Yamaha RX-V500D - First Impressions
Yamaha's RX-V500D is their first (and hopefully not their last) DAB-capable receiver and home cinema amplifer. With 5 HDMI and 2 Optical inputs along with a selection of AV phono and digtal cable connections, this unit can be configured to mix any HDMI input with a desired AV sound source under 4 SCENE button as required. Simply pressing a SCENE button will power up the unit, select the desired source and predefined surround sound processing. This is ideal for the wife. I have configured the buttons for TV, SKY, DVD and Radio but I could equally have included my CD or a Blu-ray player. The single HDMI output is feed to the TV ideally through an ARC-enabled HDMI port allowing you can control the relevant amplifier source and volume (see my separate post on setting this up).
Connecting a combined DAB/FM aerial feed to the rear F connector, provides a beautifully clear radio source in both DAB and FM. The DAB reception is particularly impressive as I have a single DAB dipole aerial mounted on my TV aerial mast to pick up Classic FM from 77km away! Both DAB and FM stations can be stored in up to 20 presets. A RJ45 port is provided for connecting to the home network and internet allowing Net Radio channels to be call up; some will wish a wireless connection (available separately) but I prefer a direct wired connection.
Yamaha provide very functional iPod and iPhone Apps for controlling the RX-V500D and the inclusion of AIRPLAY allows you to output iTunes or iPlayer Radio over the sound system which sounds superb. That said, sound quality is excellent (in my humble opinion) with all the sources I have tried so far: 'Olympus has Fallen' on Sky HD or Pink Floyds' Pulse on DVD.
Do I have any issues with the RX-V500D? A few. The single HDMI output is a little limiting but not the end of the world. Setting up the various sources can be a little confusing (hence my previously mentioned post). And selecting between DAB and FM presets is a little slow, as each must tune in before you can move to the next (it is much quicker with the iPhone/iPad App).
Overall, I am delighted with the unit that has replaced my 14 year old Yamaha RX-V795RDS receiver.