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Denon AVR-X3700H AVR Review

Jimmi

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Yes, the Denon 3700 dual Preset configuration option allows you to easily switch between two different setups. Many users find this helpful for setting up a stereo configuration that is different than a 7.2.4 movie configuration. Simply switching between the two presets lets you access the one you want. And if you use the Audyssey MultEQ Editor app on the App Store it can save an unlimited amount of additional Audyssey config files that you can load into Preset 1 or 2 on the Denon 3700. Once you start using these options you start to build different Audyssey configurations for different uses and save them on your iPad for easy access. Loading them on the receiver is super easy.

I am understanding that you can have a 5.1.2 and Zone 2 - and listen to the same source on both Zone 1 and Zone 2 simultaneously?
 

amper42

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I am understanding that you can have a 5.1.2 and Zone 2 - and listen to the same source on both Zone 1 and Zone 2 simultaneously?

Zone 1 and 2 are totally different configuration methods than using the Denon 3700 Presets.
1. When Preouts are used they only support the function marked on the connector. Denon 3700 doesn't support Zones or dual fronts that are available in amp assign with preouts to external amps.
2. If you want to use the Zone function then using the internal Denon amps is required.
3. You can play Zone 1 and 2 at the same time - but again without the preout function. The manual can show you how to use Zones. You won't realize preouts cannot be used until it doesn't work and you email Denon support. :D
 

Jimmi

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Zone 1 and 2 are totally different configuration methods than using the Denon 3700 Presets.
1. When Preouts are used they only support the function marked on the connector. Denon 3700 doesn't support Zones or dual fronts that are available in amp assign with preouts to external amps.
2. If you want to use the Zone function then using the internal Denon amps is required.
3. You can play Zone 1 and 2 at the same time - but again without the preout function. The manual can show you how to use Zones. You won't realize preouts cannot be used until it doesn't work and you email Denon support. :D
So you can listen to both "zones" like A and B speakers at the same time?
 

jpqpi

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@amirm Long time lurker and rarely post but I felt I must this time. Firstly, I massively appreciate all the honest reviews and the level of detail you go to on them. But, are you aware that for this and two other recommended Denon receivers (i.e. AVR-X3700h, AVR-X4700h and AVR-X6700h) the DAC has been quietly changed by Denon since May 2021?

I realise this was due to the AKM factory fire and running out of AK4458 chip supply but apparently the replacement chosen was a Texas Instruments PCM5102a DAC which many feel is not equivalent in quality.

There was plenty of discussion on these forums about how they were less than forthcoming about the new DAC info (it appears they needed to be threatened with legal action for false advertising for them to come clean on the details - link here https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...akm-ak4458-dac-ic-in-x4700h-and-x6700h.22798/ ).

I really had hoped to purchase a Denon AVR-X4700h or even a AVR-X6700h as I feel they measured very well, but with this information I personally will be holding off on that decision.

With this in mind, I must ask if this and the other two Denon AVR reviews are still valid given that most likely these reviews would be used as info for a new product purchase?
 
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dlaloum

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@amirm Long time lurker and rarely post but I felt I must this time. Firstly, I massively appreciate all the honest reviews and the level of detail you go to on them. But, are you aware that for this and two other recommended Denon receivers (i.e. AVR-X3700h, AVR-X4700h and AVR-X6700h) the DAC has been quietly changed by Denon since May 2021?

I realise this was due to the AKM factory fire and running out of AK4458 chip supply but apparently the replacement chosen was a Texas Instruments PCM5102a DAC which many feel is not equivalent in quality.

There was plenty of discussion on these forums about how they were less than forthcoming about the new DAC info (it appears they needed to be threatened with legal action for false advertising for them to come clean on the details - link here https://www.audiosciencereview.com/...akm-ak4458-dac-ic-in-x4700h-and-x6700h.22798/ ).

I really had hoped to purchase a Denon AVR-X4700h or even a AVR-X6700h as I feel they measured very well, but with this information I personally will be holding off on that decision.

With this in mind, I must ask if this and the other two Denon AVR reviews are still valid given that most likely these reviews would be used as info for a new product purchase?
We have all been asking the same question - it cannot be answered until someone sends in a current version model for testing!
 

jpqpi

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We have all been asking the same question - it cannot be answered until someone sends in a current version model for testing!
I guess the point I'm making is that the reviews are not valid until they are retested
 

dadregga

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I guess the point I'm making is that the reviews are not valid until they are retested

The reviews are absolutely valid for all the AKM-based 3700s out there, which was all that was available at the time of writing.

That's why the reviews have dates on them.

They're not valid for the non-AKM versions, but given how the differences between modern DAC chips are mostly theoretical and the amp/preamp stage is the limiting factor for all AVRs, not the DAC, it is vanishingly unlikely that there would be any audible differences at all between the revisions.

Most of what Amir's reviews test is design and implementation of everything *around* the DAC chip, not the DAC chip - because the DAC chip and it's limitations simply aren't an audible factor most of the time.
 

jpqpi

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The reviews are absolutely valid for all the AKM-based 3700s out there, which was all that was available at the time of writing.

