Every season, Yamaha introduces updated versions of the models in their AV receiver lineup, now ending with the number 9. This often means a reduced price and an opportunity to get previous models significantly cheaper. We have already tested the entry level RX-V477 and its bigger brother RX-V677, but here we test the best model in the series, the Yamaha RX-V777BT.
As we have come to expect, the AV receivers from Yamaha are characterized by a unified design, and this applies to the 77 series as well. In other words, if you´ve seen one model of the series - you've seen them all, and the difference is really only noticable in the size of the housing. However, the RX-V777BT differs from the more affordable cousins by incorporating an aluminum front, which provides greater stability and durability, as well as a more luxurious look. The front panel is divided in two horizontal sections with a slightly protruding bottom part, which helps organize the various control buttons. In the corners of the lower part you find large controls wheels for volume and input selection, and additional buttons and in- and outputs are placed between them; HDMI, USB, composite video, 6.35mm headphone output jack, and the calibration microphone input.
There are also four SCENE buttons placed in the center, making them accessible and easy to use. The surface of the upper half is completely covered with plastic, under which a large dot-matrix display with white illumination can be seen. Beneath it is a series of ten small buttons for controlling the secondary functions.
Due to a large number of connectivity options, the rear panel of the receiver is filled with various in- and outputs. Five HDMI inputs and two HDMI outputs are probably more than the average user needs, and to feed it analog video signals you´re provided with two component and four composite video inputs.
Five analog inputs and two outputs for audio sources are available (including phono MM), and four digital inputs (two coaxial and two optical). The pre-out section (for additional power amplifiers) enables the RX-V777BT to function as a surround preamp/processor, and the speaker terminals are expanded with a Zone 2 option or additional Front Presence speakers. If you´re not utilizing a 7.2 system, you can use the Surround Back speaker terminals for bi-amping you Front speakers. An Ethernet port and an integrated Wi-Fi adapter is included for connection to the local network and Yamaha also include an adapter for use with Bluetooth devices. It is worth mentioning that the power cable is not detachable, which is a bit surprising in this price range.
The interior of the receiver is characterized by a more standard approach, but the Yamaha managed to leave enough space for cooling components and air to flow. On the left side is a transformer of solid dimensions, and behind it is the power supply for the digital section. The rest of the front of the housing is filled with cooling parts, to which complementary pairs of output transistors (Sanken A1695 and C4468) are attached. The last section have circuit boards in three levels, with two electrolytic capacitors of 6800 microfarad from the manufacturer Nippon Chemi-Con. Burr-Brown PCM5101 is used for digital-to-analog conversion, and the PCM9211 serves as a transceiver. The rest of the electronics is very conventional, and includes well-known circuits, such as Texas Instruments Cinema DSP, memory module from ESMT, Silicon Image Sil9589 HDMI processor, and more.
Apart from the receiver, the shipping box contains a quick guide in printed form, a complete user manual on CD, YPAO microphone, in-door FM, AM and wi-fi antenna. The remote control is borrowed from the more expensive AVENTAGE series and has a good build quality and button layout, as well as a large number of small buttons with various functions in the bottom section.
Sound and Image Quality
In addition to the auto-calibration, which is being improved for every new model and also common in this price range, the RX-V777BT is characterized by a fairly large number of features and additional options, wireless networking being among one of the more important. Supported audio formats include 192 kHz / 24-Bit FLAC and WAV, and we used this to check how the Yamaha sounded in stereo mode.
The first impression is that it never lacks power, and that the RX-V777BT is able to deliver a very loud sound without noticeable distortion. Fine details are present, as well as a certain dose of warmth, although the overall tonal balance is leaning towards the brighter side of neutral, but not enough to sound clinical or boring.
Human voices are reproduced quite faithfully, and we really enjoyed the vocals from Bob Marley and José González, among others. Just like the YPAO system, the Compressed Music Enhancer is getting better from generation to generation and really makes compressed audio quite pleasant to listen to.
The handling of video files showed the power of this Yamaha - HDMI 2.0 supports 4K Ultra HD material, and the RX-V777BT can scale up 480, 576, 720 and 1080 to 4K. No visible degradation of the image was visible when upscaling.
When it comes to multi-channel audio, standard 7.2 channels can be complemented by additional Front Presence speakers, which provide an even larger sound image. The impression of power was retained during use with Polk's TL1600 5.1 system, with which the RX-V777BT provided a detailed and three-dimensional sound. Switching to more demanding Klipsch speakers showed that power is not unlimited, but it still sounded massive and impressive. Details sounded far more refined, and the tone was natural, but we can say that these speakers got the most out of the receiver.
There are plenty of additional functions and features, and one of our favorites is the AV Controller App, which enables advanced DSP setting parameters. The RX-V777BT is equipped with preamplifier for turntables, an it´s nice to know that Yamaha has not forgotten those who love vinyl.
