The only area where I had significant reservations about the STR-DG800 involved its user interface, which I found difficult to use. First, the receiver provides no onscreen menu display, instead showing menu information only in the receiver’s front panel display window. Second, the Sony’s automated speaker set-up feature for some reason recognizes all speakers in the system except for powered subwoofers. As a result, all subwoofer configuration settings must be entered manually. Finally, the receiver’s remote control is far from intuitive and makes common control tasks (for example, adjusting channel level trims on the fly) much more difficult than they ought to be.
Overall, Sony’s STR-DG800 receiver offers a versatile mix of features, functions, and I/O options, and it provides very strong core performance for the money.
My only wish is that its user interface made its performance capabilities easier to tap—especially for first-time AVR owners. The good news is that the performance fundamentals are all in place; Sony just needs to do a bit more work on the fine points. TPV