Pioneer VSX-920-K review

Ben Pitt
16 Aug 2010
Pioneer VSX-920-K
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
inc VAT

Packed with unusual features plus all the ones we’d expect, but sound quality is a little disappointing


The VSX-920-K is a fairly expensive AV receiver and it's one the most sophisticated we've seen. There are nine 140W speaker outputs, giving 7.1 surround plus stereo in another room. All video sources can be fed to the HDMI output, which simplifies cabling when using analogue devices. There’s an Ethernet port to feed the internet radio function, plus a port for an optional Bluetooth audio receiver.

The front panel houses analogue AV inputs plus a USB port that can read MP3s and WAV files (but not AACs) from mass storage devices. The remote control and front panel display make light work of browsing folders on the disk. A cable is included to connect an iPod or iPhone to this USB port, with an integrated composite cable for video playback from the player.

Track selection is either via the receiver’s or the player’s controls. A dock would have been tidier than a cable, though. There are seven phono inputs, but we’d settle for fewer if it allowed for an additional, front-mounted HDMI port. There’s only one coaxial S/P-DIF input but that’s still one more than most people will need.

Pioneer VSX-920-K

Sadly, the VSX-920-K’s sophistication comes at the expense of ease of use. The remote is overpopulated with buttons, many of which have multiple labels. There’s a large dial on the front panel to switch input sources, but it’s not as convenient as individual buttons. Setting up to send different sources to the two zones was convoluted.

Sound quality of the amplifier stood up well in isolation but comparisons with the Onkyo SR608 and SR308 revealed slightly harsh high frequencies and less of a sense of space in stereo music tests. Blu-ray soundtracks fared better, with a detailed surround soundstage and plenty of oomph.

This AV receiver is well equipped for modern listening habits with its internet radio, USB, Bluetooth and iPod support. However, at this price it’s frustrating to have to accept a comprise in sound quality, however small.




HDMI inputs4
HDMI outputs1
Component inputs2
Component outputs1
Output resolutionsPAL (576i), 720p, 1080i, 1080p
Total SCART sockets0
SCART socket typeN/A
S-Video input0
S-video output0
Composite inputs5
Composite outputs2
Stereo phono inputs7
Stereo phono outputs3
Coaxial S/PDIF inputs1
Coaxial S/PDIF outputs0
Optical S/PDIF inputs2
Optical S/PDIF outputs0
Multi-channel inputno
Headphone output1/4in
Speaker configuration7.1
Main unit end speaker connection typespring terminals and binding posts
Speaker end speaker connection typeN/A
Other connectionssubwoofer line out, calibration mic input, wired remote, USB, Adapter Port
Wired network ports10/100
Wireless networking supportnone


Surround sound formatsDolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD, DTS, DTS-HD HRA, DTS-HD MA
Optical driveno
Region freeN/A
Supported playback disc formatsN/A
Audio format supportN/A
Video playback formatsN/A
Image viewing formatsN/A
RadioFM, AM


Speaker configuration7.1
RMS power output1260W
RMS power centre140W
RMS power front280W
RMS power surround560W
RMS power subwoofer0W
Wall mountableno
Centre speaker cable lengthN/A
Front speaker cable lengthN/A
Surround speaker cable lengthN/A


Extrasremote control, calibration mic, FM antenna, AM antenna
Subwoofer dimensionsN/A
Centre speaker dimensionsN/A
Front speaker dimensionsN/A
Surround speaker dimensionsN/A
Power consumption standby0W
Power consumption on51W

Buying Information

Warrantyone-year RTB