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Chapter 6. Selecting the Right Equipment > Selecting the Right Receiver

Selecting the Right Receiver

The home theater receiver brings all your sights and sounds together and this plays an integral role in your system. That’s why choosing the right receiver is most important. Receivers range in price from $200 to well over $5,000. There are many capable receivers on the market, and this section helps you distinguish features that are absolutely necessary from those that are fun but not essential.

Amplification and Features

The most important function of the receiver is its ability to amplify signals and reproduce sound. The receiver you purchase should be capable of producing acceptable volume levels without distorting the sound too much. Larger rooms need more amplification, but a good starting point is to find a receiver rated at 70 watts per channel over the entire spectrum (20 Hz–20,000 Hz) with less than .1% distortion. This information should be readily available, so be sure to ask the salesperson if you don’t see it. Alternatively, you can look up the manufacturer’s web page to inquire about the specifications of the receiver.


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