Yamaha YAS-408: A universal system for use in any home theater

Yamaha YAS-408
Yamaha YAS-408

In terms of its feature set, the Yamaha MusicCast BAR 400 soundbar can be considered a universal system for use in any home theater. The Yamaha MusicCast BAR 400 does not try to shake up the soundbar market with its appearance: it is a simple black panel with a rectangular subwoofer. If you cover the logo, you won’t even be able to tell who made the soundbar… which might not be a bad thing if you want a discreet audio system.

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The older model in the line of Yamaha soundbars – above it are sound projectors – their model index begins with the abbreviation YSP (Yamaha Sound Projector), and our hero has YAS, that is, Yamaha Audio System. The difference is in the number of channels and the principles of forming a surround sound field. Sound projectors have more channels and more complex operating algorithms, but projectors currently produced do not support MusicCast Surround technology – they seem to have no use for it.

Like all other Yamaha soundbars, this one is the embodiment of external modesty: it barely rises above the TV stand and does not attract attention with any bright details. Even the indicators hidden behind a dark filter behave modestly and do not hit the eyes. If you hang the speaker under the TV (which does not require additional brackets, since the case already has loops for mounting to the wall), it will not attract attention – all of it will go to the large TV, and it will seem that it is creating such a vast and relief sound field.

All six drivers of the soundbar are concentrated on the front panel, so it is suspended horizontally from the wall – just like it lies on a cabinet. The bass drivers of the MusicCast Bar 400 are placed on a narrow front panel, there are four of them, so the total volume of air moved in the model is greater, and accordingly the lower limiting frequency of the speaker is lower – this eliminates the dip in the lower middle, typical of most compact soundbars. On the other hand, the smaller diameter of the diffusers allowed them to cover the middle part of the range, which has a positive effect on the coherence of the sound, and in the most significant part of the spectrum. The use of four mid/bass drivers made it possible to arrange them according to the D’Appolito principle, which improves dispersion and allows you to create a more voluminous sound stage.

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The subwoofer (wireless, of course) has a 16 cm speaker, so the 55 Hz stated below is beyond doubt. By the way, MusicCast technology allows you to add another subwoofer if desired – MusicCast SUB 100 with a 20 cm speaker and a lower limit frequency of 28 Hz.

The Yamaha MusicCast BAR 400 soundbar is equipped with HDMI output with ARC support, HDMI input, optical and analog 3.5mm inputs. There is also a USB port for software updates. The subwoofer in the soundbar is a rectangular black box with a fabric protective mesh for the speaker. On the rear panel of the subwoofer there are buttons for turning on and pairing with the soundbar, and this procedure has already been completed at the factory.

The system is much easier to install than a home theater with discrete acoustics. The HDMI output of the soundbar is connected to the input of the TV, preferably one that has an audio return channel (ARC), so a cable is needed that supports this function. Another HDMI cable will be required to connect the projector to the source (if it is needed, many will make do with the TV’s built-in media player). You also need to provide power to the main speaker and subwoofer. This is the switching minimum provided that the bass machine is connected wirelessly. Two wires are included in the kit in case the high level of interference in the 2.4 GHz range does not allow for stable communication, then a wired one is used. The same applies to Wi-Fi – in case the airwaves are jammed, there is an Ethernet interface.

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It is imperative to take care of a stable network connection in order to realize the rich capabilities of the proprietary MusicCast technology, as well as to be able to control the system from mobile devices. Yamaha offers a single free app for iOS and Android devices: MusicCast Controller. It can be used both for cinema functions (switching inputs, tuning, adjusting volume and timbres, selecting digital sound processing, etc.), and for network functions, including direct connection to a home network and control of a multi-zone system, if it , of course, deployed. By the way, it is not at all necessary to have a soundbar in each room – different zones can be served by any Yamaha devices with MusicCast support, for example, desktop or micro-component music systems, AV receivers, etc.

It is MusicCast that turns a compact soundbar into a full-fledged entertainment center, combining in one compact body not only a multi-channel home theater, but also a network player with access to local and remote audio resources. With such a system, a smart TV and a smartphone, you can easily do without an additional external source.

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MusicCast was developed by Yamaha from the ground up to provide a stable and reliable multiroom system, as well as equip it with modern functionality. As we already mentioned, one of the most interesting features of MusicCast is that it can include any compatible Yamaha components. That is, you can simply build a system from the components you already have, instead of purchasing a set of new equipment, and will not be tied to any specific set.

MusicCast technology is integrated into many models of Yamaha equipment, including soundbars, AV receivers, wireless speakers and Hi-Fi systems. This means that to create a multiroom system you do not need to buy any specific set of equipment and it can be built from available compatible components. And even if you haven’t thought about building a multi-room audio system, but you have several Yamaha devices with MusicCast at your disposal, you might want to try building one just for fun. Simple integration within one network is an indispensable condition for a modern multiroom system, as is support for the latest High-resolution audio formats, as well as convenient control. MusicCast has all of the above advantages, plus excellent flexibility in use, which makes it very attractive.

