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Denon AVR-X3600H AV Receiver Review

hmt

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The big difference is the possibility to disconnect the pre outs for the fronts from the amps. Appart of that the difference is not that big.
 

simple6

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Me too. One would think an incremental bump in the name wouldn't deliver so much performance upgrade in this day and age. But apparently there is no certainty on performance with these AVR's.
3500 was an incremental upgrade to the 3400. 3600 is based on the 4500 platform, sharing the same architecture, cooling and number of channels processed. Completely different beast to 3500!
 
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It's nice to at least see heatsinks that don't look like aluminum foil, and a DAC that isn't complete garbage, in an AVR.

The fan underneath (or is that the top) is odd, if underneath (fighting the natural desire of heat to rise).

Edit: What's funny is how so many people accuse the inside of a PC of having EMI, then I look inside one of these and think... :facepalm:
that fan is facing upwards , so it sucks cold air from underneath and aids natural heat rising
 

BsdKurt

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The big difference is the possibility to disconnect the pre outs for the fronts from the amps. Appart of that the difference is not that big.
@peng pointed out that disconnecting the pre-outs is also possible with the x3500h as well. I believe the unit had be returned already so that aspect of of the x3500h was not explored.
EDIT: My bad. I misread that post.
 
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It seems that this model does not allow bi-amping of the center channel... That is kind of really bad.
Center channel is arguably the most stressed and important channel for in a surround system - it is often smaller and less efficient than towers commonly used for mains and yet it has to play as loud and generally blend in. It would make total sense to dedicate the best possible amplification to the center, but it can not be used with the two high-quality pre-outs and can not be bi-amped internally despite so many amps inside.

I have only 5 speakers, so even after bi-amping the mains I would have poor under-powered center and 2 wasted, unassigned amps... :)
 
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amirm

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Thread Starter #266
I don't know who asked about ECO mode. I turned it on and it degraded the DAC performance with the amps connected just as bad as non-ECO mode. So it is not a solution to get the center channel to perform well.

I am still trying to test the center channel DAC but having lots of compatibility issues with HDMI multichannel audio.
 

waynel

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I don't know who asked about ECO mode. I turned it on and it degraded the DAC performance with the amps connected just as bad as non-ECO mode. So it is not a solution to get the center channel to perform well.

I am still trying to test the center channel DAC but having lots of compatibility issues with HDMI multichannel audio.
Didn't ask about eco mode but did ask about if the L+R preamp out stays clean when using other channels as well. I imagine using the L+R out into an external amp and driving other channels of my HT directly from the receiver. Interested in knowing when the other channel amps are running will the preouts distort early.

Thanks
Wayne
 

hmt

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I don't know who asked about ECO mode. I turned it on and it degraded the DAC performance with the amps connected just as bad as non-ECO mode. So it is not a solution to get the center channel to perform well.

I am still trying to test the center channel DAC but having lots of compatibility issues with HDMI multichannel audio.
Good news anyway since it is now save to use eco mode on with external amps or active speakers. My fear was that clipping would set in earlier with eco mode on.
 
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amirm

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Thread Starter #269
OK, got my issues with HDMI fixed. Here is the DAC performance of the Left channel and Center at the same time:


Denon AVR-X3600H AVR X3600 Home Theater Dolby Atmos DAC HDMI Left and Center Audio Measurements.png

As you see, Center channel without amp disconnect suffers a lot.

If you reduce the output to 1.4 volts, SINAD of the center channel improves to 97 dB whereas the Left goes up to 103 dB. This is at volume position 79.5 dB (above is at 82.5).
 
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amirm

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Thread Starter #270
Didn't ask about eco mode but did ask about if the L+R preamp out stays clean when using other channels as well. I imagine using the L+R out into an external amp and driving other channels of my HT directly from the receiver. Interested in knowing when the other channel amps are running will the preouts distort early.

Thanks
Wayne
Just tested this. Up to 5 channels being driven, performance of left and right stay the same (99 dB SINAD). If I turn on 8 channels, it drops by 1 dB so not a big issue.
 

waynel

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Just tested this. Up to 5 channels being driven, performance of left and right stay the same (99 dB SINAD). If I turn on 8 channels, it drops by 1 dB so not a big issue.
That's great. Thanks for testing. Is does look like some parasitic coupling from the Amp stage to the pre-out rather than a power supply issue.

Wayne
 
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amirm

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I measured 2 and 4 channel output with 4 ohm load. This is through HDMI. Note that only Left and Right performance is shown in both cases (my analyzer can only handle two channels input but can output 8 channel):

Denon AVR-X3600H AVR X3600 Home Theater Dolby Atmos Amp HDMI Power into 4 ohm Audio Measurements.png


As noted you go down from 152 watts in stereo mode to 107 watts with 4 channels driven simultaneously. You also incur increased distortion and noise.

Not shown but in 3-channel mode, output power is 125 watts.

Are there any other requests left?
 

MZKM

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OK, got my issues with HDMI fixed. Here is the DAC performance of the Left channel and Center at the same time:

View attachment 59942

As you see, Center channel without amp disconnect suffers a lot.

If you reduce the output to 1.4 volts, SINAD of the center channel improves to 97 dB which the Left goes up to 103 dB. This is at volume position 79.5 dB (above is at 82.5).
“X3400H”
 

Dimifoot

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As you see, Center channel without amp disconnect suffers a lot.
The Center channel is most important in movies and as important as L-R in multichannel music.

Measuring its performance is very important, thanks @amirm .

I wonder how the surround channels measure.
 

A.West

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I measured 2 and 4 channel output with 4 ohm load. This is through HDMI. Note that only Left and Right performance is shown in both cases (my analyzer can only handle two channels input but can output 8 channel):

View attachment 59944

As noted you go down from 152 watts in stereo mode to 107 watts with 4 channels driven simultaneously. You also incur increased distortion and noise.

Not shown but in 3-channel mode, output power is 125 watts.

Are there any other requests left?
I have an audio science math question: using this as a preamp for multiple channels of hypex nc amps, (nc502mp) given their input sensitivities, and keeping the Denon's preamp output under 1.5v (under 80db volume), how would this combination perform? Could it get up to good volumes without audibly distorting?
Would there be better alternatives for a multichannel system?
 

Dj7675

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Surprised to see that AVR-X3600H is much better than AVR-X3500H
Just remember it is better on the L/R channels but the others are similiar/same as the x3500h. To take advantage of disconnecting amps on all channels in the Denon line you have to go up to the X8500.
 

Dj7675

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I have an audio science math question: using this as a preamp for multiple channels of hypex nc amps, (nc502mp) given their input sensitivities, and keeping the Denon's preamp output under 1.5v (under 80db volume), how would this combination perform? Could it get up to good volumes without audibly distorting?
Would there be better alternatives for a multichannel system?
One thing also to note with Denon / Marantz in regards to power is there “70% guarantee” which guarantees 70% of the rated 2 channel output into 5 channels.
 
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Just remember it is better on the L/R channels but the others are similiar/same as the x3500h. To take advantage of disconnecting amps on all channels in the Denon line you have to go up to the X8500.
Which in turn leaves me wondering if these cheaper avrs are a flat ribbon cable pull away from measuring better across the channels. I haven't looked at how the internals of these are put together but in some designs it's fairly clear where the power/signals are fed to the amps.
 
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