Sony AV receivers provide a wide range of products to complete your surround sound system.
Their entry level models are a cost-effective way to get the basic features you need to connect all your AV equipment, while the flag ship products provide higher quality specifications for those who need the best performance.
The STR-DH and STR-DN models provide an excellent range of features that will suit most needs and budgets. However, if you require the highest audio performance with added networking and other advanced features, then you should consider the ES series.
Most of the models are available in both the US and UK, although there are some regional differences which are highlighted below. The exact specifications may also vary slightly between countries.
These Sony receivers are listed in approximate order of value (using the Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price as a guide) - starting with the entry level models and moving up to the flagship products.
The STR-DH510 is the entry level model for Sony AV receivers. It comes with 5.1 channels and is rated at 90W per channel.
There are three HDMI 1.4 inputs (and one out) and this receiver supports the new audio return channel which has been introduced as part of the HDMI 1.4 specification.
Also featured is standby pass-through which allows a signal through to your TV even when the receiver is switched off. The STR-DH510 will decode LPCM audio from your Blu-ray player and has a Digital Media Port connection for an optional device used to connect external equipment like iPod and Bluetooth devices.
The STR-DN610 AV receiver is only available in the UK (at the time of writing).
It is a budget version of the STR-DN1010 and features the modern matching design for Sony Blu-ray players.
With 7.1 channels at 100W per channel this model also has bi-amp support for advanced connection to your speakers.
The 3-in/1-out HDMI 1.4 connections allow for the audio return channel and also 3D video pass-through for those with compatible 3D equipment. It comes with a setup microphone for use with Sony's DCAC (Digital Cinema Auto Calibration) feature which allows for easy configuration of the sound in your room.
The Sony STR-DH710 is a model that appears to be only available in the US (at the time of writing).
It allows for the connection of 7.1 channels and is rated with a power output of 95W per channel.
Full decoding support for Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD-Master Audio is a useful feature included in this model.
There are 4 HDMI 1.4 inputs (and one HDMI output) and full support for 3D video and the audio return channel. This model also allows for 24p True Cinema pass-through which allows for a more stable image from players that can output at this rate.
The setup and configuration of your speakers is made easy with DCAC (Digital Cinema Auto Calibration), and you can also have wireless speaker connections with the optional S-AIR Speaker System.
The Sony STR-DH810 has 7.1 channels with a power rating of 100W per channel.
The main difference between this and the STR-DH710 is this increase in power output.
HDMI 1.4 connections (4-in/1-out) support 3D video and the audio return channel.
The DH-810 can decode most audio formats including the high-definition audio of Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio.
This model also allows for video upconversion from analog inputs to HDMI, which can allow for easier connections in your home system.
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.
The STR-DN1010 is an AV receiver that is designed to match the looks of Sony's Blu-ray players.
The modern styling means it will look great in your rack alongside a matching Blu-ray player.
This model has 4-in/1-out HDMI 1.4 connections with full support for the audio return channel and 3D video signals.
It is a 7.1 channel machine with a power rating of 100W per channel. The tuner is Sirius Satellite radio ready, and comes with 90 preset radio channels. This model also has a simple on-screen GUI which can make altering the settings of the receiver a bit easier.
The STR-DN2010 is the flagship model in this range. At the time of writing it was only available in the US and not the UK.
This model is built with the new sleek look to match Sony's range of Blu-ray players, and has 7.1 channels rated at 100W per channel.
The main difference between this and the STR-DN1010 is addition of a 4-port ethernet switcher which gives this model networking capabilities. It also has AMX/Crestron certification which indicates good support for remote control systems.
It also provides a more advanced GUI than the simple version that is included with the STR-DN1010.
At the time of writing, the STR-DA3600ES was only available in the UK.
This model provides 'elevated standard' audio due to a high grade power amplifier and superior build quality.
It is a 7.1 channel machine with a power rating of 100W per channel, and also has full 7.1 pre-outs for advanced connections to other amplifiers.
It provides full HDMI 1.4 support with 4-in and 1-out and will also decode all the major audio formats including DTS-HD Master Audio and Dolby TrueHD.
This machine allows for sending audio and video to a 2nd zone, plus it will send just audio to a 3rd zone - which is ideal if you need multi-room support. The STR-DA3600ES also has networking capabilities with a built-in 4-port ethernet hub and will also act as a DLNA network client for streaming media from a DLNA server.
Like the previous model, the Sony STR-DA5600ES was only available in the UK at the time of writing.
It has all the feature of the previous STR-DA3600ES, but comes with additional features to improve the specification.
Power output is increased to 120W per channel for those with bigger rooms (or who like it a bit louder!).
The HDMI 1.4 connections are increased to 6-in/2-out, which will allow this machine to output to two different sources without re-wiring your system.
It comes with gold-coated terminals to improve performance and an advanced GUI to assist the configuration of your system. This machine is also able to act as a DLNA network client and server.
It also comes with an advanced auto room calibration system called DCAC EX.