Receivers & Amplifiers
The heart of your sound or theater system. Power up your audio capabilities with the right amplifier and receiver that pairs with your other components too.
An AV receiver is an audio/video receiver typically with 5 to 9 channels and one to two subwoofer channels. Which means it has either 6 to 11 speaker outputs. An AV receiver can also be used as an ordinary stereo receiver. Besides being a part of a theater system it can be used for other things too. With video connectivity, the purpose is to configure devices such as digital cameras, Blu-ray, DVD players, Direct TV, Cable TV, etc. to the inputs of an AV receiver. Then to select a source to route to a TV or monitor and have sound output for.
A stereo receiver has typically referred to a unit with an integrated tuner, preamplifier and a power amplifier. This 2-channel amp is primarily used for stereo music listening. CDs, turntables, and iPods are the most listened to sources. These can also be used to power whole house audio systems or second or third zones off of an a/v receiver.
AV receivers are designed for multi-channel sound. There are 5.1, 6.1, 7.1, 9.2 and 11.2 channel output systems, respectively five, six, seven or nine separate speakers and a subwoofer or dual subwoofers.
Simulated surround sound can be applied to the sound of 2-channel formats like cds, old lps etc. AV receivers have various surround processing effects that convert two-channels into a multichannel surround simulation. However since any realistic results can not be made with this fixed setting, this feature should be regarded as an audio effect rather than simulation of surround sound, the effect will usually be equally on all the time, making it overdone. Another name which is also used, is home theater receiver. Since audio/video can be more than just "home theater", as the examples mentioned above, the name AV receiver tells that it also handles more than just signals from a DVD.