It’s been 110 years since Denon produced its first gramophone player. Now the venerable Japanese … [+] audio manufacturer is celebrating its birthday with some special-edition products.
Everyone loves an anniversary especially consumer electronics companies. This month we’ve already seen loudspeaker manufacturer Bowers & Wilkins celebrating its 25th anniversary of the company’s 6000 Series loudspeakers, now it’s the turn of Denon, Japan’s oldest audio manufacturer.
It’s been 110 years since Denon produces its first gramophone player and, since then, the venerable company has gone on to produce a whole range of audio industry firsts. The Denon name was derived from the Japanese words Denki and Onkyo, meaning electrical sound, and sound is what Denon does best. From producing one the first PCM audio recorders in the early 1970s to the latest 8K AV Receivers, Denon has been a trailblazer in developing new audio technology. To celebrate 110 years, Denon has announced four new anniversary products.
Denon AVC-A110 AV Amplifier
The flagship AVC-A110 13.2-channel 8K AV amplifier supports all the popular 3D sound formats like Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, DTS:X Pro, IMAX Enhanced, Auro-3D as well as others. The AVC-A110 has been tuned for premium sound and features an all-black interior, housed in a limited-edition silver-graphite case with aluminum front and side panels, custom die-cast feet plus a copper transformer plate for improved isolation.
With 8K/60Hz pass-through – or upscaling, 4K/120Hz pass-through for gaming and support for the latest HDMI specifications – the AVC-A110 ensures that owners will be assured of compatibility with other 8K components in the future. Gamers will be pleased to note that the AVC-A110 has Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM), Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) and Quick Frame Transport (QFT) for minimizing lag and latency while eliminating frame tearing for more fluid gameplay.
Denon claims the AVC-A110 produces a lifelike cinematic experience thanks to its monolithic amplifier design which is powered by a massive 8.2kg transformer delivering up to 150 watts per channel. There are eight HDMI inputs and three outputs, including a dedicated 8K input with the latest dynamic HDR standard. The eARC HDMI offers uncompressed and object-based audio formats like Dolby Atmos and DTS:X to connect directly from a smart TV app to the AVC-A110.
Denon has also included multi-room entertainment with HEOS built-in so music can be played all around the home to other HEOS-compatible speakers as well as devices supporting Apple AirPlay 2. There’s support for a whole load of popular music streaming services like Spotify, Amazon Music HD, TIDAL, Deezer and many more. Users can also have hands-free control with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Siri voice agents.
PMA-A110 Integrated Amplifier
The second Denon product to celebrate Denon’s 110 anniversary is the PMA-A110 Integrated amplifier. This high-end amplifier is powered by Denon’s Ultra High Current topology with 80W per channel into 8Ω. Denon’s engineers have designed the circuitry with frequency response going up to 100-kHz during applied use. The PMA-A110 can handle a range of Hi-Res digital sources thanks to two PCM1795 chips working in a differential mode for the highest accuracy and best signal-to-noise ratio. The PMA-A110 also uses Denon’s Ultra AL32 Processing, an advanced technology that processes digital sources and smooths the waveform so that is as close to the original signal as possible.
Users can connect a range of analog and digital sources to the amplifier, including a vinyl turntable. The phono preamp stage is compatible with Moving Magnet (MM) and Moving Coil (MC) cartridges plus there also jitter-suppressing Coaxial, Optical or USB-B inputs for handling digital sources. Denon hopes the PMA-A110 will appeal to audiophiles who want a statement amplifier for a modern audio system with analog and digital sources.
DCD-A110 SACD Player
Denon has also announced the limited-edition DCD-A110 flagship SACD player. The DCD-A110 can play CDs and SACDs, as well as DSD files and Hi-Res audio files up to 192-kHz/24-bit recorded on DVD-R/RW and DVD+R/RW discs. Users can also play music files with sampling frequencies of up to 48kHz recorded on CD-R/RW discs.
The DCD-A110 SACD player is built like the proverbial tank and uses premium materials like a copper plate for the top panel, die-cast aluminum for the disc tray, and 2-millimeter thick steel for the mechanism brackets. Because of the high-mass, vibration-resistant properties of these materials, vibrations caused by spinning discs are eliminated so that digital data can be read from the disc with higher levels of accuracy.
The DCD-A110 has a new Quad DAC configuration that converts the data with 32x oversampling of the incoming PCM signal. The DCD-A110 has carefully selected custom-tuned components for better sound quality. There are two clock oscillators, one for each sampling frequency (44.1-kHz and 48- kHz), that can be switched between the frequencies to eliminate digital jitter.
The limited-edition SACD player also has fully independent power supplies for the digital and analog circuits to cut down on interference and noise. The player’s power supply is built using custom parts such as high-power bipolar junction transistors, a fully discrete voltage regulator circuit, high-quality electrolytic capacitors, and polyphenylene sulfide capacitors.
DL-A110 Phono Cartridge
The final 110 Anniversary product is Denon’s new DL-A110 phono cartridge. This is a premium Moving Coil design, hand-spun at Denon’s Shirakawa factory, Japan, just as it was back in the 1960s when it was first introduced as the DL-103 cartridge. This anniversary edition Denon cartridge is the oldest product to carry the Denon badge and still uses the original headshell design that was initially developed by Denon when stereo FM radio stations first started up in Japan, back in the 1960s.
With a weight of just 6 grams, the DL-A110 silver-graphite headshell holds the cartridge securely in perfect alignment, producing a detailed sonic signature with extended low-frequency performance. The DL-A110 uses the same bayonet connector developed by SME for its tonearms.
Pricing and availability: The AVC-A110, PMA-A110 and DCD-A110 will be available at authorized Denon retailers from October 2020. The final special edition product, the DL-A110 cartridge, will be available in November 2020.
AVC-A110 AV Amplifier $5,499 / £4,999 / €5,500
PMA-A110 Integrated Amplifier $3,499 / £3,199 / €3,500
DCD-A110 SACD Player: $2,999 / £2,799 / €3,000
DL-A110 Phono Cartridge: $599 / £499 / €599
More info: www.denon.com