Latest Onkyo kit makes multi-room audio easy

NCP-302 fireconnectOnkyo’s latest additions are designed to deliver hassle-free Wireless Multi-room Audio Distribution as well as outstanding AV performance in their own right.

Armed with that FireConnect tech I mentioned earlier in the week, these new products join a roster of existing 2016 FireConnect- equipped Onkyo products already available on the market.

A firmware update that will enable FireConnect functionality across the entire range is also being rolled out today.

Each of the new arrivals also feature Chromecast built-in, DTS Play-Fi, Dual-band 5GHz/2.4GHz WiFi and Bluetooth wireless connectivity.

This all adds up to users being able to cast their music from the widest possible range of devices and PC applications.

Onkyo Controller app

The key to controlling and managing all this amazing interconnectivity is the Onkyo Controller App (available for iOS and Android).

The easy-to-use app scans for information about your network music libraries, streaming services and your FireConnect-equipped devices.

That information is then gathered together and presented on an easy-to-navigate interface, complete with multi-room playback controls.

Audio Visual Receivers: TX-NR575E and TX-NR474

The TX-NR575E (7.1-channel) and TX-NR474 (5.1-channel) AVRs add wireless multi-room capability to their long list of talents.

onkyo TX-NR575E FrontThey feature full support on all inputs for HDMI 2.0a and HDCP 2.2 (for 4K televisions) as well HDR-10 plus Dolby Vision ‘4K Pass Through’.

These new receivers feature high-current amplifier stages. In fact, they’re powerful enough to to drive ‘difficult’ 4 ohm speaker loads. You get 170w per channel for the TX-NR575E, and 135w per channel for the TX-NR474.

onkyo TX-NR474 angledAs well as the expected support for all the common surround sound modes these AVRs also offer Dolby Atmos 3.1.2, the latest Dolby speaker configuration mode. This has been designed to deliver the advantages of Atmos from an easier to set-up speaker package.

Naturally, all the streaming audio bases are covered: Spotify, TIDAL, TuneIn, Deezer and the Amazon Music Service are all supported.

Airplay is a given and there is an optional USB dongle that adds DAB+ capabilities. Naturally, this is in addition to a built-in AM/FM tuner.

With the ability to wirelessly send both analogue (including vinyl) and digital sources to any other FireConnect-equipped components in a home, these new receivers can form the heart of a superb multi-room audio system.

Network stereo receiver with HDMI: TX-8270

What do you do when you’ve got a winning formula? Take it to the next level! The TX-8270 is a seriously evolved, uprated version of the award-winning TX-8150 receiver but armed with some ingenious new tricks.

One of the headline features is HDMI connectivity.

The receiver boasts four HDMI inputs and one output with Audio Return Channel (ARC) to transform your TV listening experience and enable the connection of media players. With it you can hook-up your Apple TV (a rear mounted 5v/500mA USB port supports HDMI dongles that require power), for instance.

onkyo TX-8270 angled rightWith 2 x 160w of power on tap, this receiver will happily drive large floorstanding speakers to high levels. Combining non-phase-shift circuitry for imaging clarity, with discrete output transistors for low distortion, the TX-8270 will do justice to the most dynamic musical content.

To ensure the unit delivers maximum fidelity, digital signals are converted by a high quality AKM 384 kHz/32-bit DAC enhanced with VLSC (Vector Linear Shaping Circuitry). Of course it is. Basically it’s some very clever filtering technology that eliminates ultra-high-frequency pulse noise.

Processing is optimised for Hi-Res Audio including DSD 5.6 MHz/2.8 MHz and PCM formats up to 192 kHz/24-bit in popular file formats.

TIDAL, Spotify, Deezer, and TuneIn services are all built-in, as is a DAB+ tuner for terrestrial broadcasts. Vinyl fans can indulge their passion courtesy of the onboard MM phono input. FireConnect will allow users to stream all their music (including vinyl) to other FireConnect-equipped devices in the home.

Wireless audio system: NCP-302

The NCP-302 is a FireConnect-enabled speaker that’s designed to extend your analogue/digital home entertainment experience to any room in a home.

onkyo NCP-302 LifestyleYou can use it as a standalone device (via the Onkyo Controller App) or as part of a multi-room set-up.

The system features twin 77mm woofers plus a single 26mm ‘balanced dome’ tweeter. These are all housed in a very compact bass-reflex cabinet. The NCP-302 is available in either Natural White or Black.

NCP-302 top controlsManual controls are arranged along the top of the unit. Users can stream sources to multiple units located in different rooms via the app.

As well as streaming options via the app there’s also a a 3.5mm analogue input for other devices.

There is even a LAN input giving the option of hard-wired network connectivity.

Prices and availability

All products will be available in March 2017

  • TX-NR575E: £499.99 (in silver or black)
  • TX-NR474: £429.99 (in silver or black)
  • TX-8270: £599.99 (in silver or black)
  • NCP-302: £279.99 (in wood or black)