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Denon AVR-X4700 AVR Review (Updated)

rccarguy

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Hi all,

Happy 4700 owner here.

I'm planning on getting a streamer DAC (specifically the eversolo DMP-A6).

I am unsure whether I should be better of connecting the streamer DAC to the 4700 via digital (and using therefore using the 4700 DAC), or taking advantage of the reportedly quite nice DAC in the eversolo (Dual Sabre ES9038Q2Ms, one for each channel), and connecting by analogue RCA to the 4700.

My limited understanding suggests a digital connection may be best because a) The DAC in the 4700 is actually quite good and b) Analogue inputs are not always implemented particularly well, and so may be best avoided. And since this is an AVR, I am unsure if the analogue inputs would be any good or not?

I've read the review but I'm not knowledgeable enough to understand where the answer may lie amongst all the measurements.

Any insights / advice would be much appreciated.

Or buy cheaper streamer and use coaxial output.

If stereo sound is important you wouldn't be considering a AVR, you'd be using a stereo integrated amp plus the eversolo analogue out.
 
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Or buy cheaper streamer and use coaxial output.

If stereo sound is important you wouldn't be considering a AVR, you'd be using a stereo integrated amp plus the eversolo analogue out.

Thank you.

Sorry to be clear I have the 4700, I'm not weighing up buying an AVR.

I'm specifically interested in this streamer for the apple music implementation + screen, and don't mind paying for that. (I appreciate 95% of the features would be found in something like a Wiim Pro).

I'm not really too worried about the last word in sound quality, usability is more of a priority. Hence simply wondering the best way to connect what I will have, if I do buy the eversolo.

I have considered though getting a stereo integrated amp to run the eversolo + pre-outs L and R from the 4700. Very naive, but do you know what sort of money I'd be spending to significantly improve upon what the 4700 offers as a 2 channel amp?
 

amper42

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Hi all,

Happy 4700 owner here.

I'm planning on getting a streamer DAC (specifically the eversolo DMP-A6).

I am unsure whether I should be better of connecting the streamer DAC to the 4700 via digital (and using therefore using the 4700 DAC), or taking advantage of the reportedly quite nice DAC in the eversolo (Dual Sabre ES9038Q2Ms, one for each channel), and connecting by analogue RCA to the 4700.

My limited understanding suggests a digital connection may be best because a) The DAC in the 4700 is actually quite good and b) Analogue inputs are not always implemented particularly well, and so may be best avoided. And since this is an AVR, I am unsure if the analogue inputs would be any good or not?

I've read the review but I'm not knowledgeable enough to understand where the answer may lie amongst all the measurements.

Any insights / advice would be much appreciated.

I have a Denon 4700. I found several levels of streaming that work well for me:
1. Free - Simply download the HEOS app and use it to stream music to the 4700. It's pretty flexible and works with a tablet or phone. It supports Pandora, Spotify, Amazon Music, Tidal, SoundCloud and a few other option. This is a nice place to start.

2. The RPi4 with Moode was my next option. They are back in stock for $55.
Moode is free. https://moodeaudio.org/
You can select a power adapter and a 32GB microSD card with your RPI4. That takes you to $75.90
Of all the streamers I tried this was one of the most reliable and highly customizable. It supports AirPlay and UPnP connections. This setup is great for streaming Qobuz from my computer to the Denon.

3. Wiim mini - this is another option that supports a wide range of services and uses a phone or tablet to stream music to the Denon.

Personally, I don't see a need to pay more. You won't get better sound and there is nothing easier than using the phone as a remote. But maybe there is a feature you want to pay more for? Or perhaps you don't want to use your phone/tablet? The three options above work really well and cost is super low.
 

popej

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I have considered though getting a stereo integrated amp to run the eversolo + pre-outs L and R from the 4700. Very naive, but do you know what sort of money I'd be spending to significantly improve upon what the 4700 offers as a 2 channel amp?
Try to think like this: the main problem in audio reproduction is room acoustic and speakers. Whatever electronics you switch, it doesn't change the main problem.

The notable exception is digital room correction function (Audyssey), that your x4700 has. This function is designed to correct a bit the main problem - room acoustic and speakers characteristics. If you remove it, you will lose reproduction quality. If you keep this function, then the best way to add new sources is to connect them digitally, since then the signal can be directly processed by DSP performing room correction.
 
