Yamaha Unveils Its First AV Receivers with Wireless Surround, Introduces New Wireless Speakers and Subwoofer

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Rivaling the sound quality of a wired system, this technology brings for the first time a wireless surround capability to Yamaha AV receivers, appealing to a broad range of customers at a variety of price and performance levels.

Yamaha MusicCast Surround

“By adding a wireless surround capability to our new line, we’ve made it easier than ever to create an amazing, theater-like experience at home. MusicCast Surround suddenly makes an AV receiver an attractive option for a whole new audience of entertainment fans,” said Robert Goedken, Yamaha.

Entertainment enthusiasts know well that the best way to build a reliable, versatile and great-sounding home theater surround system is to use an AV receiver with wired speakers. For many, this is still a go-to solution that works seamlessly. For others, it presents a dilemma: how to get wires to the back of the room for surround sound speakers without having unsightly exposed cables. Running speaker wire through walls can be a headache, and for those who rent their homes or have plaster walls, it’s simply not feasible. Now Yamaha gives home theater fans a choice: wired or wireless surrounds.

Yamaha is introducing three new 4K AV receivers—the 5.1-channel RX-V485 and 7.2-channel RX-V585 and RX-V685—two new speakers, the MusicCast 20 and MusicCast 50, and the new MusicCast SUB 100 subwoofer, all featuring a new wireless technology called MusicCast Surround. An enhancement of the company’s MusicCast wireless multi-room audio system, MusicCast Surround allows a user to build an AV receiver-based 5.1-channel surround sound system with wired speakers for the front channels (Front Left, Center, Front Right) and wireless speakers for the surrounds (Surround Left, Surround Right). It also supports the option of using a wireless subwoofer.

Rivaling the sound quality of a wired system, MusicCast Surround technology brings for the first time a wireless surround capability to Yamaha AV receivers, appealing to a broad range of customers at a variety of price and performance levels.

The RX-V 85 series AV receivers are also capable of supporting wired surround speakers for those who prefer a traditional setup or a speaker configuration with more than 5.1-channels. They also feature a host of other upgrades from last year’s line.

MusicCast Surround builds on the Yamaha MusicCast wireless multi-room audio system which enables music enthusiasts to stream their favorite tunes from almost any audio source over a Wi-Fi network to MusicCast-enabled products throughout the house. In comparison, when the MusicCast Surround mode is employed, a direct Wi-Fi connection is made between an RX-V 85 series AV receiver and the MusicCast 20 or MusicCast 50 wireless speakers so that the surround audio streams do not have to pass through the user’s home router.

All of the new models come fully-loaded with wireless technologies, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth®, Apple AirPlay® and Spotify Connect. They support numerous built-in streaming services, including Spotify, Pandora®, SiriusXM Internet Radio, TIDAL, Deezer, Napster and thousands of free internet radio stations, all accessible via the free MusicCast app. They also all feature voice control via Amazon Alexa-equipped devices, such as the Echo and Echo Dot smart speakers, through the use of free MusicCast skills available on the Alexa Skills Store.

“For entertainment fanatics who love movies, TV and gaming, nothing beats using an AV receiver to build a true surround sound system,” said Robert Goedken, general manager, AV division, Yamaha Corporation of America. “By adding a wireless surround capability to our new line, we’ve made it easier than ever to create an amazing, theater-like experience at home. MusicCast Surround suddenly makes an AV receiver an attractive option for a whole new audience of entertainment fans.”

Here are some additional key features and benefits of the new products:

RX-V 85 Series 4K AV Receivers: All three receivers deliver life-like images to connected TVs with up to 4K resolution at 60 frames per second. The receivers also pass through high dynamic range (HDR) video in the HDR 10, Dolby Vision and Hybrid Log-Gamma formats with BT.2020 wide color gamut (WCG) compatibility, delivering a wider, more realistic palette of colors, greater brightness and contrast, and details previously not visible in the darkest and lightest portions of a scene. The RX-V685 offers dual HDMI outputs for rooms incorporating both a flat-screen TV and a video projector.

All three models support HD Audio decoding of Dolby® TrueHD and DTS-HD Master AudioTM sound tracks, while the RX-V585 and RX-V685 also support object-based Dolby Atmos® and DTS:XTM decoding, which adds height effects through overhead speaker channels. All feature Yamaha-exclusive sound technologies, such as YPAO auto-calibration and Cinema DSP, which transforms the dynamics of the listening environment to recreate the acoustic experience of being in a movie theater or even famous music venues like the Bottom Line, Roxy Theater or European cathedrals.

MusicCast Speakers: The compact MusicCast 20 and high-performance MusicCast 50 wireless speakers stand out for their versatility. Both can be used as standalone audio systems, or with existing MusicCast components for multi-room audio linking, or used as wireless surround speakers with MusicCast Surround-enabled AV receivers.

Two MusicCast 20 speakers can be paired in stereo mode. A single MusicCast 50 delivers stereo sound by itself, while using two MusicCast 50 speakers yields even higher output and a wider sound field.

In a MusicCast Surround configuration, only a single MusicCast 50 is needed to produce two surround channels, but two units may be used for better performance. The MusicCast 50 delivers the highest performance of any MusicCast speaker, and features a lower profile than competing models in its performance class to fit more discreetly in more places at home.

The two models come with more top-panel controls than previous MusicCast speakers, adding an alarm-clock button and three presets for your favorite music channels.

Subwoofer: The MusicCast SUB 100, which sports a stylish piano-gloss finish, can be paired wirelessly with the new AV receivers as an alternative to a wired subwoofer, allowing for easy placement anywhere in the room. It can also be paired with either a single or two MusicCast 20 or MusicCast 50 speakers for 1.1-channel and 2.1-channel systems.

Pricing and Availability
The three RX-V 85 4K AV receivers will be available in May at the following MSRPs:

  •     RX-V485, $449.95 MSRP
  •     RX-V585, $549.95 MSRP
  •     RX-V685, $649.95 MSRP

The following two MusicCast speakers will be available in July in a choice of black or white at the following MSRPs:

  •     MusicCast 20 at $229.95 MSRP
  •     MusicCast 50 at $499.95 MSRP

The MusicCast SUB 100 will be available in September in a piano black finish at $549.95 MSRP.

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About Yamaha
Yamaha Corporation of America (YCA) is one of the largest subsidiaries of Yamaha Corporation, Japan and offers a full line of award-winning musical instruments, sound reinforcement, commercial installation and home entertainment products to the U.S. market. Products include: Yamaha acoustic, digital and hybrid pianos, portable keyboards, guitars, acoustic and electronic drums, band and orchestral instruments, marching percussion products, synthesizers, professional digital and analog audio equipment, Steinberg recording products and NEXO commercial audio products, as well as AV receivers, amplifiers, MusicCast wireless multi-room audio systems, Blu-ray/CD players, earphones, headphones, home-theater-in-a-box systems, sound bars and its exclusive line of Digital Sound Projectors. YCA markets innovative, finely crafted technology and entertainment products and musical instruments targeted to the hobbyist, education, worship, music, professional audio installation and consumer markets.
Contact:    Peter Giles/Giles Communications
        (914) 644-3500 ext. 700 (pgiles@giles.com)

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