Yamaha YMC-700 Review
One of the main weaknesses of the AVR is that many people who benefit from not buying. They can get as much as examining a potential purchase, but they are deterred by long and obfuscatory spec sheets. Another rap against the AVR is not suitable for the way more and more people listen to music, ie in the form of audio files as opposed to spinning discs. Even audiophiles listen to audio files as they are lossless or uncompressed.
This second point of criticism is fading into history. In fact, many A/V receivers now have Ethernet connections and use them to provide a new bag of tricks: pull music from a network PC, Internet radio, various other streaming capabilities, firmware updates, etc. The advent of HDMI 1.4 can ultimately accelerate this trend by A/V devices and Internet connections to exchange data with each other.
It’s one thing to add functions to an AVR. Manufacturers are desperately doing just that for decades. What’s new about the Yamaha neoHD YMC-700 is a great power in recipient radical recalled the product design, right down to the nickname. The YMC-700 is not so much an A / V receiver because it is a media controller.
The name suggests that the control and management of the media is more important than simply receiving audio and video signals. This new product design is also aimed at the typically stressful get-to-know-you process with a less stressful story. And once it’s up and running, it’s just easier to use.
There are two neoHD models, YMC-700 and Yamaha YMC-500. The main difference is that the YMC-700 Wi-Fi connectivity and has hard-wired Ethernet. Other features that are exclusive to the YMC-700 include Internet radio, Rhapsody online music service, and compatibility with iTunes AAC files using a free TwonkyMedia server software upgrade. If you want speakers with the Yamaha receiver, examine neoHD System 2.1, model YMC-S21.
The neoHD is smaller than an average A/V receiver, and it’s not much bigger than a set-top box. Energy-efficient Class D amplifier allows the smaller and run cooler while driving speakers of reasonable size and sensitivity (think satellites or small monitors).
A remarkable hollow front has two surfaces that are strongly divided in the middle. There is very little on the front: just a big volume knob in the center and an on / off button on the left. Near the front, the top panel has a navigation ring and a few other nav buttons. I’ve never used them, instead, I relied exclusively on the remote.
The remote is almost as tight as the front of the unit and top panels. Although small, it is not one of those dreadful membrane remotes. Of course the navigation ring again, along with Power, Power TV, Guide, Menu, Previous, Next, Control, Back, channel up / down, volume up / down, page up / down and mute buttons. I found it easy to use, helped by the sober arrangement of on-screen interface.
It is at the back of the Yamaha that you begin to see the limitations of making a receiver that is barely larger than a set-top box. The speaker terminals are not the collared binding posts that are standard equipment on most receivers. Instead, they are spring-loaded wire clips, and the cheapest kind. They are only compatible with the bare wire tips, brazed tips, or pin connectors. Admittedly, though, the people buying this product are not the sort of people who buy fancy cable with spade lugs or banana plugs.
HD-level video connectivity is limited to one HDMI output, three HDMI inputs and two component video inputs. This will accommodate five HD signal sources not an unreasonable number. But forget about feeding more than one HDTV. It also has a composite video input for legacy sources. Yamaha takes you on a diet legacy, and perhaps not a bad idea. A docking input for either an iPod dock or a Bluetooth adapter. Naturally, because this is
Wi-Fi device, a Wi-Fi antenna protrudes from the back. Yamaha also offers infrared flashers, which is an unusual and thoughtful touch.
The neoHD contains a more limited set of surround codecs than an average A / V receiver. Although it is compatible with Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Digital, Dolby Pro Logic II and DTS 5.1 is not compatible with Dolby EX, DTS-ES, DTS Neo: 6, or either type of DTS-HD. Among the many consequences: If you play DTS-HD software, you get the core DTS signal, but that is no reason to hang yourself. For faux-surround effects from two speakers, there is an Air Surround Xtreme improvement.
- Audio Decoding: DTS, DTS 05/01, 96/24
- Dolby: TrueHD, Plus, 5.1 Digital, Pro Logic II
- Other: Air Surround Xtreme
- THX certification: No
- Number of Amp Channels: 5
- Rated Power (watts per channel): Not specified
- Specified Frequency: Not specified
- Video Processing: Not specified
- Auto Setup / Room EQ: YPAO
- Dimensions (W x H x D, inches): 11.75 x 3.63 x 13.13
- Weight (kg): 7.9
- Price: $ 500