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I have a Denon 4700. I found several levels of streaming that work well for me:
1. Free - Simply download the HEOS app and use it to stream music to the 4700. It's pretty flexible and works with a tablet or phone. It supports Pandora, Spotify, Amazon Music, Tidal, SoundCloud and a few other option. This is a nice place to start.

2. The RPi4 with Moode was my next option. They are back in stock for $55.
Moode is free. https://moodeaudio.org/
You can select a power adapter and a 32GB microSD card with your RPI4. That takes you to $75.90
Of all the streamers I tried this was one of the most reliable and highly customizable. It supports AirPlay and UPnP connections. This setup is great for streaming Qobuz from my computer to the Denon.

3. Wiim mini - this is another option that supports a wide range of services and uses a phone or tablet to stream music to the Denon.

Personally, I don't see a need to pay more. You won't get better sound and there is nothing easier than using the phone as a remote. But maybe there is a feature you want to pay more for? Or perhaps you don't want to use your phone/tablet? The three options above work really well and cost is super low.

Many thanks for sharing this experience.

The sticking point for me is Apple Music, which our family is invested in now don't want to change away from anytime soon....

I hadn't realised until recently that Apple Music from iOS over Airplay 2 (including to the 4700) is down-sampled from lossless to AAC. Which triggered a search leading to the eversolo.

One option for lossless apple music is to have an iPhone / iPad wired to the receiver but this forgoes remote control, which is quite a big deal IMO. I have also tried leaving an old macbook in the cabinet with our library downloaded as lossless files. But, ironically, there is a known bug (2 years without a fix) with the Apple iOS remote control app that means it won't work for lossless files on a Mac, defeating the purpose and rendering that route a dead end for me.

The eversolo is pretty much the only product to my knowledge that allows lossless apple music to be piped into an amplifier / receiver, while also affording app control that the family can use. The Fiio R7 also achieves lossless Apple Music likewise through an embedded android installation, but has no remote app support. The eversolo is indeed not cheap, but at the moment I'm happy to pay for this unique functionality - to be able to easily stream losslessly in the main room - since am rather stuck with Apple Music at the moment.

Of course if I'd happily hear it if any of the above is wrong.
 

Sal1950

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I'm specifically interested in this streamer for the apple music implementation + screen, and don't mind paying for that. (I appreciate 95% of the features would be found in something like a Wiim Pro).
Why not just get an Apple 4k box for $100 and HDMI into your 4700?
That's exactly what I have here and the sound quality is as good as it gets from streaming, plus the availability of Atmos/multich music from Apple is the best there is..
 
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Try to think like this: the main problem in audio reproduction is room acoustic and speakers. Whatever electronics you switch, it doesn't change the main problem.

The notable exception is digital room correction function (Audyssey), that your x4700 has. This function is designed to correct a bit the main problem - room acoustic and speakers characteristics. If you remove it, you will lose reproduction quality. If you keep this function, then the best way to add new sources is to connect them digitally, since then the signal can be directly processed by DSP performing room correction.

It's a very good point.

To date I have always done my 2 channel listening in pure direct mode, thereby bypassing the audyssey DSP. I have always been wary of getting "used to" how my music sounds under a particular calbiration because I know how variable different Audyssey calibrations are. 2 years in and still don't feel like I've nailed it for our room (though a lack of free time this last year necessistated giving it a rest for a while).

Do people here generally leave Audyssey on for 2 channel listening?
 

Sal1950

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Do people here generally leave Audyssey on for 2 channel listening?
I do, absolutely. There's no way to get the in-room bass response as good without DRC.
You can always use a curve that excludes the top end if you don't like it.
 
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Why not just get an Apple 4k box for $100 and HDMI into your 4700?
That's exactly what I have here and the sound quality is as good as it gets from streaming, plus the availability of Atmos/multich music from Apple is the best there is..

Hah - that's exactly what I've been doing the last few weeks. Using a dedicated Apple TV for this, on it's own input.

It's a bit obsessive I know but it bothers me that all 44.1kHz music will be upsampled to 48kHz. Though I've never blind tested myself on this and wouldn't be at all surprised if I can't tell the difference.

My main reason to indulge in the eversolo are:

1) The apple TV solution has always been a little bit buggy, it randomly stops several times each evening. Never got to the bottom of why after a bunch of trouble shooting, and I'm inclined to put it down to TvOS being up to something.

2) The family don't find controlling an apple TV from their phones very intuitive. I.e. using the iOS music app to commandeer control of the apple TV I do agree with them is a bit cumbersome. So it appeals having a central screen anyone in the family can walk up to and select a playlist etc + a dedicated app which will always output where you expect. I am very aware this is a very minor issue though!

