Denon DHT-T100 review

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Reviewed:

Awards

  • Recommended by TR

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Denon DHT-T100
  • Denon DHT-T100
  • Denon DHT-T100
  • Denon DHT-T100
  • Denon DHT-T100
  • Denon DHT-T100
  • Denon DHT-T100
  • Denon DHT-T100
  • Denon DHT-T100

Summary

Our Score:

9

User Score:

Pros

  • Smooth, detailed sound with well-controlled bass
  • Robust build quality
  • Two digital inputs

Cons

  • No HDMI inputs
  • More expensive than similarly-specced rivals

Key Features

  • Built-in Bluetooth with apt-X
  • Denon Virtual Surround and five listening modes
  • Supports TVs up to 27kg (or 50in size)
  • Dolby Digital decoding
  • Optical and coaxial digital inputs
  • Manufacturer: Denon
  • Review Price: £249.00

What is the Denon DHT-T100?

The shocking sound quality offered by today’s slim TVs has created a market for simple, discreet speaker systems that restore depth and loudness to TV and movie playback. The best known of these is the soundbar, which is placed in front of a TV or on the wall. But an alternative type of single-unit speaker has emerged that sits tidily under your TV, blasting out a big sound without bringing extra clutter into your living room. The Denon DHT-T100 is one such product.

Described as a TV Speaker Base (although they’re also called a plinth, sound base or sound plate, depending on which company you ask), the Denon DHT-T100 takes the signal from your TV and turns it into something more beautiful – and it’ll do the same with music to, thanks to its built-in Bluetooth connection. At £250 it’s a little pricier than rivals like the Maxell MXSP-SB3000 and Cambridge Audio Minx TV, but hopefully that’s justified by superior performance.

SEE ALSO: 10 best soundbars you can buy

Denon DHT-T100

Denon DHT-T100 – Design & Connections

The DHT-T100’s build quality is excellent, a cut above rival plinths from Maxell and Cambridge Audio. The 608 x 355mm top panel sports a tactile matt finish, while the wonderfully robust cabinet allows you to place your TV on top with confidence – Denon says it’ll support loads up to 27kg, which should cover most TVs up to 50-inches, provided the stand fits within the top surface, while there guidelines imprinted on the top to help you to position it centrally.

It’s slimmer than most under-TV speakers too, standing just 71mm high. Looks-wise there’s no showboating – it’s just a discreet black box with curved corners and a black metal mesh covering the front. In fact, the only things that stop it being completely anonymous are the Denon logo and a row of illuminated buttons running along the top, including volume, Bluetooth, mute and sound mode selection controls.

Denon DHT-T100

The lack of HDMI inputs on the back is a slight surprise, given the elevated price and the fact that Maxell provides three of them for £20 less. But they’re not crucial on a product like this as you can pass everything through your TV into the Denon’s optical digital input.

In fact there are two digital inputs, the other being of the coaxial variety. They’re joined by a 3.5mm minijack input, which might come in useful for connecting MP3 players and TVs without digital outputs. This input has its own sensitivity control (with 0dB, -6dB and -12dB settings) should your TV’s output be too strong and cause distortion.

Denon DHT-T100 – Features

Feature highlights include Bluetooth connectivity, which employs apt-X for CD-quality wireless music streaming, and Dolby Digital decoding, but oddly not DTS.

Denon’s Virtual Surround processing aims to emulate the effect of surround speakers. You can also tailor the sound to your taste using five listening modes, including self-explanatory Movie and Music settings, plus Movie Wide and Music Wide, which deliver an expanded front soundstage. Dialog mode brings extra emphasis to speech frequencies, while the Night mode reduces the dynamic range so you can continue listening when everyone else has gone to bed.

Denon DHT-T100

It’s a two-way speaker system using dual 2 x 5-inch oval mid-bass drivers and two 0.5-inch dome tweeters placed at the very edges of the front panel, while on the back are two bass reflex ports. Denon isn’t quoting any power output figures for the built-in digital amplifier.

BrotherBungle

December 3, 2013, 5:48 pm

Question for the money are you safer with the Denon DHT-100 or a similar priced sound bar?

Stefan Andrusyschyn

December 4, 2013, 2:34 pm

was wondering the same thing myself

dansus

December 7, 2013, 4:14 pm

Can it stream bluetooth audio to headphones for night time listening?

Geek in Training

December 8, 2013, 9:39 pm

Can you set this up like a bluray player? I'd rather the Denon sit in my tv stand rather than on top with the tv on top of it. How would this effect the sound quality?

Sarge

December 11, 2013, 6:09 pm

Just bought one its amazing!!!!!

Stefan Andrusyschyn

December 13, 2013, 9:47 am

If my TV's on an eye'level hight hifi cabinet, would this be a bad idea? as in, would it raise the tv too high for comfortable viewing? Also, is it similar in quality to similarly priced soundbars?

anon

December 27, 2013, 8:12 pm

"No HDMI" listed as a "con"? Why on earth would you need HDMI for something that is audio-only? Optical handles HD sound, so that "con" is redundant.

TheNash

December 30, 2013, 9:04 pm

How does this compare to other similar TV speakers such as the Onkyo LST10? This seems to be a new sub-category of TV sound system so it would be great to have some reviews of the rivals please

stonnie

January 12, 2014, 1:43 pm

Bought the Denon at Christmas as a present for me!! Its fantastic brings all programmes and films to life, Great value!!!

Hinniehall

February 18, 2014, 7:54 pm

Superb system!
The Denon DHT-100 has brought a much better sound dimension to my TV sound.
It is so simple even I managed to set it up and have it working after a night flight from Texas to the UK.
The bluetooth is brilliant for playing from my phone.
There is a distinct lack of wires - so top lady-marks from my missus.

Top marks from me.

NOK

February 19, 2014, 1:24 pm

Bought last week. It's ok but..
Setup1: Samsung A816 (rather old lcd model, firmware the latest) -optical-> DHT-T100 -> annoying lip-sync.
Setup2: Samsung blu ray bd-p1500 (old 1st gen player, firmware the latest) -HDMI->A816-optical->DHT-T100 -> terrible lip-sync

Pat Robson

February 22, 2014, 5:27 pm

i just installed one and its great! 1 problem tho, the listening mode option has stopped working in TV mode, the front panel does not light up or change modes. works fine with Bluetooth selected. not sure how to rectify this, any answers?

Sergio

March 4, 2014, 4:28 pm

I have the same problem. Have you got to rectify this?

Sergio

March 5, 2014, 8:52 am

Finally, I reset the soundbar to the factory settings and now it works fine again.

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