Denon is now shipping the AVR-X4800H AV receiver it first announced back in September 2022. That’s great news for home theater fans looking to step up their cinema sound game over what’s delivered by the best dolby Atmos soundbars, and it should also be of interest to gamers seeking a receiver that’s fully compatible with PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X | S consoles.
A notable feature of the AVR-X4800H, and one that would rank it among the best AV receivers, is its support for 8K 60Hz and 4K 120Hz video pass-through on multiple HDMI 2.1 ports. Some earlier models from Denon and other AV receiver makers provided either a single full-featured HDMI 2.1 input, or even none at all, while promising a full suite of HDMI 2.1 capabilities would be added via a “future firmware update.”
The AVR-X4800H provides 8K and 4K 120Hz compatibility out of the box, and its other gaming features include support for Variable Refresh Rate (VRR), Quick Frame Transport (QFT), and Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM). There’s also pass-through support for all key high dynamic range formats: Dolby Vision, HDR10+, Dynamic HDR, and HLG.
Denon’s latest receiver is similarly stacked on the audio side, offering up Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, IMAX Enhanced, and Auro 3D sound processing. Built-in Audyssey MultEQ XT32 room correction lets you fine-tune the interaction between your speakers and listening environment for the best sound, and a firmware update that will enable an upgrade to Dirac Live room correction (at extra cost) is promised for the future. Having used Dirac Live and experienced its sound quality benefits, we find that last feature especially compelling.
That’s not all there is to be said about the AVR-X4800H. With 9 onboard 125-watt amplifier channels, it supports Dolby Atmos configurations that use up to four overhead “height effects” speakers. It also has four subwoofer outputs that can be independently controlled. Denon’s wireless HEOS platform is used for streaming, allowing for high-res audio to be conveyed to the receiver over a Wi-Fi connection.
Analysis: Receivers with up-to-date HDMI 2.1 features have arrived (finally)
One irony concerning A/V receivers that have been released over the past few years is that many lacked HDMI 2.1 ports with comprehensive features to support the latest generation of gaming consoles, while numerous soundbars offer such support.
Models like Denon’s AVR-X4800H correct that situation by letting you connect both a PS5 and an Xbox series X with full pass-through of 4K 120Hz video along with VRR and ALLM support. Oh yes, it also has both 8K video pass-through and upscaling of 4K video to 8K resolution to ensure compatibility with your future 8K TV.
AV receivers like the AVR-X4800H are pricey ($2,499 / £2,000 / AU$3,600) audio components that you’ll want to hang on to for many years – decades, even – so it’s comforting to know that they are available now with a fully up-to-date feature set. Anyone buying Denon’s new receiver will be able to use it well into the future, or at least until virtual reality replaces all other forms of entertainment.
With four independent subwoofer outputs and both Audyssey MultEQ XT32 and Dirac Live support (forthcoming), the AVR-X4800H can be used as the centerpiece of a perfectionist home theater, one with deep, perfectly tuned bass output. Those features are the ones that really make this receiver interesting and different from other options on the market, and we hope to get an opportunity to test it out in the near future.
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Al Griffin has been writing about and reviewing A/V tech since the days LaserDiscs roamed the earth, and was previously the editor of Sound & Vision magazine.
When not reviewing the latest and greatest gear or watching movies at home, he can usually be found out and about on a bike.