Along with the growing popularity of custom home theater builds, the comparison of Onkyo TX-NR686 and Pioneer VSX-LX504 takes place. According to the results of our review, Onkyo TX-NR686 received 7.2 points out of 10 possible, and Pioneer VSX-LX504 was rated 8.8 points. The release date of TX-NR686 is 2018, and VSX-LX504 is 2019. Based on the data on the characteristics and features of both models, we can conclude that VSX-LX504 has better performance than TX-NR686.
For the built-in amplifier, the devices received different marks - 7 and 9, respectively, on a 10-point scale.
The number of channels is equal to the number of possible connected speakers. The Onkyo TX-NR686 supports 7.2-channels sound, but Pioneer VSX-LX504 supports a 9.2-channels configuration.
RMS stands for the actual power of the receiver. The higher this value, the louder the sound can be produced. The differences between the models in terms of RMS power are significant - for the VSX-LX504 this value is 230/6 W/Ohm, and for the TX-NR686 it is 165/6 W/Ohm.
|Stereo power (RMS), W/Ohm||165/6||120/8, 230/6|
|Output impedance, Ohm||6||8, 6|
|THD in stereo, %||0.08||0.08|
The score for audio features is 9 of 10 for both receivers.
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)||VLSC 384 KHz/32-bit||AK4458 384 KHz/32-bit|
|Pure direct (straight)||✔||✔|
|Auto speaker calibration||AccuEQ||MCACC|
|Speaker A/B switching||✖||✖|
|Other audio features||Advanced Music Optimizer, Theater-Dimensional, Hi-Res audio||Advanced Sound Retriever, Hi-Res audio|
The connectivity of competitors in our comparison is equal and was rated 8 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)||AirPlay||AirPlay, AirPlay 2|
|Other streaming services||Deezer, TIDAL, TuneIn Radio||Deezer, TIDAL, Pandora|
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, both receivers got 8 points on our 10-point scale.
Competitors in our review have 7/2 HDMI inputs and outputs.
|HDMI ARC (Audio Return Channel)||✔||✔|
|HDMI eARC (Enhanced Audio Return Channel)||✖||✖|
|Digital content protection (HDCP)||HDCP 2.2||HDCP 2.2|
|Subwoofer output (LFE)||2||2|
|Headphone output||1 x 6.3||1 x 6.3|
|Optical digital input||2||1|
|Coaxial digital input||1||1|
|Phono (MM) input||✔||✔|
|Front panel connectors||HDMI, phones, setup mic||USB, HDMI, phones, 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 TX-NR686 were rated 7 out of 10 against the 10 for the VSX-LX504.
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 with Pioneer VSX-LX504.
|HDR (High Dynamic Range)||HDR10||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||✔||✔|
|Video conversion||✖||analog to HDMI|
|Analog to HDMI scaling||✖||✔|
|HDMI to HDMI scaling||✖||✔|
|Other video features||DeepColor, x.v.Color||x.v.Color, HLG, BT.2020|
In terms of evaluating additional features, the TX-NR686 got 7 points, but the VSX-LX504 has 9.
|Voice control||Google Assistant||Amazon Alexa|
|App control||iPhone, iPod, Android||iPhone, iPad, iPod, Android|
|Tuner||AM, FM||AM, FM|
|Auto power off||✖||✔|
|Graphical user interface (GUI)||✔||✔|
|Firmware update||network, USB||network, USB|
|Other additional features||IP Control||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.
|Zone audio output||speaker, preout||speaker, preout|
|Zone HDMI output||✖||✔|
|Multi-room control||Onkyo Controller app, FlareConnect||Pioneer Control App, FlareConnect|
|Remote control input/output (IR)||0/0||1/1|
|DC trigger output (12V)||0||2|
Onkyo TX-NR686 got 7 points for the multichannel surround sound and Pioneer VSX-LX504 got 8.
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 VSX-LX504 licensed by IMAX.
|Dolby (other)||Dolby Digital Plus||Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization|
|DTS HD Master||✔||✔|
|DTS (other)||DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS-HD, DTS-EXPRESS||DTS-ES, DTS 96/24, DTS-HD, DTS-EXPRESS|