The "Official" Denon AVR-3808CI Thread - Page 4 - AVS Forum
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Receivers, Amps, and Processors > The "Official" Denon AVR-3808CI Thread
cdnpaul's Avatar cdnpaul 07:27 PM 06-17-2007
Thanks for putting the list together. Great stuff!

rkgriffin's Avatar rkgriffin 07:53 PM 06-17-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by vcor View Post

With lots of comparisons between the Onkyo 875/905 and Denon 3808/4808 (and not all the specs fully understood), I made a comparison chart of the important items. It's still a bit of comparing apples to oranges as each have some really nice features unique to each one.


Shouldn't that be the Denon 4308?
dirk1843's Avatar dirk1843 09:00 PM 06-17-2007
The one thing that bothers me about this unit is the crazy amount of S and composite video connections it still carries, but has only 6 (3 coax and 3 optical) digital audio inputs. I know that HDMI is going to be the knew thing, but with my last set-up I was using I needed 2 DVD, 1 XBox, 2 D* boxes, 1 CD player. Had upgrade plans for media server and D-VHS but one died and the other never got around to. That would have made 8 inputs needed. Alot of the units in modern trim will of course use HDMI but there is alot of good older equipment out there, but how much of it is actually using S-video, much less composite?? Save some back panel space and put only S-video on the unit and throw in some adapters to plug composite in the S where needed, and give me a couple more optical inputs, another component video and a couple more HDMIs.
broadwayblue's Avatar broadwayblue 10:07 PM 06-17-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirk1843 View Post

The one thing that bothers me about this unit is the crazy amount of S and composite video connections it still carries, but has only 6 (3 coax and 3 optical) digital audio inputs. I know that HDMI is going to be the knew thing, but with my last set-up I was using I needed 2 DVD, 1 XBox, 2 D* boxes, 1 CD player. Had upgrade plans for media server and D-VHS but one died and the other never got around to. That would have made 8 inputs needed. Alot of the units in modern trim will of course use HDMI but there is alot of good older equipment out there, but how much of it is actually using S-video, much less composite?? Save some back panel space and put only S-video on the unit and throw in some adapters to plug composite in the S where needed, and give me a couple more optical inputs, another component video and a couple more HDMIs.

I totally agree with you about the absurdity of having so many composite and s-video connections. That said, 4 HDMI and 3 Component inputs makes for 7HD and digital connections. I don't know that I could ever exceed that. Even if I got a second DVR and bought a PS3 to go along with my existing cable box, HD-DVD player, and Xbox 360, I'd still have a couple HD/digital audio inputs available.
DarkAdept's Avatar DarkAdept 10:47 PM 06-17-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirk1843 View Post

The one thing that bothers me about this unit is the crazy amount of S and composite video connections it still carries, but has only 6 (3 coax and 3 optical) digital audio inputs.

While I agree with you on the absurdity of the analog inputs (time to include fewer and make them assignable, Denon!) I think it's similarly absurd to claim that there are only 6 digital audio inputs.

4 optical (one on front) + 3 coax + 4 HDMI = 11 by my count. HDMI really does eliminate the need for a large number of optical inputs for me. There was a time when I needed 5 optical inputs so I completely freaked at only having 3 on the back of the unit. Then I looked at my actual usage and discovered I only needed two now! Where did the others go?

My DVD player and PS2 were replaced by my PS3. Two optical outputs converted to a single HDMI input. My HD DVR used another optical output, and it will also go HDMI. Another optical output gone! Only my Xbox 360 and Airport Express will use optical inputs from the outset this time around.
amjustice's Avatar amjustice 05:20 AM 06-18-2007
The number of digital inputs was one of the things that sold me on the 3808
mkuzia's Avatar mkuzia 06:53 AM 06-18-2007
While comparision of features is excellent I did not understand in N905/4308 comparision table assignability of HDMI outputs. All I really need is parallel outputs (to switch between plasma and projector). This is what I understood Denon does (and nothing else). Can Onkyo be configured to do just that?
MagnoliaPro2's Avatar MagnoliaPro2 10:15 AM 06-18-2007
Nice chart! However, i thought the 3808 does DTS-HD MA decoding, it just says DTS ES?
bfdtv's Avatar bfdtv 12:31 PM 06-18-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by MagnoliaPro2 View Post

Nice chart! However, i thought the 3808 does DTS-HD MA decoding, it just says DTS ES?

