Along with the growing popularity of custom home theater builds, the comparison of Yamaha RX-V385BL and Sony STR-ZA3100ES takes place. According to the results of our review, Yamaha RX-V385BL received 4.7 points out of 10 possible, and Sony STR-ZA3100ES was rated 6.3 points. The release date of RX-V385BL is 2018, and STR-ZA3100ES is 2017. Based on the data on the characteristics and features of both models, we can conclude that STR-ZA3100ES has better performance than RX-V385BL.
For the built-in amplifier, the devices received different marks - 6 and 7, respectively, on a 10-point scale.
The number of channels is equal to the number of possible connected speakers. The Yamaha RX-V385BL supports 5.1-channels sound, but Sony STR-ZA3100ES supports a 7.2-channels configuration.
RMS stands for the actual power of the receiver. The higher this value, the louder the sound can be produced. In terms of RMS power, the models have the same characteristics - 70/8, 145/6/8 W/Ohm.
|Stereo power (RMS), W/Ohm||70/8, 145/6||70/8, 90/6|
|Output impedance, Ohm||8, 6||8, 6|
|THD in stereo, %||0.09||0.09|
After reviewing the audio features of each model, we can rate the RX-V385BL 5 out of 10, and the STR-ZA3100ES - 7.
Bi-amping is the amplification of one speaker with two amplifiers. This amplification method has a positive effect on sound quality. Bi-amping is possible on the STR-ZA3100ES.
Pure Direct mode feeds sound directly to the amplifier and bypasses any DSP processing. Only Sony STR-ZA3100ES has Pure Direct mode.
Most receivers now come with a microphone included. It is with the help of this microphone that the auto-calibration system functions, which adjusts the sound of the receiver to the room.
|Digital to analog converter (DAC)||Burr-Brown 384 KHz/32-bit||N/A|
|Pure direct (straight)||✖||✔|
|Auto speaker calibration||✖||DCAC EX|
|Speaker A/B switching||✖||✖|
|Other audio features||CINEMA DSP 3D, Compressed Music Enhancer, Virtual CINEMA FRONT||Sound Optimizer|
The connectivity of competitors in our comparison is equal and was rated 6 out of 10.
Bluetooth connection is now one of the main communication protocols for the receiver's control or even music broadcasting.
|USB||1 (USB 2.0)||1 (USB 2.0)|
Now music streaming services are gaining more and more popularity. They allow users to listen to millions of songs by subscription.
|Apple Music (AirPlay)||✖||✖|
|Other streaming services||has not||has not|
The presence of many connectors makes the receiver more versatile. But there are also narrowly targeted models, the number of connectors which are limited to a certain area of use. And when choosing their own receiver, users need to consider exactly your goals for using the receiver. For extensive connection, Yamaha RX-V385BL got 7 points, but Sony STR-ZA3100ES received 9 points.
Yamaha RX-V385BL is equipped with 4/1 HDMI inputs and outputs, and Sony STR-ZA3100ES has 6/2 HDMI inputs and outputs.
The HDCP encryption protocol is now mandatory for most media devices. This security technology encrypts digital signals from one product to another. HDCP content-encryption protocol is present on Yamaha RX-V385BL in the HDCP 2.3 version, and Sony STR-ZA3100ES has the HDCP 2.2 version.
|HDMI ARC (Audio Return Channel)||✔||✔|
|HDMI eARC (Enhanced Audio Return Channel)||✔||✔|
|Digital content protection (HDCP)||HDCP 2.3||HDCP 2.2|
|Subwoofer output (LFE)||1||2|
|Headphone output||1 x 6.3||0|
|Optical digital input||1||2|
|Coaxial digital input||2||1|
|Phono (MM) input||✖||✖|
|Front panel connectors||USB, phones, AUX||USB, HDMI, setup mic|
|Multi channel preamp output||✖||✔|
The AV receiver is the heart of the home theater. And in this case, support for all current video formats ensures the best user experience, so it is very important to consider this when choosing a device. Video features of the RX-V385BL were rated 9 out of 10 against the 7 for the STR-ZA3100ES.
Most of the AV receivers have a video scaling function, it is the process of reformatting the video signal to a higher resolution without losing the quality of the image. Upscaling the video signal resolution is possible only with Yamaha RX-V385BL.
|HDR (High Dynamic Range)||HDR10||✔|
|4K signal pass-through||4K/60Hz||4K/60Hz|
|8K signal pass-through||✖||✖|
|HDMI signal pass-through||✔||✔|
|3D signal pass-through||✔||✔|
|HDMI pass-through in standby mode||✔||✔|
|Analog to HDMI scaling||✔||✖|
|HDMI to HDMI scaling||✔||✖|
|Other video features||HLG, BT.2020||HLG|
In terms of evaluating additional features, the RX-V385BL got 5 points, but the STR-ZA3100ES has 6.
Only the Yamaha RX-V385BL has the ECO mode.
|App control||✖||iPhone, iPad, iPod, Android|
|Display||colour OSD||colour OSD|
|Tuner||AM, FM||AM, FM|
|Auto power off||✔||✖|
|Graphical user interface (GUI)||✖||✔|
|Firmware update||network, USB||network, USB|
|Other additional features||has not||has not|
As the center of a home media system, each multichannel receiver has an additional set of terminals for connecting the second set of speakers to create additional audio space in Zone 2 or even Zone 3 where audio can have the separate source.
|Multi-room zones||has not||2|
|Zone audio output||has not||speaker, preout|
|Zone HDMI output||has not||✔|
|Multi-room control||has not||has not|
|Remote control input/output (IR)||0/0||1/2|
|DC trigger output (12V)||0||3|
Yamaha RX-V385BL got 5 points for the multichannel surround sound and Sony STR-ZA3100ES got 7.
Dolby Atmos' particularity is that this is the object-oriented sound format, that is, each audio signal object is independently sounded and connected to its spatial position. Sony STR-ZA3100ES can create 3D sound due to the Dolby Atmos support.
DTS:X is an algorithm used by the processor to create sound scenes, where sounds connected directly to objects rather than channels, and to determine the optimum sound output distribution in space. Surround sound with DTS:X is available on the STR-ZA3100ES.
IMAX Enhanced is a licensing and certification program under which home theater devices deliver crisp 4K HDR pictures and powerful sound as it was designed by the IMAX engineers. The STR-ZA3100ES licensed by IMAX.
|Dolby (other)||Dolby Digital Plus||Dolby Digital Plus|
|DTS HD Master||✔||✖|
|DTS (other)||DTS 96/24, DTS-EXPRESS||DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS-HD|