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HolidayBuyer's Guide
AV Receivers

Pioneer SX-S30 receiver is a slim stream machine

With its low-profile looks and Pandora's box of streaming features, the Pioneer SX-30 seemingly offers a lot for the money.

If you thought Marantz's NR receivers were slim, you ain't seen nothing yet. B-b-b-b-b-b-baby, you just ain't seen nothing yet.

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Pioneer

Pioneer has just announced its crazy-slender Elite SX-S30 stereo receiver and it packs in almost every streaming feature available: Chromecast built-in, Airplay, Play-Fi and FireConnect (if that ever materializes), plus it has Spotify Connect and Bluetooth.

The SX-S30 is almost half an inch shorter than the Marantz NR1506 at 3.7 inches high. Part of the reason they're able to get it so small is that the Pioneer is a stereo receiver, while the NR line are full surround receivers.

The receiver is a claimed 85W per channel (but at a weird 4 ohms, 1 kHz, THD 1.0%, 1ch Driven) and offers 4 HDMI ports -- which is pretty unusual for a stereo receiver. These ports will also support 4K sources and HDR.

If you're interested in high-res music, it will do DSD decoding from the network or disc as well as support 24-bit/192kHz files. It also wouldn't be a 2017 receiver without a phono input as well. Be aware that it only has a single subwoofer output, so using it as a preamp for a surround amplifier isn't possible.

In terms of pure stuff, the Pioneer SX-S30 looks to be pretty jam-packed and would possibly suit people who want to run a pair of decent speakers -- say the Elac Debut B6s -- in a small room.

The receiver is known as the SX-S30DAB in the UK and Australia and adds, you guessed it, DAB radio. It's unknown yet whether the Commonwealth-based model offers Play-Fi, but we have reached out to Pioneer for clarification.

The Pioneer Elite SX-S30 is available now for $500, while the Pioneer SX-S30DAB is available in the UK for £429 and Australia for AU$999.

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Pioneer SX-S30

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