Denon AVR-S960H (USA version)
- 7.2 channels
- 7.1 channel processing
- 90 W (8 Ω, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 2 channel driven)
- HDMI 2.1
- Dolby Atmos, DTS:X capable
- HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision, 8K Upscaling, 8K Passthrough
- AirPlay 2, DLNA, HEOS
- Ethernet, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
- USB and Phono inputs
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Denon AVR-S960H was introduced in 2020. It is equipped with 7 channel amplifier with 90 W (8 Ω, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 2 channel driven) power per channel and is capable of 7.1 maximum channel processing. It supports Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, passes 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz and upscales up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 50/60Hz 4:4:4 video signal.
We evaluated the a/v receiver and gave 88 overall score out of 100. Our ranking system is based on the amplifier specifications, audio and video features, connectivity, multizone capabilities, radio and many other details.
Pros and Cons
In this section we present pros and cons of Denon AVR-S960H.
|Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization|
|Auto Speaker Calibration System with Mic.|
|New HDCP Version|
|Auto Low Latency Mode Pass-through|
|4K or 8K Video Passthrough|
|4K or 8K Signal Upscaling|
|Works with Amazon Alexa|
|Composite Video Inputs|
|Component Video Inputs|
|New Bluetooth Version|
|No Front Wide Channel Support|
|No IMAX Enhanced|
|No Auro 3D with Auro-Matic Upmixer|
|No DSD via HDMI|
|No Chromecast Built-In|
|Few 8K Inputs|
|No Analog Pre-Outs|
Here we are comparing Denon AVR-S960H to its predecessor AVR-S950H and displaying the major changes.
|UPGRADES||Denon AVR-S960H||vs||Denon AVR-S950H|
|Video Signal Passthrough||up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 100/120Hz 4:4:4||vs||up to 4K 50/60Hz 4:4:4|
|Video Signal Upscaling||up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 50/60Hz 4:4:4||vs||up to 4K 24/25/30p 4:4:4|
|More 8K Inputs||1||vs|
|More Analog Audio Line Inputs||5||vs||4|
|Wi-Fi Standard||IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac||vs||IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n|
|Newer Bluetooth Version||4․2||vs||3․0 + EDR|
|DOWNGRADES||Denon AVR-S960H||vs||Denon AVR-S950H|
|Less HDMI Inputs||6||vs||8 (1 front)|
|Front A/V Inputs||USB||vs||HDMI, USB|
For more detailed comparison between the models please visit Denon AVR-S960H vs Denon AVR-S950H.
7 channel Amplifier
Denon AVR-S960H features 7 channel power amplifier. It is rated at 90 W (8 Ω, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 2 channel driven) and is able to drive 4 ohm speakers.
Denon AVR-S960H's 7 channel amplifier can be assigned for different speaker configurations.
- Dolby Atmos Configurations: The following speaker configurations are supported for Dolby Atmos:
- 5.2.2 with internal amplifier.
- DTS:X Configurations: The speaker configurations for DTS:X are the same as for Dolby Atmos:
- 5.2.2 with internal amplifier.
- Configurations without height channels: There are also other speaker configurations available which do not include height channels:
- 5.2, 7.2 with internal amplifier.
Denon AVR-S960H supports Dolby Atmos. It is a cinematic audio format in which sounds exist as individual entities, called audio objects. In Dolby Atmos, any sound can exist as an independent audio object, free of channel restrictions. They can be precisely placed and moved anywhere in your room, including overhead, to flow above and around you in three-dimensional space. Through the use of audio objects, overhead sound, and all the richness, clarity, and power of Dolby sound, Dolby Atmos turns your room into an amazing place for entertainment. The format supports up to 128 simultaneous independent audio objects in a mix for rich, realistic, and breathtaking sound. It recreates the director's original concept through descriptive metadata to provide customized playback for home theater and delivers sounds above you through overhead speakers, special upward-firing Dolby Atmos speakers, or a Dolby Atmos enabled sound bar.
- Dolby Surround Upmixer: If the content is not mixed in Dolby Atmos then the Dolby surround upmixer will expand the audio to all channels including ceiling speakers. The upmixer has replaced the Dolby Pro Logic II family with improved upmixing algorithms.
- Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization: Dolby Atmos height virtualization is a digital signal processing solution that leverages Dolby's deep understanding of human audio perception to create the sensation of overhead sound from the listener-level speakers.
