Home Theater Forum and Systems banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
4,557 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Several weeks ago we previewed Sony’s new line-up of AV Receivers that included a 7.2 channel model capable of 4K pass-through priced in the mid $300’s. As of yesterday, Sony is no longer the only big name manufacturer offering the latest bells and whistles for less coin. This time Denon…yes, Denon…announced budget busting prices on models with premium technologies, which is certainly interesting for a brand that’s frequently associated with higher-end pricing.

It appears the “S” included in the model numbers of Denon’s three new S-Series AV Receivers is meant to represent “savings,” because it’s obvious it doesn’t stand for “skimp” or “slashed.” The spec sheets on the company’s new AVR-S500BT ($250 MSRP), AVR-S700W ($450), and AVR-S900W ($600) receivers are certainly going to grab some attention. At this stage of the game, it’s obvious that that 4K compatibility (which goes hand-in-hand with HDMI 2.0) is a must-have option when shopping for new equipment and Denon and is making that a possibility for the masses.


“The S-Series models deliver an incredible home theater experience now and in the future with Bluetooth and wireless connectivity for streaming audio, a feature that undeniably is a must for today’s consumers,” said Paul Belanger, product manager for D+M. “And in response to growing consumer demand, we’ve priced the S500BT at an all-time low price point for built-in Bluetooth streaming in an AVR at $249.”

The feature set that all three AVRs share is fairly lengthy, including the latest HDMI 2.0 specification, 4K (60 frames per second) pass-through, 4:4:4 Pure Color capability, cinematic 21:9 aspect ratio compatibility, and auto lip sync technology. All three models also feature on-board Bluetooth connectivity for wireless streaming from smartphones and other portable devices. The S700W and S900W also carry built-in Wi-Fi to tap into home networks for internet radio, Pandora, Spotify Connect, Sirius XM, Airplay (for connection to iOS devices) and DLNA 1.5 certification (for PC, Mac, and Android devices).

The S500BT might not tickle the fancy of hardcore enthusiasts, but it’s impossible not to marvel at the features Denon is offering for a mere 250 dollars. Owners will have access to 5 HDMI inputs, dual subwoofer outputs, basic calibration functions, and 70 Watts of power across five channels. These are all inclusions that will work well for budget buyers looking for a solid performing unit.


The S700W (75W X 7 channels) and S900W (90W X 7 channels) offer slightly more, with 4K upscaling, Audyssey Bronze (MultiEQ, Dynamic EQ, and Dynamic Volume), and powered multi-zone capabilities. They also are compatible with typical file types, including MP3, WAV, AAC, WMA, FLAC, ALAC, AIFF and DSD. The S900W takes it a step further with 8 HDMI inputs, 2 HDMI outputs, a front panel USB input, and analog to HDMI transcoding.

Of course, the impressive features on these aggressively priced models fail to address their sleek exterior design properties. Each has an easy to read display, large master volume knobs, and attractively brushed metal face plates.

All three units can be preordered on Denon’s website (now) and are scheduled to ship in June 2014.


Image Credits: Denon
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,817 Posts
Re: Denon's New AV Receivers Offer Big Bang for Little Buck

Any chance that these have pre-out jacks for external amps?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
259 Posts
Re: Denon's New AV Receivers Offer Big Bang for Little Buck

The 700 and 900 series units are rated for 4ohm loads though! Just not sure what happens internally to the output when the amp section sees that low load. It may do nasty things to the signal? Sad that most manufacturers seem to be skimping on a rather inexpensive way to offer an amplifier upgrade (full set of pre-outs). Now the least expensive receiver to offer pre-outs is: $600 NAD T748v2, then it goes like this: $800 Yamaha followed by $900 for Marantz, $1200 for Onkyo and $1300 for Denon! Note that these are MSRP's though and many times you can find some better deals.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Re: Denon's New AV Receivers Offer Big Bang for Little Buck

Just to clarify, HDMI 1.4 is fine for 4K(UHD or 2160P is more accurate).....at 24fps. HDMI 2.0 is where we get 4K/4.4.4/60fps.....although I think the 2.0 spec as it stands doesn't mean 4K/4.4.4/60fps simultaneously. Most of last years' higher-end AVR models from all manufacturers were capable of 4K/24fps passthrough and/or upscaling.

At any rate, It's interesting that all the big players have released HDMI 2.0 compliant receivers in their low-mid tier models first. I'm ready to upgrade, and my brand of choice(Pioneer Elite) is following the same trend in that they haven't made any sort of announcement on their new upper-end receivers yet.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,423 Posts
Re: Denon's New AV Receivers Offer Big Bang for Little Buck

Too bad no one make a nice inexpensive AVR like these but with pre-outs instead of all the fluff that no one really cares about. :scratch:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
82 Posts
Re: Denon's New AV Receivers Offer Big Bang for Little Buck

Too bad no one make a nice inexpensive AVR like these but with pre-outs instead of all the fluff that no one really cares about. :scratch:
Emotiva and Outlaw do; it's called a pre/pro.

