Since the day Dolby Atmos was introduced, one of the most common requests among home theater enthusiasts has been the inclusion of front-wide speakers in a 3D immersive audio speaker configuration. Another common request? Allow for six overhead channels. At CES 2018, not only did Denon answer these wishes, it did so with an AV receiver that is fully capable of running the entire show—the AVR-X8500H ($3999).
This beast of an AVR packs a lot inside a single box. For movie lovers, it offers Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, and Auro-3D. It supports 7.1.6 and 9.1.4 Dolby Atmos speaker configurations – including front-wide speakers in 9.1.4 mode. Denon says power output is 150 watts per channel (2 channels driven, 0.05% THD).
Notably, if you have your own amps, the Marantz AV8805 pre/pro ($4499) also offers 13-channel processing, but eschews amplification for balanced outputs. The two units have more in common than not, so the AV8805 falls under the same AVS Forum Best of CES 2018 umbrella.
Beyond channel count, the AVR-X8500H (and the Marantz) offer a cornucopia of connectivity audio plus AV options, as well as advanced room correction plus bass management with Audyssey. And of course it is a networked AVR with HEOS built-in.
In the following video Yoshinori Yamada, Technical Category Manager, Audio and Video for Denon and Marantz discusses the AVR-X8500H with AVS Forum editor Scott Wilkinson:
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