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Auro 3D coming to more Denon & Marantz AV products

All immersive formats soon to be on-board

by Mark Hodgkinson Dec 20, 2016 at 7:06 AM

  • D+M Group, the company behind the Denon and Marantz brands has announced a forthcoming upgrade to support Auro-3D.
    The immersive sound format upgrade will add an additional height sound layer creating a different take to Atmos and DTS:X in providing a 3-D immersive sound experience at home. Announced only in the US, for now, it’s expected to be available on January 5, 2017, just as CES 2017 is getting in to full swing.

    The upgrade will be available on three recently introduced premium AV receivers and one AV pre-processor. Customers can purchase an Auro-3D firmware upgrade for $199 for the Denon AVR-X6300H, Denon AVR-X4300H, Marantz SR7011 AV receivers and Marantz AV7703 AV pre-processor.

    The Denon and Marantz upgrade service can easily be done by every owner at home through the model’s built-in online feature upgrade function. More details will follow soon on the official Denon and Marantz websites.

    Auro-3D provides a realistic sound experience via added “height layers” in sound reproduction. The format creates an immersive sensation through acoustic reflections, generated and heard similarly to how they are produced in real-life—capturing the sense of sound originating from both above and around the listener. Auro-3D's unique and consistent “coherent vertical stereo field” not only creates one of the best screen sounds on the market but also a very natural experience for the listener, says the release, and that’s been our experience with the format, too.

    Once upgraded with the Auro-Codec Decoder, all four models can decode the original Auro-3D mixes from available content. The decoder allows playback on an Auro 9.1 or 10.1 speaker configuration, both of which incorporate Auro Technologies’ unique approach to create an immersive home entertainment experience. An extra amplifier is needed for the AVR-X4300H and the SR7011 to drive the top surround channel for 10.1 configurations while the 11.2 channel AVR-X6300H supports a 10.1 channel configuration without extra amplification. The AV7703 pre-processor will need external amplifiers.

    The height information, captured in recording or created during the mixing process, is mixed into a standard 5.1 PCM stream that comes with a regular Blu-ray. Moreover, its proprietary AuroMatic algorithm enables playback and upmixing of legacy mono, stereo, 5.1 surround formats, and creates a 3D immersive sound experience with audio quality on par, they say, to native mixed versions.

    D+M Group is all about innovation, and we’re always on the lookout for improvements to our hardware to offer a cutting-edge audio experience,” said Yoshinori Yamada, global business team leader for the company’s A/V receiver category. “This is our 3rd year of offering the Auro-3D firmware upgrade to our Denon and Marantz AVR lineup. We are having more and more customers asking for the upgrade. We are happy to be able to continue to deliver this technology and share the excitement with our customers.”

    Auro-3D has seen significant momentum in 2016 with rapid growth within the home entertainment, digital cinema, mobile, music, automotive and gaming fronts,” said Wilfried Van Baelen, CEO of Auro-Technologies and inventor of the Auro-3D format. “This latest collaboration with D+M Group is testament to our vision of providing true-to-life three-dimensional sound to as many people as possible. With Auro Technologies’ unique format and D+M Group’s premium line-up, we can offer the perfect package for home theater enthusiasts looking for a truly immersive listening experience. This support from D+M Group marks the end of a momentous year for us and heralds an even more exciting 2017”.

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