CES 2019: Onkyo USA announces TX-SR494 and TX-SR393 AV receivers

Onkyo translates as "sound harmony" - do the SR494 and SR393 live up to this?

by Andy Bassett Jan 9, 2019 at 12:00 PM

  • Onkyo has announced two sub-$500 Dolby Atmos AV receivers for the US market – the 7.2 channel TX-SR494 and the 5.2-channel TX-SR393.
    These entry-level receivers might support Dolby Atmos but the number of channels available to dedicate to surround speakers is clearly more limited than models in higher price brackets.

    These 7.2- and 5.2-channel receivers can be reconfigured into object-based audio playback systems, with the SR393 becoming a 3.2.2 system and the SR494 can be converted to a 5.2.2 configuration.

    In their 7.2 and 5.2 configurations, the new Dolby Atmos Height Virtualizer and DTS Virtual:X 3D sound virtualizers create a virtual surround and height effect from traditional speaker layouts without employing additional surround or height speakers.

    Please note that the Dolby Atmos Height Virtualiser is not available out of the box and will be enabled in a future firmware update.

    Both receivers feature Onkyo’s discrete high-current analog amplification system backed by a High-Current Low-Noise Power Transformer providing 160W per a channel for the the SR494 and 155W per a channel for the SR393.

    Onkyo have implemented plenty of other features too, including a Vocal Enhancer which lets users raise or lower vocal frequencies to clarify movie or TV dialog via the remote controller or front-panel controls.

    Also included is AccuEQ Room Acoustic Calibration, a process that uses AccuReflex technology to analyse the surroundings to detect speaker presence, size, and distance from a measurement point. The system then selects the best subwoofer crossover, EQs all speakers and optimises 3D audio reproduction through any Dolby Atmos-enabled speakers.

    Both receivers feature four HDMI inputs and one ARC-enabled output with pass-through support for 4K/60p and HDR (Dolby Vision, HDR10, HLG, and BT.2020) along with 4:4:4 color sub-sampling. Further connectivity includes optical and coaxial digital audio inputs and RCA analog audio inputs. There’s also Bluetooth and a USB power output that supports network media streaming sticks.

    If you want to listen to your music or audio in a separate room then a Zone B line-out passes audio signals, including HDMI and digital audio, to a nearby Hi-Fi system or a wireless headphone dock, via an analog RCA audio input.

    The TX-SR494 and the TX-SR393 are US-only and will be available in February for $479.99 and $349.99 respectively.

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