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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Denon Packs New S-Series Receivers with Bluetooth and HDMI 2.0


Denon's AVR-S500BT is a real bargain, packing Bluetooth and HDMI 2.0 into an AVR for $249.

If you're looking to replace that receiver, Denon is planning to heat up its AVR lineup this summer by introducing three new products under the S-Series.

It's important to note that the AVR-S500BT, the AVR-S700W and the AVR-S900W all have Bluetooth, so you can wirelessly stream audio to the receiver from any networked smartphone, tablet or other compatible device. However, if you want to be tethered (and you'll have to be for other AV devices), Denon is also giving these models HDMI 2.0 connectivity.

HDMI 2.0 is the latest HDMI specification, which can handle 4K Ultra HD 60Hz video, as well as full resolution 4:4:4 Pure Color sub-sampling, 21:9 aspect ratios and dynamic auto lip synchronization.

The AVR-S500BT is a real standout, thanks to its $249 MSRP. This is a great bargain, considering the Bluetooth, the HDMI 2.0 and the five HDMI inputs. This model also promises 70 watts for each of its five channels, as well as dual subwoofer outputs, a front-panel USB port, color-coded speaker terminals, and the auto speaker setup and EQ via the included microphone.

 The AVR-S900W has Bluetooth, HDMI 2.0, Wi-Fi, AirPlay, analog-to-HDMI video transcoding, and 4K Ultra HD upscaling.

Both the S700W and S900W add in built-in Wi-Fi for instant access to thousands of web radios stations from around the world, as well as subscription services, such as Pandora, Spotify Connect, and SiriusXM. Each one also has AirPlay for wirelessly streaming content from iOS devices or your iTunes account. Other features include DLNA 1.5 certification and support for Denon's Remote App.

The AVR-S700W has 75 watts for each of its seven channels, along with new 4-ohm certification. Other features include six HDMI inputs, dual subwoofer outputs, a front-panel USB port, multi-zone and multi-source options, and the color-coded speaker terminals. Also worth mentioning is that this AVR comes with the Audyssey Bronze suite (MultEQ, Dynamic EQ, Dynamic Volume) built in.

To set it apart as the top model, the AVR-S900W has everything already mentioned above, as well as 90 watts for each of its channels, along with the new 4-ohm certification. It also has eight HDMI inputs, two HDMI outputs, analog-to-HDMI video transcoding, and 4K Ultra HD upscaling.

"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 each is loaded with the latest HDMI connectivity that includes pass-through for 4K Ultra HD 60Hz, 4:4:4 Pure Color and 21:9 video content, making them compatible with 4K Ultra high-definition sources and displays."

Denon has priced the AVR-S500BT, AVR-S700W and AVR-S900W at $249, $449 and $599, respectively. The company plans to start shipping these new AVRs sometime in June.


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