Denon AVR-S960H supports DTS:X. A technique used in DTS:X is similar to the one used in Dolby Atmos. Instead of a fixed number of channels, DTS:X defines object locations from the listener in polar coordinates. An a/v receiver then dynamically renders sound according to the current speaker configuration. The speaker layout employed by DTS:X is the sum of Dolby Atmos and Auro-3D. It has standard 7.1 channel base layer, a 5 channel height layer above the base layer on the front and side walls, and 3 rows of speakers on the ceiling.
- DTS Neural:X: DTS Neural:X is an advanced upmixer that can take non DTS:X content and upmix it to the DTS:X speaker layout. It has replaced the DTS Neo family with improved flexibility.
- DTS Virtual:X: DTS Virtual:X bridges the gap between DTS:X codec and the reality of so many consumers' homes, allowing you to enjoy multi-dimensional sound regardless of room size, layout, or speaker configuration. If you have a limited speaker setup you will miss a full immersive potential of your entertainment system. DTS Virtual:X adds height and surround audio effect to your system without adding height speakers. It works with multiple configurations and delivers immersive sound experience out of 5.1 or even 2.1 speaker layouts.
- DTS Dialog Control: This function adjusts the dialog levels during playback of the DTS:X stream. It allows you to separately increase the dialog levels in contrast with the background sound and hear dialog easily even under noisy circumstances.
Enhanced Audio Return Channel (eARC)
Audio Return Channel (ARC) feature allows the compatible TV to send audio signal to the a/v receiver through the same HDMI cable which is used to send audio and video signals to the TV. So one HDMI cable is used to transfer audio signal in both directions. New Enhanced ARC will support uncompressed audio formats such as Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD Master Audio whereas the previous ARC could support only Dolby Digital, Dolby Digital Plus, DTS, DTS HD, and PCM.
- Audyssey: Denon AVR-S960H comes with Audyssey Dynamic EQ and Dynamic Volume.
- Dynamic EQ: selects the best possible frequency response and surround volume levels moment-by-moment. This ensures that the bass response, tonal balance and surround impression remain constant despite changes in volume. This is the first technology that carefully combines information from incoming source levels with actual output sound levels in the room, a pre-requisite for delivering a dynamic volume solution.
- Dynamic Volume: Your Listening experience can be greatly diminished when there are significant shifts in volume between television programs, commercials and within the program material itself. When this happens you must constantly adjust the volume to maintain your desired listening level. Audyssey Dynamic Volume monitors the volume of program material moment-by-moment and automatically adjusts it, maintaining the desired listening level for all content while optimizing the dynamic range to preserve impact.
Denon AVR-S960H comes with Audyssey MultEQ room correction system and includes the calibration microphone. It also supports Audyssey App.
- Audyssey Room Calibration: Audyssey is an acoustic measurement technology which automatically restores the acoustic distortion caused by the acoustic behaviour of a room with only a push on a button. Audyssey equalization provides an clear, accurate, natural sound with voices and dialog that become focused and intelligible, restoring the musical balance. Musical instruments and sound effects become precisely localized and the surround soundstage is made seamless and enveloping.
Denon AVR-S960H features 1 HDMI 2.1 input with 8K support and 5 inputs with 4K support. It has 2 outputs which work parallelly and output the same signal.
- 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz Passthrough: 1 out of 6 inputs passes up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 100/120Hz 4:4:4 and the rest of the inputs pass up to 4K 50/60Hz 4:4:4 video signal.
- 8K Upscaling: Denon AVR-S960H can upscale up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 50/60Hz 4:4:4 from HDMI sources.
- BT.2020 Color Space: BT.2020 or Rec. 2020 is a color standard which delivers a wider color gamut compared to Rec. 709. It covers approximately 75% of the total visual spectrum while the Rec. 709 covers only 35%.
- HDCP 2.3 Copy Protection: All inputs and outputs are HDCP 2.3 compliant which is a requirement for 4K/HDR copy-protected content transmission.
- Quick Media Switching (QMS): With HDMI 2.1a, Quick Media Switching for movies and video uses the HDMI VRR mechanism to eliminate the blackout period when an HDMI Source device switches its video mode. As long as the resolution remains the same and only the frame rate changes, QMS will instantly switch between frame rates. QMS eliminates A/V blackouts by using VRR technology to change frame rates, allowing instant changes from 24Hz to 60Hz frame rate, and anywhere in-between. The viewer never sees blank screens and gets a seamless experience.