That's an error in his table.
Amnizu's Avatar Amnizu 05:25 PM 06-18-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by bfdtv View Post

The Denon 3808 uses the same three TI SHARC DSPs as the Onkyo for audio decoding and processing, but has inferior Faroudja FLI02310 video processing, inferior Burr-Brown PCM1791 DACs (113dB SNR) from 2005, and at least on paper, an inferior amp design.

Do you have a link to the confirmation on the 1791? This seriously disappoints me, as I was hoping for and upgrade in DAC with this receiver from my Pioneer VSX-81TXV.
bfdtv's Avatar bfdtv 06:58 PM 06-18-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Amnizu View Post

Do you have a link to the confirmation on the 1791? This seriously disappoints me, as I was hoping for and upgrade in DAC with this receiver from my Pioneer VSX-81TXV.

Denon hasn't published information on their web site, but according to the first post of this thread, the 3808 uses the older PCM1791 DAC. It's not a bad part by any means -- it was the best mid-range DAC available until last fall -- it's just not the latest and greatest solution from Burr-Brown.
MrJames's Avatar MrJames 07:04 PM 06-18-2007
Most if not all of the info on the Denon 3808/4308 have come from the Listen Up website. It's second hand and should be taken with a grain of salt until Denon announces something but it's all we've had to go on so far.

http://www.listenup.com/DENON+AVR-38...I-p-49908.html
vcor's Avatar vcor 07:09 PM 06-18-2007
I've updated the comparisons with some additional info and corrections (Denon has DTS-HD Master Audio) and fixed the wrong Denon part number. Here it is again:

blackbelt's Avatar blackbelt 09:53 PM 06-18-2007
This might be a dumb question but here goes.Does anyone know if it matters at all if you have 5.1 or 7.1 or so with your speakers to get the dolby-true hd or the digital plus?I am looking at this receiver also. I have a friend that says you are waisting your time with this 3808ci if you dont have 7.1... Any thoughts? I only have 5.1 setup...
bfdtv's Avatar bfdtv 10:03 PM 06-18-2007
Quote:


This might be a dumb question but here goes.Does anyone know if it matters at all if you have 5.1 or 7.1 or so with your speakers to get the dolby-true hd or the digital plus?I am looking at this receiver also. I have a friend that says you are waisting your time with this 3808ci if you dont have 7.1... Any thoughts? I only have 5.1 setup...

Your friend is partially misinformed. On the Blu-ray format, Dolby Digital Plus exists only to provide 7.1 capability. However, your friend is totally wrong when it comes to TrueHD andd DTS-HD MA -- those formats not only add 7.1 capability, but they also provide higher-fidelity audio for 5.1.

Most theatrical releases will remain 5.1 for the forseeable future. Last I looked, there was only one Blu-ray title available with a 7.1 track. The overwhelming majority are 5.1, with a few 6.1s thrown in.
bwclark's Avatar bwclark 02:13 PM 06-19-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by vcor View Post

I've updated the comparisons with some additional info and corrections (Denon has DTS-HD Master Audio) and fixed the wrong Denon part number. Here it is again:


Well, how's the `ol Onkyo 875 vs. Denon 3808 thread going............

Wow, vcor...... you da man!!
rkgriffin's Avatar rkgriffin 09:23 PM 06-19-2007
I know it is commonly accepted that the Reon chip is better than the Faroudja chip with one of the main reasons being macroblocking on certain displays.

Does anyone know if macroblocking occurs even if the Faroudja is just deinterlacing say from 1080i to 1080p and not doing any scaling?
dirk1843's Avatar dirk1843 10:32 PM 06-19-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by DarkAdept View Post

While I agree with you on the absurdity of the analog inputs (time to include fewer and make them assignable, Denon!) I think it's similarly absurd to claim that there are only 6 digital audio inputs.

