Anthem MRX 300 Performance
It might be lacking in features, but the Anthem MRX 300 makes up for it with sensational sound quality. There are levels of refinement and raw power at play here that instantly justify the price tag – particularly with ARC working its magic.
Movie playback is breathtaking. The Anthem handles Super 8’s train crash scene in an exciting and aggressive manner without losing control as the huge train carriages start crashing into one another at full pelt.
The sound is immersive thanks to the detailed atmosphere conjured up by the surround channels, while smooth steering guarantees everything sounds natural when effects pan from speaker to speaker.
Spot effects are fast and snappy, dialogue is clear and sudden dynamic shifts – like the moment when a flying metal door crashes to the ground and shatters the silence – happen in the blink of an eye.
The Anthem MRX 300 also musters immense power despite its modest 80W per channel rating, which Anthem claims is a more realistic measurement than its rivals normally quote. There’s plenty of puff to drive larger speakers, but it’s equally comfortable with compacts like the Paradigm Cinema 100 CT, which proves a match made in heaven.
It provides a room filling sound without cranking the volume too high, but when pushed it flat out refuses to distort. Bass is of the highest order too, making every gunshot or explosion punch right into your gut. ARC deserves a special mention here. After room correction, the sound is tighter and more focused, with less bass boom from the subwoofer that stops it overpowering the other speakers.
So the Anthem MRX 300 can be a beast, but there’s beauty here too. Its sound is open and transparent, twinkling with detail from every speaker. Such is its level of refinement that it can make you fall in love again with films you’ve seen a hundred times. It’s that good.
This poised sound works well with music too, a talent that sets the MRX 300 apart from many of its mainstream rivals. Lianne La Havas’ No Room For Doubt sounds particularly spine tingling, picking out all the nuance of the voices and the twang of guitar strings.
Anthem MRX 300 Verdict
The Anthem MRX 300 lacks the extensive connections and features found as standard on mainstream rivals, eschewing network connectivity, USB ports and web content to concentrate on the things audiophiles really care about – classy sound quality.
And sure enough it’s a wonderful performer, delivering a potent yet refined sound with lots of detail and visceral bass – helped along by the nigh-on miraculous effects of ARC, the superb room correction system. It’s for this reason that Anthem gets our recommendation despite its lack of eye-catching features.
Anthem MRX300 AV Receiver 0 bids$200.00 View Item