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Denon announces new A/V receivers, stereos, and audio systems

Denon announces new A/V receivers, stereos, and audio systems

Denon today announced a slew of new products in advance of the September CEDIA show. The four A/V receivers, the three stereo receivers, an all-in-one home-theater system, and an audio shelf system will all offer compatibility with Denon's ASD-1R iPod dock (which allows for remote control of the functions of a docked iPod), and they're all XM-ready (just add an XM Connect-and-Play antenna with an up-to-date subscription for access to any of XM's satellite stations, including those broadcasting in the latest 5.1 surround sound).

The company will add four new A/V receivers to its product lineup: the AVR-2307CI ($800), the AVR-1907 ($550), the AVR-1707 ($450), and the AVR-1507 ($330). The AVR-1907 (85 watts per channel), the AVR-1707, and the AVR-1507 (both 75 watts per channel) are updated versions of the existing AVR-1906, AVR-1706, and AVR-1506, respectively. Slated for availability in August, the AVR-2307CI looks to be the pick of the litter: it will deliver many of the core features of the AVR-2807--a current CNET Editors' Choice--at a price point that's $300 cheaper. Among the highlights of the 100-watt-per-channel AVR-2307CI is its strong HDMI capabilities: it can switch between two HDMI sources and convert any of the analog video inputs (composite, S-Video, component) to HDMI output as well. That means you can connect two of the latest HD products via HDMI (say, an HD-DVD or Blu-ray player, HD cable or satellite box, or the forthcoming PlayStation 3), as well as any legacy gear (VCR, DVD recorder, an older game console), and still need to run only a single HDMI cable to your HDTV. Furthermore, the HDMI inputs can accept 7.1-channel uncompressed PCM audio, and the receiver offers 7.1-channel analog inputs, which give you the most flexibility for dealing with HD-DVD and Blu-ray audio formats for the time being. Like other receivers and DVD players in Denon's line, the "CI" designation in the AVR-2307CI's name designates that it's friendly to "custom installer" applications, such as specialized input labeling and streamlined programming. Meanwhile, the previously released AVR-5805MkII ($7,000), AVR-4806CI ($4,000), AVR-4306 ($2,000), AVR-3806 ($1,300), AVR-2807 ($1,100), and AVR-2106 ($700) remain active products in the company's lineup.

Also coming from Denon in August is the DHT-487DV ($700), a home theater in a box (HTIB) that combines a decent Denon receiver, DVD player, and 5.1 speaker system in one package. Unlike last year's DHT-486DV, the DVD player in the new model offers HDMI output with video scaling to 720p and 1080i, though it's unclear whether the accompanying receiver boasts any HDMI capabilities.

If surround isn't your thing, Denon has a decent selection of two-channel products as well. The DRA-697CI ($600), the DRA-397 ($400), and the DRA-297 ($300) are capable stereo receivers, headlined by the two-source/three-zone capability (with a second zone remote) and HD Radio upgradability of the 697CI model. The S-81 ($600), meanwhile, is an audio-only shelf system that plays audio CDs and home-burned MP3/WMA CD-R/RWs--an offshoot of the S-301, minus the video capability. All four models are scheduled to ship by the end of September.