Any audiophile worth his or her salt will tell you that speakers are the most essential part of any home theater system. After all, without a high quality set of floor standing speakers, in-ceiling speakers or in wall speakers at your side, how are you supposed to recreate the type of immersive experience you get down at the local Multiplex in the comfort of your own home? While nobody will argue this particular point, it is essentially to understand that the second most important aspect of your overall system is the home theater receiver that those speakers are connected to. When buying a new home theater receiver, there are a few key things to watch out for.
Certain major electronics manufacturers will ship home theater receivers with what are called proprietary inputs. This essentially means that the plugs used to connect speaker wire are shaped in a very unique way that no other company uses, essentially to guarantee that you have to use an X brand receiver with X brand speakers. If you want to use Y brand speakers, you're out of luck. To make sure that you'll always have a way to connect your favorite JENSEN floor-standing speakers to your receiver, make sure you're picking a unit that doesn't use a proprietary input system.
Another feature that you'll want to make sure that you're picking with a home theater receiver is network connectivity. The chances are high not only that you have either a wired or wireless network connection in your house, but also that there are computers, smartphones and other devices filled to the brim with all of your favorite tunes connected to that network at the exact same time. If you pick a home theater receiver with network connectivity, you can stream all of those songs to your receiver at all times. This saves you the need from buying a new cable to connect your iPhone to the unit, burning CDs, and other tasks that take up far too much time.
Room to Grow
Another thing that you absolutely DO NOT want to do when purchasing a home theater receiver is lock yourself into a certain number of speakers for all time. Just because you currently only have two JENSEN rear in-wall speakers right now doesn't mean that you won't want to expand to four in a few years. If you purchase a home theater receiver capable of broadcasting 7.1 or even 9.1 discreet channels now, you'll be all set for the future. If you lock yourself into a 5.1 system, you'll need to purchase new equipment when the time comes to upgrade down the road. Now that most Blu-ray home video discs are shipping with 7.1 channel audio tracks as a default, this is one area of your receiver that you don't want to skimp out on.