Denon AVR-X6700H 11.2-channel A/V Receiver Review Page 2

The Denon also has HDMI eARC, which lets you route lossless audio both from a TV's internal apps and from any sources connected to it back to the AVR. For gamers, the X6700H offers the following: 4K/120Hz pass-through; Variable Refresh Rate (VRR), a feature that permits more fluid motion and a reduction of judder and frame-tearing by enabling the game console or computer to deliver video at a rate dependent on the varying requirements of the graphics processor; Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM), which lets a gaming source trigger the display to automatically switch to a low-latency mode; and Quick Frame Transport, which further reduces latency for no-lag gaming.

Additional features that some buyers may find useful include Bluetooth wireless (input and output), and support for Google, Amazon, and Apple voice assistants. There's also a moving magnet phono input for vinyl collectors and wireless multi-room streaming of most popular music services via Denon's HEOS platform. I was able to play both music from Tidal and internet radio on the X6700H using the HEOS app on my iPhone X, and the resulting sound quality from Tidal was excellent, though radio quality varied wildly with the source. One streaming-related quirk I encountered: when wirelessly playing the same content via AirPlay 2, I was blocked from checking Audyssey status and from accessing the AVR's tone controls.

1120denonr.remThe X6700H is compatible with IMAX Enhanced sources. These use a variation of DTS:X immersive audio and can also be played on non-IMAX Enhanced gear, though without the format's benefits. Two years after its introduction, only a limited amount of IMAX Enhanced content is available, both on disc and the FandangoNow streaming service in the U.S., though Sony is reportedly readying a large number of additional titles for release. Bottom line: the X6700H has it if and when you need it.

Setup And Use
The Denon's front panel revealed no quirks, though I seldom used it apart from referring to the information window. The full-function remote control was easy to use most of the time, though the lack of full backlighting made operation more difficult in a darkened home theater.

I found the X6700H's nearly 350-page user manual (downloadable from the Denon website) poorly organized and a chore to use. Thankfully, its onscreen menus are vastly more user-friendly. These walk you through setup in easy-to-follow detail, though you might still find the manual useful for searching out in-depth information. Ultimately, I found setup relatively easy since it was similar to that of my Marantz AV8805 pre-pro. (Denon and Marantz may not be kissin' cousins, but they are corporate cousins.)

For setup, you can select either Auto (Audyssey) or Manual. Two configurable presets are available to store different speaker configurations, either with or without Audyssey (the X6700H can recall two separate Audyssey calibrations).

Source components used for this review included a Marantz UD-7007 disc player (for music), connected to a coaxial digital input and an Oppo UDP-203 Ultra HD Blu-ray player (for movies) connected via HDMI. Speakers included a pair of Monitor Audio Silver 10 towers, a Monitor Audio Silver C350 center, Revel Concerta dipole/bipole speakers for bipolar surrounds, two pair of PSB Alpha Series P3s mounted near the ceiling for overhead effects, and two SVS SB-3000 subwoofers. I used the subwoofers in all of the listening tests. This certainly helped take some of the load off the Denon below 90 Hz (the crossover frequency used), but that's a fair tradeoff since most potential buyers will likely have one or more subwoofers.

I used two different listening setups for my test. The first was without Audyssey, but to minimize an excess of response between 100 and 200 Hz in my room, I employed the same technique used in my recent Revel PerformaBe system review—juggling the Bass control to reduce the upper bass bump and then raising the subwoofer level to restore the overall bass balance. The second review setup used Audyssey room EQ to correct the speaker/room response. All critical listening was done via CDs for music and Blu-ray or Ultra HD Blu-ray discs for movies.

I'm more of a home theater pre-pro/separate amps kind of guy, and my recent experience with AVRs is limited. Even so, listened to in the first setup described above (Audyssey off), the system's sound when driven by the Denon exceeded my expectations. That's not to say the X6700H bested the nearly $8,000 in electronics it replaced (that's just for the five main channels, and not the older five-channel amp I used to power the overhead speakers), but I didn't find myself itching to return to the pricier setup.


