Audiophiles will frequently go to any length to achieve the greatest possible sound. This applies to all types of media kids consume, including TV shows, movies, YouTube videos, and more. That is why you need the smallest audio receiver for your home.
There is no disputing that a small receiver can deliver excellent sound to your media room. They let you bring the excitement of the movies into your own house, and they may also be used to listen to music.
But how can you make a decision when there are so many options? We will explore some of the best smallest audio receivers in this article. If you are interested in these models, keep reading our Smallest Audio Receiver review for more information below.
Our Top Pick: Denon S650H AV Receiver
Features: This 5.2-channel gadget has a simple, elegant design with straight edges on the outside. The volume and input selector buttons, as well as the headphone, USB, and measuring microphone connections, are all located on the front panel.
The screen is fairly wide, and the subtitles are legible even from a distance. The HDMI port on the front panel is missing, which is a little disappointing. A 192 kHz/32-bit DAC module was installed in the amplifier.
In comparison to the number of numerous connections and inputs on the previously evaluated amps, the rear panel looks to be virtually barren. On the back panel, there are two analog RCA inputs, one Phono MM input, and two optical digital inputs.
Wireless connectivity such as Bluetooth, Wifi, and AirPlay2 are also supported. The device also has a LAN Ethernet connection, two analog subwoofer outputs, five HDMI inputs, and one HDMI output, two composite video inputs and outputs, and speaker connections.
So, the good news is that everything related to this receiver works wonderfully once you install it. The tiny mic setup for assessing speakers and location, as well as the receiver’s own setup program is fantastic.
It appears that manufacturers have been working a little bit more on making it much easier to manage other devices. As a result, your TV and remote will be able to detect and control the Denon right away, as well as do all of the different routing wizardries.
It has a cohesive stage picture as well as a nice, expansive, and airy sound. Do not purchase Denon’s smallest receiver if you want more powerful bass and transparent, crystal-clear audio sounds and can afford to pick from a more costly category.
Runner Up: Yamaha WXA-50 MusicCast Wireless Streaming Amplifier
Features: The WXA-50 has a strong metal body with an aluminum top and is thin and compact enough to fit almost anywhere. High-performance components and sophisticated circuitry offer strong, sonically pure amplification behind the hood.
Connect this stereo amp to a pair of your favorite speakers, then utilize your current Wi-Fi network and also provide all of your music through a simple app. For cordless multi-room audio playback, connect more MusicCast speakers, soundbars, or receivers. It is ideal for use with in-ceiling and patio loudspeakers.
Before you may use the WXA-50, you must first connect it to your network. If you are using Ethernet, simply plug it in; if you are using Wi-Fi, follow the simple setup instructions in the MusicCast app on your smartphone (iOS or Android).
You can quickly connect WXA-50 to the Wi-Fi network using the 2.4GHz connection provided by the amp. You will also need to connect your speakers and, if desired, a subwoofer.
The amplifier can be controlled fully through the MusicCast app, but it also comes with a tiny remote control. It is our personal preference but a larger, more rugged type would have been preferable.
The WXA-50 is small, measuring 215 x 52 x 251mm, yet it fits on a 1U rack and may be simply placed anywhere. The WXA-50 has a heavy metal casing that gives it a comforting aura of quality.
The supplied stands may also be used to install it vertically. We like how simple the design is, with only three control buttons (power, input choice, and play/pause), status lights, and a volume slider on the front of the amp.
Best for Budget: YAMAHA R-S202BL Stereo Receiver
Features: Yamaha’s 125-year music legacy is packed in the R-S202 to recreate music as it would be heard live. Bluetooth connection makes it simple to listen to music that is now being streamed.
This receiver was designed with maximum power and the lowest interference in mind. For peak power delivery, the power transformer was placed near the amp circuit. The signal ground and the power supply ground are connected at one location.
It results in a better signal-to-noise ratio. Less is more in this case. The brushed metal finish provides an understated luxury feel that will last for years in both appearance and function.
Yamaha built this amplifier with the same care as any other more expensive component. The weight of the volume dial and the gleam of the brushed aluminum fascia indicate that this was not thrown together to appeal to the masses.
Yamaha has incorporated two sets of speaker connections, allowing the R-S202D to power two different systems. However, these will only work with bare wire. You will not have to spend money on banana plugs or similar speaker cable terminations, which saves money on production costs. However, you will be limited to thinner cables.
The Yamaha R-S202BL specifications are excellent for the price range; the price-to-quality ratio is maintained. The receiver has an amplifier and operates in two-channel mode with a total output power of 100W per channel.
