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This makes it - on paper at least - a very flexible core for any multi-source system, and this versatility is complemented by the promise of high-quality playback when used with multichannel movie soundtracks from Blu-ray and DVD.
The other features of v1. Output power is quoted at Wper channel with two channels driven simultaneously: but as usual there is some cross-coupling through the power supply which limits power output when more channels are driven simultaneously.
In our labs we measured real world two-channel performance at W, dropping to W-per- channel with five channels driven. As you can see, then, this remains a prodigiously powerful amplifier. Inside lurks a massive torroidal transformer-based power supply, and a dual-mono symmetrical circuit layout. Spreading sound The Denon features the highest-spec available version of Audyssey MultiEQ-XT room equalization technology, which involves the use of a supplied calibration microphone, gathering results from a number of locations in the listening room, to give a relatively uniform spectral spread of sound.
Perhaps surprisingly for those new to Audyssey room equalization, this works remarkably well, based on experience not just with this amplifier, but also with similarly-equipped earlier models.
At first sight, and despite the humanizing effect of the wave-like front-panel profile, the Denon looks quite similar to previous high-end amplifiers from the brand, the preceding AVC-A1XV for example. However, the back panel has been reorganised for greater intelligibility, and in a clear break with tradition, the old block-graphic onscreen interface has been replaced by something slightly more contemporary- a Graphical User Interface GUI no less.
It will take some learning, but with its extensive use of submenus and text labels, you should certainly find it more useable and informative. The primary handset is an electroluminescent design with a touchscreen interface, but display illumination is rather dull, and the graphics are not especially clear.
To my mind, some previous Denon designs have been more impressive. The GUI is undeniably a step in the right direction, but it exacts a price in the amount of acclimatisation required. This is an amplifier which seems purposely calculated to scare grannies, small children and household pets, and which, even for the initiated, represents a significant investment in learning how to drive the beast.
If you like your amplification to be plug-and-play, this is probably not the model for you. The Denon sounded a little more civilised and disciplined than I had expected from previous similar pairings, but without noticeable loss of fluidity or dynamics. There is no reason to expect Blu-ray to be any worse.
The rule is that once musical information has been lost, it can never be accurately reinvented, though the feature does provide a listening experience that may be interpreted as more pleasing. Still, there is no matching sense that resolution has been enhanced, a key problem with lossy audio files, and data-reduced k AAC recordings from a tame iPod did not end up sounding like the real thing.
Impressive multichannel audio Like other top-end Denon AVRs, this one includes Cat5-style Denon Link, which allows you to patch in multichannel SACD signals in raw digital form from a similarly-equipped disc player, for digital-to- analogue conversion by the amplifier. It is a natural for multichannel audio and video, of course, and with its high-end video processing, it is an obvious good fit with Blu- ray. Yes, there is much to like about this new Denon. Tech deals, prizes and latest news Get the best tech deals, reviews, product advice, competitions, unmissable tech news and more!
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