Receivers

Yamaha RX-V665 7.1 A/V Receiver

ARTICLE INDEX

Setup

Setup of the RX-V665 was a breeze. Apart from the connections, which for a given HT don't change from receiver to receiver, I had the 665 up and running and fully calibrated in about 15 minutes. The most difficult part was finding a way to place the YPAO microphone at a location that best simulated where my head would be during listening sessions. YPAO (Yamaha Parametric Audio Optimization) is Yamaha's own proprietary EQ, speaker setup and level balance system and I have to say it worked quite well. The YPAO calibration resulted in nearly perfect speaker settings for my system. The only part of the YPAO results that I tweaked a bit was the cutoff frequency for my speakers. I have identical satellite speakers in a 5.1 configuration and they are pretty solid down to about 90~100Hz. YPAO configuration resulted in a crossover frequency of 160Hz, whereas I ended up preferring it a bit lower at 120Hz. Everything else the YPAO nailed; distances were spot-on and the EQ smoothed out some bumps and dips in the sound field.

Comparing YPAO to Audyssey, the EQ offered on several other manufacturers' receivers, the main difference that I could tell is that Audyssey can optimize the sound field for multiple seating locations, whereas YPAO optimizes for only one location. During an Audyssey calibration, you can move the microphone to several locations in the room, whereas the YPAO system is "set it and forget it". In fact I just left the room entirely. There are advantages and disadvantages to both systems: The Audyssey system might result in a better (more stable/consistent) sound field for every seat in the room, but at some sacrifice in overall sound quality for any one seat.

YPAO on the other hand is going to sacrifice consistency of the sound field from seat to seat, in favor of optimizing sound field and quality at one seat location. (Audyssey can also optimize for one seat only by leaving the microphone stationary during calibration.) Indeed, I don't think I've ever had my 5.1 system so well calibrated for the main seating location. Balance and smoothness were excellent. That said, auto-EQ is not for every one, nor every room. For a more detailed look at the pros and cons of auto-EQ, read Secrets' technical article on the topic.

(http://www.hometheaterhifi.com/technical-articles/technical-topics/using-the-auto-set-up-and-eq-features-in-an-ssp-or-receiver.html)