Two more AV receivers join Onkyo's 2011 lineup

Onkyo is expanding its 2011 AV receiver line with two new models--the HT-RC360 and HT-RC370.

Onkyo HT-RC370
Onkyo HT-RC370 Onkyo

Less than two months after unveiling three new AV receivers with loads of extra features, Onkyo is already expanding its 2011 lineup. The new models feature Marvell Qdeo 4K video upscaling, USB audio support, and the ability to stream some Internet audio services such as Pandora, Rhapsody, and XM. HT-RC360 and HT-RC370 replace last year's HT-RC260 and HT-RC270, respectively.

Read on to find out more about Onkyo's latest additions and see some of their key features.

Onkyo HT-RC360

Onkyo HT-RC360
The front panel of the Onkyo HT-RC360 (click for larger image) Onkyo

Onkyo HT-RC360 back panel
The rear of the Onkyo HT-RC360 (click for larger image) Onkyo

Key features of the Onkyo HT-RC360:

  • 7.2-channel AV receiver with Audyssey 2EQ room correction
  • Marvell Qdeo 4K video upscaling processor
  • Six HDMI inputs, including one front-panel HDMI input
  • Advanced HDMI features like 3D pass-through , standby pass-through and audio return channel (ARC)
  • Ethernet port
  • Wi-Fi-ready (requires $40 UWF-1 USB adapter, sold separately)
  • Networking functionality including Internet radio and DLNA compatibility
  • Can be controlled by iPhone/iPod Touch using Onkyo's free Remote app
  • Can directly connect iPod/iPhone via front-panel USB port
  • Powered second zone audio
  • $549 list price; available in April

Onkyo HT-RC370

Onkyo HT-RC370 front panel
Onkyo HT-RC370 (click for larger image) Onkyo

Onkyo HT-RC370 rear panel
The rear of the Onkyo HT-RC370 (click for larger image) Onkyo

Key step-up features of the Onkyo HT-RC370:

  • 7.2-channel AV receiver with Audyssey MultEQ XT
  • Front bi-amp capability
  • Support for Audyssey DSX (7.1 + front-high and front-wide), Dolby PL IIz (7.1 + front-high)
  • Seven HDMI inputs, including one front-panel HDMI input
  • Earned THX's Select2 Plus certification for sound quality
  • VGA-style PC input
  • S-video inputs/outputs
  • Built-in phono pre-amp
  • 5.1 analog inputs
  • Pre-amp outputs
  • $849 list price; available in April

At $849, the HT-RC370 definitely skews towards the high-end of today's AV receiver market, but it's loaded with a lot of bells and whistles not found on lower-end models. Among them: pre-outs; a whopping eleven pairs of powered speaker terminals (for elaborate Audyssey DSX and Dolby Pro Logic IIz setups, which support "front high" and/or "front wide" speakers); a dedicated phono input for vinyl fans; and even good old-fashioned S-video connections, which are quickly disappearing from most AV products.

At $549, the Onkyo HT-RC360 seems to be very redundant to Onkyo's own TX-NR609--a $500 receiver with an almost identical spec sheet.

The HT-RC360 will also be competing against the recently announced Pioneer VSX-1021. That offering, which comes in at $549 as well, boasts many of the same features as the Onkyo (five HDMI inputs, a USB port to play music from external devices, network support via Ethernet port, plug-and-play iPod/iPhone compatibility via USB). Moreover, while the addition of 4K video upscaling to the Onkyo receivers provides a nice bit of future-proofing, it's one of those features (like "Deep Color support") that won't have any real-world use for the foreseeable future.

However, while both the Onkyo receivers and the Pioneer offer plug-and-play USB compatibility with iPhones and iPod Touch handhelds, the Pioneer receiver includes one feature that's conspicuously missing from all of Onkyo's 2011 products to date: Apple's AirPlay . Thanks to AirPlay, VSX-1021 owners can wirelessly stream content from their iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad to the receiver. (AirPlay is also available on more expensive 2010 Denon and Marantz receivers, which means we're likely to see it on that company's soon-to-be-announced 2011 products as well.)

We're glad to see that the new Onkyo models eliminate the need for a separate iPod dock (though that support still exists if you want it), and that they deliver the latest HDMI features (standby pass-through wasn't supported in the predecessor models.) But we hope the 2011 HT-RC models exhibit better sound quality than the HT-RC260, which lagged among its competitors in our 2010 evaluations .

Related links
• Pioneer's 2011 line of AV receivers compared
• Sony unveils 2011 midrange AV receiver line
• Onkyo brings networking to its midrange receivers
• Apple AirPlay: 10 things you need to know

Editors' note: This post was updated after its original publication with additional information on the Onkyo HT-RC370.

 

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