That's why the reviews have dates on them.

They're not valid for the non-AKM versions, but given how the differences between modern DAC chips are mostly theoretical and the amp/preamp stage is the limiting factor for all AVRs, not the DAC, it is vanishingly unlikely that there would be any audible differences at all between the revisions.

Most of what Amir's reviews test is design and implementation of everything *around* the DAC chip, not the DAC chip - because the DAC chip and it's limitations simply aren't an audible factor most of the time.
I wholeheartedly agree that the reviews are valid for the Akm based DACs but ask yourself this question... are these reviews likely to be used primarily as purchasing decisions for used (i.e. pre may 2021) Denon AVRs or new Denon receivers post may 2021 redesign? Fyi, Id be very happy with a warning on the first page to that end so that people aren't misguided
 

Galz

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Due to the great potential for confusion, I'd agree it's worth a disclaimer at the start of the relevant reviews. After all Denon sells those receivers with different DACs but the same model number.
 

tonycollinet

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If there was a significant risk of the different DAC chip making an audible difference, I’d agree. There isn’t, I don’t.

Anyone is free to buy one of the later versions, and send it in for testing If they are so concerned.
 

jpqpi

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If there was a significant risk of the different DAC chip making an audible difference, I’d agree. There isn’t, I don’t.

Anyone is free to buy one of the later versions, and send it in for testing If they are so concerned.
I'm not sure I agree that the DAC isn't important tbh. I was under the impression that there are many ways that a poor performing DAC/implementation could screw things up.

I would genuinely love to hear the science/facts on this, that my worry is for nothing, and that this trio of Denon receivers are still a great buy. But for now, I'm not convinced that a new receiver (post may 2021 redesign) will perform so close to the old measurements.

It would be amazing of course if someone sent one in and if Amir was willing to retest.
 
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beren777

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If there was a significant risk of the different DAC chip making an audible difference, I’d agree. There isn’t, I don’t.

Anyone is free to buy one of the later versions, and send it in for testing If they are so concerned.

If there wasn't an audible difference, why were they using AKM DACs in the first place? If it's pure marketing hype with no perceived increase in performance, ASR should start explicitly marking in graphs the point at which the differences are no longer relevant.
 

HarmonicTHD

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Differences between AKM and ESS in a different product - practically zero


and even if there were, consider this


or come back with proof that you can hear differences at the SINAD levels we are talking here


Is this the ultimate proof - no, but claiming a difference is even more conjecture without proof
 

jefny

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In following this discussion, a key issue that is almost philosophical is what is "better sound." So much goes into this including the quality and placement of speakers, room acoustics, and of course the quality of the amps themselves, whether those that come with the receiver or external amps (in my case I use my receiver, the x3700, as a pre-amp). I see the the graphs that Amir has provided but I wonder how that translates into "better sound." Obviously clipping and clarity as well as balance are issues that you can use your own ears but this whole discussion reminds me when I was upgrading my own system earlier this year, when sales people were trying to sell me some pure pre-amps that cost 2 to 3 times that of the x3700 that would sound better. I could not tell the difference when I heard demos.

Of course the parts that a manufacturer puts into their equipment may be a determinant to how long equipment lasts but I have been lucky in this regard because virtually all my earlier purchases, going back to 2000 when I set up my first home theater still work (Outlaw amp and preamp as well as a Marantz receiver). I hope the x3700 lasts as long.
 

HarmonicTHD

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In following this discussion, a key issue that is almost philosophical is what is "better sound." So much goes into this including the quality and placement of speakers, room acoustics, and of course the quality of the amps themselves, whether those that come with the receiver or external amps (in my case I use my receiver, the x3700, as a pre-amp). I see the the graphs that Amir has provided but I wonder how that translates into "better sound." Obviously clipping and clarity as well as balance are issues that you can use your own ears but this whole discussion reminds me when I was upgrading my own system earlier this year, when sales people were trying to sell me some pure pre-amps that cost 2 to 3 times that of the x3700 that would sound better. I could not tell the difference when I heard demos.

Of course the parts that a manufacturer puts into their equipment may be a determinant to how long equipment lasts but I have been lucky in this regard because virtually all my earlier purchases, going back to 2000 when I set up my first home theater still work (Outlaw amp and preamp as well as a Marantz receiver). I hope the x3700 lasts as long.
I think it was discussed before, but it is long thread.
In short:
a) preamp only mode: ca 100dB SINAD plus the SINAD of the separate power amps.
b) built-in power amps: ca 90dB SINAD.

For all practical reasons (see links above on audibility), the average listener will be unable to distinguish any sound differences and at these SINAD levels the performance can be regarded as transparent for music reproduction. Of course, provided there is no clipping / power limit. Claims to the opposite are welcome to provide proof of controlled, blind ABX test (no one ever succeed yet, but who knows).

I run a) because I can and I like the power for the KEF Reference 3. Personally I am unable to distinguish a) vs b). (Separate Poweramps ca 114dB SINAD)

Edit: Typo and clarity.
 
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