The Yamaha YSP-2700 Digital Sound Projector With MusicCast

Yamaha's YSP-2700 Sound Bar Is Loaded For Home Theater and Multi-Room Audio

The Yamaha YSP-2700 Digital Sound Projector With MusicCast
The Yamaha YSP-2700 Digital Sound Projector With MusicCast. Image Courtesy of Amazon

Introduction to the Yamaha YSP-2700

Sound Bars or Under-TV audio systems definitely improve TV sound, and they offer more convenience and less clutter than a full home theater setup with lots of external speakers.

However, one of the drawbacks of the sound bar option is the diminishing of the surround sound listening experience. However, it doesn't have to be that way. Yamaha offers up a twist that takes sound bar performance up a notch with the Yamaha YSP-2700 with the incorporation of Digital Sound Projection technology.

Digital sound projection uses an array of small speakers (referred to as Beam Drivers), each with its own amplifier, housed in a single cabinet that looks like a sound bar.

The "beam drivers" (tiny speakers) project sound with directional accuracy from the front to the main listening position as well as projecting sound beams to the side and rear walls of your room which are reflected back into the listening space to create a realistic 5.1 or 7.1 channel (depending on model) surround sound field.

During the setup procedure, which utilizes a provided microphone and built-in test tones, groups of beam drivers can be electronically assigned to project sound too different points in the room.

Digital sound projection works best in a closed room with a flat ceiling. This allows for better sound reflection off the walls, which provides a better surround sound result.

In the case of the YSP-2700, there are 16 beam drivers (each only 1-1/8 inch in size) that are individually paired with their own 2-watt amplifier.

In addition to the beam drivers, the YSP-2700 also comes packaged with a wireless 75-watt subwoofer that contains a 5-1/2 inch driver (not shown in the above photo) housed in a tradition "cube" design. The total power output for the entire system is stated as 107 watts (Peak Power), which is enough for small and medium size rooms.

However, the built-in beam drivers and amplifiers are just the start. The YSP-2700 offers up features that you would normally only see on a home theater receiver. Keep on reading for the details.

Channel Configuration, Audio Decoding, and Processing

The YSP-2700 can be configured for up to 7.1 Channel surround sound. Audio decoding for several Dolby and DTS surround sound formats is included, such as Dolby Digital/DTS 5.1, Dolby TrueHD/DTS-HD Master Audio

Additional surround sound support is provided by Yamaha&s DSP (Digital Surround Processing) Modes (Movie, Music, Entertainment), but you can also adjust the YSP-2700 for your own preference with the provided "My Surround" mode.

For better listening performance from MP3s and other digital audio files, a Compressed Music Enhancer is provided. This feature restores some of the missing harmonics deleted from music that is compressed to conform to MP3 and other low-res digital audio files.

Audio Connectivity

For a sound bar, the YSP-2700 has a lot of audio connection flexibility, with its 2 digital optical and 1 digital coaxial audio inputs, and 1 set of analog stereo inputs.

Also, even though the system comes with a wireless subwoofer, there is also a subwoofer preamp output provided for connection to an external Yamaha, or another brand, wire-connectable subwoofer, if desired.

Video Connectivity

Most sound bars don't provide much support for video - after all, their main function is to provide better sound for TV viewing. However, the Yamaha YSP-2700 incorporates the same type of video connectivity found on many home theaters receivers.

For example, the YSP-2700 provides 3 HDMI inputs and one HDMI output.

Also, all of the HDMI connections are 3D, 4K, and HDR pass-through compatible and provide HDCP 2.2 copy-protection.

HDCP 2.2 is necessary for compatibility with 4K Netflix and other streaming sources delivered via externally-connected media streamers.

It is also important to note that although the sound bar provides video connectivity and HDCP copy-protection, no additional video processing/upscaling is provided.

On the other hand, if you wish to watch TV without using the sound bar, the YSP-2700 provides HDMI Standby Pass-Through. This feature allows you to view and listen to your HDMI-connected source devices even if the sound bar is turned off.

In addition to using the HDMI inputs to connect a DVD or Blu-ray Disc player, and Cable/Satellite boxes, you can also connect media streamers, such as Roku Boxes/Streaming Stick, Amazon Fire TV/Stick, Google Chromecast, and Apple TV.

When these types of devices are connected, the sound bar will access the audio portion of the incoming signal and pass the video portion (including the onscreen menu displays) to your TV. It is also important to point out that the YSP-2700 has its own onscreen menu display for easier operation.

Built-in Network and Streaming Features

The YSP-2700 provides convenient Ethernet and Wifi connectivity.

These connection options provide access to audio files stored on network connected PCs and Laptops (DLNA), as well as internet streaming music content from several providers, such as Pandora, Rhapsody, Spotify, and Sirius/XM.

Also, the YSP-2700 incorporates Apple Airplay and wireless bi-directional Bluetooth. The Bluetooth feature allows users to stream music directly from compatible source devices, such as smartphones and tablets to the YSP-2700, as well as stream music content from the YSP-2700 to compatible Bluetooth headphones or speakers.

MusicCast

Yamaha expands the YSP-2700 further with the inclusion of its MusicCast multi-room audio system.

MusicCast enables the sound bar to send, receive, and share music content wirelessly from/to/between a variety of compatible Yamaha components that include home theater receivers, stereo receivers, and powered wireless speakers.

However, you have to keep in mind that MusicCast is a closed system (like Sonos) - you can only pair the soundbar with compatible Yamaha Wireless Speakers or other designated devices.

As of 2017, compatible wireless speakers include the Yamaha WX-030 - Buy From Amazon and WX-010.

For more details on Yamaha's MusicCast System, read my previous report.

Control Options

The Yamaha YSP-2700 comes packaged with a wireless remote control, but for more convenience, the system can also be operated via compatible smartphones and tablets using Yamaha's free Remote Controller App for iOS or Android.

My Take

Over several years, I have had experience listening and using Digital Sound Projection technology. My assessment is that if you have small or medium size room with closed walls, the surround sound experience, although not as precise as a system using individual speakers placed around the room, is still quite effective.

If you are looking for the practicality and convenience of a sound bar, but still desire the same type of features you would get on an entry-level or mid-range, home theater receiver, including video pass-through and switching, and with the added perk of wireless multi-room audio capability, the Yamaha YSP-2700 digital sound projector is certainly one option to consider.

Definitely, give it a test run at a local dealer when it becomes available before making your final purchase choice.

More Info

The Sound Bar portion of the YSP-2700 is 37-1/8 inches wide, 2-inches high, and 6-inches deep. This makes it a good visual complement for TVs with 39 to 55-inch screen sizes. The sound bar can be easily placed in front the TV without obstructing the bottom portion of the TV screen (see photo example above). It can also be wall-mounted above or below a TV.

The companion wireless subwoofer is a compact 11-5/8 inches wide x 11-3/4 high x 12-1/8 inches deep. Since receives audio signals from the sound bar wirelessly, it can be placed anywhere in a room where it delivers the best bass response, as long as it is close by to AC power outlet.

The Yamaha YSP-2700 has a suggested of $1,199.95 - Buy From Amazon.