Review on Sony STR-DH190 Stereo Receiver

Sony STR-DH190 Review

Speakers nowadays are good enough that can give you really high-quality music listening experience. However, the experience will be far better with a stereo receiver.

You will get to listen to all the smaller details that otherwise wouldn’t be heard from just using a speaker connected via your smartphone. But finding a receiver can be quite daunting. Good receivers are very expensive and cheaper ones just don’t sound that great.

However, there are certain brands that have come out with great quality products at a very affordable price. We have done our research and have selected one that we think is the best one comparing the price, performance, and audio quality. We will be reviewing the Sony STR-DH190. As of writing this review, it has over 3,500+ ratings on Amazon, out of which 77% are 5-stars.

Read our full review on this home stereo receiver to see if it’s a good fit for your home. Also, in case you are interested in setting up a complete home theatre experience, check out our review on the BenQ HT2050A 1080P Home Theater Projector.

Design & Construction

The design of the Sony STRDH190 is very minimal, yet sleek and modern looking. This should blend in with most rooms. It is a bit on the larger side, so you will need to have a dedicated space for placing this machine.

Regarding the build quality, the front part is made of mostly plastic, and the rest of the body uses a thin metal sheet material. This also adds to the premiumness of the product. It may not be as premium as the higher-end models but is definitely decent as compared to the price.

The buttons are well placed and properly labeled. It should be easy to work around for most users. The remote also hosts all the necessary features at your fingertips, so you won’t have to deal with the receiver buttons if that’s too complicated for you.

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You will get to see the Sony badge at the top followed by the power button, headphone jack, and a mini-jack. The left part also consists of the button named speaker, which allows you to switch between your connected speakers. As far as the speakers are concerned, you will be able to connect up to 4 speakers at a time. No more than that.

Right after the speaker button, you will get 3 additional buttons. Those are used for the tuner functionality. A display is mounted at the center of the receiver, which shows you the status and control functionality of the system.

On the left, you will get two knobs. The smaller one is for the input selector, and the larger one is for the volume. At first glance, we thought these were made of metal, but soon got disappointed after touching it. It is made of plastic, the color finish just gives it that shiny look.

At the right, below the display, you will get the display button and a dimmer button. The dimming option is really convenient, as you won’t be bothered by light continuously flashing at you. You also get the Bluetooth and the pure direct button, which we will talk about soon.

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Bluetooth & pure direct

Having the Bluetooth capability built-in is really a huge plus with this device. It will pair your receiver with your Bluetooth device for audio transmission. However, only one Bluetooth device can stay connected at a time. Once connected, the system should be ready to use automatically. The pure direct will help you achieve the best all-around sound quality that the system is capable of producing. Once it is turned on, it will shut down all the functionalities that are not related to the sound output, this also includes turning off the display. This will ensure the system receives the shortest and purest signal path.

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Remote control

I can’t stress how convenient having the remote really is. It makes using the system much easier and more fun. The remote itself has a very user-friendly layout. The buttons are very straightforward and display all the important features that you will require. Each set of buttons are laid out in sections of their use. The controls are also available directly in the receiver in case you need them. But using the remote is much more logical and convenient, so we recommend using it rather than going into the pain of manually changing the settings.

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Performance

If you are someone who’s coming from a higher-end stereo receiver, then you will notice the budgetness of this product. If not, then this will satisfy your music listening needs. This Sony STR-DH190 even outperforms some of its competitors when it comes to performance. The audio is very well balanced and relatively neutral. What we mean is that the treble, mid-range, and bass are integrated very appropriately. One thing we really like about this product is that, unlike other brands, Sony didn’t deliberately bump up the treble and bass to make it sound more impressive. Companies usually do it to make their one sound more attractive. However, by doing so, it opens up customers to a headache in terms of choosing the speaker that will be properly compatible with their desired speaker. Sony’s approach of not doing such things means that you can use whatever speaker you wish to use and should work just fine.

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Pros

  • Best value for money
  • Excellent audio performance
  • Very polished design
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Easy to use remote control system
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Cons

  • Limited connectivity
  • Only one Bluetooth device can be connected at a time
  • No AM support
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Final Thoughts

Surely, the Sony STR-DH190 is not the best stereo receiver out there, but for the price, the output it delivers makes it a very tough competition. By removing the expensive features, Sony managed to streamline the product into being something that is suitable for most general consumers. It is built for home use and lives up to the expectation of what it was intended to do.

Cindy Lin

Cindy Lin is a senior writer here at Doorbell Gears. She is from a Computer Science background and has been working for the company for the past 5 years. Her expertise mostly lies in computers and AI-driven products. But because of her interest in technology as a whole, she has excellent knowledge in most fields of the tech product industry. Therefore, she is the primary candidate when it comes to writing anything related to electronics. Her work has been published in numerous print media including some magazines. Cindy’s reviews are very unique, as she has her own style and humor in doing things.

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