Trickle-down technology can be a consumer’s best friend—when it’s done right. And that certainly appears to be the case with the Yamaha R-N2000A network receiver. The unit sounded fantastic when the team at Yamaha matched it with a pair of muscular NS-2000A tower speakers at the 2023 AXPONA show.
For customers, one key advantage to choosing a legendary, global brand like Yamaha is that such manufacturers routinely offer an excellent price-to-performance profile by taking technology that first appeared in a flagship line and incorporating it into other products.
The 2.1-channel R-N2000A is compatible with lossless and high-resolution music sources, including streaming services, such as TIDAL, Qobuz, Amazon Music HD and Spotify. The 48.7-pound unit, delivering 120 watts per channel, is available in black or silver. Inside the chassis, the floating, balanced power amplifier and the symmetrical construction help ensure that the purity of the signal is maintained.
The illuminated level meters on the front of the chassis add a classic, old-school aesthetic. (They also serve as a reminder that listening is an active experience.)
“The approach we took with this product comes from our flagship 5000 series,” said Michael Hine, senior manager, product strategy at Yamaha. “We took the technology from that and brought it into this product. So, there’s some trickle-down [technology].”
Typically reserved for flagship components, the R-N2000A benefits from the technical proficiency of a toroidal transformer. Additionally, a 3-millimeter brass base sandwiched between the bottom of the transformer and the inner chassis banishes vibrations in the transformer, resulting in wider sonic dynamics and more realistic sound.
The ES9026PRO digital-to-analog converter [DAC], made by ESS Technologies, achieves highly accurate signal conversion through the balanced analog audio output and further refined current delivery for four-channel operation.
Like Yamaha’s flagship model, the R-N2000A utilizes the mechanical ground concept. The bolts of the feet are welded directly to the main chassis, and the concept is also embodied via the large heat sink, power transformer and block capacitors, also directly bolted to the chassis. This design eliminates vibration, resulting in authentic, expressive low-frequency response.
“The RN-2000A is a really interesting piece because it brings together traditional hi-fi sound, build quality and looks, but then we’ve injected it with a lot of cool digital and streaming technology,” Hine said. “You can have all of your streaming services through our MusicCast platform. It even supports multi-room audio with other MusicCast products that we’ve introduced. And it has HDMI ARC [Audio Return Channel]. So, you can hook it up to your TV and use it for your TV sound. It’s not an AV receiver—it doesn’t do all of the processing—but a lot of people just want a really amazing experience with their TV sound.”
Under the hood, the receiver is designed with perfectly symmetrical, folding-book construction. The power supply is positioned in the center, with the power amplifier blocks at both ends of the main unit. This creates ideal weight balance, and it suppresses adverse effects between channels. The result is exceptional channel separation.
As veteran audiophiles know, environmental factors can play a significant role in the sonic signature of a room. The proprietary Yamaha Parametric Room Acoustic Optimizer (YPAO) automatic calibration technique—which has been refined over decades of use in home theater products—has been optimized for the R-N2000A to deliver outstanding performance.
YPAO features precision EQ, which performs high-performance equalization with accuracy of up to 192 kHz / 64-bit audio resolution. YPAO R.S.C. (Reflected Sound Control) works in tandem to control the early reflection sounds, automatically adjusting and optimizing the sound for a specific room—while factoring in the speaker placement and the materials of the walls.
On the back of the unit are premium speaker terminals, cut directly from pure brass. They can be tightened by hand for a secure, reliable connection.
The NS-2000A is 3-way, bass-reflex type tower speaker. Inside the rear-ported cabinet are two 6.5-inch woofers, a 3.25-inch midrange driver and a 1.25-inch tweeter.
“Just like in the case of the RN-2000A, the speakers also have [technology] trickled down, here from our NS-5000 speakers,” Hine explained. “The drivers use a Zylon, hybrid type of material. And some of the acoustic technology that we use comes from the NS-5000 speakers as well.”
To achieve tonal balance, the NS-2000A speaker has a newly developed diaphragm made from a blend of materials, including Zylon and spruce. The cabinet was designed with vibration analysis technology that was developed through Yamaha’s building of musical instruments.
The patented R.S. (Resonance Suppression) Chamber suppresses unwanted resonance. Premium parts are used for the crossover circuitry, including audio capacitors made by Mundorf of Germany.
The R-N2000A receiver is available from authorized Yamaha retailers, including B&H, for $3,999.95. Additionally, B&H carries the NS-2000A tower speaker, $3,999.95 each (approximately $8,000 per pair).
We have not heard these products in our home, but they offered incredible sonics at AXPONA. If you are a fan of Yamaha, each of these products is definitely worth an audition. The appeal here is performance that is near top-of-the-line, but at a much more accessible price. For some customers, pairing the receiver and speakers in a system would be like finding an exquisite, affordable house in a neighborhood that’s filled with mansions.