Anthem MRX 740 8K as an upgrade to my Denon AVR-X3700H

I have a 7.2 system.  I drive my front speakers using pre-out to my 2 channel system amp that drives my 2 channel system speakers.  I have 2 more sets of floorstanders for side and rear.  2 self powered subs.  Pretty happy with the system. 

Thinking of the upgrade in the subject.  I'm much more well versed in 2 channel sound than AV systems and would appreciate comments. 

I like the same things in theatre however, clear, accurate, and powerful, and dynamic.

For a streamer, are there better options than my LG smart TV delivered to my HT receiver via ARC?  I don't see any discussion of HT specific streamers/decoders.  



thinking about your question I realize I wasn't clear.  I have a 2 channel streame and DAC feeding input 1 on my amp.  The AV streamer (currently my TV) feeds input 2 on my amp.

So the streamer I'm looking or is just for multichannel movie streaming.


The more I work with Anthem’s latest the more gory it seems.

Stick to Marantz, which has more advanced EQ features and probably handles Surround correctly.

The difference between the Anthem remote and the anthem Web UI has driven me more than a little crazy. Anthem adds "Dolby Surround" to what should be straight up Dolby Digital and you can’t disable it. Conversely, using Dolby Surround to a 2 channel Dolby Digital mix won’t correclty decode center and surround signals from Netflix.

I am supposed to be able to disable Dolby Surround ... but I can't.  It still goes there even when I want it off.

Anthem adds "Dolby Surround" to what should be straight up Dolby Digital and you can’t disable it.


I mistyped. You can disable it, but you can’t stop it from turning on automatically when you switch material. I seem to recall it working better before a more recent firmware upgrade. In other words, you can use the remote MODE button to turn it off for this particular stream, but switch to another and come back and it will return.

Also for whatever reason it no longer recognizees Atmos like it used to from Netflix. Don’t know WTF, but I dont’ trust it is doing what I think it should be doing at all. It’s as bad as my Roomba.

Next, the room correction is hard to use and also not very good.  You must take 6 measurements, no way to disable that, and no way to alter the results very much.  The end result was NOT very good compared to manual EQ matching, and the subwoofer was also not tuned very well.  The reason I'm leaning to Marantz, besides accurately handling Dolby Digital sources is the advanced models allow you to hand craft EQ settings, which would let me get rid of the 2 miniDSP units I have hidden in the back. 

@erik_squires If you say it is not user friendly, then it must be hopeless.  the best time to avoid a frustrating piece of equipment is before you buy it.

I'm starting to look at Marantz.  I think the Cinema 40 will work for me.  

I'm in no hurry so I'll keep reading for a while.

Thanks again.


I’d say it is extremely use friendly, if you aren’t paying attention to what it’s doing vs. what you think it should be doing.

In that sense, it is a plug and play system.  

Take careful note of the type of Audyssey each Marantz model has and the features. The low end Audyssey isn’t as flexible.

I have read , a while ago , that for 2 channels music , Audio Control

was very good

Concert XR-4 7.1.4

May be more expensive than Marantz ,Denon, Yamaha .... but ....



Just to be clear, I am looking for a reciever for HT only.  Nothing to do with 2 channel music.


Well , I misread your need's description  .

I thought you were looking at HT Receiver that was also  very good for 2 channel music.         

My bad .



@erik_squires continuing to do some more research with your suggestion of Marantz, I'm leaning toward the Cinema 50 which seems to fit my system perfectly.  If also has Dirac Live Room correction capability which should be an upgrade.  Do you recommend Dirac Live?  

All of this said. I'm continuing to be impressed by my simple, and several years old, Denon AVR-x3700h as I watch movies.



@carlsbad2 Of the few DiracLive curves I've seen they look really good and some versions also let you set your own target curves. 

@Mahler123 Thanks for folloing up and asking.  I haven't actually made the purchase yet.  I'm leaning very heavily toward a Marantz Cinema 50.  I've been distracted by non-audio activities lately.  I also have a new center speaker on order and I'd like to get it and watch a couple of movies with it before I switch.  I have a bad habit of making mulitiple changes at once and not really know which one was the best upgrade.

I also may get into a shop that has the ability to compare.  There are more AV shps than 2 channel shops now.


I’m leaning very heavily toward a Marantz Cinema 50.

Get the Marantz AV10 PREPRO. Pair it with separate hifi power amps and it will start to smack all your 2 channel purist gear for music

Stuffing not 2, but, 11 power amp channels in the same box as the preamp sections, DAC, streamer, DSP module (I.e. the AV receiver) was never a good idea for high fidelity 

Get the Marantz AV10 PREPRO. Pair it with separate hifi power amps and it will start to smack all your 2 channel purist gear for music

Yeah, prepros often “smack” dedicated stereo components.  NOT!

Yeah, prepros often “smack” dedicated stereo components. NOT!

