The Good True six-channel receiver; massively flexible surround processing; A/B speaker switching.
The Bad Must adjust processing settings to improve sound.
The Bottom Line This receiver's extensive tweakability will appeal to hands-on buyers.
Some folks like the sound of their movies and music straight and never engage extra surround processing or even nudge a bass or treble control up a notch. But there are lots of home-theater buyers who want to customize their sound. Yamaha's RX-V1200 receiver is aimed at the second group--its Tri-Field Cinema processing serves up a total of 44 surround variations, which means that you can fine-tune your DVD and CD listening to your taste. Some folks like the sound of their movies and music straight and never engage extra surround processing or even nudge a bass or treble control up a notch. But there are lots of home-theater buyers who want to customize their sound. Yamaha's RX-V1200 receiver is aimed at the second group--its Tri-Field Cinema processing serves up a total of 44 surround variations, which means that you can fine-tune your DVD and CD listening to your taste.
Have it your way
The V1200's soft, orange display is easy on the eyes, and the receiver's sleek faceplate hides a cluster of buttons and knobs, as well as a complete set of audio/video/digital inputs behind a flip-down panel. The Bass Extension button on the main front panel lets you add a low-frequency boost without the hassle of using setup menus, and the Processor Direct feature gets you back to the original format in a jiffy. We spotted one rather unusual but potentially very useful feature: Center GEQ. If your center speaker is of a different brand or doesn't sonically match your left and right speakers, the Center GEQ's five-band graphic control can smooth things out. It's a way cool feature.
In addition to Yamaha's proprietary Tri-Field Cinema digital signal processing (DSP), this receiver is decked out with the latest Dolby Digital and DTS-ES Matrix and Discrete 6.1-channel surround-processing modes. Stereo CDs, FM radio, and older video sources will benefit from Dolby Pro Logic II and DTS Neo: 6's exquisite 5.1 surround effects. The receiver delivers 80 watts to each of 6 channels.
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