Pros + Sound quality of Audyssey EQ calibration
+ Full-featured (though not perfect) Android App
+ Highly customizable (thanks to Audyssey EQ)
+ Respected brand with 2year warranty
+ Best sounding AV receiver around $500 (it is widely sold for $550 today)
Cons - Interface is crap
- Streaming is buggy (very slow and unresponsive...and the Android app doesn't help)
- Airplay is buggy and absolutely requires an Apple device (no - Android or Windows workaround)
Summary Okay, so I set out to make my home theater for for the first time. I am a technology geek (work as an network admin) and do my research before settling on purchases.
I tried all of the popular AV receivers and was able to hear the sound difference. All the middle-class receivers I tried were able to produce great, but they sounded different when they did their processing. Using "(pure) direct" sound made all of the receivers sound VERY similar. Thus, it really boiled down to what receiver was able to do its magic to make my speakers sound better in my home theater room. Audyssey EQ hands down did the best job.
My grip with this review is that they fail to mention you are able to get the Denon AVR-2112CI for $440 (you have been able to get this price since it came out and still can) and AVR-1712 for $400 and BOTH of them have a better Audyssey EQ (XT) that will make the receiver exponentially better at making your speakers sound good.
CNET is for some reason obsessed with AirPlay. which the 1712 doesn't have, but 2112ci does. I have tried using this fear on the 1912 and found it did not work flawlessly for my Ipad. Sound quality was better plugging in my Galaxy SII via MLA convert to HDMI...so much so that I think it is silly to use Airplay. Also, Sonos CONNECT has much better sound quality and features if you want to use your phone as remote to play music.
Thus I don't give the 1912 5 stars because it does not have Audyssey EQ XT (it has Audyssey EQ). This techology is the single thing that makes the receiver great and having better makes it even better, but CNET seems to think dropping XT and getting Airplay is worth it (that or playing more to not have XT and Airplay). Ironically, if you do a little research, you can get XT AND Airplay on the 2112ci for $100 less than the 1912!
Either way, Denon is making the best AV receivers hands down but be mindful of the cons I list. Yamaha deals with the cons, but their EQ technology is far worse than Audyssey EQ and it sounds worse (different maybe a better way to put it). Some claim Yamaha makes music sound better (less tiring because sounds don't jump out at you), but I would counter this the flexibility of the Denon can make music sound the same or better with manual tuning.
The difference in Yamaha and Denon sound can be described that Yamaha sounds 'loud and wide' and Denon sounds 'localized and fine tuned,' which is what I want from a 5.1/7.1 system.
Denon isn't a perfect brand and there is a lot I don't like about them, but for under $500, the sound quality they produce is hard to argue against when looking at the competition.
Lastly, if you're will buy the Denon AVR-1912, I suggest you have to compare prices before you decide at -> *******************/Denon-AVR-1912
Pros See in summary
Cons See in summary
Summary After returning 2 failed (video problems) Onkyo TX NR609 receivers, I gave this Denon a try and am happy I did. It has gorgeous sound and was easy to set up and calibrate and has a wide array of features, including Apple Airplay.*** P.S. IF you will buy this Denon AVR-1912 I suggest you have compare prices before you decide at: www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/B004U403XQ?ie=UTF8&ref_=dp_olp_new&condition=new#?ie=UTF8&tag=***************&********=ur2&camp=1789&creative=390957
1) Beautiful sound! Dolby ProLogic IIz; 7 discrete amps!
2) 6 HDMI ports
3) 2 year warranty
3) Ease of setup; Audyssey automatic calibration of speakers with included microphone
4) "Airplay" for use with Apple products--this is very cool.
5) No need to buy expensive Wifi adapater. This will use any wireless bridge to allow you to connect to internet (I bought one for $50).
6) Pandora, Rhapsody, and Napster!
7) Attractive looking with rounded corners and matte black finish
8) On-screen menus and volume control (Pioneer does not have this feature)
9) USB port on front of receiver for Iphone or Ipod connection (using the Apple USB cord)
1) Difficult to use remote control (note: You have to press the AMP button on the remote first THEN Menu button before you can access the Setup Wizard). Confusing instructions on setting up remote to work with other devices. I still cannot get the "Quick Select" buttons to work, and will have to contact technical support for advice. Will update this post with instructions when/if I obtain them.
2) No manual! Instead they give you a CD with PDF of the manual. I found this annoying since my PC is in a different room than the receiver and going back and forth to follow step-by-steps was frustrating. You can print pages out of course, but a hard copy of the manual would have been my preference. On the up side...no bulky manual to file away, and I have the CD smartly stored away and a saved PDF of the manual on my computer for future reference.
3) Front USB port is not compatible with the IPad. (Airplay does, however, work with Ipad)
The unit does not seem to run hot, and from what I have read, Denon receivers enjoy a long and stable life. Based on what I have experienced so far, I highly recommend this unit over the Onkyo TX NR609 and even the Pioneer VSX-1021-K, which I also tried. I could not tell the difference in sound between the Denon and Pioneer, but the Pioneer does not have on-screen menus or volume, which I found very annoying. Pioneer also wants an outrageous $150 for their Wifi adapter. Both the Pioneer and Denon sound better than the Onkyo.