Here we go again (don’t I remember you). You are the guy who just pushes a button and rotates a knob on the purist preamp for magic to happen...and that’s about all you can do, right? And as you keep spending 100k, 500k, etc on a featureless crap preamp, it will just keep sounding even better and better (because the power supply got better apparently!! and ya get what ya pay for!!) Anything else might just be too complicated for you. Stick with your 1 knob preamp and continue on with your purity brand, continue rotating the 1 knob well. The other is for guys with more technical prowess (not for you, of course)..

Good luck.

@deep_333 Keep deluding yourself that a Jack of all trades, master of nothing prepro built to a price point with lesser parts quality, power supplies, etc. and loaded with all manner of digital/circuit noise somehow magically sounds better than a similarly-priced, purpose-built stereo component with better parts and less noise. It makes absolutely no sense from an engineering/design or common sense perspective whatsoever, and you’re on an island of one here that prepros “smack all your 2 channel purist gear for music.” Ever see any manufacturer/dealer use a prepro in a system at a high-end audio show? Ever wonder why almost nobody here with a decent stereo system uses a prepro? The answer is patently obvious to all but you. Stick with your multifunction noise bucket a continue to fool yourself. The other is for people, and the vast majority here, who care much more about sound quality than technical prowess.

@soix ...This is not very bright with your tired old theory crafting nonsense.

Name your glory featureless one knob preamp and brand (the more expensive the better, your main moneymaker with the magic sauce rubbed chinese caps and power supply), whatever you sell. Also, bring a blindfold with you.

DSP, rsc filters, etc prepro VS straight wire w/ gain crap knob turning... We’ll see if your knob wins.


@deep_333  I learned a long time ago not to wrestle in the mud with a pig because the pig likes it, so we’ll just agree to disagree on this and go on with life as we see fit.  To each his own. 

@soix , Heifers who know nothing about electronics and acoustics always run when asked to put their money where their mouth is. It ’s nothing new..Enjoy your 1 knob polished chassis preamp that the "elusive" low volume brand guy made in his garage for you to make you feel real special. He hit tolerances and hand soldered sht in his garage that SoundUnited couldn't do in their facility with SMTs apparently (NOT!!). Bye now.

Not running at all, just no desire to waste my time on nothing nor to unnecessarily derail the OP’s thread any further.  If you wanna flesh this out more I’d encourage you to start a new thread entitled “Prepros smack all your 2 channel purist gear for music” and see how that works out for you there.  Peace out.

I appreciate the spirited discussion and am reading and studying it all.  

I do treat my 7.2 channel system differently than my 2 channel system.  My front speakers will always be driven by my 2 channel amp (with pre-signal from my AV system) but the other 5.2 channels I don't have nearly as much dedication to from an audio purist standpoint.   

The original question came from my thought "I really am impressed by how this Denon sounds with the speakers I've added" and thinking maybe I can go up one more level cost effectively.  

So my initial response is that I'd rather not spend $10k on separates to watch an occasional movie.  that said, $10K or more isn't a problem if I am convinced I will enjoy it that much.


@carlsbad2 i've owned the 740 for about a year now, and tbh once the honeymoon period was over i miss the old pioneer elite it replaced--the anthem has alot of power and sounds more audiophile-accurate and less digitally tweaked than the mass market stuff, but also sounds flatter and less dynamic than the mass market stuff, esp. with movies. if i had to do it all over, i would have gotten a used higher-end marantz or yamaha avr.

@SOIX the zen is an integrated.  But I am using it as an amp with 2 inputs.  I have the volume knob maxxed.  for 2 channel I use my Lampizator GG3 dac as the pre.  For movies, the Denon preout for the 2 front channels drives the Zen.

This weekend, I think my new bespoke custom amp will be delivered and the zen will get a break.  I've really become attached to it.  It will be interesting going from an $1100 amp to a 6 figure amp.


@loomisjohnson I just ordered a Marantz Cinema 50.  For the price, I'm not realy risking much.  I'll report back here when it arrives and I watch a couple of movies.


@carlsbad2 Wow! That must be quite an amp — congrats. Is it by chance a Berning design?  I figured you were using the Lampi as a pre for 2-channel. Have you ever considered or tried using a good stereo pre? Just curious.

@soix It is a new amp, not on the market yet.  I get the prototype, but the target is six figures.  So call me an exaggerator.  It will indeed be much different.  It is still a hand made tube amp but with a lot of very high quality components and a design I have never seen elsewhere.

I haven't tried a quality preamp. I've used a couple of crappy ones (that got good reviews in stereophile) and hated them.  My philosophy is to touch the signal path as little as possible.  My humble opinion is that people who love their preamp love the "color" the preamp ads.  I may be sticking my head in the sand but I enjoy skipping the pre, especially if it runs the signal all around a bunch of printed circuit boards.  Please refrain from pointing out that my DAC adds it's own color to the music.  :-)  I don't have a good answer for that.