Along with the growing popularity of custom home theater builds, the comparison of Onkyo TX-NR5100 and Onkyo TX-SR494 takes place. According to the results of our review, Onkyo TX-NR5100 received 7.3 points out of 10 possible, and Onkyo TX-SR494 was rated 5.5 points. The release date of TX-NR5100 is 2021, and TX-SR494 is 2019. Based on the data on the characteristics and features of both models, we can conclude that TX-NR5100 has better performance than TX-SR494.
For the built-in amplifier, the models have rated 7 points out of 10.
The number of channels is equal to the number of possible connected speakers. Both receivers can handle the 7.2-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 TX-NR5100 this value is 165/6 W/Ohm, and for the TX-SR494 it is 135/6 W/Ohm.
|Stereo power (RMS), W/Ohm||80/8, 165/6||135/6|
|Output impedance, Ohm||8, 6||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.
Speaker A/B switching allows you to change between the main and sub speaker set. Onkyo TX-NR5100 can work with the main and additional set of speakers - and switch between them.
|Digital to analog converter (DAC)||384 KHz/32-bit||AKM 384 KHz/32-bit|
|Pure direct (straight)||✔||✔|
|Auto speaker calibration||AccuEQ||AccuEQ|
|Speaker A/B switching||✔||✖|
|Other audio features||Advanced Music Optimizer, Hi-Res audio, Dynamic Audio Amplification, CinemaFILTER||Advanced Music Optimizer, Hi-Res audio|
The connectivity of competitors in our comparison is markedly different, Onkyo TX-NR5100 scored 9, and Onkyo TX-SR494 scored 5 out of 10.
Bluetooth connection is now one of the main communication protocols for the receiver's control or even music broadcasting.
Wired internet connection via RJ45 allows receiver faster connection than wireless or even use NAS storages. Wired connection via RJ45 is possible in the TX-NR5100 only.
|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 2||✖|
|Other streaming services||Deezer, TIDAL, Pandora, SiriusXM, Napster, SoundCloud||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, both receivers got 6 points on our 10-point scale.
Onkyo TX-NR5100 is equipped with 4/2 HDMI inputs and outputs, and Onkyo TX-SR494 has 4/1 HDMI inputs and outputs.
HDMI eARC is the next step in the development of audio return channel technology, which works in conjunction with HDMI 2.1. Using eARC provides the highest sound quality for home audio systems. HDMI eARC is available only on Onkyo TX-NR5100.
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 Onkyo TX-NR5100 in the HDCP 2.3 version, and Onkyo TX-SR494 has the HDCP 2.2 version.
Connecting a vinyl player or phonograph is possible using a Phono input which is represented by mini-jack or RCA connectors. Only the TX-NR5100 has a Phono interface.
|HDMI ARC (Audio Return Channel)||✔||✔|
|HDMI eARC (Enhanced Audio Return Channel)||✔||✖|
|Digital content protection (HDCP)||HDCP 2.3||HDCP 2.2|
|Subwoofer output (LFE)||2||2|
|Headphone output||1 x 6.3||1 x 6.3|
|Optical digital input||1||1|
|Coaxial digital input||1||1|
|Phono (MM) input||✔||✖|
|Front panel connectors||phones, setup mic, AUX||USB, phones|
|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-NR5100 were rated 8 out of 10 against the 6 for the TX-SR494.
With the 4K pass-through feature, the AV receiver sends "native" 4K signals to a 4K TV from a video source without any processing. The TX-NR5100 works with the 4K/120Hz video, and the TX-SR494 has the 4K/60Hz.
The AV receiver passes "native" 8K signals from a video source to 8K TV without any encoding, with the 8k pass-through features. The 8K path-through is available only on Onkyo TX-NR5100.
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 Onkyo TX-NR5100.
|HDR (High Dynamic Range)||HDR10+||HDR10|
|4K signal pass-through||4K/120Hz||4K/60Hz|
|8K signal pass-through||8K/60Hz||✖|
|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||DeepColor, x.v.Color, HLG, BT.2020, LipSyn, Deep Color||DeepColor, x.v.Color, HLG, BT.2020|
In terms of evaluating additional features, the TX-NR5100 got 10 points, but the TX-SR494 has 6.
Voice control allows you to control the basic functions of the receiver through a smartphone, smart speaker or using the microphone that comes with the kit. The TX-NR5100 can be controlled by voice via Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, Josh.AI. Only the Onkyo TX-NR5100 has the ECO mode.
|Voice control||Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri, Josh.AI||✖|
|App control||iPhone, iPad, iPod, Android||iPhone, iPad, iPod, Android|
|Tuner||AM, FM||AM, FM|
|Auto power off||✔||✔|
|Graphical user interface (GUI)||✔||✔|
|Firmware update||network, USB||USB|
|Other additional features||Web Control, App 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.
|Multi-room zones||has not||2|
|Zone audio output||has not||speaker|
|Zone HDMI output||has not||✖|
|Multi-room control||FlareConnect||has not|
|Remote control input/output (IR)||0||0/0|
|DC trigger output (12V)||0||0|
For the ability to create multichannel surround sound, each of the receivers received 7 points out of 10.
|Dolby (other)||Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization||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|