PROS / It has the ability to upscale videos to 4K resolution.
CONS / It doesn't offer HDCP 2.2, so it might be unable to pass through future protected content.
VERDICT / The Pioneer VSX-1124K is loaded with features that make it one of the best AV receivers.
The Pioneer VSX-1124K is an AV receiver with elite upscaling and pass-through capabilities. It is one of the most fully featured receivers we reviewed. For its wealth of features and its wireless capabilities, the Pioneer VSX-1124K is our Top Ten Reviews Bronze Award winner for AV receivers.
This receiver can pass through 1080p video, 4K video and 3D video. This is crucial because a good home theater receiver should be the hub between your television and your input devices. You can connect your cable or satellite box, gaming system, Blu-ray player, DVD player and whatever other input devices you own to the receiver, and then connect the receiver to the television.
This receiver can also upscale lower-resolution video to 4K resolution. If you own a 4K television, this can result in a better picture than a non-upscaled 720p or 1080p video.
The VSX-1124K supports HDMI 2.0, which allows it to pass through 4K video with a frame rate of over 24 fps. Although there isn't a lot of high-fps 4K content currently available, this feature future-proofs the receiver.
Its biggest weakness is that it doesn't support HDCP 2.2. This is a copyright protection encryption that will be used on future 4K content. This could mean the VSX-1124K won't be able to pass through some future 4K content.
This receiver sends 90 watts of power (when measured at two speakers driven) into a surround system. That's one of the highest wattages among the receivers we reviewed. It means you can listen to your movies or music at volumes that are probably higher than you'll need.
Like all the best AV receivers, the VSX-1124K has Wi-Fi and is optimized for Apple's AirPlay and Android's DLNA. This means you can easily send audio to the receiver over your home Wi-Fi network using your iPhone or Android phone. Unlike some competing receivers, it doesn't have Bluetooth, which is the simplest way to send wireless audio.
It has a signal-to-noise ratio of 98 dB, which, while adequate, is not the cleanest signal we've seen. It has a total harmonic distortion of no more than .08%, which is one of the best ratings among receivers we reviewed. Overall, expect this receiver's sound quality to be well above average. Of course, if you're looking to drastically improve the sound quality of your current surround sound system, you should invest in speakers before a receiver.
Connectivity is perhaps the most important and most overlooked aspect of a receiver. It's the main reason to upgrade from an older model. The VSX-1124K has exceptional connectivity, with an astounding seven HDMI inputs, which is on par with the best receiver we reviewed. It also has two HDMI inputs. These ports allow you to connect a plethora of input devices to the receiver.
This AV receiver also has a wide variety of legacy inputs. It boasts two optical inputs and three analog audio inputs. These give you the ability to connect your old audio equipment to this new receiver.
It can power up to seven speakers and two subwoofers, and it can decode Dolby and DTS surround sound formats. If set up properly, it provides you with a completely immersive listening environment. The VSX-1124K comes with a remote control, and it also has a downloadable smartphone app, so you can get the most of its functionality without having to leave the comfort of your couch.
Help & Support
Pioneer offers a one-year warranty on this receiver, which is disappointing compared to the two-year industry standard. It has phone and email support and also a social media support team. Like most audio equipment brands, Pioneer routes much of its customer support through its authorized retailers.
The Pioneer VSX-1124K is one of the best AV receivers on the market. While Bluetooth and HDCP 2.2 would have been welcome additions, the VSX-1124K will still be a nicely featured centerpiece of your home theater system for years to come.