Arcam HDA AVR21 (All version)
- 7.2 channels
- 15.2 channel processing
- 110 W (8 Ω, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 2 channel driven)
- HDMI 2.1
- Dolby Atmos, DTS:X Pro, Auro 3D capable
- HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision, 8K Passthrough
- AirPlay 2, Chromecast
- Ethernet, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
- USB input
Disclosure: We earn money from the affiliate links to products associated with content in this article.
In The Box
- Mains lead
- Remote control with 2 x AAA batteries
- Quick Start Guide (full manual online)
- DAB/FM aerial
- 3 x Wi-Fi/Bluetooth antennas
- Calibration microphone
- USB cable
Arcam HDA AVR21 was introduced in 2022. It is equipped with 7 channel amplifier and is capable of 15.2 maximum channel processing.
We evaluated the Receiver and gave 92 overall score out of 100. Our ranking system is based on the amplifier specifications, audio and video features, connectivity, multizone capabilities, radio and many other details.
Amplifier score is based on power ratings, minimum impedance load, power supply, transformer type, total harmonic distortion, damping factor, signal to noise ratio and other small details. Audio score depends on the number of channels, front wide channel support, maximum channel processing, support of audio formats, DAC specifications, room calibration algorithm... Video score is based on HDR, Dolby Vision and video signal passthrough and upscaling, analog to HDMI upconversion. Connectivity score is defined from all wired and wireless inputs and outputs, internet and bluetooth connections, HEOS, SONOS and others. Multizone score depends on the number of zones with their outputs. Radio score is evaluated form digital radio support and analog tuner with its frequency range, signal to noise ratio, harmonic distortion...
Pros and Cons
In this section we present pros and cons of Arcam HDA AVR21
|Front Wide Channel Support|
|15.2 Channel Processing|
|Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization|
|Auro 3D with Auro-Matic Upmixer|
|DSD via HDMI|
|Auto Speaker Calibration System with Mic.|
|Auto Low Latency Mode Pass-through|
|4K or 8K Video Passthrough|
|New HDCP Version|
|Many HDMI Inputs|
|Many HDMI Outputs|
|Many 8K Inputs|
|Many Analog Audio Line Inputs|
|New Bluetooth Version|
|Does not Work with Amazon Alexa|
|No Phono Input|
|No Composite Video Inputs|
Here we are comparing Arcam HDA AVR21 to its predecessor AVR20 and displaying the major changes.
|UPGRADES||Arcam HDA AVR21||vs||Arcam HDA AVR20|
|Newer HDMI Version||2.1||vs||2.0b|
|Auto Low Latency Mode Pass-through||vs|
|Video Signal Passthrough||up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 100/120Hz 4:4:4||vs||up to 4K 50/60Hz 4:4:4|
|Newer HDCP Version||2.3||vs||2.2|
|More 8K Inputs||7||vs|
For more detailed comparison between the models please visit Arcam HDA AVR21 vs Arcam HDA AVR20.
Arcam HDA AVR21 has 7 channel amplifier and delivers 110 W (8 Ω, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 2 channel driven) and also has a stable performance at 4 Ω load. This receiver even supports front wide channels which is found only in a very few high-end receivers these days.
The Receiver has 8K passthrough up to 60p. It can bypass HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision.
High-dynamic-range (HDR) video has greater dynamic range than standard-dynamic-range (SDR) video with brigter whites and deeper blacks. HDR10 was announced on August 27, 2015, by the Consumer Technology Association and uses the wide-gamut Rec. 2020 color space. It sends static metadata via video stream to the TV which calibrates its screen brightness and color according to that. HDR10 supports up to 1000 nits of brightness and 10-bit color which corresponds to 1024 shades of the primary RGB colors.
Dolby Vision and HDR10+
Dolby Vision and HDR10+ are both updates to HDR10 by adding dynamic metadata that can be used to more accurately adjust brightness levels up to 10,000 nits maximum brightness on a scene-by-scene or frame-by-frame basis and support up to 12-bit color depth (4096 shades of RGB) and 8K resolution.
Dolby Atmos and Dolby Surround upmixer
Arcam HDA AVR21 supports Dolby Atmos with its Dolby Surround upmixer. It can be configured upto 5.1.2 channels using internal amplifiers.
