Denon DNP-720AE any tried one?

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Thinking of getting one of these, partly for airplay as the DAC should provide better quality than I get from the airport express, but mainly because I've started to collect a few 24 bit 96kHz tracks that I'd like to hear in their full glory.

Anyone own or trialled one, what did you think? I'd especially be interested if anyone has tried it with FLAC HD files!!
 
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Anonymous

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Hi, I bought one of these last week. I'm completely new to network streaming. Up to now I just used CDs and occasionally played mp3s via PC line-out. I'd been wanting to get a bit more out of the many mp3s that I had on the PC, and I also wanted to be able to play FLAC 24/96 like you do.

I've been really impressed with the Denon on the whole. It's very easy to setup and I reckon the quality is excellent. I have been ripping my CDs to FLAC and to me the quality of these files streamed via the Denon is just as good as the CD playback via my Marantz CD6002 player. Downloaded FLAC 24/96 files sound great - as you'd hope they would! Lower quality mp3s (e.g. 128 and 192) also sound better than I've heard them previously.

The only reservation that I have about the Denon is the user interface when accessing files stored on the PC. You can either access directly via the Denon's 'media server' mode, or use Airplay. Airplay is fine if you only have Apple files, but you can't airplay FLAC for instance. And, based on reading I've been doing on the net, I suspect that airplay is not capable of streaming above CD quality. I'm currently waiting to hear back from Denon on this question.

If you don't use Airplay, then the Denon media server interface is a bit fiddly, although this can be improved by organising your files carefully. The Denon remote app for iPhone is a bit slow.

Overall I'm very pleased with it though, and I think it's excellent value at current price.
 
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Anonymous

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I bought one yesterday and given it about 3 hours of listening so far. For the price (almost £200 less than it was when it was launched in October) I can't fault it. The DAC (not been able to find out which chip) seems to do a decent enough job of bringing the detail out of the music and setting up a solid soundstage. I've listened to Dark Side of the Moon, Wish you were Here and The Doors' LA Woman. I wouldn't say the difference between between the CDs and FLAC-HD is so great that you would never want to listen to the CD again, but the drums, guitars and cymbals certainly sound more vibrant and there are tiny things I've never heard before.

The major surprise though, has been how good 256kbps AACs sound when streamed over airplay, I think becaus e my expectations were quite low I've been pleasantly surprised. Also there's something very satisfying out sitting in a comfy chair with access to thousands of songs on an iPod Touch or iPad with the info displayed clearly on the player.

As Henry said, I think the only issue is the user interface if you're not using airplay. As most of the time I'm only going to be accessing a few albums from a USB stick occasionally this won't be a problem. My only other issue is how unresponsive the remote was initially, but after downloading the latest firmware (it alerts you in the first 5 mins) it's worked perfectly.
 

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