Denon's new AVR-X1700H is a slick but affordable 8K receiver

Mike Wheatley

Audio brand Denon is making most of its advanced AVR features accessible at a relatively low price point with the debut of its entry level AVR-X1700H. The new amp, which goes on sale next month, will offer seven-times 80 watt amplification channels plus three 8K HDMI 2.1 inputs and support for a range of surround sound formats, such as Dolby Atmos, Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization, DTS:X and DTS Virtual:X.


The HDMI 2.1 inputs are said to support both 8K@60Hz and 4K@120Hz video pass-through at a rate of 40Gbps, meaning they will be compatible with next-generation games consoles. With that, they support advanced features of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, like Variable Refresh Rate, Quick Frame Transport and Auto Low Latency Mode that help to ensure smooth gameplay. There’s also 8K upscaling available for all inputs, plus enhanced Audio Return Channel that delivers uncompressed audio via a single HDMI cable.

Another feature seen on all three HDMI slots is 4:4:4 chroma sub-sampling, as well as compatibility with various HDR codecs including Dolby Vision, HDR10+, HDR10 and HLG. Further, the built-in display has an interesting benefit, in that it shows current HDMI signal information, so users have an easy way to confirm both the resolution and the HDR format that’s being passed through the AVR.

Denon said that at its best, the AVR-X1700H can be setup to drive a 5.1.2 channel Dolby Atmos or DTS:X speaker system. Alternatively, without those channels it can take advantage of DTS Virtual:X and Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization to deliver immersive 3D audio in 7.1, 5.1 and even 2.1 speaker arrangements.

The system is perfect from streaming sounds too thanks to its built-in compatibility with Apple AirPlay 2, so users can send songs to it from their iPhone or iPad. Alternatively, the AVR-X1700H boasts support for several high-resolution formats including FLAC, ALAC and WAV files, plus DSD 2.8/5.6MHz.

Further compatibility exists with music streaming services such as Spotify and Tidal. Those services can be streamed over Bluetooth or the company’s proprietary HEOS technology. With HEOS, the receiver can also stream music wirelessly to compatible speakers anywhere else in the home. For private listening, there’s Bluetooth audio transmitter that’s able to send music to Bluetooth headphones.

Other handy features include voice control via Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple Siri or Denon also makes the initial set up a breeze with it Audyssey MultEQ XT calibration software that detects each speaker’s size, type and configuration and then measures their response to optimise its performance. Users can choose to further refine the settings using the Audyssey MultEQ Editor app on their Android or iOS phones, then they can use the Dual Speaker Presets capability to store two different speaker configurations and their settings, and easily switch between them.

All in all, the Denon AVR-X2700H has some pretty nifty features that will appeal to anyone wanting a realistic sound experience. Moreover, it will be a lot cheaper than Denon’s and other brands’ higher end receivers, with a price tag of just £730.