The Pioneer Elite SC-LX901 sets at the top of Pioneer’s AV line-up. Take a quick peek at its stats and you’ll see why. This jumbo sized receiver can amplify 11.2 channels and push about 140 watts (8 ohms with 2 channels driven). However, these numbers only scratch the surface. The LX901 is 4K ready as well as Dolby Atmos and DTS:X equipped.


Pioneer Elite SC-LX901 Features

Pioneer SC-LX901 InternalLike previous Elite amps, the SC-LX901 utilizes a Class D3 Amplifier (Direct Energy HD Amplifier). According to Pioneer, the Class D is capable of delivering consistent power to all 11 of the its channels without any discernible drop in output.


With the Pioneer SC-LX901, Pioneer did everything they could with the construction of the amp to minimize electronic interference. If you look at the receivers internal structure, many of its components are segregated and insulated from each other. For instance, the 901 has separate Pre and Power Amplifiers Blocks with isolated power supplies for digital and analog circuits. This design should provide clean power and contribute to clear signal transmission.

Pioneer SC-LX901 Preview

Dolby Atmos & DTS:X

Pioneer SC-LX901 Connections
The Pioneer SC-LX901 is the first 11 channel amp that the company’s put out. I can’t help but feel that this is partly fueled by the advent of the object oriented audio formats Dolby Atmos and DTS:X. The SC-LX901’s 11 channels offers flexible speaker layout options for Dolby Atmos and DTS:X.  7.2.4ch, 7.2.2ch, and 5.2.4ch configurations are all possible with the 901 without the assistance of an external amplifier. For calibration, the receiver uses its top-of-the-line calibration suite, MCACC Pro, along with Pioneer’s Reflex Optimizer which is designed specifically to dial-in up-firing Atmos modules.


4K Ready

The SC-LX901 has a total of 8 HDMI inputs among its gaggle of other analog and digital inputs. If you’ve upgraded to a 4K TV or plan on upgrading to one in the near future, then the 901 is more than capable of handling the Ultra High Definition signal. Most of the HDMIs support HDCP 2.2 copy protection as well as (4K/60p/4:4:4) upscaling/pass-through and HDR/BT.2020 standards.


Network Streaming

The Pioneer Elite SC-LX901 boasts the standard laundry list of streaming options. WiFi and Bluetooth are available. If you prefer a wired connection, the receiver also has an ethernet hook-up. For streaming services Pandora, Spotify, TuneIn, TIDAL, Google Cast, and DEEZER are supported as is Apple’s AirPlay.


Pioneer is also beginning to implement their own multi-room audio solution called FireConnect. Like MusicCast, FireConnect allows you to send the audio of any device connected to the receiver to a compatible FireConnect speaker. FireConnect is in its infancy currently so once more speakers become available to support it, we’ll see how it stacks up against Yamaha’s MusicCast.


Hi-Res Audio

The Pioneer SC-LX901 also utilizes high-grade 192 kHz/32-bit ESS SABRE32 Ultra DAC (ES9016S) to handle the audio duties. Along with Dolby TrueHD, DTS-HD Master Audio, DTS:X and Dolby Atmos, the amp can handle a variety of hi-res music files. FLAC, WAV, AIFF, and Apple lossless file formats up to 192 kHz/24-bit, and DSD up to 11.2 MHz are all supported by the 901.


Being Pioneer’s top-of-the-line amp, SC-LX901 will set you back a few grand. However, with all of the bells and whistles inside its fortified black box, the 901 could be the centerpiece of your AV rack for years to come.


Where to Buy:

See Price on Amazon

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