Pioneer Elite VSX-91TXH 7.1 Channel Receiver Review

Pioneer VSX-91TXH 7.1 Channel Home Theater Receiver
Pioneer VSX-91TXH 7.1 Channel Home Theater Receiver. Image provided by Pioneer Electronics

The Bottom Line

The Pioneer Elite VSX-91TXH is good home theater value. As one of the new-generation receivers that incorporates onboard Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD surround decoding, it is ready for the future. In addition, this receiver has extensive connection capabilities, power to spare, and very flexible audio and video operation. If you are looking for a receiver that integrates flexible audio and video connectivity, as well as delivering great audio performance that will not become "obsolete" in just a few years, then check out the VSX-91TXH.

For a closer look, check out my Pioneer VSX-91TXH Photo Gallery.

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Pros

  • Power to spare, excellent audio performance, extensive surround sound settings.
  • Extensive Audio and Video Connectivity - including 2 HDMI 1.3a inputs.
  • Excellent pass-through of 1080p source signals.
  • MCACC speaker setup system works very well.
  • Simple XM and Sirius Radio connectivity with onscreen control functions.

Cons

  • Could use more HDMI inputs. HDMI input on the front panel would be nice.
  • No Video Upscaling of analog video sources (480i to 480p only).
  • Complicated to use for the novice - Remote control not intuitive.
  • No dedicate phono turntable input connection.
  • Only one AC Convenience output on the rear panel.

Description

  • Home Theater Receiver with THX Select2 Audio Processing and Composite, S-Video, Component Video Conversion to HDMI output.
  • 7 Channels of amplification featuring 110 WPC at .09% THD (Total Harmonic Distortion) FTC Rating
  • 2 VCR connection loops for VCRs or VCR and DVD Recorder. iPod, and both XM and Sirius Satellite Radio Tuner/Antenna inputs.
  • Composite, S-video, Component to HDMI video conversion (480i to 480p). No video upscaling from 480p to 720p, 1080i, or 1080p.
  • 7 assignable digital audio inputs (2 coaxial and 5 optical ). HDMI support for SACD, DVD-Audio, PCM, Dolby TrueHD/DTS-HD.
  • Stereo audio inputs for CD or Cassette. 5.1 channel inputs for DVD-Audio, SACD, Blu-ray, or HD-DVD. Subwoofer line output.
  • AM/FM/XM and Sirius Satellite Radio Connectivity. MCACC (Multi-Channel Acoustic Calibration System) Speaker Calibration.

Guide Review - Pioneer Elite VSX-91TXH 7.1 Channel Home Theater Receiver - Short Review

The VSX-91TXH excellent audio performance and delivers more than enough power a medium size room. Useful features include Built-in decoding for all major 5.1, 6.1, and 7.1 Channel surround sound formats, including Dolby TrueHD, Dolby Digital Plus, and DTS-HD. Second Zone pre-outs, which allow the user to supply either a simultaneous or second source to another room (additional amplifier required), XM and Sirius satellite radio connectivity, iPod connectivity via an adapter cable, and MCACC (Multi-Channel Acoustic Calibration System) auto-speaker setup.

The 91TXH also does a good job with composite to S-video to Component video to HDMI video conversion.

The 91TXH offers consideration for both audio and video. This definitely makes the 91TXH a flexible home theater receiver. The image quality from HD sources is very consistent. However, the video conversion and processing of analog video sources, was below average, as revealed by the Silicon Optix HQV Benchmark DVD. See some test result examples.

I found the audio quality of the VSX-91TXH, with both music-only and video sources (such as DVD), was excellent, making it acceptable for both extensive music listening as well as for home theater use.

I also found that the MCACC (Multi-Channel Acoustic Calibration System) auto-speaker setup feature actually worked very well, especially with the center channel level, which always seems the hardest to get right with DVD source material.

The VSX-91TXH is a very flexible receiver that delivers the goods in audio performance ​but needs some improvement in video performance. I give it 4.0 Stars out of 5.

A few tweaks that would have earned a higher rating: More HDMI inputs (possibly having one on the front panel), better 480i/480p conversion, video upscaling, a dedicated turntable input, and an easier-to-use remote.

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