-quality plastic
#2 Onkyo M-5000R — Reference Series Power Amplifier without Phono
The music will sound perfectly and clearly with the Onkyo M-5000R. The latest development from Onkyo has kept all its traditions, namely: the latest state-of-the-art technologies, large direction indicators on the side panels and modern design that meets all the requirements and trends. The quality of the sound is ensured by the modern AWRAT technologies, as well as double dual gain amplification with the H-shaped transistor architecture, with these parameters the system provides extremely high power. A double transformer and four capacitors with a capacity of 27000 μF function to stabilize power and current.
- Power: 170 Watts / channel
- Proprietary technologies AWRAT and DIDRC to enhance amplification and noise reduction
- Quad Push-Pull system with transistor circuitry
- Symmetric circuits for L and R channels
- Double transformer
- Four capacitors with a total capacity of 27000 μF
- Anti-resonant aluminum panels
- Balanced XLR input
- Gold-plated connectors
- 12 V input and output signals
- Huge instantaneous peak power
- Large and heavy
- Small-sized display
In this article you will find the answers to all these questions – why you should stop and think about your choice when buying the best receiver for turntables.
You shouldn’t learn only the descriptions of the specific models and their functionality. To learn the fine grain I offer answers to the most frequent questions that arise while planning the purchase.
We provided information which can help you understand how to operate the system properly. In our review you’ll find many other equally important and necessary nuances that will help you make a choice of the best receiver for the turntables.
How to connect a turntable to a receiver?
Connecting a turntable to a receiver is not a difficult process, so you should not be afraid. All you need to know is how to complete the connection process is a few simple steps, and you are ready to listen to the quality sounds of vinyl records.
Option 1: Phono preamp is in the receiver
Everything is quite simple here.
- The receiver itself has a built-in audio amplifier, which has a dedicated input, marked “PHONO”.
- It is enough to connect the audio cable from the turntable to the PHONO input on the receiver, after that connect the ground wire to the respective receiver terminal.
- Connect an audio output device to the receiver output.
To minimize the noise that can come from your player, it is necessary to connect an existing ground wire to the terminal marked “GND”, this will reduce noise.
Option number 2: Phono preamp is in the turntable
The turntable has a built-in audio amplifier, and the receiver does not have it. To get started, you need to connect an audio cable to a specific analog audio input of your receiver.
- Simply connect your turntable to one of your receiver’s analog inputs using an audio cable. These inputs are signed as Aux – Auxiliary input, Line In, Analog In, and others. You can also connect the signal source device to “CD” or “Tape” inputs, if necessary. No other connections are required.
Option 3: Phono preamp is a separate component
Neither the receiver nor the turntable itself has a built-in phono amplifier. In this case you will have to add an additional device to your system.
- To do this, connect your turntable to the preamp using an audio cable. It is also worthwhile to connect the ground wire to the respective terminal on the phono amplifier.
- After that, connect the audio output of the phono preamp to an analog audio input of your receiver, and connect the entire system to the power source, after which the connection process will be completed.
What’s a phono preamp?
Enhancing the sound quality is a general function performed by a phono preamp, which can also be called a phono stage, phono equalizer, RIAA preamp or turntable preamp. Specifically, this component amplifies the signal from a turntable to a level required by the following device in a sound system: a receiver, a power amplifier, or speakers, for example. It also performs the RIAA equalization of the audio signal.
If you are not satisfied with the sound quality of your audio device, which contains a built-in phono amplifier, you can update your system with a separate phono stage which will provide better sound. The additional amplifiers contain high-quality circuits, and they also give the user an extra option to perform a precise tuning in order to improve the sound quality. The more expensive models come equipped with built-in Bluetooth, which provides wireless connectivity to headphones or receivers for more convenient use.
What if your turntable and receiver both have built-in phono preamps?
If your receiver contains a built-in phono preamp, you must always connect your turntable to one of linear or auxiliary inputs instead of connecting to the dedicated phono input. This is not the case where more is better!
If your receiver has a built-in phono preamp, and there is a special switch on the vinyl player that enables you to turn on or off the built-in phono preamp, you have the ability to determine how clearly and precisely your speaker system sounds.
Brief glance at HDMI 2.1 standard
As of this day, HDMI 2.1 is the latest version of the standard. Due to its relatively recent appearance, it is supported by a limited number of devices; however, their share is steadily increasing. This version added several advanced features for existing and upcoming devices. The most prominent of them are:
- the bandwidth is increased from 18 Gbps to 48 Gbps thus enabling the 8K resolution; however, you will also need TVs that support such format, and new cables that can handle higher speeds;
- the Enhanced Audio Return Channel (eARC) protocol that allows delivering 32 audio channels from a TV to your receiver;
- the adaptive or variable refresh rate to reduce micro-stuttering during gameplay;
- the automatic low latency mode is another gamer-oriented feature that ensures the reduction of lags;
- the quick media switching improves user experience by speeding up the start of your video playback;
- the dynamic HDR that uses content metadata to ensure the best video settings, such as brightness, contrast, depth, etc.
Topics to consider while selecting the optimal receiver and amplifier
The reasonable choice of the most suitable device for your particular needs should be based on a set of external and internal features. The internal features are related to the device’s specifications and inherent functions, while the external ones cover all the other relevant topics that may influence your decision.
- Overall quality of the device, including circuitry and materials. Better quality of the equipment has a direct impact on sound and also ensures longer service life.
- The presence of a built-in preamp and a dedicated phono terminal in a receiver. This way, you won’t have to purchase a separate phono stage.
- A wide range of connectivity options. Your receiver or amplifier should be compatible with all the other devices in your home media system, have enough inputs and outputs, and support wireless connections.
- Pleasant design that would fit your interior, even if you like to modify or completely overhaul it from time to time.
- A comfortable remote control will facilitate the process of setup, adjustment and content selection, helping you to enjoy the media playback.
- The weight may become a problem if you have to move your equipment occasionally or if your furniture cannot withstand heavy loads.
- The budget is often the determinant factor in making a decision, including the choice of a receiver or amplifier. Decide the amount of money you can afford to spend on equipment; this will narrow down the selection of available models to a specific price range.
- The retailer choice, including warranty and service, is another important point that often gets overlooked in favor of a lower price. Pick a brand that has an extensive network of service centers and develops firmware updates to support its products for an extended period of time.
- Best AV receivers
- Best receivers under $2000
- Best receivers under $1500
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