Multizone audio features have been available on better home theater receivers for several years (though I suspect few people take advantage of them). Now D+M, with the company’s Denon and Marantz brands, is launching a series of receivers that also offer full second zone video via HDMI output.
In addition to the multizone video, other features appearing on some of the new Denon and Marantz receivers include Airplay, Streaming content (Pandora, Sirius and vTuner), 4K (upconverting and pass-through) and ungradeability (via internet downloads).
From Denon, the In-Command line represents the company’s high-end, multifunction products targeted at enthusiasts and professional installation. They feature the company’s top technologies for both audio performance and control/operation. Those products include the AVR-3313CI (SRP:$1199.99), AVR-2313CI (SRP:$899.99) and AVR-2113CI (SRP:$649.99).
The flagship AVR-3313CI is a 7.1 channel system offering 125 watts per channels and can be operated as as the center of a three zone system (three audio/2 video), each with independent sources. If sports seven HDMI inputs, HDMI matrix switching functionality and three HDMI outputs (2 x parallel, 1 x discrete) which allows for two separate video outputs. You can use one for the main home theater, and then run an additional HDMI out to a separate TV in another room.
The model AVR-2313CI offers 105 watts/7 channels, dual HDMI outputs and dual subwoofer outputs.
Model AVR 2113CI offers 95 watts/7 channels.
All three include 4K scaling and pass though (making them ready for the coming of 4K content); RS232 control, Audyssey MultEQ XT Auto Setup and Calibration ,and a variety of other integrator-friendly features.
From the Marantz family, we get three new SR series of networked receivers featuring a similar set of options including Airplay, music streaming, 4K pass-through/scaling and 7.2 channel output, new user interface and a setup assistant to guide the user through the initial setup.
The SR7007 ($1,799) is a 125 watts per channel receiver with seven HDMI inputs (6 in the back and one in the front), 2-source, 2-zone video distribution over HDMI. An aluminum front-panel with fold up door hides a 2-line display. You also get a phono input for a turntable.
The SR6007 ($1,199, shown below) is a 110 watts per channel receiver while the SR5007 ($849, not shown)does 100 watts per channel.
All three receivers feature the latest Dolby Pro Logic llz, Dolby True HD, and DTS HD decoding. Additionally, all three accept LPCM 7.1 signals from a Blu-Ray player and have DC triggers and an RS-232c port for control integration. The front panel USB port will support high-resolution audio formats, including FLAC files.
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Grant Clauser has been covering home electronics for more than 10 years with editorial roles in several consumer and trade magazines. He's done ISF-level damage to hundreds of reviewed products and has had training from THX, the Home Acoustics Alliance, Control4 and Sencore. His latest book is Necessary Myths
. Follow him on Twitter @geclauser.