Denon AVR-3310CI

Denon is all about universality when it introduced a special Blu-ray player that can handle the latest Blu-ray formats along with other older formats so additional devices aren’t needed to suit their legacy needs. Now Denon is adding some universality to some of its AV receivers including the Denon AVR-3310CI. This AV receiver doesn’t focus solely on the high definition features of the player, but it also ensures that the older SD sources come out in the best quality possible in both audio and video. It aims to provide a rich surround sound experience by using the latest decoding technologies.

Denon AVR-3310CI Receiver

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Design

The Denon AVR-3310CI is one of the bigger AV receivers around, but maintains a clean sturdy look that resembles the Blu-ray universal players and DVD changers. The layout is surprisingly clean when the front panel is closed showing the different logos of the formats that it supports and the basic controls on the sides.

There are two knobs on each side with the larger one on the right control the volume and the other knob on the opposite end for the source select. Under the source select are four small buttons that can change presets, video modes, and zones. The lower left is where the power buttons are and the lower right has three buttons functioning as a quick select.

All of the other controls and connectors are revealed when the front panel is open. The directional buttons are found on the center taking the form of a more compact layout than the 2310CI. The aux inputs and S-video are laid out similarly, but a USB port is found just above it which is not found in the 2310CI. There are also some other functions that control the different audio features and a lone phones jack on the left.

Performance

The Denon AVR-3310CI is more of an enhanced amplifier with support of up to 7.1 channels. These audio features can be utilized by any of the HDMI supported devices along with several other media devices that use older connections. Like the 2310CI, there are five assignable HDMI inputs and a single output for the TV or monitor. There are also three assignable component video inputs and a single output as well to cater to the devices that do not have any HDMI features. Plenty of S-video and audio connections are found on the back as well to support a multitude of devices.

Features

Audio quality is superb when the Denon AVR-3310CI is connected because it has the latest Dolby technologies including the new Dolby Pro Logic IIz which isn’t found in many current AV receivers and what it does is it expands the front soundstage by adding enhanced effects to the front channels. Other high resolution audio decoders are also supported including the DTS-HD Master Audio and Dolby TrueHD. Special audio technologies are provided by Audyssey to improve the setup calibration using the MultEQ room measurement and correction feature when the calibration mic is plugged in and used. It also provides some useful dynamic features including the Dynamic RQ for balanced tones at any volume level and Dynamic Volume for smooth transitions between any scene shifting with different volume levels.

Video quality is also optimized thanks to the special video processing by Anchor Bay VRS ABT-2010 which can upconvert HDMI connections to output at the full 1080p 24p/60p HD as well as support for analog to digital upconversions.

Extra features include Internet connectivity with a built-in Ethernet port allowing network access to the PC storages to stream audio and images. It also supports connectivity to Napster and Rhapsody services for subscribers and 7,500 other Internet radio stations all using the audio processing features. It is also Sirius ready and can read USB flash drives and iPod devices when the optional Denon iDock accessory is used.

Bottom Line

The Denon AVR-3310CI is a powerful AV receiver with a heavy price tag. However, it is the implementation of all these features that still make it worth the cost. It has five HDMI inputs which should be more than enough to support high-end home theaters and some nice networking support for even greater possibilities in the home network. The sound processing is excellent and makes a perfect companion when used with a Denon Blu-ray player.

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