Marantz's slim AV receivers add turntable input because 2018
The NR1509 and NR1609 offer up to eight HDMI inputs and AirPlay support.
Ty Pendlebury is a journalism graduate of RMIT Melbourne, and has worked at CNET since 2006. He lives in New York City where he writes about streaming and home audio.
ExpertiseTy has worked for radio, print, and online publications, and has been writing about home entertainment since 2004. He majored in Cinema Studies when studying at RMIT. He is an avid record collector and streaming music enthusiast.Credentials
Ty was nominated for Best New Journalist at the Australian IT Journalism awards, but he has only ever won one thing. As a youth, he was awarded a free session for the photography studio at a local supermarket.
What's not to love about slimline receivers? They're so little! So tiny. Come here little cutie!! Look at you!
Marantz has been making half-height
for many years, and the NR1509 and NR1609 are the latest to slip off the production line. The look is familiar, and the features are more or less the same. Now that everyone is going bongo bananas over vinyl, however, they include the phono input needed to connect a turntable.
With 50W per channel offered on both receivers, your main decision is whether you want vanilla surround or to go the whole hog with Atmos. The NR1509 is 5.1-channel surround while the Dolby Atmos-decoding NR1609 enables enthusiasts to fill their living spaces with an immersive 5.1.2-channel setup.
The system is also compatible with the HEOS Alexa skill for control with voice command, but there is no Google Assistant capability yet.
If you've bought an NR series from recent years, there probably isn't much impetus to upgrade -- especially as a standalone phono preamp is only about $100. Now that the Denon versus Sonos business is over, HEOS is a nice addition, and AirPlay 2 is also very likely.
The $549 NR1509 and the $749 NR1609 are available now. UK and Australian availability are yet to be announced, but expect £550 or AU$1,100 and £750 or AU$1,500 respectively.