This receiver provided a very clean signal via the direct 5.1 analog audio inputs from both HD-DVD/Blu-ray disc sources, in addition to the Blu-ray/HD-DVD HDMI and Digtial Optical/Coaxial audio connection options.
The RX-V2700 showed no signs of strain during very dynamic audio tracks and delivered a sustained output over long periods of time without eliciting listening fatigue.
In addition, another aspect of the RX-V2700 was its multi-zone flexibility. Running the receiver in the 5.1 channel mode for the main room and using the two spare channels (normally devoted to the surround back speakers), and using the provided second zone remote control, I was easily able to run two separate systems.
With the setup that utilized both the Main Zone and Zone 2, I was able to access DVD/Blu-ray/HD-DVD in 5.1 channels and easily access XM or Internet Radio or CDs in the two channel Zone 2 setup in another room using the RX-V2700 as the main control for both sources. Also, I could run the same music source in both rooms simultaneously, one using the 5.1 channel configuration and second using the 2 channel configuration.
The 2700 has the option of running the second and/or third zones using either its own internal amplifiers or using separate external amplifiers (via Zone 2 and/or Zone 3 preamp output). Specific details on second and third zone setup options are outlined in the RX-V2700 user manual.
Using the Silicon Optix HQV Benchmark DVD as a reference, the internal scaler of the 2700 does a good job, in relation to other receivers with built-in scalers, but it does not perform as well as a good upscaling DVD player, or a dedicated external video scaler. However, the fact that you don't need to use several types of video connections on one video display is a great convenience.
Although upconversion of video inputs signals to HDMI is limited to 1080i, the RX-V2700 can pass a native 1080p source through to a 1080p television or monitor. The image on a Westinghouse LVM-37w3 1080p monitor showed no visible difference, whether the signal came directly from one of the 1080p source players or was routed through the RX-V2700 before reaching the monitor.
What I Liked About the RX-V2700
1. Sound quality excellent in both stereo and surround modes.
2. Analog to HDMI Video signal conversion and Video Upscaling.
3. Incorporation of an XM-Satellite Radio and iPod Control.
4. Extensive speaker setup and adjustment options. The 2700 offers both automatic and manual speaker setup as well as provisions for connection and setup of 2nd or 3rd Zone speaker systems.
5. Well designed front panel controls. If you have misplaced or lost either remote, you can still access the the main functions of the receiver using the front panel controls, hidden behind a flip-down door.
7. Separate Remote Control provided for Second and Third Zone operation. Having the second remote is very convenient as it only has the functions needed to access sources for the second or third zone systems.
What I Didn't Like About the RX-V2700
1. Heavy - Use caution when lifting or moving.
2. Only one Subwoofer output. Alhtough having only one subwoofer output is standard, it would be very convenient, especially in a receiver in this price class, to include a second subwoofer line output.
3. No Sirius Satellite Radio connectivity. XM and Internet Radio is a great convenience, but adding Sirius would be a real bonus for those subscribers.
4. No front mounted HDMI or Component Video Inputs. Alhough there is limited space on the front panel, it would be great to add component and/or HDMI connections to accommodate game systems and high-definition camcorders.
5. Speaker connections too close together. This is my pet-peeve with Yamaha Receivers. When using bare-wire end speaker cables, it is sometimes difficult to get the lead into the speaker terminals; another 1/32 or 1/16-inch distance between terminals would help.
6. Main remote control not intuitive. All remotes have a little learing curve, however, I found the buttons and functions on the main 2700 remote to be very small and not very well located. However, the Zone 2/3 remote was easy to use.
Several additional innovative features of the RX-V2700 are the inclusion XM-Satellite Radio connectivity, (paid subscription required), built-in networking and internet radio reception capability, and both speaker connections or preamp outputs (your choice) provided for second and/or third zone operation.
One of the indicators of a good receiver is the ability to perform well in both stereo and surround modes. I found the audio quality of the 2700 in both stereo and surround modes to be very good, making it acceptable for both extensive music listening as well as for home theater use.
I also found the analog to digital video conversion and upscaling functions worked very well. This simplifies connection of older components to today's digital televisions.
However, one important note is that the RX-V2700 has a lot of setup and connection options, which makes reading the user manual a must before inegrating it with the rest of your home theater system components.
The RX-V2700 packs in a lot of features and delivers great performance in its price class. If you are looking for a home theater receiver that can function as a complete centerpiece for your home theater system, consider the RX-V2700 as a possible choice. I give it 4.5 Stars out of 5.