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Denon AVR-X3800H Review

Rate this AVR

  • 1. Poor (headless panther)

    Votes: 75 20.7%
  • 2. Not terrible (postman panther)

    Votes: 194 53.4%
  • 3. Fine (happy panther)

    Votes: 78 21.5%
  • 4. Great (golfing panther)

    Votes: 16 4.4%

  • Total voters
    363

Trell

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Not having HDMI inputs into the receiver was getting old. I had to cludge together an HDMI audio extractor to make it work temporarily but it was becoming increasingly an issue. So I needed something modern and this receiver seemed like the bottom (quality) receiver I could find with preouts. I now know the RZ50 should have been on my radar as well.
Sure! Personally I would get the 3700 before the 3800 due to the big price hike as the 3700 will EQ your two subwoofers just fine.

While you’re at it, you could consider buying an UMIK-1 USB measurement microphone to find good positions for your subwoofers. This will also give you better results when using room EQ.

The mic is around $100, and the software REW is free to download. Runs on Windows and MacOS.
 

Narnian

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2 days and 73 pages later, now I'm wondering if I made the wrong decision. That's the downside of reading reviews after purchasing something. You're almost better off without the added information.
I have been running my X3800H for about 5 weeks now and am quite happy with it. The Denon X series was the only one that had the stuff I wanted and was also disappointed with the step down in the test results and was planning on getting an X3700H when they went on sale but was given a chance to try the X3800H in the meantime and I am very happy with it. It still tests better than most other AVRs out there and the discrete sub management is more useful than expected since I have two subs and can manage each one independently. The sound is the best of 3-4 other AVRs I have tried this year so even though I can get the X3700H at a discount I am going to stick with the X3800H because of the additional features I am actually finding useful.

My recommendation is get whatever you get from a seller who gives you a decent tryout period and have fun.
 

amper42

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I have been running my X3800H for about 5 weeks now and am quite happy with it. The Denon X series was the only one that had the stuff I wanted and was also disappointed with the step down in the test results and was planning on getting an X3700H when they went on sale but was given a chance to try the X3800H in the meantime and I am very happy with it. It still tests better than most other AVRs out there and the discrete sub management is more useful than expected since I have two subs and can manage each one independently. The sound is the best of 3-4 other AVRs I have tried this year so even though I can get the X3700H at a discount I am going to stick with the X3800H because of the additional features I am actually finding useful.

My recommendation is get whatever you get from a seller who gives you a decent tryout period and have fun.

This is really a good point. While I'm not willing to reward Denon for moving backward on performance measurements while increasing prices by 40% that's just me. If you try the Denon 3800 and like it, that's great! It's your ears you need to please, not a bunch of messages on ASR. :D
 

Narnian

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This is really a good point. While I'm not willing to reward Denon for moving backward on performance measurements while increasing prices by 40% that's just me. If you try the Denon 3800 and like it, that's great! It's your ears you need to please, not a bunch of messages on ASR. :D
All things equal I would have gotten something other than a Denon because I agree with not rewarding them. However I also did not want to cut off my nose to spite my face (though with the size of my nose it could be an improvement). I still have about 3+ weeks to return it if anything changes.
 

ivo.f.doma

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Sure! Personally I would get the 3700 before the 3800 due to the big price hike as the 3700 will EQ your two subwoofers just fine.

While you’re at it, you could consider buying an UMIK-1 USB measurement microphone to find good positions for your subwoofers. This will also give you better results when using room EQ.

The mic is around $100, and the software REW is free to download. Runs on Windows and MacOS.
According to those smarter than me, today neither the X3700 nor the X3800 will independently equalize your subwoofers. It just sets the levels and delays and equalizes them as one. It is the X3800 after delivery of the DLBC that will realistically equalize independent subwoofers.
 

Trell

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According to those smarter than me, today neither the X3700 nor the X3800 will independently equalize your subwoofers. It just sets the levels and delays and equalizes them as one. It is the X3800 after delivery of the DLBC that will realistically equalize independent subwoofers.
Yes, that is what Audyssey XT32 with SubEQ HT does, and has been so for many years. Audyssey in their own testing found that, with their algorithm, individually EQ of subwoofers gave worse performance than EQ together. I guess that DLBC does this differently than SubEQ HT, but those who have DLBC have to chime in on what it does.

As for DLBC on the 3800 it will be released sometime in 2024, so you’ll have to wait a couple of years for that feature.
 
Last edited:

bgavin

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After reading all the tests, and all 74 pages of comments here, and those on AVS Forum, I opted for the X3700H.
The new X3800 is a whole lot more $$ and doesn't offer me anything I need over the X3700.
I figure both have the same DACs, and also understand that all X3700 currently shipping have the HDMI 2.1 bug fix in place.
 

pbc

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Just ordered the 3800. Use powered speakers for my LCR, so only need amplification on the remaining 6 surround/atmos channels. Was some 30% off discount code for Denon so figured that would pay for the Dirac upgrade(s).

Can sell my Sunfire CG200x7 amp and Anthem AVM60.
 

Narnian

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After reading all the tests, and all 74 pages of comments here, and those on AVS Forum, I opted for the X3700H.
The new X3800 is a whole lot more $$ and doesn't offer me anything I need over the X3700.
I figure both have the same DACs, and also understand that all X3700 currently shipping have the HDMI 2.1 bug fix in place.
Even though I bought the X3800H I agree this will be the best decision for most people who do not need any of the new features.
 

Narnian

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Just ordered the 3800. Use powered speakers for my LCR, so only need amplification on the remaining 6 surround/atmos channels. Was some 30% off discount code for Denon so figured that would pay for the Dirac upgrade(s).

Can sell my Sunfire CG200x7 amp and Anthem AVM60.
What code? Others may be interested.
 

pbc

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Ah maybe it was because I didn’t have an account set up. Worked now.

What’s the diff between the Cinema 50 and the 3800, what more is one getting for the CAD$1000?

The Cinema 60 which is priced similar to the 3800 doesn’t get the Dirac upgrade
 

elderblaze

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I think I want Dirac so the 3700H is a non-starter. The 3800H will be over 2000$ by the time Dirac is released and paid for. By and large the consensus seems to be Dirac is pretty great. Think your better off with NR7100/Pioneer 305 or RZ50. I've read the oddities with the RZ50 amp and it appears to be much ado about nothing, as real world reports of it's performance don't bear out the results of the test. RZ50 with a Mini DSP and a pair of subs, probably best value for money. Doubt DLBC will be much/any upgrade over Mini DSP and MSO software. If your really worried about amp oddities on the RZ50 just get a stereo amp for your mains and reduce the load on avr dramatically. RZ50's got pre-outs.
 

bgavin

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Bummer.
$914 including tax is $381 less than I just paid from Denon when I ordered today.
Q: who is the vendor offering this deal?
 

elderblaze

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Ah maybe it was because I didn’t have an account set up. Worked now.

What’s the diff between the Cinema 50 and the 3800, what more is one getting for the CAD$1000?

The Cinema 60 which is priced similar to the 3800 doesn’t get the Dirac upgrade
Cinema 60 is an expensive 2800H, no dirac, no XT32. She's got a pretty face though.
 

amper42

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Sign in at Denon.com use code DENONORD30 to get an AVR8500HA for 30% off or $1379 off. Wow!
 

pbc

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Bummer.
$914 including tax is $381 less than I just paid from Denon when I ordered today.
Q: who is the vendor offering this deal?
Denons official website. Not sure if the orders will be cancelled as I think it may have been supposed to be a targeted email campaign. Just return your order when it comes in and order again using the code.
 
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