The Bottom Line
- Sound quality excellent in both stereo and surround modes.
- On board decoding of Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio.
- Incorporation of both Bluetooth and iPod connectivity.
- Two Subwoofer outputs.
- Multi-zone operation included.
- Video upscaling quality was disappointing.
- Only one connection provided for both iPod and Bluetooth docking stations.
- Needs more HDMI inputs.
- Speaker connection terminals too close together.
- External build quality not as good as previous RX-V861 model it replaces.
- 7.2 channel home theater receiver delivering 105 Watts into each of 7 channels at .06% THD. Two Subwoofer line outputs.
- Audio Decoding: Dolby Digital Plus and TrueHD, DTS-HD, Dolby Digital 5.1/EX/Prologic IIx, DTS 5.1/ES, 96/24, Neo:6, SRS CSII.
- 8 additional input jacks for discrete multi-channel input. Can be used for accessing SACD, DVD-Audio, or external decoder.
- 8 Channel Preamp Outputs. Second zone preamp outputs. Silent Cinema headphone output.
- Audio inputs: 6 Stereo Analog, 4 Digital Optical, 2 Digital Coaxial. 1 Digital Optical Audio output.
- Video Inputs: 3 HDMI, 3 Component, 6 S-video, 6 Composite. One set of AV inputs mounted on front panel.
- Analog to HDMI video conversion (480i to 480p) and upscaling from 480p to 1080p via HDMI. HDMI pass-through of 1080p signals.
- YPAO automatic speaker setup function. SCENE function for preset or customized listening and viewing modes.
- XM/Sirius Satellite Radio Connectivity. XM Neural and XM-HD Surround decoding. 40 Preset AM/FM Tuner with HD Radio access.
- Wireless remote and onscreen menu system. iPod and Bluetooth connectivity and control via optional docking station.
Guide Review - Yamaha RX-V863 7.2 Channel Home Theater Receiver with HDMI - Short Review
Second Zone use is also available via pre-outs, which allow the user to supply either a simultaneous or second source to another room (additional amplifier required) or using only 5.1 channels in the main room, but using the 6th and 7th channel amplifiers of the 863 to power a second zone. Other audio-related features, such as XM/Sirius, iPOD, and Bluetooth connectivity, built-in HD Radio tuner, and YPAO auto-speaker setup balance out the audio flexibility of this receiver.
I found the audio quality of the RX-V863, from audio-only CDs, DVD-Audio Discs, SACDs, and Blu-ray disc soundtracks, was excellent, making it more than suitable for both extensive music listening as well as for home theater use.
I also found that the YPAO auto-speaker setup feature actually worked well, including the center channel level, which is usually the hardest to get right with DVD and Blu-ray source material.
The RX-V863 also offers consideration for both audio and video. This definitely makes the RX-V863 a flexible home theater receiver. The image quality from pass-through 1080p HD sources is very consistent. However, the video conversion and upscaling of analog video sources, was below average, as revealed by the Silicon Optix HQV Benchmark DVD. See some test result examples. This receiver needs improvement in this area.
If you are basing your purchase decision on video upscaling needs, this may not be the receiver for you. However, The RX-V863 is a very flexible receiver that really delivers the goods in terms of audio performance, features, and connectivity options. I give it 4.0 Stars out of 5.