Onkyo HTX-22HDX 5.1 surround sound system - Features and operation

By Danny Philips


  • Recommended by TR
Onkyo HTX-22HDX 5.1 surround sound system


Our Score


Review Price £319.90

Here’s where the HTX-22HDX’s value factor starts going through the roof. Aside from the inclusion of three HDMI v1.4 inputs – which in itself is a major bonus at this price – it also decodes the full gamut of HD audio formats, including Dolby True HD and DTS HD Master Audio. It also accepts multichannel PCM via HDMI, making it the perfect partner for Blu-ray players of any vintage.

There’s plenty more besides. You get a wide range of Onkyo Original DSP Modes, including four specifically for gaming – Rock, Sports, Action and RPG – plus the Theater-Dimensional mode designed to mimic surround sound when set up as a 2.1 system. The on-board Dolby Pro Logic II does a similar job, while the EX. Bass mode that boosts low-frequency output and Music Optimiser enhances the quality of compressed music formats. Selecting ‘Direct’ bypasses all processing.

Like Onkyo’s AV receivers, there’s a very useful onscreen display that appears when you hit Setup on the remote. The design is fairly basic and it looks much smaller than Onkyo’s receiver menus – this is to accommodate a new structure that keeps the main menu visible on the left while the options are shown in a submenu to the right. Thankfully the new layout is logical, despite being a little harder to read.

There’s a formidable amount of options to play with, addressing every last sonic detail. Speaker configuration, audio adjustment, source, HDMI and volume setup – you name it, you can tweak it. The only thing missing is an auto calibration system but that’s forgivable at this price.

Sadly, controlling the setup menu’s plethora of options is a little fiddly due to the oddly-designed remote. The menu controls, for example, are tiny and mixed in with a load of other keys, which makes menu navigation a little muddled, plus there seems very little logic behind the placement of the other buttons. You’ll get used to it but some tweaking is needed for this system’s successor.

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December 31, 2010, 12:36 pm

Great stuff, I just received mine yesterday, and I'm about to start wall mounting the speakers! Looking forward to it even more after your review!


December 31, 2010, 7:22 pm

I've got one of these...as a 2.1 set-up it is very limited and lacking heavily in the midrange, but with the center speaker and extra surround speakers it sounds much better and offer great value for money. I wish I could tweak the bass and treble on the presets though as sometimes it's too boomy and lacks clarity. And I agree about the comment on playing music on this...it doesn't sound that great at all, just a tad hollow and well, not as good as I was expecting. But having said that, it is still good enough for me to live with as a main audio source in a small room and the 5.1 film sound set up with a WD live and 1080p projector is very impressive, especially for the money.

Ned Seagoon

January 1, 2011, 4:18 pm

Had one of these for about 3 months, very pleased with it, including the extra speakers which you certainly do need to make the most of it. Didn't buy it to play music, but as an alternative sound system to my Samsung TV's own sound. We use three sources - the TV itself, a Blu-ray player, and a PVR. It's so good we never use the TV's own sound now, even if just watching the News.

Sure the menus are desperately detailed and fiddly, but having set it up it's a doddle to use even for my somewhat technophobic other half. Delighted with it, really. Got a very good price direct from Peter Tyson.


January 1, 2011, 11:46 pm

I have the older version. The cooling fan noise on it is perhaps my largest bugbear.

What about the new revision?


January 2, 2011, 6:00 am

@ Danamic - Very quiet and constant. You could hear it if you were listening out for it and you were very close to it in a small room, but it really is extremely low indeed. Not an issue. The 6 fans in my PC and the projector drown out the noise from the heathrow traffic, so i'm not worried ;)


January 2, 2011, 1:45 pm

Well since my first comment I've managed to get all the speakers wall mounted and watch a few movies too!

I'm very pleased with it overall, it was very easy to set up, and I agree with the comment above; the fan is very quiet and I can only just notice it if I listen carefully when the system is the only thing switched on. I have never noticed it during a film yet.

The sound is fantastic for the money, and it has completely changed our movie watching experience!


January 2, 2011, 8:48 pm

I bought one of these in the run up to Christmas as my old Receiver wouldn't fit in our new house and an upgrade to HD Audio was long overdue. I've set up my existing full size Mission speakers for the front and centre channels and am making do with the bundled Onkyo speakers for the rears for the time being but will be getting some suitable small bookshelf Missions for the rear soon.

With the amp set up for large speakers and the bass boost turned off the sound is a massive improvement over my old Pioneer Receiver. With CDs or 192+kbps files in iTunes I am very impressed with the sounds quality and I think it sounds exceptionally musical for the money. I'm sure this is helped by the sub section only ever having to reproduce the .1 channel. The 25wpc is more than enough to drive my speakers in this fairly small living room and even watching Blu-ray and DVD films I have yet to have the volume above 50.

Highly recommended!


January 13, 2011, 5:04 pm

I like this system a lot and will probably cash out for it soon. Just haven't found anyone selling additional SKS-22X speakers for it yet (in Sweden).

One question tho... Is this comparable in quality to Onkyos HT-S6305 combo (TX-SR508 + SKS-HT528) that costs around £410 here? I prefer the simplicity of HTX-22HDX, but I wonder if it's a better solution to pay some £100 extra and get the HT-S6305?

I'll use the system mostly for watching movies through a Boxee Box and playing some GT5 on a PS3. TV is a good old Pana 42PZ70 (without ARC unfortunately).

Can I get the tv sound in any of these two? Not that important, but it would be nice.

I'm returning a brand new SC-HTB500 soundbar that went berserk on me the other day and want to get something better in same price range. Panas own soundbar wouldn't play nicely with my Pana TV as it's apparently way too old (!?) according to Panasonics support people. So I'll just go for something without Viera Link and try to live with another remote control.

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