Dolby Atmos and DTS:X might be the two best-known names behind object-based surround sound — also known as 3D surround sound — but they’re not the only ones. Auro-3D has actually been around longer than either, and is becoming available in more and more hardware. For some time, D+M Group, the company behind the high-end Denon and Marantz brands, has offered Auro-3D upgrades for those companies’ A/V products, and now even more are getting the upgrade.
“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,” global business team leader for the D+M’s A/V receiver category Yoshinori Yamada said in a statement. “This is our third 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.”
On the Denon side, the AVR-X6300H and AVR-X4300H A/V receivers will get the upgrade. For Marantz, the SR7011 A/V receiver and AV7703 A/V pre-processor will get the upgrades. For all of these products, the upgrade is available as a firmware upgrade, and each unit can be easily updated though its built-in online upgrade functionality.
Once the models have been updated to include the Auro-Codec Decoder, they will be able to play back Auro-3D content from any available sources, in either Auro 9.1 or 10.1-channel configurations. For the AVR-X4300H and the SR7011, an extra amplifier will be needed to drive the top surround channels, while the AV7703 pre-processor will need a compatible amplifier or amplifiers.
“Auro-3D has seen significant momentum in 2016 with rapid growth within the home entertainment, digital cinema, mobile, music, automotive and gaming fronts,” Auro-3D format inventor and CEO of Auro Technologies Wilfried Van Baelen said. “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 lineup, 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.”
The Auro-3D upgrade for these products isn’t free — owners will need to pay a $200 fee for the firmware update. The upgrade is expected to become available on January 5, 2017. For more information on the products listed above, see the Denon or Marantz websites.