We have more than four IT fairs within a work year. Some are relatively low-key while others like the IT Show have proven to be hugely anticipated events by gadget-seekers island-wide. On the other hand, exhibitions showcasing the best in audio and visual equipment are few and far between in the local scene. But all is not lost.
Making its 13th appearance is the International Sound & Sight Exhibition, now on at the Parkroyal hotel on Kitchener Road from the 2nd to the 4th of December. Organized by Sound Journal, the event is a rare chance for audiophiles and budding AV enthusiasts to catch the latest audio-visual crop from a host of prominent manufacturers. Members of the public can purchase tickets at the exhibition itself. A single day pass costs $15 while a two-day pass is going for $20. Opening hours are between 11am and 7pm.
Yamaha, an established maker of musical instruments and audio-visual components, is one of the distinguished participants at Sound & Sight this year. Besides showcasing their latest AV wares, the Japanese firm also conducted a Meet-The-Members session with our HardwareZone forum members on the first day of the show. Essentially, participants received informative tips on how to source for an appropriate receiver and the basic mechanics of putting together a home theater system. There's more on that towards the end of our coverage. For now, here are some of the highlights from Yamaha's latest AV booty.
Yamaha carries two main series under their AV receivers line-up: V-Series and Aventage. The premium-grade Aventage range only found its way to our shores recently following its official announcement back in August. To quote Yamaha's product site, the Aventage was engineered "to bring studio grade sound and sophisticated video enhancements to your home". That isn't an excessive marketing brag to be fair, since the new systems do feature improved internal components, networking capabilities (DLNA), a HQV Vida VHD1900 video processor, as well as 9.2-channel output (A2010 and A3010 models) with support for DTS-HD Master and Dolby TrueHD formats. Yamaha's high-end receivers are also fitted with an ART (Anti Resonance Technology) wedge, or an additional fifth-foot if you will, designed to stabilize the center of the receivers against vibrations.
Sitting at the top of the Aventage cluster is the 9.2-channel RX-A3010. Decked with an aluminum front panel, this state of the art receiver is armed with a fortified H-shaped Cross Member Frame to increase the chassis' durability and to reduce vibrations from the transformers and heat-sinks. This beauty packs a whopping 2,070W maximum effective power output to drive the nine dedicated channels. Other audio treats include a high-speed thermal feedback power amplifier and a low-jitter PLL circuitry to improve the receiver's sound imaging. Yamaha's flagship receiver also features CINEMA DSP HD; a surround sound processing which combines two CINEMA DSP engines with advanced 3D processing and two front presence channels to recreate a cinematic aural experience. Video-wise, the A3010 is equipped with a drool-worthy HQV Vida processor with 12-bit color processing which supports 3D imaging and SD upscaling to HD quality.
Don't write off this 'entry-level' Aventage as yet. The RX-A810 is actually a marvelous choice if you are comfortable with a 7.2-channel receiver equipped with a more conservative power output. While it doesn't showcase as many IO ports as its A3010 sibling, like the number of optical inputs for instance, the A810 does feature similar audio and visual benefits like its counterparts. For instance, it houses the same Burr Brown DAC chipset, plus it also supports a bi-amp configuration if you prefer to assign the amps individually. Not to mention this receiver also supports HD audio formats such as Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio among others. For calibration, the A810 uses Yamaha's multi-point YPAO and DSP Effect Normalization technologies which varies the CINEMA DSP parameters as determined by the reflected acoustics. At the video end, the A810 is able to process 3D signals and provide HD upscaling for lower resolutions as well.
|Rated Output Power
(20Hz-20kHz, 2ch driven)
|100W x 7 (8ohms, 0.06% THD)||110W x 7 (8ohms, 0.06% THD)||140W x 9 (8ohms, 0.06% THD)||150W x 9 (8ohms, 0.06% THD)|
|Cinema DSP||Yes (3D)||Yes (3D)||Yes (3D)||Yes (3D)|
|Audio Codec Support||Dolby TrueHD/Digital Plus/ Pro Logic IIx, DTS-HD MA||Dolby TrueHD/Digital Plus/ Pro Logic IIx, DTS-HD MA||Dolby TrueHD/Digital Plus/ Pro Logic IIx, DTS-HD MA||Dolby TrueHD/Digital Plus/ Pro Logic IIx, DTS-HD MA|
|DAC||192kHz/24-bit Burr Brown||192kHz/24-bit Burr Brown||192kHz/24-bit Burr Brown||192kHz/24-bit Burr Brown|
|Web Browser Control||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|HDMI Upscaling||Analog to HDMI/HDMI to HDMI||Analog to HDMI/HDMI to HDMI||Analog to HDMI/HDMI to HDMI||Analog to HDMI/HDMI to HDMI|
|HDMI Input/Output||8 (front 1) / 2 (Simultaneous)||8 (front 1) / 2 (Simultaneous)||8 (front 1) / 2 (Simultaneous)||8 (front 1) / 2 (Simultaneous)|
|USB Input||iPod/iPhone, USB Memory, Portable Audio Player||iPod/iPhone, USB Memory, Portable Audio Player||iPod/iPhone, USB Memory, Portable Audio Player||iPod/iPhone, USB Memory, Portable Audio Player|
|Dimensions (mm)||435 x 171 x 369||435 x 182 x 432||435 x 192 x 467||435 x 192 x 467|