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Pioneer AV Receivers: Comparing the Elite vs VSX Models

Updated: September 21, 2020

Pioneer has been making AV products for many years. Although not as popular as some brands, Pioneer AV receivers are high-quality and well worth considering if you are in the market for a receiver.

There are two broad categories of receiver - the high-end Elite Series and the budget VSX Series. However, just to confuse you, some of the Elite receivers also use the VSX tag.

The Elite VSX models are labeled VSX-LXxxx, and the non-Elite VSX models are VSX-xxx (without the LX).

The following summarises the different ranges:

  • Elite SC Series: this is top-of-the-range for audiophiles with class D³ amplifiers.
  • Elite VSX Series: high-end AV receivers at a slightly lower price point.
  • VSX Series: not part of the Elite series. Slightly fewer features and aimed at the lower-end of the market.

I must admit, I do find their naming conventions slightly confusing. Maybe it's just my brain! However, don't let it put you off considering a Pioneer receiver.

These receivers are grouped by their year of release and then listed in order of value (using the Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price as a guide).

You will often find the MSRP undercut by many retailers, but it is still a useful guide as to the quality of each product.

The specifications are from the US models. This may vary slightly around the world, but they should be broadly similar.

If you're not sure what some of the technical terms mean, you may find my buying guide to the best AV receivers useful. It goes into more detail about which features are useful - and what they do.

Pioneer AV Receivers: Comparing the Elite vs VSX Models - front view of two amplifiers


Pioneer Elite SC Series

The Elite SC Series of AV receivers are the high-end audiophile range from Pioneer. These receivers use Pioneer's D³ amplifier technology and are aimed at sound purists.

One of the main advantages of a Class D amplifier is that it uses less power - and doesn't get as hot - as a traditional Class A/B amp. This may be reason enough for you to consider one of these.

2019

Pioneer Elite SC-LX904 11.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $2999

Pioneer Elite SC-LX904 11.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX904 11.2-Ch AV Receiver Rear ViewImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX904 AV Receiver Features
Channels 11.2
Dolby Atmos 7.2.4
HDMI In / Out 6+1/3 (eARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone 3 (2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone B (2-ch audio line out)
Pre Out / Line Out 11.2-Ch / Zone 2 & Zone B (2-Ch) & Zone 3 (2-Ch)
Power (W)* 140
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.3 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / Bluetooth / Airplay 2 / Chromecast / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect / Google Assistant / Amazon Alexa
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Pro Auto Room Tuning - Full Band Phase Control, Precision Distance, Subwoofer EQ, 9-Point Standing Wave Control
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/2-ch & 5.1-ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization Technology, DTS Neural:X, IMAX Enhanced
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 17-5/16 in (435 x 185 x 440 mm)
Weight (lbs) 40.8
* 8 Ohms, 1 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2019

Pioneer Elite SC-LX704 9.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $1599

Pioneer Elite SC-LX704 9.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX704 9.2-Ch AV Receiver Rear ViewImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX704 AV Receiver Features
Channels 9.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 / 7.2.2 (Support for 7.2.4)
HDMI In / Out 6+1/3 (eARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone 3 (2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone B (2-ch audio line out)
Pre Out / Line Out 11.2-Ch / Zone 2 & Zone B (2-Ch) & Zone 3 (2-Ch)
Power (W)* 135
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.3 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / Bluetooth / Airplay 2 / Chromecast / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect / Google Assistant / Amazon Alexa
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Pro Auto Room Tuning - Full Band Phase Control, Precision Distance, Subwoofer EQ, 9-Point Standing Wave Control
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/2-ch & 5.1-ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization Technology, DTS Neural:X, IMAX Enhanced
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 17-5/16 in (435 x 185 x 440 mm)
Weight (lbs) 40.8
* 8 Ohms, 1 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2017

Pioneer Elite SC-LX502 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $999

Pioneer Elite SC-LX502 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX502 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & powered 2-ch audio)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone 2 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 120
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 15-9/16 in (435 x 185 x 395 mm)
Weight (lbs) 26.2
* 8 Ohms, 1 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven

2016

Pioneer Elite SC-LX901 11.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $3000

Pioneer Elite SC-LX901 11.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX901 AV Receiver Features
Channels 11.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 / 7.2.4
HDMI In / Out 7+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone 3 (2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out 11.2ch / Zone 2 (2-ch) & Zone 3 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 140
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Pro Auto Room Tuning - Full Band Phase Control, Precision Distance, Subwoofer EQ (4 Band)
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 17-1/3 in (435 x 185 x 441 mm)
Weight (lbs) 39.7
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2016

Pioneer Elite SC-LX801 9.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $2000

Pioneer Elite SC-LX801 9.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX801 AV Receiver Features
Channels 9.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 / 7.2.2
HDMI In / Out 7+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone 3 (2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out 11.2ch / Zone 2 (2-ch) & Zone 3 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 140
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Pro Auto Room Tuning - Full Band Phase Control, Precision Distance, Subwoofer EQ (4 Band)
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 17-1/3 in (435 x 185 x 441 mm)
Weight (lbs) 39.5
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2016