The frequency range of the Yamaha R-S202BL is good, ranging from 10 to 100 000 Hz (/- 3 dB). The receiver’s discrete output stages use complementary pairs of Sanken transistors and operate in the A/B class.
For peak power delivery, the power transformer was placed near the amp circuit. The signal ground and the power supply ground are connected at one location.
How to choose the best smallest audio receiver?
Each of the receivers reviewed above has its own set of characteristics, indicating that any device will only be suitable for a limited number of configurations and cannot be utilized universally.
However, your ultimate decision will be based on your particular tastes and requirements. When it comes to small AV receivers, there are certain restrictions to consider.
Some tiny home theater receivers, for example, will offer a range of functions but may lack functionality found in other models. Simply said, finding a small-footprint AV receiver with all of the required capabilities in a single box is difficult.
We made it a point to choose the four best compact versions that were compatible with state-of-the-art 4K Ultra HD technology and supported the most common HDMI interfaces when screening tiny receivers for this evaluation.
We made sure to choose budget-friendly tiny receiver versions that delivered on performance. From the ones we have examined, you will be able to pick a suitable compact form factor receiver.
What to look for when buying the smallest audio receiver?
In a little 5.1 receiver, what should I look for? This is the question that you probably ask yourself. A high-quality tv is an essential component of any home theater. But it is not the only consideration.
5.1 receivers are useful in this situation. It might make all the difference if you have a high-quality small receiver. It can significantly increase the amount of time you spend viewing movies or listening to music.
As we have stated, the issue is that there are just too many options to select from. Of course, the good news is that we have included some of the greatest in our list. With that in mind, there are a few key factors to keep in mind. We have whittled it down to these options:
Compatibility with Surround Sound
Surround sound is not as common as it used to be. It is a smart idea to purchase a 5.2 receiver in case you decide to upgrade in the future. The good news is that many of them are also compatible with a 5.1-channel system, so they will work with your existing setup.
You will not know how your device will sound until you put it together. And, for better or worse, the sound is very subjective. It is no surprise that there are so many goods available.
As a result, you must evaluate how you want to utilize the receiver. Will you be going to the movies? Do you like to listen to music? Other things? Where are you going to put up your media room? Is it in a designated area or room? Do you live in a basement? In a house with an open floor plan?
It is easy to overlook how much the room affects the sound. We cannot give you too many particular ideas, but here are some broad suggestions:
More bass may be preferred if you enjoy watching movies. Of course, when there is too much bass, some of the finer details might be missed. So, if you are going to spend a lot of time listening to music, a unit with a superior balance is a must.
The ability to customize frequencies can be quite beneficial. It is worth noting that not all small receivers come with built-in EQ. Some receivers will automatically adjust your sound to the size of your space, which is a useful feature.
Again, because sound tastes are so individual, there is only so much advice we can provide. The important thing is to pick your receiver based on what you intend to accomplish with it.
Numerous Connectivity Options
Wireless connection appears to be the way of the future. Nonetheless, because you may have a mix of modern and older hardware, we believe it is best to have a receiver that supports both wired and wireless connections.
It is almost a no-brainer when it comes to stuff like Bluetooth. The ability to link your device with your receiver allows you to quickly and effortlessly access the media you wish to view or listen to.
If your router is in the same room as the rest of your setup, a Wi-Fi connection may be quite useful. It is worth noting that certain receivers struggle with Wi-Fi.
Do you need the smallest audio receiver?
You do not have to buy the smallest audio receiver. However, you will almost certainly need one if you want to set up a home theater. A receiver decodes the surround sound codecs on DVDs, drives your speakers, and lets you switch between your audio and visual components.
If you want to hear movie soundtracks the way they were designed to be heard, you will need to invest in a good AN receiver. They have five or more audio amplifier channels, which can drive two frontal speakers, two back speakers, and one middle speaker.
The distinction comes from the fact that stereo receivers can only power two speakers. Stereo receivers, on the other hand, may be excellent for listening to music.
Who would need the smallest audio receiver?
A tiny stereo amplifier is for someone who wishes to put together a great-sounding stereo system that takes up very little room and costs very little money.
When you couple one of these amps with a decent set of a bookshelf or outdoor speakers—even an old pair of hand-me-downs from the attic—you can construct a system that sounds better than most all-in-one wireless speakers while not necessarily costing more. It might possibly be considerably less expensive.