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All Yamaha equipment equipped with MusicCast supports Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. This ensures the interaction of components within the system – to create it, you can use an existing Wi-Fi router, or connect the equipment directly to each other. The system is also easy to set up: all you need to do is download the MusicCast app on your smartphone or tablet. You then connect compatible audio components to your existing network and pair them with your smart device. This is quite simple and, if desired, you can constantly increase the number of components in the system. MusicCast allows you to listen to music in any room where the corresponding Yamaha equipment is installed, and control its operation using one single application.

All MusicCast components have built-in Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz, 802.11 b/g/n) and support DLNA 1.5, so they can access network storage devices, and also receive signals directly using Bluetooth and AirPlay. This also means you can listen to music from a source connected to one of the MusicCast components through any other. For example, you are listening to TV through a Yamaha soundbar, and then you need to go to another room, and if active acoustics MusicCast is installed in it, you can continue listening to the audio of the TV program.

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Due to the fact that MusicCast components are equipped with built-in Bluetooth modules (2.1, EDR/A2DP, AVRCP), you can connect various devices – speakers or headphones – equipped with BT to the multiroom system. By connecting them to MusicCast, you can transmit a music signal to them from any of the system components. MusicCast supports digital audio with sampling rates up to 192 kHz (PCM), as well as DSD up to 5.6 MHz. There is compatibility with all common formats, including WAV, MP3, WMA, AAC, ALAC, AIFF, FLAC, and it is possible to use Spotify, Napster, Juke, Net Radio services to expand the capabilities of the system.

The equalizer (EQ) function in the MusicCast control application allows you to adjust certain frequencies, customizing the sound of the music according to your preferences. The levels of high, mid and low frequencies are individually adjustable.

You can play any audio files from your smartphone wirelessly via Bluetooth or AirPlay. You can play music from music apps, radio apps, or video sites like YouTube™.

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Take your home theater experience to new heights with sound from above and from all directions. The Yamaha YAS-408 Soundbar supports DTS Virtual:X™, immersing audiences in a immersive 3D surround sound experience from a single soundbar. Clear Voice mode brings narration and dialogue to the forefront without compromising overall sound quality. All the movies, TV shows, sports and news you watch will suddenly become easier to hear.

One of the main advantages of a particular soundbar is that it minimizes the number of audio components used, meaning there is no need for surround speakers or running cables around the room. A wireless subwoofer system takes this advantage even further by expanding component placement options. Feel the explosive bass from a subwoofer that can be placed anywhere in the room. The ideal surround sound system for tight spaces, the Yamaha YAS-408 provides multi-channel sound in an elegant and compact design.

The thin body allows you to compactly place the system in front of a flat-panel TV without the slightest blocking of the screen. Yamaha soundbars not only enhance your movie soundtrack enjoyment at home, but are also designed to fit discreetly into your room when paired with modern TVs. The ability to mount the Yamaha YAS-408 system to the wall ensures that there are no problems during installation and a harmonious combination with existing pieces of furniture.

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Yamaha YAS-408 is equipped with a nice remote control with large, easy-to-use buttons. Using the remote control, you can select inputs, switch surround or stereo sound modes, and enable dialogue or bass quality enhancements. Using the remote control you can also change the bass level and volume separately, which is a very useful feature.

Yamaha is the first to add support for DTS Virtual:X and DTS Virtual Surround to its Yamaha YAS-408 soundbar. For those who don’t know, we inform you that DTS Virtual:X is a proprietary audio processor that makes the soundbar sound more like a real surround system.

Specifications Yamaha MusicCast BAR 400

Output power: Soundbar: 100 W, Subwoofer: 100 W
Soundbar speakers: 4 x 4.6 cm full-range tweeters, 2x 2.5 cm
Subwoofer: 1x (16 cm) woofer
Audio formats Dolby Digital, Dolby Pro Logic II, DTS Digital Surround Surround
technology DTS Virtual: X
Surround mode Music, TV, movie, sports, game
Bluetooth version: 2.1 + EDR
Profiles: A2DP, AVRCP
AirPlay, Wi-Fi, DLNA
Inputs: 1 x HDMI, 1 x Optical TOSLINK, 1 x Stereo RCA, 1 x Ethernet
Outputs: 1 x HDMI
Support HDMI 4K Pass-through: (50/60Hz YCbCr=4:4:4, HDR10, Dolby Vision, HLG and HDCP2.2)
3D Pass-through: Audio Return Channel (ARC)
Consumer Electronics Control (CEC)
Auto Lip-Sync
File formats supported MP3/WMA/MPEG-4 AAC: up to 48 kHz/16-bit, ALAC: up to 96 kHz/24-bit, FLAC/WAV/ AIFF: up to 192 kHz / 24 bit
Dimensions (W x H x D) Soundbar: 980 x 60 x 110.5 mm, Subwoofer: 180 x 437 x 401 mm
Soundbar weight: 2.7 kg, Subwoofer: 9.4 kg

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