Initial impressions of the Denon 5900 universal

Category: Digital

I have only had this player for 6 days for in home demo.
I have around 90 hours run in on SACD, listened to a couple cd's and dvd-a's and watched a dozen movies.
I will only comment on the video and SACD sections as redbook and dvd-a have very little hours on them.

The video, to keep it short and sweet is as close to hi def as I have seen whith quality dvd transfers in the progressive mode, played through my 7ft dlp projected screen.
I have only seen about 6 dvd players in my set up and none are in the same area code as the resolution the 5900 offers.

The sacd sonics were decent out of the box, but after around 50 hours, they started to open up, and at around 90 hours,I can say that the sacd sonics are better than first gen players such as the Sony 777 and Phillips sacd 1000, and much better than the Sony 9000es, Phillips 963sa or Denon's 2900.

All listening so far has been done in two channel and the 5900 shines whith dynamics,bass and imaging.
I have heard all mentioned players in my systym and the only player that was slightly better than the 5900 was a Modwright 9000 es Signature which had slightly better inner detail than the 5900.
This could change after the 5900 gets 200
+ hours in SACD though.

I can only comment that redbook sounds very good whith only a couple hours use and will hold further comment until there is some burn in in that format.

As far as DVD-A goes, the 5900 sounds better than my back up dvd player, which is a Denon 1600, but again, there are only a couple hours whith this format and I have never heard a hi end dvd-a player if one exsists.
To me dvd-a sounds better than redbook and Sacd sounds much better than redbook when playing the two formats on equal priced players like the 963sa and the 1600.

I will follow up whith a more in depth review when i get some hours on the other formats, but already believe this player has no competition near its price range for a universal player and believe it is a bargain for just its SACD and video playback alone so far.


I can't wait for your evaluation of redbook. I currently have the Toshiba sd9200. DVD sound better in my system. Redbook, however, is not as good to my ears. I am trying to research for another universal player - Denon 5900 looks good - but don't know if it will perform better than my current sd9200 on redbook. Maybe I should buy the dedicated player just for redbook.

Thanks - I will check back.

I have over 120 hours run in whith redbook and find the 5900 to only sound decent, not only does it not sound much better than the 963sa and up universals,but its sonics never seemed to improve after around 50 hours.

I also wanted to mention that the video on most material is fantastic, but I have seen macro blocking in dark scenes of a few movies and find it unacceptable.
Someone else can do a more in depth [more hours]of this players sonics as I am bringing the 5900 back.
I have both the sony dvp s9000es and the denon A11 same as the US. 5900.I have found the sony to be tempremental in playing sacd discs some it likes others it rejects,but as a player I think it is very good in both cd and sacd,and I can compare the cd standard to my reference player the mark levinson 37.I have used my levinson 360s dac on both units and on an a and b listening there is not much in it.
As to the denon its early days to make any malor comments,but one point I would make on the video is that even with its dvi and scan feature it still is not much better than my proceed md transport and that is 4 years old.So much for progress
ears,what movies did you have a problem with??
was it with only a few or with all.and how many movies did you try out?i'm only asking cause i'm looking to buy a new player within the week