I'm a fan of female vocal recordings, and two recent favorites are Loreena McKennitt's Nights from the Alhambra live album and Danish jazz singer Sinne Eeg's Waiting for Dawn. The McKennitt recording can be a little bright, but when I reduced the Denon's volume to a realistic level it sounded sweet, clean, and subtly affecting. The recording of Sinne Eeg's vocals sounded even better (as expected, given the studio vs. concert origins of the two recordings), with the Denon producing a tight soundstage and excellent depth. For these and other recordings I frequently turned off the room lights and listened in the dark. Without the distracting visible presence of speakers, the X6700H provided a convincing performer-in-the-room experience.

Bass with the Denon was also punchy and solid, with little or no boom or mud. Years ago, I made several mix CDs from a wide range of music in my collection. One disc has bass-heavy tracks featuring a wide range of hard-hitting drums, organs, and synths. All of these sounded stunning on the Denon, even at levels that would drive small children from the room. I never felt that the AVR-X6700H's amps were running out of gas or even close to it. Yes, the subwoofers I used certainly deserve a nod here, but so does the Denon for its high- and low-pass crossovers and, as set up, smooth transition from subs to mains.

Results were mostly the same but better when I switched over to Audyssey mode. The low end didn't measure all that different between the two setups, though bass with Audyssey was subtly but clearly tighter- and punchier-sounding. Imaging also had better focus, though just marginally so.

Movies presented greater challenges, and the Denon met them easily with nine of its 11 channels fired up. Here again I marginally preferred the sound in Audyssey mode but could have easily lived with either setup. Crushing dynamic bursts in Blade Runner 2049 were as clean and startling as I've ever heard them in my room. Oblivion's electronic score never fails to keep me riveted, and it did so here as compellingly as ever. The Greatest Showman was equally thrilling with its mix of clear vocals, moving underscore, and powerful bass. Finally, the effects-heavy mayhem in Midway proved no challenge for the Denon, even in my super-sized listening space.

The Denon also did an excellent job with both Dolby Atmos and DTS:X immersive audio (my setup of four overhead speakers isn't optimum for Auro-3D, so that wasn't tested). Halfway through Tangled, Flynn and Rapunzel make an escape just as a dam breaks, with flooding and collapsed timbers flying everywhere. Here the overhead speakers, driven by the Denon, offered a convincing presentation of the chaos. The Oblivion soundtrack offered much of the same, but also precise positioning where needed. For example, when Jack lands in the wrecked stadium, there was no doubt as to where his chopper was moving as it circled around. In a more subtle use of Atmos, a scene that alternates between a close-up of Jack speaking over the radio to Becca at her console revealed his voice shifting to overhead where it might originate from speakers in her control module. Just as important, overhead effects blended well with the main channels and didn't call attention to themselves except when a scene called for it.

You can spend more—a lot more—on home theater electronics than the $2,499 you'll pay for Denon's AVR-X6700H (for example, the company's far pricier AVR-X8500H), and with less crowding and less heat, such products might well produce longer service life. But will they sound significantly better or provide more useful features? Looking out over the current A/V landscape, the AVR-X6700H will certainly give any other available option a great run for the money.

tomvet's picture

As the owner of a 2018 Denon AVR, I've had real problems getting its ARC function to work with an LG OLED TV. An internet search reveals that I'm not alone -- lots of people have been unable to get Denon AVR's to play nice with LG TV sets via HDMI ARC connections. Do you know if it's been fixed with the eARC connection on this receiver?

moonshinedf's picture

I have the AVR-X3400H and now using LG OLED 65x and have no connection issues what so ever. The AV unit works great. But I am considering upgrading to the AVR-X6700H for more speakers

3ddavey13's picture

I'm curious why (with the exception of their high-end model) Denon receivers don't offer 7.1 analog inputs while their sister company Marantz does. I specifically purchased a Marantz SR7011 so I could connect my Oppo UDP-205 to its 7.1 analog inputs to take advantage of the Oppo's superior DACs. I've noticed a lack of 7.1 inputs on most of the receivers recently reviewed in S&V. I can only hope Marantz doesn't follow this trend.

trynberg's picture

Because the intention of these products is to use Audyssey room correction, which would then require re-digitizing the signal anyway. I think it's a rare room/setup where the Oppo DAC with no room correction produces better overall results than the Denon DAC with room correction.