Marantz SR6003 review: Marantz SR6003

Marantz SR6003 receivers have opted for a different look than previous models. It is more curved, more sophisticated and yet also much simpler. You’ll find only two dials on the SR6003’s fascia: volume and input selection. All other controls like the Menu button and direction buttons are hidden under a softened flap. The amp comes in two colors: classic black and “New Silver” which is actually closer to Rose Gold.

In the center of the receiver is a large LED display, the most “Denon-like” ever. Of course, there’s a reason it looks like this: Both manufacturers are owned by the same company. That’s not to say it’s a poor display, far from it, and it’s certainly easier to read than the Sony equivalent, for example.

The remote is functional enough, but perhaps not the most elegant the company has ever released. We still have fond memories of the almost porcelain remote that came with the old SR7200. Even if the new version is a learning model, we would still like one Logitech Harmony One, which is now available online for under AU $ 200.

The SR6003 is a complete receiver as well, given that it is available at two thirds of the price of the Rotel with similar characteristics it really makes great value for money. The output power is raised to 100W x 7, although knowing Marantz this is likely to be conservative too. Needless to say, it should power all but the most esoteric of speakers.

As a modern receiver, it supports the latest HD standards – Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio – and while there are still only a handful of players capable of playing these streams natively, the list is definitely growing. While these formats are still relatively new, being able to download them to a high quality DAC will have a better result than relying on the decoders of a cheap player.

We were a little disappointed to see that the receiver only offers the bare minimum of three HDMI V1.3a inputs, which will fill up very quickly, but offers two outputs. This means that both a projector and a plasma can be connected at the same time.

The SR6003 features an on-screen color graphical interface. But it’s not as good as the Sony STRDA5400’s menu, and it’s actually just replacing the traditional black background with blue, sharper text, but it’s easier to use than Sony’s and Rotel’s. We loved being able to view each source and its inputs on a single screen and edit them on the fly. This makes installation a breeze.