In the early 2010s, a new generation of low-cost, high-efficiency audio amplifier chips from firms like Texas Instruments made it feasible to create good stereo amplifiers that cost as little as $20 and are the size of a grilled cheese sandwich.
Although the greatest tiny stereo amps have the power and sound quality to power a large living room audio system, most people use them to power modest systems in their offices, bedrooms, dorm rooms, and garages.
These amplifiers are also ideal for powering outdoor speakers—as long as you keep your amplifier indoors, as none of them are waterproof. Some of these amplifiers are just stereo analog inputs, volume controls, and stereo speaker outputs.
Others include Bluetooth connectivity, tone controls, digital audio inputs, and subwoofer outputs. These amps can connect to any audio source with an analog line output or a headphone port.
This means you could use a cable to connect a phone, tablet, or computer, or add an Amazon Echo Dot, Echo Flex, or a cheap Bluetooth receiver if the amp does not have built-in Bluetooth.
Because few microamps contain an AM/FM tuner or a phono input, you are better off getting a stereo receiver if you want to listen to sources like AM/FM radio or a record player.
Important Aspects of the Smallest Audio Receiver
There are some important aspects to consider when getting yourself the smallest audio receiver. Here they are:
Because many people use receivers for home theater systems, most include video pass-through. You are searching for at least HD, however, the forward-thinking will also consider 4K and Ultra HD connections. HDR is less crucial, but technophiles who enjoy vibrant colors should keep an eye out for it.
Another thing to consider is the number of HD ports available on the receiver. Because most of your gadgets now use HD, you will need at least four ports. Keep in mind that the fewer parts you have, the more time you will waste fiddling with receiver connections.
Most 5.1 receivers include additional connecting options in addition to wired HD devices and speakers. The bulk of the items on my list have Bluetooth built-in, but if yours does not, you will need to get an adaptor. You will have to manually connect gadgets to a USB port if you do not have them.
Wi-Fi connectivity is available on some receivers, allowing for simpler streaming from your devices. You want something that can keep a good connection even if the Wi-Fi signal strength changes. The receiver should ideally be in the same room as your modem.
When it comes to sound, consider what you will be playing the most via the receiver. Heavy bass may be preferred by movie lovers to accentuate action-packed sequences. Poor balance, on the other hand, may result in the bass drowning out more delicate sounds.
This is particularly problematic for fans of layered music, such as classical pieces. At times, too much bass depletes the mid-range. You might wish to seek a system that adapts the sound setup to your space automatically.
Stereo or surround sound?
When looking for the best tiny receiver, you will likely come across two distinct product categories: home theater receivers and stereo receivers. Both gadgets can help you improve your media consumption experience but in different ways.
Some people hurry to buy both systems, but you should study the differences between them to prevent wasting money.
Although home theater receivers are designed for surround sound and video, most of them can also operate in a 2-channel stereo mode. You may use a device to listen to music with great clarity and crispness after you activate this mode.
Only the front left and right speakers, as well as a sub, are active when a home theater receiver is utilized instead of a stereo device. In all other situations, there are at least three speakers to choose from.
If you are an audiophile who needs a receiver just for music or a hub for a second room, investing in a stereo system is a wise decision. Despite the lack of video extras and certain sophisticated capabilities, such a device may fully realize its audio potential, especially when combined with a set of high-quality loudspeakers.
Whether you choose a stereo receiver or one that can produce surround sound, keep in mind that they differ based on the manufacturer and model. The primary difference is in the number of features.
If you are looking for a receiver at a store, you can request a listening demo to see how much of a boost a gadget can provide your present audio system. If you are purchasing online, this option is not available, so you will have to rely on the specifications.
Conclusion: Smallest Audio Receiver [2022 Review]
It is not simple to pick the finest compact AV receiver, especially if you have no idea what all those connections, functions, and buttons are for. Because miniature models differ from their bigger versions, you may be even more perplexed while deciding on the best selection.
A decent 5.1 receiver enables HD video pass-through and gives your sound system a rich richness. However, you should be aware that they limit the number of speakers you may use. However, some come with numerous channels so you can mix things up.
All of the smallest audio receivers on our list have excellent sound, with just one lacking video capabilities. Everything boils down to personal taste so make sure you get something you like. Look for a receiver that supports 4K and Ultra HD pass-through if you are shopping for the future.
Those who are more interested in sound, on the other hand, should pay attention to bass levels. A device that adapts to your space automatically is also beneficial. Take a look at our list as a starting point and think about your own requirements. We hope you liked our Smallest Audio Receiver review and it was helpful.