- 3D Ready: Denon AVR-S960H is able to pass 3D video through HDMI.
HDR (High Dynamic Range)
Denon AVR-S960H supports HDR (high dynamic range) video formats such as HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision, Dynamic HDR and Hybrid Log-Gamma. High dynamic range video has greater dynamic range than standard dynamic range (SDR) video with brighter whites and deeper blacks. The result is greater contrast and more details in dark and bright areas, better color and depth.
- HDR10: HDR10 uses the wide-gamut Rec. 2020 color space. It sends static metadata via video stream to the TV which calibrates its screen brightness and color according to that. HDR10 supports 10-bit color which corresponds to 1024 shades of the primary RGB colors. It is technically limited to a maximum of 10,000 nits peak brightness, however common HDR10 contents are mastered with peak brightness from 1,000 to 4,000 nits.
- HDR10+: HDR10+ is an HDR video technology that adds dynamic metadata to HDR10 source files. The dynamic metadata are used to adjust brightness levels on a scene-by-scene or even frame-by-frame basis. HDR10+ supports maximum of 10,000 nits peak brightness and 10-bit or more (up to 16-bit) color bit depth. It uses Samsung's dynamic metadata defined in SMPTE ST 2094-40.
- Dolby Vision: Dolby Vision is a set of technologies developed by Dolby Laboratories for high dynamic range (HDR) video. It covers content creation, distribution, and playback. Like HDR10+, it includes dynamic metadata that are used to adjust and optimize each frame of the HDR video to the consumer display's capabilities in a way specified by the content creator. Dolby Vision allows for a maximum resolution of 8K up to 12-bit color depth, maximum peak brightness of 10,000 nits and a color gamut up to Rec. 2020. It uses Dolby's proprietary dynamic metadata defined in SMPTE ST 2094-10.
- Dynamic HDR: Dynamic HDR enables a noticeable progression in overall video image quality from SDR to static HDR, and now static HDR to dynamic HDR. Dynamic HDR support ensures every moment of a video is displayed at its ideal values for depth, detail, brightness, contrast, and wider color gamuts - on a scene-by-scene or even a frame-by-frame basis. HDR-enhanced content is available for movies, videos, TV shows, video and PC games and VR.
- Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG): The Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG) is a transfer function developed mainly for HDR live video feed and over-the-air broadcasts. It is an HDR format that uses BT.2020 color primaries and a bitdepth of 10-bit. It is backward compatible with the transfer function of SDR and is designed to be better-suited for television broadcasting, where the metadata required for other HDR formats is not backward compatible with non-HDR displays. HLG defines a non-linear optical-electro transfer function, in which the lower half of the signal values use a gamma curve and the upper half of the signal values use a logarithmic curve.
Denon AVR-S960H supports Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM), Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) and Quick Frame Transport (QFT) for lag-free and smooth gaming.
- Auto Low Latency Mode (ALLM): Auto Low Latency Mode enables the ideal latency setting to automatically be set allowing for smooth, lag-free and uninterrupted viewing and interactivity. When the receiver detects a gaming signal it will enter ALLM. The signal will also be sent to the TV causing it to automatically switch to a low-latency, low-lag mode for gaming. Some functions will not be available on the receiver and TV during ALLM.
- Variable Refresh Rate (VRR): VRR enables a gaming source such as a console or computer to deliver video frames as fast as it can, which in many cases is slower than the normal static refresh rate. It allows the TV to adapt to certain frame rate which reduces or eliminates lag, judder and frame tearing for more fluid and better detailed gameplay.
- Quick Frame Transport (QFT): QFT reduces latency for smoother no-lag gaming, and real-time interactive virtual reality. It transports each frame at a higher rate to decrease display latency, which is the amount of time between a frame being ready for transport in the GPU and that frame being completely displayed.
Denon AVR-S960H offers multi-zone playback which allows you to play different input sources in 2 different rooms.
- Powered Zone 2: You can use the unit's 2 amplifier channels by connecting Zone 2 speakers directly to the speaker terminals. The remaining 5 channels will be left for main zone amplification.
