When it comes to home audio, do you like it old-school? By which I mean tower, surround, or bookshelf speakers paired with an actual stereo receiver? Then you've come to the right cheap-show.
While supplies last, Amazon has the Denon AVR-1312 5.1-channel home theater receiver for $139 shipped. It sells elsewhere in the $180 range, and had a list price of $250 when it debuted about a year ago.
This is not the receiver for hard-core audiophiles, but rather an affordable entry-level option for folks who want to vastly improve the sound quality of their TV audio -- or, you know, just listen to music.
That said, the AVR-1312's specs would seem to rise above the "entry-level" designation. Its key features, as reported in a CNET roundup of the latest Denon receivers:
- 5.1 AV receiver, 110 watts per channel
- Four HDMI inputs
- 3D video pass-through, standby pass-through, and audio return channel
- Graphical user interface, overlaid on HDMI sources
- Two digital audio inputs (one optical, one coaxial)
- Two-year warranty
Not too shabby, eh? I especially like the overlaid GUI, which should make the AVR-1312 significantly easier to configure than the likes of my slightly older Sony receiver, which relies solely on a hassle-tastic LED window.
CNET hasn't reviewed this particular model, but the few dozen user reviews on Amazon are mostly positive. A couple buyers seemed to experience technical issues, however, so I do recommend perusing those reviews before buying.
Recently I've been fiddling with sound bars and other single-unit audio options, but there's no debating that the biggest, loudest, and overall best sound comes from a receiver and at least two speakers. Here's your chance to score the receiver on the cheap.
Bonus deal: Speaking of speakers, Newegg has the Pioneer SP-BS21-LR bookshelf speakers for $49.99 shipped when you apply coupon code EMCNDNE74 at checkout. That's $50 off the regular price of this top-rated pair, which earned an average of five stars from Newegg customers.
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