Yamaha R-N602: a box of tricks


Well-known member
May 16, 2008
While we were in England over the Xmas holiday the Yamaha R-N602 was on offer again, this time at £369. This is incredibly cheap compared to the €699 it costs here in NL. So we decided to buy the thing and start enjoying it. Today I had time to set it up.

The R-N602 replaces three other devices: a Yamaha R-S500 stereo receiver, a Cambridge Audio DACMagic (older model) and an Apple Airport Express (also older model). The HiFi stand has become tidier and there are fewer cables around. All good. I will try to sell the R-S500 and the DACMagic here in NL. The Airport Express will go to the system in the bedroom thus creating multiroom on the cheap.

There is much less to connect than before: Phono, TV to Optical 1, Minidisc recorder to Optical 2 and the Bluray player to both Coax 1 and CD (for SACD playback).

The most time took setting up the WiFi connection, reconfiguring our Logitech Harmony Touch universal remote control and programming the FM tuner (we get 39 radio stations through our cable provider). FM sounds as good as it gets with the signal from our cable provider.

We haven't had a lot of time to listen yet but initial verdict is that it sounds very similar to the R-S500, which we like very much. But the convenience compared to previous configuration is incredible. The R-N602 has some very clever settings options, like Volume Trim. FM and Phono sounded a bit weak compared to other sources. You can turn up or down the initial volume of any source so they all are about the same level. Very clever.

AirPlay is working better than ever. When I play an album or a playlist from iTunes I can use the remote control to go to the next or previous track.

I haven't had time to set up internet radio yet. I will try that tomorrow. The only thing that I will miss occasionally is the Rec Out selector. I used that for digitising LP's while listening to another source.

Initial verdict: highly recommended, especially at £369. I can't think of many other solutions that will give you both a phono stage, FM/MW radio, a good DAC and clever networking stuff in one box that both looks nice and sounds great. I do recommend reading the manual for all the intricate settings that will enhance the user experience. I haven't tried Spotify Connect and the Musiccast app yet.

They seem to be very popular at Richer Sounds. They had no stock in Swiss Cottage but they did find one in the shop near Liverpool Street where I picked it up. The different prices in different countries are very interesting. The R-N602 is £369 in the UK, €599 in Germany and €699 in NL.


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