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Sony Electronics has been on a Hi-Resolution Audio kick, making the technology a major part of its 2014 product campaign. They aren’t alone in their revitalized love for high quality musical fidelity, with many other industry players highlighting Hi-Res playback features on their AV Receivers and pushing pricey DAC equipment. It’s not all that surprising, really, as the industry is constantly looking to exploit untapped features to make new equipment enticing for buyers. This all goes without mentioning that the average music listener has been on a decade-long binge of Low-Res music downloads. Naturally, this means the industry should be ready to pull in the opposite direction, reintroducing everyone to the best sound possible.

"Sony's goal is to make the benefits of Hi-Res Audio accessible to every music lover," said Jeff Hiatt, director of home audio at Sony Electronics. "We're focused on providing a variety of Hi-Res solutions that fit every lifestyle need. Our latest additions are specifically developed to bring Hi-Res excitement to a broader audience."

Recently, Sony welcomed four new affordable AV Receivers to its electronics family, led by the STR-DN1050 and STR-DN850 AVRs. Priced at $599 MSRP and $499 (respectively) these full featured 4K ready, 7.2 channel, receivers read well on paper with features that scream ‘bang for the buck.’ Bolstered by beefy power sections (165 Watts per channel for the DN1050 and 150W for the DN850), the DN1050 brings a second zone to the table, accessible through a dedicated HDMI output, IR repeaters, and line-level audio connectivity. DN1050 zone two users can independently access sources connected to the AVR, including media playing through wireless services and Bluetooth devices.

Both receivers offer relatively abundant connectivity options, led by the DN1050 which features six HDMI inputs (two with MHL support) and 3 HDMI outputs (one dedicated to zone two) and a single USB input. Meanwhile, the DN850 has five HDMI inputs (one MHL compatible) and a single USB input.

The STR-DH750 ($349) and STR-DH550 ($279) are slightly paired down versions of their more potent siblings. The DH750 is a 7.2 channel receiver that features a robust amount of power (145W), while the DH550 is only 5.2 channels (145W). The DH750 maintains decent connectivity options with 4 HDMI inputs and a single USB port. Surprisingly, it also features 4K and 3D pass-through, which is a bonus for a model at its price point.

Expect all models to decode Dolby True HD and DTS-MA Blu-ray codecs, along with the ability to connect with Android and iOS devices. They also ship with Sony’s on-board proprietary room correction software (Digital Cinema Auto Calibration, or D.C.A.C) and a supplied calibration microphone.

All four receivers became available as of May 1st, 2014.

Image Credit: Sony Electronics
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