Denon AVR-X3500H review | What Hi-Fi?

Maintaining supremacy on the market isn’t normally accomplished via status nonetheless. Nor is it led to by utterly remapping the path that ended in luck in the first position.

Denon knows that inertia ends up in stagnation, so the key is discovering a steadiness between small but effective alterations and making empty revisions merely for the sake of it.

The question is not so much whether Denon can persuade its consumers to improve their systems yearly, however that it stays at the vanguard of house cinema amplifier design, particularly at entry-level and mid-range price issues. Thankfully, the Denon AVR-X3500H takes a step forward from its already class-leading predecessor.

The AVR-X3500H was once at the start introduced back in 2018 and was once replaced in 2019 through the Award-winning AVR-X3600H, which has itself now been outmoded by the AVC-X3700H. Click on those type numbers if you're interested within the newer amps, or continue reading in case you are still interested in the older version.

Build and lines

The basics of this type, though, stay the similar as the AVR-X3400H – the Denon AVR-X3500H is a 7.2 channel amp, with two of the channels assignable as either encompass back or for top, applying Dolby Atmos, DTS:X and DTS Virtual:X technologies.

Physical connections are similar to those at the final type, with 8 HDMI inputs and three outputs, each and every able to 4K HDR pass-through. Denon has additionally added a phono enter.

In line with the corporate’s desire to progress this fluctuate from house cinema amps to a home entertainment hub, the major additions to this yr’s characteristic checklist are Alexa Voice Control and Apple AirPlay 2. The amp may also be a hub for a HEOS multi-room set-up.

Under the bonnet, the changes are in keeping with Denon’s little-and-often solution to upgrading portions. The corporate has revealed that the DAC, DSP, energy transformer, block capacitors and mechanics have remained unchanged, even though they were already at a excessive level for the price.

Instead, Denon has enthusiastic about making improvements to the encompassing portions, making component changes to the pre-amplifier energy supply, power amplifier and DAC circuit. These adjustments have ended in marginal, but efficient, positive factors in the amplifier’s general performance.

Set-up is guided by way of the on-board Audyssey device, which remains to be some of the accurate, fast and easy-to-use device we’ve come across. It takes us step-by-step through speaker configuration and automated level adjustments.

Sound

From there, it’s trade as standard because the AVR-X3500H greets us with Denon’s recognisably bold and open soundstage, ticking containers across the board whilst permitting us to turn out to be immersed in whichever supply we choose.

When we reviewed this amp’s smaller sibling, the AVR-X2500H, we celebrated the muscle it had gained over its predecessor. The AVR-X3500H had no such ground to make up, however it soon turns into transparent that Denon has focused on added authority across the vary.

It is relaxed driving our reference PMC Twenty5 bundle in the course of the rumbles and thumps of a high-action mystery, with the added solidity felt across the board as voices and soundtracks benefit from its authority and stability.

Tech specs

Channels 7.2

Power 180W in step with channel

HDMI inputs 8x HDMI 2.2

HDMI outputs 3

Dimensions (hwd) 43.4 x 16.7 x 39.1cm

Weight 10.8kg

That even, but complete stability is also unchanged, with a variety of detailed low-end now not only making the motion more convincing, but also handing over a performance this is consistently smooth at the ears. With so much power, you want to simply transform fatigued through the depth, however this Denon has a knack of being welcoming even when conveying essentially the most chaotic scenes.

Denon has managed this with out forgoing subtlety or dynamics. The AVR-X3500H is as relaxed hanging its light contact over staid drama as it is offering the punch in an action-heavy scene. It proves its talent to modify gears as and when the supply material demands.

This approach translates to track playback too, which is why Denon has positioned the focus on the AVR-X3500H as an all-round leisure machine reasonably than simply pass-through for your own home cinema.

Where such a lot of AV amps battle, this one delivers song consummately with the rhythmic and dynamic figuring out we’d be expecting from a stereo counterpart. Though it could’t compare with a dedicated stereo amplifier, we're very happy paying attention to it power our PMC Twenty5.23s.

Verdict

Denon appears to have its path to endured luck figured out. Its intensive listening tests, because it makes the ones annual tweaks to its home cinema amplifiers, are obviously a fruitful guide.

In terms of both options and performance, the AVR-X3500H nudges a bit further ahead of its predecessor. And this is another credit to Denon.

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