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Onkyo TX-SR series AV receivers: HDMI 1.3, 1080p and TrueHD

Onkyo's newest AV receivers aim to bathe us in glorious 7.1 surround sound and feature support for the uncompressed movie soundtrack formats, Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD

Surround sound is awesome. It makes watching movies a truly exciting experience and teleports gaming into a whole new world. Crave recently had a pop at the new Colin McRae rally game, DiRT, and were blown away by the amazing surround effects, so we are especially excited to hear about these new TX-SR series AV receivers from Onkyo.

The new TX-SR home-cinema receiver range includes four THX-certified systems -- named TX-SR705, TX-SR805, TX-SR875 and TX-SR905 -- that also support HDMI 1.3a and both Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD, which means seriously amazing uncompressed surround sound.

All the models have Neural THX, which is designed to offer a full 5.1 surround experience from specially encoded stereo soundtracks. It also promises to extend 5.1 sound to 7.1 for gamers too, which will make for a very surround-y experience.

The £600 TX-SR705 offers THX Select 2 certification, which essentially means low signal-to-noise ratio and distortion figures, which means a better quality amp. The £800 TX-SR805 promises THX Ultra 2, which adds a few requirements, including THX Music, which should improve the music performance of the amp.

The receivers all offer HDMI in and out, how many of each depends on the model -- the 705 and 805 have three inputs and one output, the £1,000 TX-SR875 has four HDMI inputs and one output, and the £1,400 TX-SR905 has four inputs and two outputs.

The two top-of-the-range amps, 875 and 905, offer an ear-bashing 200W per channel. They will also upscale video to 1080p, which is a nice little bonus for those looking to get the best out of their DVD collection and swanky new TV. They're all out very soon, except the TX-SR705, which takes a bow next month. -Ian Morris