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Soundbars Vs AV Receivers: Which Is Right for You?

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When it comes to home entertainment, we've really never had it so good. From discs to streaming, TV shows to films, there’s a never-ending supply of great content that sounds and looks amazing to enjoy from the comfort of your armchair. And thanks to an abundance of premium AV products from manufacturers like Denon, it’s refreshingly simple to see and hear this great content in all its glory.

While getting an awesome TV is a great place to start, modern TVs are thinner than ever before. This results in a steep decline in TV audio quality. If being a part of explosive, edge-of-the-seat action and thoroughly suspending belief is part of your entertainment goals, upgrading audio is the best next step. Nobody wants the crucial moment ruined by lackluster sound.

So where do you start? Please reference the following guide to understand the pros and cons of premium sound bars and AV (Audio Video) receivers from Denon.

A Soundbar for Space Saving

If space is at a premium, a soundbar is a room-saving choice while still offering a significant upgrade on your home audio. Denon soundbars come complete with built-in amplifiers, speakers, networking technology, and more. And thanks to features like Bluetooth, AirPlay, HEOS Built-in, multi-room, HDMI connectivity, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and more, a Denon soundbar is much more than just a TV speaker.

Immersive Surround Sound, Sleek Design

The svelte Denon DHT-S316 soundbar and wireless subwoofer system packs in huge sound and Bluetooth audio, HDMI with ARC (audio return channel) connectivity, Dolby Digital and DTS surround sound decoding, and Denon’s Dialogue Enhancer, which lets you turn up the dialogue without having to adjust the overall volume. Simple set-up means you’ll be enjoying theater-quality sound in no time. And at $299, the DHT-S316 won’t break the bank.

Outstanding Dimension, Clarity and Power

Step up to the more powerful Denon DHT-S516H ($799) soundbar and wireless sub and you benefit from the addition of AirPlay 2 for seamless Apple streaming and HEOS Built-in connectivity for wireless, whole-home audio across compatible HEOS Built-in AV receivers, mini systems and speakers. There’s also Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri voice control, support for Hi-Res Audio and the ability to connect up to two devices with 4K HDMI and digital optical and coaxial inputs.

Premium Sound with Four 4K HDMI Inputs

For the ultimate streamlined sound, the Denon DHT-S716H is a compact soundbar with 9 drivers delivering 3-channel sound, with the option of a wireless subwoofer. Four 4K HDMI inputs, alongside digital optical and coaxial inputs, gives you a wealth of connectivity. All the features of Denon’s soundbar range are here in a sleek, stylish package, making this the flagship model in the range. But there is another way to achieve audio bliss if sound bars just won’t cut it….

The Ultimate Sound: Denon AV Receivers

If you want the best, you need to upgrade to a Denon AV receiver. Connect all your home entertainment products for the best sound quality in stereo, surround and 3D sound, all completely customizable to your room. If you take your movie nights seriously, you need to hear true surround sound the way only an AV receiver and speaker system can deliver. All Denon AV receivers are powerful hubs for a variety of audio, video and music streaming sources. We recommend choosing a model that works best for you based on your room size, number of speakers for surround and/or 3D audio, and necessary inputs and outputs.

Entering the World of High-Quality Home Cinema

The Denon AVR-X1600H ($599) offers 145 watts of power to a maximum of seven speakers, which could fill a medium-sized room with powerful audio and connect up to six devices over HDMI. You can stream through Bluetooth, AirPlay 2 or the HEOS app, and there’s support for Dolby Atmos and DTS:X 3D surround sound. The receiver supports 4K video, Hi-Res Audio, Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Siri, and there’s unique Audyssey room correction for calibrating the sound perfectly to your individual room. It also has a built-in phono equalizer for connecting your beloved turntable.

The Digital Octopus

Upgrade with the Denon AVR-X2600H ($799) and get all the same features of the X1600H, plus 150 watts of power and eight HDMI inputs for added muscle and connectivity. The addition of a second HDMI output is ideal for running a TV and projector or two screens in the same room, or for sending audio and video to a second room.

High-Powered Home Cinema

For the ultimate AV performance, there’s the Denon AVR-X3600H ($1,099). On top of all the specs found in the X1600H and X2600H, you’ll feel the energy of 180 watts powering up to nine speakers. It supports the latest IMAX Enhanced specification, 4K video upscaling—even for analog sources like older game consoles—and a choice of three HDMI outputs. The premium Audyssey MultEQ XT32 room calibration technology from Audyssey ensures the AV receiver’s performance is perfectly optimized to your room.

Whether you want compact convenience or no-holds-barred surround sound thrills, Denon has a soundbar or AV receiver to fit the bill. And because Denon products routinely come out on top in critical reviews and industry accolades, you can be assured you’re getting class-leading picture and sound performance.