Yamaha RX-Z7 AV-receiver

A long time player in this affray has been Yamaha, using the present RX-Z11 pulling against the most heavy of surround sound clouts for the business. This behemoth has spawned a son, the RX-Z7 under review here.

Smaller - a bit. Less expensive - nearly half the cost. The RX-Z7, nevertheless, is a serious AV receiver by the standards of anyone.


How to begin? There is not much the RX-Z7 has not got covered.

This also is a network receiver and contains a web browser interface that enables one to control the RX-Z7 using any PC or internet-enabled PDA (for example an Apple iPhone or iPod Touch) over the home network. An optional dock enables it to play fine with playlist info shown onscreen via Yamaha's GUI, with iPods.

Different sources can not run to two screens, yet, only a single source.

Scaling over HDMI promises to upconvert video.

I really could carry on, but space does not permit, so let us find out the RX-Z7 performs.


Right in the get go, it is clear this is an AV receiver with bags of control power and capacity to dish out the dynamics. Leaping right to the activity, it was time for many things that is loud. The scene where the Tripod appears from beneath the road in Spielberg's War of the Worlds is among the very bass- dynamically and crunching challenging you will discover. Seldom have I experienced this picture sequence with as much 'slam-you-in-the torso' impact and strength as this Yamaha serves up. It is got so much headroom also, and drives a 7.1 channel speaker setup with complete ease. Together with the volume cranked I did find the Yamaha runs quite warm, therefore I would not be putting at it or putting other equipment on top - it wants room to ventilate.

Far from being no brains and all brute, the RX-Z7 is also highly tactile, direction and setting effects across the area with precision that is nearly unnerving. The BD of Sweeney Todd illustrates this good, creating a suitably dreary sonic disposition to match the onscreen setting. When the cast regularly break into song, the Yamaha makes the distinct characters that are sung seem natural, flawlessly set inside an extremely comprehensive soundstage and wholesome.

Hit on the 'Pure Direct' button as well as the RX-Z7 transforms into a more than adequate two channel amplifier for music; there is control and that same bass guitar power, having an extended and simple treble that does not ever seem driven or too harsh. Also to help tidy up the sounds out of your iPod or music library that is networked, there is the Compressed Music Enhancer technology of Yamaha.

And, as is customary with all Yamahas, there are considerable (38 total, with 22 theater modes) DSPs to keep the most serious button-pusher content, in case you see repeating the acoustic guitars of a Munich church, by way of example.


Far from just being a stripped down variant of the RX-Z11, that is a great top end AV receiver in its own right. At around $4,000, it is still a fair amount of outlay, but with its ability as a film and, performer music plus superb system flexibility and connectivity, the RX-Z7 makes an outstanding all round AV option.

Yamaha RX-Z7 AV-receiver photo