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Onkyo TX-NR609

Onkyo TX-NR609 AV network receiver

Multichannel maestro

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Remote viewing

The user interface is unfussy and straightforward to navigate. You can also find your way around things like the network audio menus via the front panel display, so you don't always need the TV on to see what you're doing when just playing music, but a TV obviously gives you a bigger view.

Onkyo TX-NR609

Network audio features include media streaming, internet radio, Napster and Spotify Premium access

Alternatively, the receiver also has an iOS app to work with Apple touchscreen kit, and a recently launched Android app to turn mobiles into glossy touchscreen remotes for menu and sound controls. To its credit, the Android version also plays audio files from the phone over Wi-Fi to the receiver. In conjunction with the Spotify app, it all enhances what you can do with the product.

Onkyo TX-NR609

The latest Android app can stream audio from phones or control the receiver

There’s no DAB radio tuner (unless you attach an external module) or Apple Airplay support but the DLNA media streaming, internet and on-demand features make up for that. There are other ways of hearing Spotify through receivers (via computer) but having it built in saves an awful lot of fuss and improves the bitrate – if you don’t mind shelling out for the premium edition.

Onkyo TX-NR609

Old school remote: compact, versatile and not overly complex

At launch, the Spotify menu lacked its own search feature (you had to use the PC or phone app to find tracks or save playlists) but it was added in a firmware update in early August, as was the AUPEO! customised internet radio service.

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Next page: Sonic boon

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