JVC RX-411 Digital A/V Receiver

Sections: Audio, Home Theater

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JVC is not a company afraid to go out on a limb to develop products outside the norm for demanding consumers. In fact, they’ve been known to use a “limb” when they developed and introduced the world’s first wood-cone speakers just a few short years ago.

As with the development of any technology, some products take years to refine and are also forced to keep pace with paired technologies. Such is the case with the latest in the JVC line of A/V controller receivers. The JVC RX-D411 features the JVC proprietary Hybrid Feedback Digital Amplifier which allows JVC to greatly reduce the overall size of the unit for the amount of power it’s pumping out 7 channels of 110 watts each.

Previous generations of digital amplifiers suffered greatly from digital distortion, thus impeding their acceptance into the consumer market. Here, JVC employs K2 technology which works to enable natural audio reproduction while reducing digital distortion. The result is a compact and stylish unit which melds well with today’s lifestyle oriented products.

What’s most noticeable about the JVC RX-411 right out of the box is the list of features which will not only control and power your A/V system, but also enhance its performance. While other A/V receivers boast component video switching, the 411 features both component video and HDMI switching. Additionally, the JVC 411 upconverts all video signals, composite, S-Video and component, into HDMI.

The RX-411 brings a lot to your audio experience as well. In addition to being XM and Sirius satellite radio-ready, the JVC RX-411 also offers “Precise Surround Setup” which is designed to allow users quick and intuitive optimization of their speakers. While other systems I have used in the past use a single microphone, the JVC uses earphones which are actually microphones that go into your ears. Sounds funny, I know, but it actually makes a lot of sense as this is, in fact, the perfect listening position. I found this to be a little intimidating in concept, but actually rather simple in function, effectively calibrating my speaker volume levels in under 10 minutes. This is a nice feature to have and I encourage anyone who purchases this unit to take the time to use this function. With setup complete, I noticed my system sounded better than before I had started. (Now if I could only figure out a way to use the JVC calibration system with my personal system.)

The tone of my system did take some adjusting. I found the JVC to be very bright on the top end versus my reference amplifier through the same speakers. The JVC did run a little hot, which is not unusual for a digital amp in a small chassis and really no need for concern.

Using the RX-411 produced the most positive experience I have had with a JVC product to date. The amount of thought and application of features that went into the new RX-411 are simply outstanding. Video performance running through the JVC was close to that of my reference system that uses an outboard processor, which alone costs twice that of the JVC unit.

With a street price of about $500, I can see a lot of these units in consumers’ homes by Christmas, and also JVC raising the bar as other manufacturers hurry to compete with the feature-set. Kudos to the design team at JVC for a well executed product. Any chance we might see a wood finish in the future?

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  • chris anderson

    I have the RX-411 and I used to use the USB from the laptop to play cds, or HD radio, etc… The problem is I upgraded my laptop to Windows 7 and now it doen’t play through the USB connection on the receiver. I called JVC and they stated that JVC no longer makes receivers and that they have no plans on updating the firmware to correct this problem. I’m pissed, paid a bunch of money for this receiver and now after 7 months of usage I not able to use it to the full potentual.