The Yamaha YHT-585B is a mid range 6.1-channel digital home theatre package, offering a pair of large floor standing main speakers, three rear surround speakers, a centre speaker and a front firing sub-woofer. The sub-woofer contains its own amplifier and utilises a 25cm driver for strong bass output.
The silver AV receiver is a complete contrast to the black speakers. It is a large rectangular unit containing a FM/AM receiver and six 95 Watt amplifiers. The rear of the unit is well laid out with all connectors properly marked and the speaker binding posts are a high quality screw-type that allow for quality banana plug insertion. It has a total of three switched component inputs for high quality analog video connections to items such as an SD/HD set top box, a DVD player or DVD recorder. There is also a single component output for a wide screen TV or plasma/LCD panel.
Missing from the package is a DVD/CD player, so you will have to add your own to complete the system. THe YHT-585B would also benefit from the use of higher quality speaker cables, plus the rear speakers will need additional stands to place them properly at the right height in most rooms.
An interesting feature of this receiver is its ability to add an iPod/MP3 player input via the optional YDS10S attachment. All the songs stored on your portable player can be played back with the power and quality that good speakers provide. Yamaha have cleverly built in a compressed music enhancer to turn your recorded iPod music into something special.
Yamaha has also included an interesting feature called Direct Stereo. It sends all music to the large pair of floor standing speakers, bypassing the internal DSP circuitry, so you can listen to CDs the way audio engineers intended.
The speakers on this system are all magnetically shielded which is important to prevent older style TVs from suffering visual distortion. This is not really a problem for modern LCD/plasma panels, but does indicate the extra effort Yamaha has gone to with this system.