Pioneer VSX-2021 AV-receiver

Pioneer's VSX-2021 is a receiver. Even setup navigator and the user guide are completely interactive iPad Programs. Ok, this GBP800 receiver may be controlled with a unique remote control and also you may blow off the Apple-centric attributes, but that would be like never using the iDrive and purchasing a BMW. Even those VSX-2021 buyers having a penchant for Android apparatus (there's a program for this platform, also) might find themselves contemplating an iPad because of its Pioneer-centric attributes alone.

The most recent iControl AV2 Program adds a raft alongside the genuinely inspired, tilt- stunning animated App UI from the very first version and sensitive degree alterations.

Each user cues tunes up from their apparatus to form a giant multi-party playlist, which can be concurrently shown on every device's display. Among my buddies, I reckon this would cause finish bunfight by track three.

But the best widget goes to the Finger EQ attribute of iControlAV. Excellent pleasure. Sensibly, the App also affords Zone 3 and Zone 2 control, videos describing various attributes (see these on the outstanding YouTube route of Pioneer) as well as a readout of exact sound and video signal information. While all this operates wonderfully on an iPhone/iPod, the committed iPad variation is not even worse. It makes you realise AMX and Crestron touchscreens have been popular. And, honestly, an adequate Program is more affordable and better than committed controls.

Apple sauce the VSX-2021 is quite a solidly designated receiver and nicely paced with competitors. The THX Select2 badge is displayed near the highest part of the attributes list of Pioneer, followed from the category-leading seven dual coincident HDMI output signals and HDMI input signals.

For EQ obligations you get the most recent version of the MCACC room of Pioneer EQ system. Alongside the auto- vehicle and set up calibration characteristics, deep, deep,deep in the state-of-the-art EQ Professional menus you'll find sound controls of sophistication that is mind boggling.

It's possible for you to alter the EQ time placement to best correct for room nodes that will run the calibration with distinct output signal biases and develop over a brief period. The EQ emphasis could be put on pure frequency response, period features, multi-point standing wave control or balance the environment loudspeakers to coincide with the front primary pair. Rather who keeps their head for the interest of complete truth, although that within a film is a puzzle if you ask me you can not defeat Pioneer's MCACC.

Which brings me to the general bundle and just what a huge old creature the VSX-2021 is. It's deep and tall in prominence although I don't have any notion why. Inside there's enough airspace to pilot a Sopwith Camel and a chunky transformer, several PCBs, a somewhat streamlined stand of cooling fins. The chassis that is largely empty does nothing or the construct quality. The case is quite tinny, the leading flap feels like it is going to fall off if your kid gets within 10 speeds, when you hook up somewhat chunky cables as well as the speaker terminals bend.

Having said that, the VSX-2021 does seem quite exuberant. It's black, slick and smooth using the greatest penises I've seen outside a government summit. The design is pure Pioneer, but there's a synergy that is cosmetic also, in case you by chance be in possession of a black iPad and squint somewhat. Perhaps because Pioneer expects one to control the VSX-2021 using a mobile Apple apparatus, the provided remote control is trousers. This is a tiny apparatus with buttons bijou I could hit my sausage thumb against nine at once. On the plus side, it's pretty rational because it offers a reddish backlight for fumbling around in the dark and emulates conventional remotes. Should you already possess iPad an iPhone or iPod Touch you should leave the remote that is normal in the box - you will not even want it for setup.

The MCACC of pioneer really isn't the fastest vehicle setup system these days but it's not casual, has a progress bar and describes what it's up to each step along the way. There are memory slots for settings and distinct setup balances, and the system handholds you through the deeper characteristics nicely. The guide is in fact a totally interactive software provided on PC DVD Rom and can also be accessible as an iPad Program... you will not be shocked to learn. This runs a step by step connectivity guide on using the MCACC set up, followed by advice.

Then the AVNavigator gets extremely cool. It lets you configure your connectivity, the MCACC attributes and settings on iPad or a PC after which download them to the AVR. Post set up, the EQ data graphs are shown in AVNavigator software with on-going capability to tweak and fix. And, even more clever still, the guide that is interactional responds to button presses the receiver. Therefore, if you press on Phase Control, for instance, AVNavigator instantly jumps to that particular page in the guide. Should you maintain the application running on PC or your iPad, Pioneer mechanically loads updates and info on firmware upgrades. Working on a PC, AVNavigator is very clever; on an iPad it's the pattern not only from Smart TVs, but likely all linked electronic goods also, for all future AVR user guides at the same time. It's not that bad.

And eventually, you could get around to playing with a film, which can be hugely rewarding. Running using total and the MCACC EQ -group phase control on, the VSX-2021 is clear, blessed with a soundstage that is extremely wide and clean. The balance is among special effects, truth and detail etched to the area. Bass Guitar is closely restrained with certainly no bloat or overhang and breathless slam. Other AVRs may seem more weighty, but the breathy-clarity the Pioneer shows right through the spectrum is currently showing - not unlike hifi that is extremely great in fact.

Switch off MCACC and the phase control and you get a congested and somewhat cloying sound that's far from perfect. The entire front soundstage is squished together and a poor malaise is that only will not budge regardless of how many times you change the loudspeakers approximately. Certainly the 2021 is constructed in the bottom up with MCACC in head and it's crucial to put it to use. The dialogue is absolutely formulated and projected nicely away to the area with accents and intonations copied. It's as close as AVRs get, being good at Pioneer all.

The VSX-2021 does and establishes new standards of functional flexibility thus backed up with spectacular audio engineering. MCACC the most recent is nothing short of a revelation to get a sub-GBP1,000 receiver, and works wonders on the Pioneer's somewhat lacklustre un-EQ'd seem in my room. Quality is built by the fairly lightweight the VSX-2021 offers category-leading features, functionality and flexibility. Actually, it's really in a category of its own.

Pioneer VSX-2021 AV-receiver photo