Receiver Wars: Denon AVR-X1700 vs AVR-S760H
I don’t know about you, but choosing a new AV receiver can be a frustrating experience. First, you have a lot of choices out there, which is never a bad thing. But then you have to compare features, prices, your needs, and any number of criteria that you may have. And to add to it, each brand has several options, making the choice harder! Well, what if you let us do all the hard work? That’s right, folks; I am starting a series of articles we are dubbing Receiver Wars. In my inaugural article of Receiver Wars, we’ll pit the Denon AVR-X1700 against the AVR-S760H. We will put them head to head, looking at features and pricing, and crown one the Winner (hopefully)! So, throw on your boxing gloves, and let’s get the Denon AVR-X1700 ($699) and the Denon AVR-S760H ($599) into the Receiver Wars ring!
In this round of Receiver Wars, we are pitting the two entry-level AV receivers from Denon (the AVR-X1700 and AVR-S760H) against each other. When price IS an object, you need to know where your hard-earned money is going. As always, I’ll utilize one of Rob H’s (AV Rant podcast co-host) favorite tools, the ZKelectronics AV receiver comparison tool. It’s a quick and easy way to compare AV receivers at a glance. I highly recommend you use it for your comparisons.
Round 1 – Base Specs
These AV receivers feature 7.2 channels allowing you to add Atmos/DTS:X in a 5.2.2 configuration. They are also HDMI 2.1 compliant (3 inputs with full bandwidth), enabling you to use your next-gen console. Honestly, these two AV receivers are so close that choosing a winner in this round will be a challenge. Let’s compare them!
|Denon AVR-X1700H||Denon AVR-S760H|
|7.2 channels||7.2 channels|
|7.1 channel processing||7.1 channel processing|
|80 W (8 Ω, 20 Hz – 20 kHz, 2 channel driven)||75 W (8 Ω, 20 Hz – 20 kHz, 2 channel driven)|
|HDMI 2.1||HDMI 2.1|
|Dolby Atmos, DTS:X capable||Dolby Atmos, DTS:X capable|
|HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision, 8K Upscaling, 8K Passthrough||HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision, 8K Upscaling, 8K Passthrough|
|AirPlay 2, DLNA, HEOS||AirPlay 2, DLNA, HEOS|
|Ethernet, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth||Ethernet, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth|
|USB and Phono inputs||USB and Phono inputs|
Result – Draw
These two AV receivers are a draw. The 5 Watts per Channel difference is insignificant, so they are identical, spec-wise, on paper. These two receivers are built on the same platform, so it isn’t surprising that they have many of the same specs.
Round 2 – Price
Pricing is often THE major consideration when choosing an AV receiver, much less an entry-level receiver. If comparing AV receivers and one is drastically more expensive than the other, you have to consider the price-to-performance ratio. For me, diminishing returns is real, and I am not willing to pay a premium for a small feature difference.
Result – Winner – AVR-S760H
The Denon AVR-S760H is the clear winner here. At $100 less retail and often more when on sale, the difference is not insignificant. If price is your main barrier to entry, the Denon AVR-S760H wins hands down over the Denon AVR-X1700 in this category on Receiver Wars. Plus if you wanted to go the refurb route, the price could be even less.
Round 3 – Features
Price is important, but features are where it is at! Most people don’t mind paying a little more if they get enough value for their money. Let’s see how these two stack up against each other!
|Feature||Denon AVR-X1700H||Denon AVR-S760H||Winner|
|Bi-amp capability||Yes||No||Denon AVR-X1700H*|
|Room Correction||Audyssey MultEQ XT||Audyssey MultEQ||Denon AVR-X1700H|
|Speaker A/B||Yes||No||Denon AVR-X1700H*|
|Zone 2 Pre-Outs||Yes||No||Denon AVR-X1700H*|
|Control 4/IR Outputs||Yes||No||Denon AVR-X1700H*|
Result – Winner – Denon AVR-X1700H?
Listen, Denon is doing a lot of work here to point out that the AVR-X1700 can do more than the AVR-S760H, but where does it matter? Without belaboring the point, the upgrade to Audyssey MultEQ XT on the AVR-X1700 is where it scored the extra points to win the receiver war. The Denon AVR-X1700 has bi-amp, Zone 2, speaker A/B, and more remote options. But if we are being honest, in all my years of being an enthusiast, I have never used these features.
Where I did notice a jump in performance, especially in my treated room, was the upgrade from basic MultEQ to MultEQ XT. MultEQ XT has 16x filters vs. 2x for MultEQ, plus two more measuring positions for better accuracy. When you are on a budget, $100 is a lot. That’s a streaming box or a remote. But in this case, $100 is worth choosing the Denon AVR-X1700H over the AVR-S760H to get that bump up to Audyssey MultEQ XT in my opinion. Now, if you don’t have a treated room, or if room correction isn’t that important to you, then the AVR-S760H is a fine choice.
And the Winner Is – Denon AVR-X1700H
In Receiver Wars: Denon AVR-X1700 vs AVR-S760H, the AVR-X1700H pulls off the win. The Denon AVR-X1700 didn’t win because it had (marginally) more power or a few more features (that you won’t use) than the Denon AVR-S760H. It won because it had a higher tier of Audyssey and the $100 price differential wasn’t enough for the AVR-760H to eke out the victory. Plus the AVR-X1700H is part of the In-Command Series which gives you installer-friendly items like removable power cords (make ’em longer or shorter) and IR ports/Control 4 inputs for custom installers to set up those goodies.
Why Might You Buy the Denon AVR-760H?
If price is a major concern, the AVR-760H is still a very capable AV receiver and I don’t have many reservations about it. With the lower tier of Audyssey, I would recommend you focus on some room treatments as your next major upgrade!
What do you think? Did I get it right? Let us know in the comments below and let us know what AV receivers you want us to put head to head.