4 optical (one on front) + 3 coax + 4 HDMI = 11 by my count. HDMI really does eliminate the need for a large number of optical inputs for me. There was a time when I needed 5 optical inputs so I completely freaked at only having 3 on the back of the unit. Then I looked at my actual usage and discovered I only needed two now! Where did the others go?

My DVD player and PS2 were replaced by my PS3. Two optical outputs converted to a single HDMI input. My HD DVR used another optical output, and it will also go HDMI. Another optical output gone! Only my Xbox 360 and Airport Express will use optical inputs from the outset this time around.

I did mention the HDMI inputs.......However not having used them before I am not so familiar with them to know if they can be used as audio only. For example my TV does not have HDMI, only component. I do have a DVD player with HDMI out, could I use the HDMI for audio only and still utilize the component for video?? If so then I will totally agree that the 4 HDMI inputs could be thought of as digital audio inputs. If not, then what good are they to anyone without a HDMI compatiable monitor?? As for the front panel input, IMHO it is only good for a tempoary hook up. Who wants to have a cable snaking around the front of the HT setup??
j2clark's Avatar j2clark 02:43 PM 06-22-2007
FYI: I just pre-ordered the 4308 from J&R for a VERY SIGNIFICANT DISCOUNT off of MSRP. I didn't ask, but I would assume they have a pre-order discount on the 3808 as well.
gully_foyle's Avatar gully_foyle 04:04 PM 06-22-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by vcor View Post

With lots of comparisons between the Onkyo 875/905 and Denon 3808/4308 (and not all the specs fully understood), I made a comparison chart of the important items. It's still a bit of comparing apples to oranges as each have some really nice features unique to each one.

FYI: My Denon 3803 supports discrete ON/OFF via IR. Might not be on the supplied remote, but it exists in the standard Denon command set, and has for some time. I've used it in my JP1 setup for years. There's really no reason they'd get rid of it. It'd be a dealbreaker for me if they did.
erikk's Avatar erikk 04:09 PM 06-22-2007
There's no way they'd get rid of discrete IR commands. I'd be willing to bet anything they're included.
sorka's Avatar sorka 12:20 AM 06-23-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by j2clark View Post

FYI: I just pre-ordered the 4308 from J&R for a VERY SIGNIFICANT DISCOUNT off of MSRP. I didn't ask, but I would assume they have a pre-order discount on the 3808 as well.

I only see the 4306 on their site. Not 3808 or 4308.
sorka's Avatar sorka 01:12 AM 06-23-2007
What a shame. I was really getting excited when I started reading about the 3808. The main thing that was attracting me over the 905 is the ethernet connectivity. I'd much rather stream my 320 KBs mp3s from my pc than have to plug in my 5g ipod every time.

But the 35lb weight (which is one of the reasons I'm not replacing my Elite with a new Elite), lesser audio processors, and the lack of Ultra2 certification is leading me back towards Onkyo again.
sorka's Avatar sorka 01:15 AM 06-23-2007
Do I see that the 905 also has an RJ45 jack?

Oh, but wait, the 905 is out of my price range while the 3808 isn't.
buzzterrier's Avatar buzzterrier 11:10 AM 06-23-2007
I am pretty new to high-end receivers but this ethernet connectivity seems pretty important. Not so much the streaming, or iradio (I have a squeezebox) but for updates from Denon. With these components being so complex, I am very suspect of closed systems (can you tell I am a pc guy?). Denon touts that they can push firmware updates to the system, and can even remotely troubleshoot issues. For me this is huge! I have read about the Onkyo 905, but I am not sure if they are able to do firmware updates using usb or their networking.
dmcdayton's Avatar dmcdayton 01:14 PM 06-23-2007
Buzzterrier

You're exactly right. I've been upgrading my Oppo DVD player via firmware to get new functionality and I understand the Denon's have been doing this for a few years on their receivers.

Especially with HDMI being very immature, I'm hopeful they can iron out whatever software bugs remain via firmware. I went through a lot of trouble with my SA8300 STB from TWC that was recently fixed ( I think, won't know until new receiver) via the firmware.