Seriously, though, I've been thinking the same thing, but that's why I am so interested in the Pioneer Elites. Their D3 amplification has been getting a lot of proper credit for producing a lot of clean, muscular power. It's been enough to keep me from buying an expensive pre/pro and picking up self-powered speakers like the Emotiva Airmotiv 5s or the Adam 5.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
141 Posts
Re: Denon's New AV Receivers Offer Big Bang for Little Buck

Emotiva and Outlaw do; it's called a pre/pro.

.
Those are the only cheap options ... I'd like to to see someone else (Marantz ? ) come out with something .

I'm using an old Marantz sr 5400 with parasound amps.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,423 Posts
Re: Denon's New AV Receivers Offer Big Bang for Little Buck

Yeah, I have been considering the Outlaw for quite some time now. I really like the clean and simple design. It is also quite a bit more expensive then these Denon's (which will likely be available for less than the MSRP).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
Funny story. I bought the AVR-S500BT last week. Hooked up my Klipsch Lascala mains, the Belle Klipsch center, and Heresy rears. Then I immediately tried the Bluetooth feature, streaming my music library from Samsung Galaxy S5.

The sound was nice, but I had to turn the gain WAY up to get really nice volume. This didn't make a lot of sense, since my mains have an output of 106 db at one meter with one watt in.

Never having used Bluetooth for anything other than using my gps as a speaker phone, I wondered if I would get better volume with a wired connection. It seemed to make sense that it would, so I plugged my cd player into the receiver, dropped in a cd, and hit play.

Uh oh. It occurred to me a millisecond AFTER hitting play that I hadn't turned down the volume on the receiver. The window about 20' from the mains (directly in line with them) exploded. My wife was (I believe) screaming at me, but I couldn't hear a thing. And I was grinning from ear to ear.

I haven't experienced something like that since the time when cd players first hit the market. I was managing a high end audio store in CT, and a new employee was demonstrating Klipsch LaScalas to a potential customer. He put a cd called "Time Warp" into a Carver player and hit play. Nothing happened. (He didn't realize there was about a 5 second delay at the start of the track he was playing on that cd. He cranked up the gain on the preamp, but the system was dead silent. Until it wasn't. The track began playing, a few panels in the drop ceiling lifted up, and 4 fluorescent light tubes detonated. (The customer, btw, immediately purchased the speakers.)

This little receiver has its limitations (one of which is that it doesn't adequately develop the bass with my speakers the way my separates, or even an old Yamaha receiver did. That is going to be cured in a few days when My NXG NX-BAS-500 arrives. That said, there is no harshness to the sonic quality of this receiver, and no audible IM distortion. It has a superior FM tuner, and more than enough power for my (admittedly efficient) 5 speaker array. The only thing that almost kept me from purchasing it was the price. I thought it was too inexpensive to really have any quality, and I was prepared to return it to Amazon as soon as it immediately and thoroughly disappointed me.

Call me Mr. Blue. That's the color I have turned, holding my breath waiting for that to happen.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,454 Posts
I for one appreciate the simplicity of these models. I've been saying for several years that all the clutter/hook-ups could be reduced and the savings passed on to the customer. How many hook ups do we really need now days? Not many!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,423 Posts
Did Audyssey recently change its naming structure?

Not really, what you are getting is a suite of Audyssey applications:

Audyssey Bronze includes MultEQ, Dynamic Volume, and Dynamic EQ.

Audyssey Silver includes MultEQ XT, Dynamic Volume, and Dynamic EQ.

Audyssey Gold includes MultEQ XT, Dynamic Volume, Dynamic EQ and DSX for front height or wide speakers.

Audyssey Platinum includes MultEQ XT32, Dynamic Volume, Dynamic EQ, DSX, Sub EQ HT, LFC, and Audyssey Pro.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
489 Posts
^^^ Thanx. I thought those names (Bronze, Silver, etc) were going to be new names for MultEQ, MultEQXT, etc. Appreciate the info.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,074 Posts
The window about 20' from the mains (directly in line with them) exploded.
BigEasy... you actually shattered a window with your system!? :gulp: :clap:

I for one appreciate the simplicity of these models. I've been saying for several years that all the clutter/hook-ups could be reduced and the savings passed on to the customer. How many hook ups do we really need now days? Not many!
Tonto, I recently picked up a Denon AVR-E400 and the remote looks the same. At first I thought I was going to hate the "Music, Movie, Game, Pure" buttons for changing the mode because I was used to having the more specific choices of Dolby, DTS, 5 ch stereo, etc., then I realized that you can cycle between the available modes by multiple button presses and now I'm kind of on board.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
For me, the important things are 1. Sonic quality 2. Ample plug-ins for my gear, and 3. Adequate power. I too was a bit put off by the "Generic" buttons, until I actually used them. Now? I don't even notice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
19 Posts
BigEasy... you actually shattered a window with your system!? :gulp: :clap:


It wasn't the first time, either.
When I was running K-Horns through bridged Apt Holman Apt 1 power amps, I actually caused (over the span of about a week of very high volume listening) to bring down an old brick chimney inside the house. :devil:
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top