In the end, our list of unfulfilled wishes is quite short and it´s hard to see how they could improve it without adding bigger numbers to the price tag, but the RX-V777BT has some competition within Yamaha's own house in the form of the slightly better and more musical RX-A840 from the prestigious AVENTAGE series. However, thanks to the excellent balance between features, functionality and high-quality sound, the Yamaha RX-V777BT represents a great choice for a large number of users looking for solid quality in all areas. And with the newer models coming out you can get it even cheaper!
- 7-channel powerful surround sound
- 110 W per channel (8 ohms, 1 kHz, 0.9% THD, 2-ch driven)
- 95 W per channel (8 ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.09% THD, 2-ch driven)
- Aluminium front panel for enhanced rigidity
- HDMI (6 in / 2 out) with 4K Ultra HD upscaling, 3D, Audio Return Channel and MHL support
- The latest HDMI version support for 4K 50 / 60p input
- AirPlay®, Pandora®, Rhapsody®, Spotify, SiriusXM Internet Radio music streaming service and AV Controller App
- HTC Connect™ for music streaming from HTC Connect compatible smartphones
- HDMI input on front panel, USB digital connection for iPod®, iPhone® and iPad®
- FLAC, WAV 192 kHz / 24-bit, Apple® Lossless 96 kHz / 24-bit playback and gapless playback compatibility
- Virtual CINEMA FRONT provides virtual surround sound with five speakers in front
- YPAO™ Reflected Sound Control sound optimization with multipoint measurement
- YPAO Volume to ensure natural sounds even at low volume
- Multi-zone audio support (Zone 2)
- HDMI Zone B for audio / video streaming to another room (same content as main room)
- Dialogue Lift and Dialogue Level Adjustment for natural dialogue and vocals
- Advanced GUI on-screen display with (English, German, French, Spanish, Russian, Italian, Japanese and Chinese)
- ECO mode operation for about 20 percent less power consumption
|Rated Output Power (1kHz, 2ch driven)||110 W (8 ohms, 0.9% THD)|
|Rated Output Power (20Hz-20kHz, 2ch driven)||95 W (8 ohms, 0.09% THD)|
|Dynamic Power per Channel (8/6/4/2 ohms)||130 / 170 / 195 / 240 W|
|Surround Sound Processing||CINEMA DSP||Yes (3D)|
|Virtual Presence Speaker||Yes|
|Virtual CINEMA FRONT||Yes|
|Dialog Level Adjustment||Yes|
|Dialogue Lift||Yes (no presence speakers required)|
|Dolby Digital Plus||Yes|
|DTS-HD Master Audio||Yes|
|Dolby Pro Logic IIx||Yes|
|Audio Features||Compressed Music Enhancer||Yes|
|YPAO sound optimization||Yes (R.S.C.)|
|Adaptive DRC (Dynamic Range Control)||Yes|
|Initial Volume & Maximum Volume Setting||Yes|
|Pure Direct||Yes (with video on mode)|
|Audio Delay||Yes (0-500 ms)|
|192kHz/24-bit DACs for all channels||Yes (Burr-Brown)|
|YPAO multi-point measurement||Yes|
|Video Features||4K Ultra HD pass-through||Yes (60p / YCbCr 4:4:4)|
|HDMI 3D pass-through||Yes|
|HDMI Audio Return Channel||Yes|
|Deep Color/x.v.Color/24Hz Refresh Rate /Auto Lip-Sync||Yes|
|4K Ultra HD Pass-through and upscaling||Yes (latest HDMI version for 4K Ultra HD 50 / 60p) *Available via firmware upgrade in Fall|
|HDMI upscaling||Yes (analog to HDMI / HDMI to HDMI)|
|Extensive Connection||HDMI Input/Output||6 (1 front) / 2 (simultaneous)|
|HDMI CEC||Yes (SCENE, device control)|
|USB Input||iPod® / iPhone® / iPad®, USB memory, portable audio player|
|Front AV Input||HDMI (MHL support) / USB / Composite|
|Digital Audio Input/Output: Optical||2 / 0|
|Digital Audio Input/Output: Coaxial||2 / 0|
|Analog Audio Input/Output||5 / 1|
|Component Video Input/Output||2 / 1|
|Composite Video Input/Output||5 (1 front) / 2|
|Wi-Fi||Yes (with Wireless Direct)|
|Wireless Music Streaming||Yes (YBA-11 Bluetooth® Adaptor)|
|Tuner Section||FM/AM Tuner||Yes|
|User Interface||On-screen display||Graphical user interface|
|SCENE||SCENE (4 sets)|
|Remote Control Unit||Yes|
|App Control||Yes (iPhone / iPad / Android™ phone / tablet)|
|Web Browser Control||Yes|
|Zone Control||Zone 2 Audio Output||Line output|
|Powered Zone||Zone 2|
|+12V Trigger Output||1|
|Remote (IR) Input/Output||1 / 1|
|General||Standby Power Consumption (IR only)||≤0.15 W|
|Auto Power Standby||Yes|
|Dimensions (W x H x D)||17-1/8” x 6-3/4” x 14-3/8” (with antenna: 17-1/8” x 9-1/4” x 14-7/8”)|