Pioneer Elite SC-LX701 9.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $1600

Pioneer Elite SC-LX701 9.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX701 AV Receiver Features
Channels 9.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 / 7.2.2
HDMI In / Out 7+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone 3 (2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out 11.2ch / Zone 2 (2-ch) & Zone 3 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 135
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Pro Auto Room Tuning - Full Band Phase Control, Precision Distance, Subwoofer EQ (4 Band)
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 17-1/3 in (435 x 185 x 441 mm)
Weight (lbs) 33.1
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2016

Pioneer Elite SC-LX501 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $1000

Pioneer Elite SC-LX501 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite SC-LX501 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone 2 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 120
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / FlareConnect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ (4 Band)
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 15-9/16 in (435 x 185 x 395 mm)
Weight (lbs) 26
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

Pioneer Elite VSX Series

Like the SC Series, the Elite VSX Series of Pioneer AV receivers are still aimed at audiophiles and sound geeks. The main difference is that they don't have the D³ amplifiers of the SC range.

So, if you want a high-end Pioneer AV receiver, but aren't sold on the Class D amplification, then this is the place to go.

They come with a great sound and feature most of the modern features you would expect in a home theater receiver.

2019

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX504 9.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $999

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX504 9.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX504 9.2-Ch AV Receiver Rear ViewImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX504 AV Receiver Features
Channels 9.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 / 7.2.2 (Support for 7.2.4)
HDMI In / Out 6+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone 3 (2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone B (2-ch audio line out)
Pre Out / Line Out 9.2-Ch / Zone 2 & Zone B (2-Ch) & Zone 3 (2-Ch)
Power (W)* 120
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay 2 / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Auto Phase Control Plus, Subwoofer EQ, Multi-point Standing Wave Control
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/2-ch & 5.1-ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization Technology, DTS Neural:X, DTS Virtual:X, IMAX Enhanced
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 15-3/16 in (435 x 185 x 386 mm)
Weight (lbs) 28.7
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2019

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX304 9.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $799

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX304 9.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX304 9.2-Ch AV Receiver Rear ViewImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX304 AV Receiver Features
Channels 9.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 / 7.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone 3 (powered 2-ch audio) / Zone B (2-ch audio line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone 2 & Zone B (2-Ch)
Power (W)* 100
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay 2 / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Auto Phase Control Plus, Subwoofer EQ, Multi-point Standing Wave Control
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/2-ch & 5.1-ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization Technology, DTS Neural:X, DTS Virtual:X, IMAX Enhanced
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 14-9/16 in (434 x 173 x 370 mm)
Weight (lbs) 23.8
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2019

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX104 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

Features in the best AV receivers under $500

MSRP: $499

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX104 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX104 7.2-Ch AV Receiver Rear ViewImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX104 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI) / Zone B (2-ch audio line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone B (2-Ch)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay 2 / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/2-ch & 5.1-ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization Technology, DTS Neural:X, DTS Virtual:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 14-9/16 in (434 x 173 x 370 mm)
Weight (lbs) 20.7
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2018

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX503 9.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $999

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX503 9.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX503 AV Receiver Features
Channels 9.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 / 7.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI & 2-ch audio - powered or line out) / Zone 3 (2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out 9.2 / Zone 2 (2-ch) & Zone 3 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 120
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ, Multi-point Standing Wave Control
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (5.6, 2.8 MHz/2 ch, 2.8 MHz/5.1 ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 7-5/16 x 15-3/16 in (435 x 185 x 386 mm)
Weight (lbs) 28.7
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2018

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX303 9.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $799

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX303 9.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX303 AV Receiver Features
Channels 9.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.4 / 7.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone 2 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 120
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ, Multi-point Standing Wave Control
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (5.6, 2.8 MHz/2 ch, 2.8 MHz/5.1 ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 14-9/16 in (434 x 173 x 370 mm)
Weight (lbs) 23.8
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2018

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX103 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $499

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX103 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX103 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6/1 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone 2 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (5.6, 2.8 MHz/2 ch, 2.8 MHz/5.1 ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 14-9/16 in (434 x 173 x 370 mm)
Weight (lbs) 20.7
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2017

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX302 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $799

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX302 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX302 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6+1/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone 2 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 100
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 14-9/16 in (434 x 173 x 370 mm)
Weight (lbs) 20.7
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2017

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX102 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $599

Pioneer Elite VSX-LX102 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer Elite VSX-LX102 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 4/1 (ARC)
Zones None
Pre Out Subwoofer (x2)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 12-5/8 in (434 x 173 x 321 mm)
Weight (lbs) 19
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

Pioneer VSX Series

The VSX Series of Pioneer AV receivers are their budget models. If you don't want to break the bank, you can still get a solid receiver for your money that will serve you well.

As with all AV receivers, you just need to consider the features that you need, and then purchase the model that ticks all the boxes.