Inputs and Outputs
- Phono Input: There is an MM phono input with built-in phono stage for connecting the moving magnet cartridge output of the turntable directly to the a/v receiver.
- Analog Line Inputs: There are 5 line inputs for analog audio connection.
- Digital Inputs: 2 optical inputs and 1 coaxial input are available for digital audio connection.
- Headphone Output: There is a 6.3 mm (1/4") headphone output jack on the front panel.
- Inputs: 6 Outputs: 2 x 8K (simultaneous)
8K Inputs: 1
- Composite Video: Connect you VCR, Laserdisc player and other old video equipment with composite video cables.
- Inputs: 2 Outputs: 1
- Component Video: Component video connection gives you the higher quality video compared to the composite video connection. So in case your old DVD player and other equipment do not have an HDMI output but have Component video output use this connection over the composite one.
- Inputs: 2 Outputs: 1
Here we list all the available features and specifications of Denon AVR-S960H.
|Front Wide Channel Support|
|Continuous 6 Ω Rated|
|Certified 4 Ω Performance|
|Mono Block Power Amplifier Construction|
|Maximum Channel Processing||7.1|
|D.D.S.C. HD Digital|
|Air Studios Monitor Certification|
|Dolby Atmos||up to 5.1.2|
|Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization|
|Dolby Atmos Music|
|Dolby Digital Plus|
|Dolby Surround Upmixer|
|Dolby Pro Logic|
|Dolby Digital EX|
|DTS:X||up to 5.1.2|
|DTS-HD Master Audio|
|DTS-HD High Resolution Audio|
|DTS-ES||Discrete 6.1, Matrix 6.1|
|Auro 3D with Auro-Matic Upmixer|
|Music Playback via USB||MP3, WMA, MPEG-4 AAC, Apple Lossless, WAV, FLAC, DSD|
|High Resolution Music Playback via USB and/or Network||up to 192 kHz|
|High Resolution Audio Formats via USB||Apple Lossless, WAV, FLAC, DSD|
|Multi-Channel Music File Playback via USB|
|DSD via HDMI|
|DSD via USB||2-ch Input|
|DSD to PCM Converter|
|DTS Dialog Control|
|Dialog Level Adjustment|
|Compressed Music Enhancer|
|High-resolution Music Enhancer|
|Audyssey Dynamic EQ|
|Audyssey Dynamic Volume|
|Audyssey Sub EQ HT|
|Pure Direct Mode|
|Independent Subwoofer Outputs|
|Auto Speaker Calibration System with Mic.||Audyssey MultEQ|
|Audyssey App Support|
|Optimized Bass Redirection|
|HLG (Hybrid Log Gamma)|
|BT.2020 color space|
|QMS (Quick Media Switching)|
|ALLM (Auto Low Latency Mode)|
|VRR (Variable Refresh Rate)|
|QFT (Quick Frame transport)|
|Video Signal Passthrough||up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 100/120Hz 4:4:4|
|Video Signal Upscaling||up to 8K 50/60Hz and 4K 50/60Hz 4:4:4|
|Analog To HDMI Upconversion|
|Component Video Upscaling|
|Analog to Analog Video conversion|
|isf Certified Calibration Control|
|Works with Amazon Alexa|
|Works with SONOS|
|Apple Product Connection||iPod, iPhone and iPad|
|Remote App||Denon 2016 AVR Remote App for iOS and Android devices and Kindle Fire|
|InstaPrevue Input Source Prevue|
|Bluetooth Headphone Transmission|
|HDMI Outputs||2 x 8K (simultaneous)|
|USB Input||1 Front for USB memory|
|USB DC Out Port|
|Analog Audio Line Input||5|
|Analog Audio Line Output|
|Composite Video Input||2|
|Composite Video Output||1|
|Component Video Input||2|
|Component Video Output||1|
|Front A/V Inputs||USB|
