Solution Promised for Yamaha AVR HDMI 2.1 Bug
The next generation of video quality will get here - eventually. As we reported a few days ago, a bug in a widely used new HDMI 2.1 chipset has prevented the latest Denon and Marantz AVRs from delivering on their promise of being able to deliver 4K/120Hz gaming feeds from the latest generation of game consoles and PCs.
We speculated in that earlier story that Yamaha's upcoming new AVRs would also be affected by the issue, as we believed they were also using the same problematic Panasonic Solutions HDMI chipset. The Japanese brand has since confirmed that its RX-V6A, RX-V4A, TSR-700 and TSR-400 AVRs are indeed all afflicted with the inability to pass 4K video at 120Hz refresh rates.
Crucially, though, Yamaha has already joined Denon and Marantz in stating that it will do whatever is necessary to resolve the problem for all of its customers. This is reassuring to hear - even if, at the time of writing, Yamaha can't say precisely when a fix will be available.
Yamaha's full statement reads as follows:
We've been made aware of an issue related to certain emerging video signals (4K/120Hz etc.) from certain sources that can cause a loss of picture and sound when passed through the AVR.
However, from the time we first announced our 2020 AVRs, we have stated that we will support such new formats via future updates. Please rest assured that we will address the reported issue as part of these future updates, including a permanent solution as needed.
The way Yamaha uses the phrase 'via future updates' in its statement raised hopes that perhaps the brand believes it might be possible to debug the HDMI 2.1 chipsets in its affected amps via a firmware update.
This would, of course, be far preferable to the previously suggested solution of having to physically replace the affected HDMI boards. Having double-checked this point with Yamaha, though, the brand was quick to stress that it can't yet say what form its promised repair will take.
It's an incredibly unfortunate situation and will undoubtedly have knocked consumer confidence about diving early into the next generation of video quality. Still, the main thing to take away from the buggy HDMI situation is that all the AVR brands affected so far have committed to ensuring that their customers aren't left high and dry.
So while you might have to be a little patient while the exact nature of the solution is figured out, there now seems little doubt that you can still buy one of the affected Denon, Marantz or Yamaha AVRs safe in the knowledge that one way or another, the problem will be fixed.
I’ve spent the past 25 years writing about the world of home entertainment technology. In that time I’m fairly confident that I’ve reviewed more TVs and projectors than any other individual on the planet, as well as experiencing first-hand the rise and fall of all manner of great and not so great home entertainment technologies.