Dolby Atmos is the first cinematic audio format in which sounds exist as individual entities, called audio objects. In Dolby Atmos, any sound - the helicopter, a car screeching around a corner, a melodic bird call - can exist as an independent audio object, free of channel restrictions. They can be precisely placed and moved anywhere in your room, including overhead, to flow above and around you in three-dimensional space. Through the use of audio objects, overhead sound, and all the richness, clarity, and power of Dolby sound, Dolby Atmos turns your room into an amazing place for entertainment. You'll feel like you're inside the action, in ways you've never experienced before.
Dolby Atmos for the home represents every sound in the original cinema mix as an audio object. Extensions to the Dolby Audio™ codecs, along with an advanced scalable algorithm, allow Dolby Atmos to be delivered via Blu-ray Disc and streaming media. A spatially-coded substream is added to Dolby TrueHD or Dolby Digital Plus. A Dolby Atmos audio/video receiver (AVR) adapts the cinema experience to your home theater from seven speakers to as many as 34 in 24.1.10 configuration, recreating the original artistic concept. The format supports up to 128 simultaneous independent audio objects in a mix for rich, realistic, and breathtaking sound. It recreates the director's original concept through descriptive metadata to provide customized playback for home theater and delivers sounds above you through overhead speakers, special upward-firing Dolby Atmos speakers, or a Dolby Atmos enabled sound bar.
If the content is not mixed in Dolby Atmos then the Dolby surround upmixer will expand the audio to all channels including ceiling speakers. The upmixer has replaced the Dolby Pro Logic II family with improved upmixing algorithms.
DTS:X and Neural:X upmixer
Arcam HDA AVR21 supports DTS:X with its Neural:X upmixer. It can be configured upto
A technique used in DTS:X is similar to the one used in Dolby Atmos. Instead of a fixed number of channels, DTS:X defines object locations from the listener in polar coordinates. An a/v receiver then dynamically renders sound according to the current speaker configuration. The speaker layout employed by DTS:X is the sum of Dolby Atmos and Auro-3D. It has standard 7.1 channel base layer, a 5 channel height layer above the base layer on the front and side walls, and 3 rows of speakers on the ceiling.
DTS Neural:X is a new upmixer that can take non DTS:X content and upmix it to the DTS:X speaker layout. It has replaced the DTS Neo family with improved flexibility.
Auro-3D with its Auro-Matic upmixer
Arcam HDA AVR21 supports Auro-3D and its Auro-Matic upmixer out of the box or after free firmware update. Auro-3D is an immersive 3D audio format developed by the Belgium-based company Auro Technologies. It consists of three layers of sound - surround, height and overhead ceiling. The base horizontal layer uses 5.1 or 7.1 format, the height layer is on top of the base layer and its information is extracted from the standard 5.1 surround PCM carrier. The a/v receiver decoder then extracts this information during playback. In home cinema Auro-3D comes with different listening formats - Auro 9.1, Auro 10.1 with added Top Ceiling channel ("Voice of God"), Auro 11.1 with added Front Height Center channel, and Auro 13.1 with added Left Rear Surround & Right Rear Surround channel. Auro-Matic upmixer takes non Auro-3D sound and upmixes to the current speaker configuration.
Arcam HDA AVR21 has a toroidal transformer which in general costs several times more than a regular C-core transformer and radiates less electromagnetic noise outside its donut shaped core.
Arcam HDA AVR21 comes with Dirac Live™ room correction system and includes the calibration microphone.
Arcam HDA AVR21 can be connected to internet using ethernet cable or built-in wi-fi adapter. It can also connect to bluetooth devices via built-in bluetooth adapter. The Receiver supports AirPlay 2. It has 7 HDMI inputs and HDCP 2.3 copy protection. There are 15.2 channel analog pre-outs for external amplification.
Front panel has AUX (3.5 mm Audio) input.
