Marantz has a new Flagship audio video model called the AV8802 that can be thought of as a deeply talented WiFi enabled Network AV preamplifier with Dolby Atmos.
That’s quite a mouthful, because the AV8802 is quite a product, and then some.
As well as the forgoing features, this is also an 11.2 channel model that can process just about any extant surround sound format with consummate ease.
One way to approach this fabulous machine is to see it as providing impeccable music and movie surround sound in one neat but imposing package.
The AV8802 does so much so well, the list of achievements runs to pages rather than sentences. If you think of it as a preamp/processor that is the hub of a high-end quality home theater sound system, you ‘d be on the money.
Only you’d have to add the AV8802 also turns in a class leading performance with music, as you’d expect from a Marantz flagship model given the brands long, illustrious audio pedigree.
The AV8802 builds on the performance and feature set of its highly recommended AV7702 model. Upgrades to the AV8802 include a massive toroid transformer wound with oxygen-free copper cable and housed in aluminum too deliver lower noise and better current delivery.
And talk about an upgrade, the AV8802’s large capacitors more than double the AV7702’s reserve current capacity and so yielding superior dynamics and tighter bass frequencies.
As for processing, the AV8802 employs AKM’s latest generation 32-bit DACs on each and every channel to elicit more detail and tonal neutrality.
Every part is built into a hefty copper-plated chassis noticeable for its three-piece top panel and double-layered foundation plate. This expensive construction was chosen to generate a rigid, vibration-resistant foundation.
Connections are also much enhanced and include 13 2-channel balanced XLR outputs along with a pair of balanced stereo inputs.
The AV8802’s talents simply beg for it to be matched with a multi-channel amplifier of the highest sonic ability. So matched, you’ll hear surround soundtracks and sound effects (and music) reproduced with the level of realism usually reserved for top-shelf stereo separates.
Only stereo separates don’t carry or need to carry Dolby’s newest surround sound technology called Dolby Atmos.
This development uses in-ceiling speakers or unique Dolby-enabled speakers built to fire upwards and reflect sound off your ceiling. This creates a greater sense of acoustic space.
As befitting a flagship model, the AV8802 lets you chose a number of Atmos setup options such as adding a quartet of above head or upwards-firing speakers to an existing seven-channel system.
We mentioned the AV8802 can be approached as a leading edge entertainment hub. Which it can by employing its built-in digital features such as WiFi to allow you to stream music from your smartphone or other Bluetooth enabled smart device.
This feature is compatible with Apple gear such as IPhones, iPods Touch and iPad or a computer equipped with iTunes and AirPlay. Android smart device owners can enjoy Pandora and other free online radio streams.
As is the desire these days, you can hear music processed by the AV8802 in up to three rooms at the same time while a Zone 2 HDMI output also allows you to enjoy different videos in different rooms-at the same time.
The AV8802 works beautifully with 4K video sources. But a caveat it’s not HDCP 2.2 compliant so can’t pass through video that’s copy protected. Marantz will be offering a free HDCP 2.2 upgrade soon.
Processing modes include Dolby and DTS along with Dolby Atmos. But there’s also Auro-3D ready decoder for generating 3D soundstages using Auro-3D mixes and a 10.1 channel speaker setup.
Mention must be made of Marantz’s setup assistant which guides you easily through the AV8802’s bundle of features. Add in Audyssey’s Platinum that allows for pain-free calibration of your speakers along with independent calibration for dual sub-woofers, and it’s clear why the AV8802 is a flagship model.