Surround Receivers

My AV Receiver has Bluetooth – What Does That Mean?

AV receivers have so many features these days. New HDMI features, room correction, and even Bluetooth. Heck, everything seems to have Bluetooth these days! They have thermometers that connect via Bluetooth so that you can get an alert on your phone when your dinner is ready to come off the grill. And, of course, headphones. It seems that now all headphones have to be Bluetooth. So, when your AV receiver has Bluetooth, what exactly does that mean? How can you know? Let’s discuss.

The Answer That is (Nearly) Always True

We’d love to say that Bluetooth worked the same for all AV receivers. But that’s just not the case. We can tell you want it generally means, but you will still have to do a little research. In general, however, when you see the word “Bluetooth” on your AV receiver, it means it can accept a Bluetooth connection. This means that you can connect your phone, tablet, computer, or another source to your AV receiver wirelessly. This is true in almost all cases. If you see Bluetooth, your AV receiver can accept a wireless connection and play the content out of the connected speakers.

The Less Often Answer

It is uncommon, but we are seeing AV receivers that can stream audio out to headphones via Bluetooth. The Denon DRA-800H and Marantz NR1200 can receive and transmit via Bluetooth. If manufacturers feel that people want and use this functionality, we’ll see this become more common.

The other very rare use case is with remotes. Sony, in particular, seems to love their Bluetooth remotes. While we haven’t seen them on their AV receivers, Sony TVs have the ability to accept a Bluetooth signal for a remote but can’t stream out to headphones.

Take Away

If there is a takeaway, it is not to assume that the Bluetooth connection on your AV receiver actually does what you think. Read the specifications closely, double-check in the manual, and contact the manufacturer if you are unsure. Bluetooth can be used in a variety of ways. Don’t assume it is implemented in a way that makes sense to you.

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