|Headphone Out||6.3 mm (1/4")|
|Zone 2 Outs|
|+12V Trigger Output|
|Remote (IR) Input/Output||0 / 0|
|On-Screen Display||Advanced Graphic User Interface|
|Web Browser Control|
|IP Control for CI|
|Pre-programmed / Learnable / LCD Display||/ /|
|Detachable Power Cord|
|Denon Link HD|
|Quick Select plus / Quick Select||/|
|SiriusXM Internet Radio|
|Front Panel||not Metal|
|Large Speaker Terminals||7|
|Color-Coded Speaker Terminals|
|Transparent High-Grade Speaker Terminals|
|High Grade Audio Components|
|Gold plated RCA terminals|
|Power Supply||AC 120 V, 60 Hz|
|Power Consumption||460 W|
|No Sound Power||ECO On/Off: 35 W/75 W|
|Standby Power||0.1 W|
|ECO Mode / Hybrid Standby Function|
|Auto Power off|
|Dimensions (W x H x D)||434 mm x 167 mm x 341 mm (with antenna: 434 mm x 237 mm x 341 mm)|
17 1/8" x 6 5/8" x 13 1/2" (with antenna: 17 1/8" x 9 3/8" x 13 1/2")
|Dimensions of Package (W x H x D)||520 mm x 243 mm x 429 mm|
20.5" x 9.6" x 16.9"
|Weight||9.5 kg (20 lbs 15 oz)|
|Weight of Package||11.5 kg (25.4 lbs)|
|Power Output (8 Ω, 20 Hz - 20 kHz, 2||90 W (0.08% THD)|
|Power Output (6 Ω, 1 kHz, 2||125 W (0.7% THD)|
|Maximum Effective Power Output (6 Ω, 1 kHz, 1 channel driven, JEITA)||185 W (10% THD)|
|Rated Power Output (6 Ω, 1 kHz, 1 channel driven, IEC)||145 W (1% THD)|
|Phono Distortion||0.03% (1 kHz, 3 V)|
|Input Sensitivity and Impedance (Line)||200 mV/47 kΩ|
|Input Sensitivity and Impedance (Phono MM)||2.5 mV|
|S/N Ratio (Line, IHF-A)||100 dB|
|S/N Ratio (Phono MM, IHF-A)||74 dB|
|Phono RIAA Deviation||±1 dB (20-20 kHz)|
|Frequency Response (Analog In)||+1/-3 dB (10 Hz to 100 kHz, Direct mode)|
|DSD Sampling Rates via USB||5.6 MHz, 2.8 MHz|
|Video Input Sensitivity/Output Level and Impedance||1 Vp-p/75 Ω (Component Y)|
0.7 Vp-p/75 Ω (Component PB/CB, PR/CR)
1 Vp-p/75 Ω (Composite)
|Video Frequency Response||5 Hz to 10 MHz, 0 dB/-3 dB (Composite)|
5 Hz to 60 MHz, 0 dB/-3 dB (Component)
|Wi-Fi Standard||IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac|
|Wi-Fi Terminal Frequency||5 GHz, 2.4 GHz|
|Bluetooth Frequency||2.4 GHz|
|USB Terminal||USB2.0 5V, 1 A|
|FM Frequency||87.5 MHz - 107.9 MHz|
|FM 50 dB Quiet Sensitivity (IHF, 1 kHz, 100% MOD.)||Mono: 2.8 µV (20.2 dBf)|
|FM Effective Sensitivity||1.2 µV (12.8 dBf)|
|FM S/N Ratio||Mono/Stereo: 70 dB/67 dB|
|FM Harmonic Distortion (IHF, 1 kHz)||Mono/Stereo: 0.7%/1.0%|
|AM Frequency||520 kHz - 1710 kHz|
|AM Effective Sensitivity||18 µV|
* - 480i/576i and 480p/576p only
** - 480i/576i only
*** - no 1080p/24 upconversion
**** - 1080p signal is not converted
In 2022 Denon AVR-S960H was replaced by AVR-S970H. Let us now have a look at some important changes that the successor brought.
|UPGRADES||Denon AVR-S970H||vs||Denon AVR-S960H|
|Dolby Atmos Music||vs|
|More 8K Inputs||3||vs||1|
|Lower FM Harmonic Distortion (IHF, 1 kHz)||Mono/Stereo: 0.7%/1.0%||vs||Mono/Stereo: 0.7%/1.0%|
|DOWNGRADES||Denon AVR-S970H||vs||Denon AVR-S960H|
|Less Analog Audio Line Inputs||4||vs||5|
|Less Composite Video Inputs||vs||2|
|Less Composite Video Outputs||vs||1|
|Less Component Video Inputs||vs||2|
|Less Component Video Outputs||vs||1|
For more detailed comparison between the models please visit Denon AVR-S960H vs Denon AVR-S970H.