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Denon AVR-5803 Home Theater Receiver Review

by August 31, 2003
Denon AVR-5803

Denon AVR-5803

  • Product Name: AVR-5803
  • Manufacturer: Denon
  • Performance Rating: StarStarStarStarhalf-star
  • Value Rating: StarStarStarStar
  • Review Date: August 31, 2003 19:00
  • MSRP: $ 4300
  • THX Ultra2 Certified
  • THX Surround EX; DTS Extended Surround Discrete 6.1; DTS ES Matrix 6.1; DTS Neo:6 Cinema & Neo:6 Music Matrix Decoding; Dolby Digital EX; Dolby Pro Logic II; Dolby Headphone; DTS
  • Ultra2 7.1 Cinema and Music modes
  • Lucasfilm Home THX Cinema 4.0, 5.1 and 6.1ES post-processing
  • DVD-Audio decoding with Adjustable Digital Bass Management, Delay, Channel Levels and Tone Controls, through DENON Link or External Analog Inputs
  • DDSC-Digital featuring New dual Analog Devices HammerHead SHARC 32-bit floating point DSP processors
  • 7 Channels equal power amplifier section
  • 170 watts per channel (8 ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, <.05%THD)
  • 200 watts per channel (6 ohms, 20 Hz-20 kHz, <.05%THD)
  • 24 bit, 192 kHz A/D conversion (Burr-Brown PCM-1804 x 4) on all analog inputs, including External 7.1 inputs
  • 16 Burr-Brown PCM-1738E 24-bit, 192-kHz highest resolution DACs, with DSD compatibility - each audio channel operating in differential mode
  • Pure Audio mode, features 4 DACs per audio channel in dual-differential mode
  • ALPHA 24 Processing Plus in Stereo/Direct/Pure Direct modes (left/right channels)
  • 4 24 bit,192 kHz Digital Interface Receivers
  • 3 sets component video inputs, compatible with wideband (480p, 720p, 1080i)
  • 8 sets composite and "S" video inputs
  • Video Conversion of Composite to S-Video and/or to Component
  • 1 AC-3 RF digital input for laser disc
  • TWO sets of 7.1 external wide bandwidth (100 kHz) inputs for multi-channel formats with full Bass Management(defeatable)
  • 11(5 Coax, 6 Opt.) assignable digital inputs
  • 8 Channel Digital External Inputs
  • 13 analog inputs including built-in AM/FM tuner
  • Multi-Zone 1 stereo pre-amp outputs with video output
  • Multi-Zone 2 outputs, pre-amp outputs or speaker outputs
  • RS-232C port for external controllers
  • 12 and 5 volt triggers
  • DENON Link, for connection to DVD-9000
  • Variable high/low pass Crossover 40/60/80/100/120
  • Audio Delay adjustment Digitally regulated volume control with .5dB increment adjustments AKTIS RC-8000 LCD touchpanel remote with IR and RF transmission Dimensions: 17.1"w x 8.5"h x 19.1"d


  • Benchmark performance in all modes of operation.
  • Endless configurability and tweaking options.
  • Excellent craftsmanship.
  • Component video up conversion on all video sources with OSD


  • Poorly written user manual.
  • Difficult set-up for neophyte.
  • Low current trigger output cannot drive many power relay boxes.


Denon AVR-5803 Introduction

In the beginning of modern audio reproduction there was mono. Consumers were complacent with listening to AM broadcasts and their phono recordings on their large floorstanding tube based radios. Life was good. Shortly after, stereo was introduced and raised the bar on fidelity and consumer expectations of their audio systems. With the advent of the computer age (thanks to the invention of a tiny device called the transistor) we soon discovered an almost limitless frontier of multi channel audio which now seems to be evolving almost as quickly. Denon's latest super receiver appears to more than satisfy the criteria of delivering the goods, perhaps more so than much of their competition both presently and dare I say for future formats and/or digital transmission standards.

About the author:
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Gene manages this organization, establishes relations with manufacturers and keeps Audioholics a well oiled machine. His goal is to educate about home theater and develop more standards in the industry to eliminate consumer confusion clouded by industry snake oil.

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