These might be budget receivers, but they offer many modern features like 4K support and Dolby Atmos. Just think about what you need in your room.

2019

Pioneer VSX-934 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $479

Pioneer VSX-934 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer VSX-934 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6/2 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (HDMI + 2-ch audio powered) / Zone B (2-ch audio line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone B (2-ch)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay 2 / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X, DTS Virtual:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 14-9/16 in (435 x 173 x 370.5 mm)
Weight (lbs) 20.7
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2019

Pioneer VSX-834 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $379

Pioneer VSX-834 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer VSX-834 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 4/1 (ARC)
Zones Zone B (2-ch audio line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone B (2-ch)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Bluetooth
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X, DTS Virtual:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 5-13/16 x 12-5/8 in (435 x 148 x 321 mm)
Weight (lbs) 17.6
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2019

Pioneer VSX-534 5.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $279

Pioneer VSX-534 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer VSX-534 AV Receiver Features
Channels 5.2
Dolby Atmos 3.2.2
HDMI In / Out 4/1 (ARC)
Zones Zone B (2-ch audio line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone B (2-ch)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Bluetooth
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X, DTS Virtual:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 5-13/16 x 12-5/8 in (435 x 148 x 321 mm)
Weight (lbs) 17.6
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2018

Pioneer VSX-933 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $479

Pioneer VSX-933 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer VSX-933 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 6/1 (ARC)
Zones Zone 2 (2-ch audio - powered or line out)
Pre Out / Line Out Subwoofer (x2) / Zone 2 (2-ch)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect / Sonos Connect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 14-9/16 in (435 x 173 x 370.5 mm)
Weight (lbs) 20.7
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2017

Pioneer VSX-932 7.2-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $579

Pioneer VSX-932 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer VSX-932 AV Receiver Features
Channels 7.2
Dolby Atmos 5.2.2
HDMI In / Out 4/1 (ARC)
Zones None
Pre Out Subwoofer (x2)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 12-5/8 in (435 x 173 x 320.5 mm)
Weight (lbs) 19.4
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2017

Pioneer VSX-832 5.1-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $479

Pioneer VSX-832 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer VSX-832 AV Receiver Features
Channels 5.1
Dolby Atmos 3.1.2
HDMI In / Out 4/1 (ARC)
Zones None
Pre Out Subwoofer (x2)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-13/16 x 12-5/8 in (435 x 173 x 320.5 mm)
Weight (lbs) 19
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2017

Pioneer VSX-532 5.1-Ch AV Receiver

MSRP: $379

Pioneer VSX-532 7.2-Ch AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer VSX-532 AV Receiver Features
Channels 5.1
Dolby Atmos None
HDMI In / Out 4/1 (ARC)
Zones None
Pre Out Subwoofer (x1)
Power (W)* 80
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 6 - 16
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10
Network / Wireless Bluetooth
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Automatic Crossover Detection
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, DTS, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Pro Logic II & DTS Neo:6
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 6-5/8 x 12-5/8 in (435 x 168 x 320.5 mm)
Weight (lbs) 17.6
* 8 Ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% THD, 2 Channels Driven FTC CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

2016

Pioneer VSX-S520 5.1-Ch Slim AV Receiver

MSRP: $399.99

Pioneer VSX-S520 5.1-Ch Slim AV ReceiverImage Credit: Pioneer
Pioneer VSX-S520 AV Receiver Features
Channels 5.1
Dolby Atmos 3.1.2
HDMI In / Out 4/1 (ARC)
Zones None
Pre Out Subwoofer (x1)
Power (W)* 50
Speaker Impedance (Ohms) 4 - 8
UHD / HDR Support 4K/60p, 4:4:4, HDCP2.2 / HDR10
Network / Wireless Ethernet / Wi-Fi / AirPlay / Bluetooth / Chromecast / Spotify Connect / DTS Play-Fi / FlareConnect
Auto Room Calibration MCACC Pro Auto Room Tuning - Phase Control, Subwoofer EQ (4 Band)
Selected Audio Decoders Dolby Digital, DD+, Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Atmos, DTS, DTS 96/24, DTS Express, DTS-HD HR Audio, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X, DSD Direct Playback via Network/USB (11.2, 5.6, 2.8 MHz/2ch), DSD Disc (SACD) Playback via HDMI (2.8 MHz/5.1ch, 2ch)
Selected Sound Modes: Post Decoding Dolby Surround, DTS Neural:X
Dimensions (W x H x D) 17-1/8 x 2-3/4 x 12-13/16 in (435 x 70 x 325 mm)
Weight (lbs) 8.8
* 4 Ohms, 1 kHz, 1% THD, 2 Channels Driven CLICK FOR LATEST PRICE

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About Home Cinema Guide

Paul started the Home Cinema Guide to help less-experienced users get the most out of today's audio-visual technology. He has worked as a sound, lighting and audio-visual engineer for around 20 years. At home, he has spent more time than is probably healthy installing, configuring, testing, de-rigging, fixing, tweaking, re-installing again (and sometimes using) various pieces of hi-fi and home cinema equipment.