Pioneer Elite VSX-53 Review

From the manufacturer
In a world where content is everywhere, access means everything. The new Elite VSX-53 offers Ethernet connectivity, opening the gates for a number of new and exciting features. From AirPlay and popular online services like Pandora® music service to a host of control options and Pioneer-exclusive apps, the network-connected VSX-53 has the power to transform your living room into a truly connected home theater.

If you'd like to take a look at the previously reviewed Pioneer Elite VSX-52 Click here

The Power of Connectivity

AirPlay is a revolutionary way of enjoying your music anywhere in your home, and the VSX-53 is AirPlay compatible right out of the box. Wirelessly push music from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or your iTunes®-running Mac or PC directly to the receiver so you can enjoy all your favorite music in your living room through the big speakers. Use your iPhone or iPad device’s familiar controls to change the volume and switch songs, all while viewing iTunes album art on your TV. And with the VSX-53’s multi-zone capability, you can even enjoy your iTunes music in a second room while you’re watching the latest Blu-ray title in another.

DLNA Certified® 1.5

Since music is meant to be shared, not stored, the VSX-53 is DLNA 1.5 Certified, which means you can pull your MP3, WMA, AAC, and even high-resolution FLAC and WAV music files directly from your Windows-based PC to the receiver via your home network. Use the VSX-53‘s convenient on-screen display to browse through your music library, complete with album art, while your living room is filled with pure, high-resolution audio. Network connection can be made through the Ethernet port or with the AS-WL300 wireless LAN adapter (sold separately).
Online Music Services & More
You can also easily access popular internet-based music services like Pandora, Rhapsody® and SiriusXM Radio, as well as the thousands of high quality internet radio stations available through vTuner™.

Pioneer Air Jam App

It’s never been easier to create music playlists and share them with friends. Available as a free download for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad, our exclusive Air Jam application is revolutionizing the way you share your music. Up to 4 Apple devices can be paired via Bluetooth® to stream music and create a group playlist. Once connected wirelessly, you can choose songs from your device to add to the playlist to play back on the VSX-53. You can view the playlist on each device. Like the songs one of your friends added? “Like” it and you have the option of purchasing it from iTunes or watching a music video of that artist on YouTube.

You can also easily bring thousands of high quality internet radio stations into your living room for endless music entertainment with vTuner. Easily add stations to your favorites and view song info on your TV through the VSX-53’s on-screen display.

HDMI 1.4

The VSX-53 receiver supports the latest HDMI 1.4 specification, meaning you're not just getting the most out of your existing movies and music, you're prepared for the next generation of 3D video content. With 7 HDMI inputs including 1 on the front panel, you've got more than enough connectivity options for the growing number of high-definition sources available today.
Apple Ready

We have always embraced developing technologies, and the Apple revolution is no exception. As passionate Apple users ourselves, Elite understands how deeply expectations run. That’s one reason the VSX-53 is fully ready for out-of-the-box plug and play convenience and compatibility. In every device – iPod, iPhone and iPad – Apple enthusiasts carry a wealth of audio and video content that can now be delivered seamlessly into the experience of high definition multi-channel home theater.

Having been an early leader in building AirPlay into our receivers, we have an intimate understanding of how to bring your iTunes library to your home theater system. It’s just one more way Elite receivers offer a truly seamless Apple experience.

Total Control

Control is at the core of the home theater experience. And the Elite VSX-53 makes sure you cancustomize and fine-tune your home theater experience to exactly the way you enjoy it most.

An industry-first, Pioneer's AVNavigator truly is an interactive owner’s manual that takes all the guesswork out of setting up your receiver. AVNavigator uses your networked PC to communicate directly with the VSX-53, walking you through the entire set-up of your home theater, step-by-step.

The VSX-53 also offers Multi-Zone audio and video with second zone on-screen display that gives you premium, customized entertainment throughout your home.

Additionally, the VSX-53 has been independently tested and certified by custom partners Control 4, Crestron, AMX, RTI, Universal Remote and Savant ensuring seamless integration that gives you a wide choice of advanced control options for IP, Serial, and IR commands. The VSX-53 is the perfect choice for a customized home installation.

Elite Video Processing

The VSX-53 converts analog video signals to HDMI and scales both analog and digital signals up to 1080p/24fps to best match your TV’s capabilities. And Marvell® video processing with award winning Qdeo™ technology provides a truly immersive viewing experience, creating natural and noise-free video for maximum performance and flexibility.

Thanks to Elite Advanced Video Adjust, any video signal that goes into the VSX-53 simply comes out better. Video signals are optimized by the type of display you have connected, with video presets for Plasma, LCD and Front Projection TV’s to maximize their performance. And working in conjunction with Elite Advanced MCACC sound tuning, Advanced Video Adjust provides subtle noise reduction and detail enhancements based on the kind of display and your distance from it.

Stream Smoother technology is specifically designed to reduce picture distortion and enhance images while viewing low bit-rate streaming video content from sites that offer it such as YouTube.

In summary,

Basically, the differences between the Pioneer Elite VSX-52 and the VSX-53 are minimal and really depend on the consumers needs.
  • An extra HDMI output (could be very important to you based on your needs, or could be completely unneeded) 
  • Zone 2 video!  Which could prove invaluable if you have more than one set of speakers and TV.(Wont need another receiver)
  • An extra zone of audio (again, depending on your needs.  A receiver like this is a lifetime investment, as a result in the ballpark of $100 difference?  Why not?)
  • Lots of Apple and networking support (That the VSX-52 also has)
  • An interactive user's manual and calibration system that helps people set up their new receiver. (With a graphical interface. Believe me, text ones suck)

Long story short, if you want to do it right?  Go all in and do it with style.  This product will not disappoint, it's well worth the money and with the price difference between the lower model.....Just do it!

    If you'd like to take a look at the Pioneer Elite VSX-52 Click here