And so I completely agree this is the best solution for probably most people in this situation, and clearly how Apple view the solution to be.
 
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I do, absolutely. There's no way to get the in-room bass response as good without DRC.
You can always use a curve that excludes the top end if you don't like it.

Interesting. Thank you.

Actually, I have always used the denon app to disable correction above 300Hz or so, since I was never confident in how it was correcting my room above that.

It didn't occur could do the same for music too.
 

Sal1950

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1) The apple TV solution has always been a little bit buggy, it randomly stops several times each evening. Never got to the bottom of why after a bunch of trouble shooting, and I'm inclined to put it down to TvOS being up to something.
I've had mine for 2 years now with no issues.
Sounds like a network connection issue to me.

It's a bit obsessive I know but it bothers me that all 44.1kHz music will be upsampled to 48kHz.
Let me put it kindly, that's just crazy, you'll never hear any difference. LOL

2) The family don't find controlling an apple TV from their phones very intuitive. I.e. using the iOS music app to commandeer control of the apple TV I do agree with them is a bit cumbersome. So it appeals having a central screen anyone in the family can walk up to and select a playlist etc + a dedicated app which will always output where you expect. I am very aware this is a very minor issue though!
I agree the Apple UI is crap. I'm not sure how you can avoid its interface. You'll just have to try it I guess.
I don't have an Apple phone (or anything else Apple) but I bought a $20 ios compatible keyboard off ebay
that's been the easiest way to navigate it I've found.
 

Sal1950

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Actually, I have always used the denon app to disable correction above 300Hz or so, since I was never confident in how it was correcting my room above that.
Again, that's exactly what I had in mind and what I use here.
 
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Let me put it kindly, that's just crazy, you'll never hear any difference. LOL

Lol. Honestly this is appreciated. I quite want to persuade my wife now to blind test me on 44.1 vs 48 re-sampling. Just to put it to rest for myself. Things get generally a lot easier if don't have to worry about 48 kHz.

And indeed the Apple TV as a solution I now realise needs further thought... could even have a dedicated small CCTV-style monitor attached, for a fraction of the cost of the eversolo.

Thank you again.
 

Gringoaudio1

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Or buy cheaper streamer and use coaxial output.

If stereo sound is important you wouldn't be considering a AVR, you'd be using a stereo integrated amp plus the eversolo analogue out.
Unless substantiated by measurements such arm waving bullshit statements don’t hold water here. This receiver measures better than almost every integrated amp test here. And their previous 3700 model was even better.
 

Sal1950

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Lol. Honestly this is appreciated. I quite want to persuade my wife now to blind test me on 44.1 vs 48 re-sampling. Just to put it to rest for myself. Things get generally a lot easier if don't have to worry about 48 kHz.
Just be sure the levels are still matched within .1db after conversion otherwise differences could be obvious.
 

amper42

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My main reason to indulge in the eversolo are:

1) The apple TV solution has always been a little bit buggy, it randomly stops several times each evening. Never got to the bottom of why after a bunch of trouble shooting, and I'm inclined to put it down to TvOS being up to something.

You may want to know EverSolo DMP-A6 users are reporting Apple Music is buggy. They also indicate, "lossless is unavailable right now, only AAC is what Apple gives." If you buy the unit make sure you have a great return policy. Sound will likely be worse than a Wiim mini with a quality external DAC.
 

Steve Dallas

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It's a very good point.

To date I have always done my 2 channel listening in pure direct mode, thereby bypassing the audyssey DSP. I have always been wary of getting "used to" how my music sounds under a particular calbiration because I know how variable different Audyssey calibrations are. 2 years in and still don't feel like I've nailed it for our room (though a lack of free time this last year necessistated giving it a rest for a while).

Do people here generally leave Audyssey on for 2 channel listening?

I do. This is my 2 channel result using Audyssey DRC in my 4700. I wish the SBIR dip was better, but it is FAR better with DRC than in pure direct mode.

F206 Audyssey to 1100Hz Left and Right.png
 

Sal1950

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You may want to know EverSolo DMP-A6 users are reporting Apple Music is buggy. They also indicate, "lossless is unavailable right now, only AAC is what Apple gives.
Unavailable in the EverSolo?
Apple 4k TV box delivers lossless ALAC @48k to subscribers.
 
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