Good point, for a newbie

Welcome
Babel_Fish's Avatar Babel_Fish 04:02 PM 06-23-2007
I have been torn over the whole "which receiver is for me" so what I did was pre-order both lol.. I was wanting the 3808 but with the preorder price.. I might as well go with the 4308 .

I live in IL and Abt Electronics (Denon and Onkyo Authorized Dealer) is also in IL (right down the road). Since JR.com was giving such a great preorder price, I just called Abt and told them and they matched the price. When the units come in (or before) i can just cancel the order if I change my mind. I have the same 30 day return policy as JR.com (and I wont have to pay shipping since they are so close).. aka no restocking fee, etc. I just need to wait to see the reviews and determine which unit will work for me.

They also told me that if I do find a lower price (after the unit is released) that they will give me the difference. Of course that is within a reasonable amount of time. I can't go back 6 months later and ask for the difference since the price is lower.

At least I know I have my bases covered. Bring on those reviews!!!
buzzterrier's Avatar buzzterrier 09:17 PM 06-23-2007
Thx dmc.

I guess I am kind of surprised that this was not called out as a bigger differentiator between the 875 and 3808. My (fairly inexpensive) Philips dvd player also can update it's firmware, which is cool. I have had other dvd players with some sort of minor problem that you were pretty much stuck with. I know there will be something with systems as complex as these receivers that can be optimized with a firmware upgrade.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dmcdayton View Post

Buzzterrier

You're exactly right. I've been upgrading my Oppo DVD player via firmware to get new functionality and I understand the Denon's have been doing this for a few years on their receivers.

Especially with HDMI being very immature, I'm hopeful they can iron out whatever software bugs remain via firmware. I went through a lot of trouble with my SA8300 STB from TWC that was recently fixed ( I think, won't know until new receiver) via the firmware.

Good point, for a newbie

Welcome


Phil Tomaskovic's Avatar Phil Tomaskovic 11:02 PM 06-23-2007
So how much difference is there between the 1791 and 1796 DACs. Does it give Onkyo that much of an edge over Denon besides the video chip differences?
bfdtv's Avatar bfdtv 01:04 AM 06-24-2007
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phil Tomaskovic View Post

So how much difference is there between the 1791 and 1796 DACs. Does it give Onkyo that much of an edge over Denon besides the video chip differences?

Treated alone it is a pretty significant improvement (10dB SNR), but it is still only one of many components in the audio chain. Other components may be the limiting factor, rendering the improved DAC largely irrelevant. Others would know more about that than I.

Until Denon posts official specs, I don't think we know for certain that the 3808/4308 actually use the PCM1791A. In recent years, Denon has used the latest mid-range DAC parts, so I was very surprised when I heard the 3808/4308 specs were published on the web showing the 1791A rather than the 1796A, especially after seeing that Onkyo was using the 1796A (and checking the current Burr-Brown price charts).

Quote:
Originally Posted by buzzterrier View Post

I guess I am kind of surprised that this was not called out as a bigger differentiator between the 875 and 3808. My (fairly inexpensive) Philips dvd player also can update it's firmware, which is cool. I have had other dvd players with some sort of minor problem that you were pretty much stuck with. I know there will be something with systems as complex as these receivers that can be optimized with a firmware upgrade.

Keep in mind that plenty of other receivers have received firmware updates using RS232. Of course, updating via RS232 with a PC requires more effort, and thus tends not to be widely used by manufacturers. With ethernet, the new Denons may be the first-ever consumer A/V receivers to download updates directly from the manufacturer. No question that is a nice feature to have.

That said, I don't think firmware upgades are as important as they are with some other devices, such as a Blu-ray and HD-DVD players, gaming consoles, etc. With receivers, the specifications are not in flux. The DSPs in most receivers are also heavily specialized, which limits the features a manufacturer could add. I would not expect new features with firmware updates. I expect firmware updates on receivers will exist to fix "bugs" discovered after release. If the platform was well-engineered in the first place, such updates may be largely unnecessary.

I was a bit surprised the 875 doesn't have ethernet. There are so many options to tweak on the ReonVX that you'd think they want every option to improve the output and/or offer more configuration options with a future firmware.
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