Updated on Aug 30, 2011
Updated on Nov 1, 2011Edit link
Suggest compare prices before you decide at: beam.to/Denon-AVR-1912
Pros Amazing sound, V-Tuner for Internet Radio!, IPod Controls
Cons Music presets sounds horrible, video upscaling very bad
Summary I bought the Denon 1912 returned it because the video up scaling was horrible and the audio playback in music mode was very bad. Movies and Video gaming sounds amazing. I exchanged it for the Onkyo TX-NR609, i was very pleased with the Onkyo except for the fact it did not have the airplay. The sound quality wasn't as good as the Denon 1912 but the overall sound was satisfying meaning movies, gaming and music sounds great. It wasn't amazing but great. So i came back to CNet to review other receivers and i came across the Pioneer VSX-1021-K CNet raves on the amazing feature such as the iPhone remote control app, Airplay and the great sound it produces. I figured I have now found the perfect receiver. So i then take the Qnkyo Tx-NR609 Back to exchange it for the Pioneer VSX-1021-K. By this time i could tell Best Buy was getting fed up with me buying and returning so much lol. I brought it home set it up and i was blown away by the amazing sound, the technology was futuristic and state of the art. I said to myself this is the one. Until i tried turning up the volume and setting the listening modes. Then i discovered THERE ARE NOT ANY ONSCREEN VISUAL CONTROLS. i said this can't be correct. I looked at the manual just to make sure i didn't have the settings wrong BUT sure enough there are no visuals at all. Denon and Onkyo has it why not Pioneer. I was very disappointed. Some of you might say this is a petty thing to complain about. But if you knew how far my reliever was from my listening area you would understand. So i may be returning the pioneer and going back to the Onkyo . Pioneer would have been the perfect receiver if they would took the extra step and installed this very simple feature ONSCREEN VISUAL CONTROLS. I think their main focus was trying to impress us with the apple features.
Denon 1912 Best Sound for Movies and Gaming (Music's Horrible)(Poor Video Up scaling)
Onkyo TX NR609 Overall Best Mid-Range Receiver great sound after a little Tweaking great video up scaling No
Airplay alternative is to Buy Apple TV $99 and your set.
Pioneer VSX-1021-K Sounds Similar to the Denon Great features Amazing Video Up scaling but no ONSCREEN VISUAL CONTROLS. It's almost like they are forcing you to purchase an IPad or an iPhone.
Here's my view on all three of the most talked about AV Receivers of 2011
Hope this helps.
"Everything I Want"on by uber6eek
Pros Internet Radio
Excellent sound quality
6 HDMI inputs
Cons -limited ipod controls
-Beware you may have to press the AMP button on the remote to use set up Wizard or enter Menu. I thought I had a diffective unit at first.
Summary i can only compare the audio quality to my 10 year old Harmon Kardon but the sound quality is amazing. I recently upgraded my speakers which made a big improvement but I was unsure a new receiver would make much more of a difference. I was blown away when I heard the difference.A few days later, I went to change the input manually and realized they removed the dial on this model. I'm a little disappointed but its a minor issue I suppose.
I went with Denon because I was looking for the best audio quality for a mid range receiver. I was pleasantly suprised when I went to purchase and found out they just got this year's model which has more hdmi inputs, an improved GUI and many new network features
Updated on May 6, 2011
Pros V-Tuner for Internet Radio! IPod Controls on the front of the Receiver! IPod DAC bypass for better sound! 6 HDMI Inputs! 2 Zone 2 Source! GUI overlay on top of content! DLNA filesharing! And most importantly EXCELLENT SOUND!
Cons No Input selector wheel (Hard Button or on Remote). No front HDMI. No pre-amp outputs for Zone two.
Summary Overall for the money this new Denon takes the cake for the low-priced leading receiver on the market. It comes in with almost every feature available for well under the $600 price point ($529 MRSP).
Some may criticize DENON for not including Wi-Fi built into the unit, but this is done for safety reasons to the equipment more than anything else. DENON does not want their products to be subject to the end-users lack of a solid Wi-Fi network in the home, so they offer the HARDWIRE ethernet connection only. In my opinion this is not a bad thing. As an installer, I have witnessed the unfortunate destruction of A/V gear doing Wi-Fi firmware updates, and thus turning top shelf A/V into nothing more than a glorified BRICK.
By DENON elliminating the Wi-Fi on this unit, they have ensured the Network A/V user a SOLID connection with error free updates.
If you want to get a little bit more function out of your unit upgrade to the new AVR2112 ($599). One step above the AVR 1912 gets you the input selector wheel, a THREE year warranty, and Pre-Amp Outputs for Zone 2. (yes you get all that for just $70 more).
But if low cost is the #1 factor in a buying decision, the AVR1912 takes the cake for this years AV Receiver Market.
Good listening and watching for all those fortunate to pick up a DENON AVR-XX12 receiver this year!