Here we list all the available features and specifications of Arcam HDA AVR21.
|Front Wide Channel Support|
|Continuous 6 Ω Rated|
|Certified 4 Ω Performance|
|DAC||Dual ESS 9026PRO|
|Maximum Channel Processing||15.2|
|Dolby Atmos||up to 9.1.6 with external amp|
|Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization|
|Dolby Atmos Music|
|Dolby Digital Plus|
|Dolby Surround Upmixer|
|Dolby Pro Logic|
|Dolby Digital EX|
|DTS:X||Pro up to 9.1.6 with external amp|
|DTS-HD Master Audio|
|DTS-HD High Resolution Audio|
|DTS-ES||Discrete 6.1, Matrix 6.1|
|Auro 3D with Auro-Matic Upmixer||15.1-ch (Built-In)|
|Music Playback via USB|
|High Resolution Music Playback via USB and/or Network||up to 192 kHz|
|DSD via HDMI||2-ch/Multi-ch Input|
|DSD via USB|
|DSD to PCM Converter|
|DTS Dialog Control|
|Audyssey Dynamic EQ|
|Audyssey Dynamic Volume|
|Audyssey Sub EQ HT|
|Direct Mode||Stereo Direct, CD Direct|
|Independent Subwoofer Outputs|
|Auto Speaker Calibration System with Mic.||Dirac Live™|
|BT.2020 color space|
|HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma)|
|QMS (Quick Media Switching)|
|ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode)|
|VRR (Variable Refresh Rate)|
|QFT (Quick Frame transport)|
|DSC (Display Stream Compression)|
|Video Signal Passthrough||up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 100/120Hz 4:4:4|
|Works with Amazon Alexa|
|Works with SONOS|
|Apple Product Connection||iPod, iPhone and iPad|
|Remote App||Arcam control app|
|HDMI Outputs||3 (2 x 8K for MAIN, 1 x 4K for ZONE2)|
|USB Input||for factory service|
|USB DC Out Port|
|Analog Audio Line Input||7 (1 front)|
|Analog Audio Line Output||1|
|Coaxial In/Out||4 /|
|Composite Video Input|
|Composite Video Output|
|Component Video Input|
|Component Video Output|
|Front A/V Inputs||AUX (3.5 mm Audio)|
|Headphone Out||3.5 mm|
|Zone 2||HDMI, Pre Out|
|+12V Trigger Output||2|
|Remote (IR) Input/Output||2 / 0|
|IP Control for CI|
|Display||Large front-panel LCD display|
|Detachable Power Cord|
|Analog Tuner||FM with RDS|
|SiriusXM Internet Radio|
|Large Speaker Terminals||7|
|Power Supply||AC 110-120 V or 220-240 V, 50/60 Hz via switch|
|Power Consumption||1500 W|
|Standby Power||0.5 W|
|Dimensions (W x H x D)||433 mm x 171 mm x 425 mm|
17.06" x 6.69" x 18.56"
|Weight||16.6 kg (36.4 lbs)|
|Weight of Package||19.9 kg|
|Power Output (8 Ω, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 2||110 W (0.02% THD)|
|Power Output (8 Ω, 1 kHz, 2||125 W (0.2% THD)|
|Power Output (4 Ω, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 2||175 W (0.2% THD)|
|Power Output (4 Ω, 1 kHz, 2||190 W (0.2% THD)|
|Multi Channel Simultaneous Drive (8 Ω, 1 kHz, 1.0%)||90 W (7 channels driven, 1kHz, 8 Ω, 0.2% THD)|
110 W (7 channels driven, 1kHz, 4 Ω, 0.2% THD)
|Input Sensitivity and Impedance (Line)||1V, 2V, 4V (user adjustable)/47 kΩ|
|Maximum Input Sensitivity (Line)||4.5 Vrms|
|Rated Preout Level and Impedance||1 Vrms/560 Ω|
|Maximum Preout Level and Impedance||5 Vrms/560 Ω|
|Rated Headphone Jack Output Level and Impedance||5 Vrms/100 Ω|
|S/N Ratio (Line, IHF-A)||93 dB (normal)|
110 dB (stereo direct)
|Frequency Response (Analog In)||±0.2 dB (20 Hz to 20 kHz)|
|Residual Noise (IHF-A Network)||0.15 mV|
|DSD Sampling Rates via HDMI||2.8 MHz|
|Wi-Fi Standard||IEEE 802.11 ac|
|Wi-Fi Terminal Frequency||5 GHz, 2.4 GHz|
* - 480i/576i and 480p/576p only
** - 480i/576i only
*** - no 1080p/24 upconversion
**** - 1080p signal is not converted