So, you're after a sound system and you want (or need) something of higher quality than, say, Denon's S-302 2.1-channel system, can't stretch to the undeniably high price tag of the POA-A1HD and you want Denon's audiophile pedigree. As Natalie Portman in Garden State (shameless film plug) once said: Conundrum! You might guess this is going somewhere, and you'd be right - the Denon POV-A1HD.
Aimed at a lower price point than the so-called Imperial Death Star of AV-amps, the AVC-A1HD still packs a pretty exceptional specification. For instance, there are six HDMI 1.3 inputs and a pair of outputs which Denon says can be run simultaneously. Thus you could, for example, power a TV and a projector from the same amp without fuddling around with switch boxes or swapping cables.
Audio of just about every kind you could want can be streamed either over Ethernet or wirelessly; FLAC, MP3, AAC, WMA and WAV to be specific. The amp is DLNA compatible, so it can pull files either from a compatible NAS appliance or a PC. Processing-wise there is a Realta sxT2 HQV chip for image processing and scaling on the video side of things, while audio is taken care of by 32-bit digital signal processing and discrete power circuitry for each channel - a Good Thing as any audiophile will testify.
Okay, so there is a catch - of sorts - tied to all this AV-goodness. While Denon does suggest that this AV amp is a veritable bargain, that's a fairly subjective claim. Certainly, compared to the £5,000-odd asking price of the POV-A1HD, the £3,799 MSRP of the AVC-A1HD could be just what the
doctor accountant ordered for the budget-constrained. And anyway, can you really put a price on a decent AV setup?