Pioneer has announced a six-strong VSX series of AV receivers for 2013, ranging in price from £200 to £550 and led by the top-of-the-range Pioneer VSX-1123.
The new Pioneer receivers claim improved smartphone integration, a host of improvements over the 2012 AV receiver range and of course top quality sound performance.
There are six models in total: the entry-level Pioneer VSX-323 (£200), the VSX-423 (£250), VSX-528 (£300), VSX-828 (£350), VSX-923 (£450) and the VSX-1123 (£550). All six come with a June 2013 release date.
The VSX range incorporates a number of features previously only seen on Pioneer's SC models, including compatibility with Android and iOS versions of the Pioneer ControlApp and iControlAV2013 apps. There's also Pioneer AVNavigator app, which offers set-up guides for users.
The top two models, the 7.2-channel VSX-1123 and VSX-923, offer eight HDMI inputs and 4K Ultra HD video upscaling, while the '1123 supports a front USB input for Direct Streaming Digital (DSD) format music files.
Both also offer HDZone, a Zone 2 HDMI out for routing either the same signal as the main zone or a separate source to a second zone via HDMI.
These top two models, and the 7.1-channel VSX-828 and 5.1-channel VSX-528, have an MHL 2.0 input for playing audio and video from smartphones and tablets.
Pioneer VSX AV receivers: Apple and Android integration
The top three models allow music playback from all versions of iPad and are able to display album art and metadata when connected to a TV or monitor. The receivers will also charge connected iPhone, iPad and iPod devices via corresponding cables, including the new Lightning or 30-pin cable.
All these four models are also Apple AirPlay, DLNA and HTC Connect compatible for wireless media streaming. Higher resolution files are also now supported for network or USB playback, with Apple Lossless, AIFF, FLAC and WAV file formats now present on the spec sheet, as well as gapless playback.
The 5.1-channel VSX-423 and VSX-323 AV receivers complete the range. All six models have 4K passthrough, while all six can play music from Apple devices in some form or other though only the top four models have Apple AirPlay for wireless streaming.
All the new Pioneer VSX receivers also have a new ECO Mode that Pioneer claims allows you to manage and reduce power consumption while still maintaining audio quality.
The ECO Working and ECO Stand-by modes, plus other settings, can be controlled from the remote control, the ECO Manager on the iControlAV2013 app, or the front panel of the receiver itself.
All six new Pioneer VSX AV receivers are scheduled for release from June 2013.
MORE: Pioneer VSX-922 review
Written by Joe Cox