CNET First Look
Yamaha RX-V573 hands-onYamaha's receivers has consistently excellent sound quality over the years, so it's possible these new models will prove their worth with their sonics.
Hey, I'm Matthew Moskovciak from CNET, and we're gonna take a look at the Yamaha RX-V573. This is a 7.1 AV receiver with built-in AirPlay and it's currently selling for $500. The design is pretty much like any other AV receiver on the market. It's a big, full-size receiver, so you're gonna need a sizable shelf to hold the whole system. The included remote is about as confusing as it gets with tons of tiny buttons and confusing labels, so you're probably gonna wanna get a universal remote if you go with this receiver. Now, you can also control it with Yamaha's Smartphone App, which is available for both iOS and Android, and that has a lot more straightforward interface than the physical remote. You could do simple stuff like change the inputs or adjust the volume, but what's really nice is it's much faster if you're gonna scroll through the list of internet radio stations which can be pretty tough to navigate on the actual receiver. And some AV receivers have upgraded the fancy graphical displays, but the setup menus on the Yamaha still look pretty ancient. It's pretty bizarre to see this kind of blocky text on a high-def TV, especially as when you're navigating, the entire screen refreshes every time you press the button. Now, you're not gonna see these kind of setup menus that often, but this is the same kind of experience you get using the built-in AirPlay functionality. There's no album art, just basic artist information and song title. Around back, you'll see the connectivity. There are only 4 HDMI inputs on the back, which is pretty skimpy when most receivers at this price includes 6. There's an Ethernet port, which you'll need to connect for AirPlay Smartphone control and internet radio where there aren't any additional streaming music services like built-in Pandora or Spotify. For legacy devices, there are also four digital audio inputs, including two optical, and two coaxial ports. The sound quality on the Yamaha is pretty solid. We had our resident audio file Steve Guttenberg listen to the receiver, and it performed well with both music and movies. It held on even when we put it head to head with our reference Denon AVR-1912, even when we switched over to 2 channel music. So, this is a pretty solid-sounding AV receiver. But even with that strong sound quality, the RX-V573 doesn't have a lot to recommend it over competitors like the Onkyo TX-NR414 that are for 6 HDMI inputs for less than $300. And if you don't need the full 7.1 channels, the step-down RX-V473 is basically the same, except we chose the 5.1 model for less money. So, the RX-V573 isn't a bad AV receiver, but most people will find a better value elsewhere. I'm Matthew Moskovciak from CNET, and this is the Yamaha RX-V573.