Pioneer has announced its first home theater receivers with HDMI 2.0 connectivity. The five new Home Theater Receivers in this first group are the VSX-824-K, VSX-1024-K, VSX-1124-K, Elite VSX-44, and Elite VSX-80.
All five receivers feature 4K pass-through at up to 60fps, courtesy of the new HDMI 2.0 specification. Other HDMI capabilities include, 3D and 4K pass-through, Audio Return Channel, and standby pass-through, which allows audio and video signals connected via HDMI to pass through the receiver even when the receiver is in standby mode. In addition, one of the HDMI inputs on all of the receivers are MHL-enabled, which allows connection of compatible portable devices (smartphones/tablets), as well as the MHL-version of the Roku Streaming Stick.
Added video features on the both the VSX-1124-K and Elite VSX-80 include 1080p and 4K video upscaling and two HDMI outputs, which allows an additional HDMI source to be accessible in a second zone.
On the audio side, all five receivers provide Dolby TrueHD/DTS-HD Master Audio decoding and the VSX-1024-K, 1124-K, and Elite VSX-80 add Dolby ProLogic IIz processing. Also, the VSX-1124-K and Elite VSX-80 both offer a 7.1 channel version of DTS Neo:X processing. Also, for optimal audio performance, the VSX-1124-K and Elite VSX-80 also incorporate ESS SABRE Premiere Audio ES9006S DACs which high-end audio performance down to midrange prices.
Pioneer’s MCACC is included in all recievers for calibration of speaker levels and speaker distances using a supplied microphone and built-in tone generator. Also, the MCACC system incorporated into VSX-1124-K and Elite VSX-80 also includes Subwoofer EQ settings.
You would think that would be enough, but there is still more available on all five receivers, such as access to Internet Radio, iTunes, and Apple AirPlay functions, and access to media files stored on DLNA compatible PCs and media servers. Content stored on iPods, iPhones, and iPads can be accessed directly via connection to the front mounted USB inputs.
Also, in addition to the provided remote control, management and control compatibility is also available via iPhone/iPad and some Android devices using Pioneer’s iControlAV5 App. Additional custom control integration (Crestron, Control4, AMX, URC, RTI, Savant) provided on the Elite VSX-80.
However, as much as these receivers cram in, it is also important to note what they don’t provide (as is the trend on most newer home theater receivers), such as no S-Video connections, no analog 5.1/7.1 channel input/output connections, and no dedicated phono input.