CNET First Look
Pioneer VSX-1021-K's AirPlay functionalityCNET takes a hands-on look at the Pioneer VSX-1021-K's AirPlay functionality, along with Pioneer's iControlAV2 iOS app.
Hey, I'm Matthew Moskovciak, Senior Associate Editor at cnet.com. We're take a quick look at the Pioneer VSX-1021-K AirPlay functionality as well as its iControlAV2 iOS app. This is the first receiver in this price range to come out with built in airplay, which means you can screen music from any iOS device, which is iPhone, iPad touch, or iPad directly to the receiver and is really easy. Start playing a song then you just hit the AirPlay icon and select the receiver and that's it. Album art and artist information shows on your TV and you can adjust the receiver's volume using your iOS device. Now, the receiver does need to be on home network, so you will need to connect it with either an Ethernet cord or using the optional Wi-Fi adaptor, which is pretty pricey at a 150 dollars. AirPlay also works with many 3rd party apps. So, if you're listening to say Pandora or rhapsody on your iOS device, You can just hit airplay and stream it directly to the receiver. You can also use Apple's remote app to stream your iTunes library up on network computer. The main thing it doesn't do is video. So, you do need an actual Apple TV if you wanna do that. If you don't have an iOS device, you can still use AirPlay with the receiver by using a computer running iTunes. Hit the AirPlay button in iTunes, select the receiver and then any music you play in iTunes will play through the receiver. In addition, the AirPlay Pioneer also has a dedicated iOS app called iControlAV2, which you can use to control the receiver instead of the usual remote. The app looks great especially on the iPad, but most of the functionality feels more gimmick even useful. It's definitely cool to be able to draw an EQ curve and immediately hear the receiver sound change, but we could not really see ourselves using it. On the other hand, there are some basic controls that like you address how loud the dialog is, which we could see some like it. The most useful part of the app is the control function, which lets you adjust the volume and select the inputs. Again, we probably stick to using a universal remote like a harmony instead of the app, but if you're planning on using just the AirPlay functionality, it's pretty nice that you can turn on the receiver and starts streaming music without having to use the simple remote. We have been using the VSX-1021-K for less than 24 hours now, but our initial impressions with the AirPlay functionality have been overwhelmingly positive. as it really is the easiest way to listen to your digital music if you own an iOS device. We're gonna continue testing all the other features on this receiver. So, check back later next week to see the full view. I'm Matthew Moskovciak and this the Pioneer VSX-1021-K with built in AirPlay.