Yes the room was a PITA to wire up for the speakers because of the high ceilings which messes anyways with the Dolby Atmos...front speakers are easy....center, left, right and two subwoofers....middle and rear are mounted on walls and I had to wire and patch drywall for the firebreaks mid height...not optimal for TV/Sound.... and skylights on the ceiling and floor to ceiling windows and fireplace on one side...not as good as I used to be on a ladder these days ....and low on the WAF here when I drag the expansion ladder in to the TV room...
The real issue with the Denon AVR was delivery via FedEx.
I went to Costco as mentioned above. They did not have it in stock. Then ordered it on line from Amazon. It was a 3rd party seller which I did not mind at all until I found out it was being delivered via FedEx.
In 2022 had a total of 4 FedEx deliveries. All of them were delivered to neighbors homes with pictures of their front porches (all different). When I would call FedEx they would just state and post the picture again and say that package was already delivered. The neighbors did deliver my packages after opening them 1-2 weeks later only because they read the shipping address and knew me and where I lived. Very nice of them.
I interrupted the Fedex delivery of the Denon AVR such that it would go to the local Walgreens....this was a mistake...so the saga continues in my next add to this post....
I could see that the package was delivered to Walgreens. I called and Walgreens told me that it wasn't processed yet. I went there at 9 PM NYE and saw the package on the FedEx delivery counter. There were only two people working there and they were just scrambling to close the store before 10 PM. One women processed my package and I signed for it and took it home. That was it.
Noticed another concern here when switching playback to AVR. 4K movies appeared to be a little darker then when I had the HDMI cable plugged in to the TV. Played a bunch here with the TV picture settings and that did not help much. Googling some found out that it is the automagic HDR enabling setting that makes the 4k picture too dark. The fix was to disable HDR. Before this tried disabling hardware acceleration which worked but would make the 4K movie stutter a bit.
Move over 4K. HDR is another important television feature that can vastly improve what you watch. Here's what you need to know about HDR.
High dynamic range (HDR) video is one of the biggest 4K TV feature bullet points. It can push video content past the (now non-existent) limitations to which broadcast and other media standards have adhered to for decades. It's impressive to see on TVs that can handle it, but it's also a fairly confusing technical feature with several variations with differences that aren't very well-established. That's why we're here to explain them to you.
Dynamic Range on TVs
TV contrast is the difference between how dark and bright it can get. Dynamic range describes the extremes in that difference, and how much detail can be shown in between. Essentially, dynamic range is display contrast, and HDR represents broadening that contrast. However, just expanding the range between bright and dark is insufficient to improve a picture's detail. Whether a panel can reach 200 cd/m^2 (relatively dim) or 2,000 cd/m^2 (incredibly bright), and whether its black levels are 0.1cd/m^2 (washed-out, nearly gray) or 0.005cd/m^2 (incredibly dark), it can ultimately only show so much information based on the signal it's receiving.
Many popular video formats, including broadcast television and Blu-ray discs, are limited by standards built around the physical boundaries presented by older technologies. Black is set to only so black, because as Christopher Guest eloquently wrote, "it could get none more black." Similarly, white could only get so bright within the limitations of display technology. Now, with organic LED (OLED) and local dimming LED backlighting systems on newer LCD panels, that range is increasing. They can reach further extremes, but video formats can't take advantage of it. Only so much information is presented in the signal, and a TV capable of reaching beyond those limits still has to stretch and work with the information present.
What Is HDR?
That's where HDR video comes in. It removes the limitations presented by older video signals and provides information about brightness and color across a much wider range. HDR-capable displays can read that information and show an image built from a wider gamut of color and brightness. Besides the wider range, HDR video simply contains more data to describe more steps in between the extremes. This means that very bright objects and very dark objects on the same screen can be shown very bright and very dark if the display supports it, with all of the necessary steps in between described in the signal and not synthesized by the image processor.
To put it more simply, HDR content on HDR-compatible TVs can get brighter, darker, and show more shades of gray in between (assuming the TVs have panels that can get bright and dark enough to do the signal justice; some budget TVs accept HDR signals but won't show much of an improvement over non-HDR signals). Similarly, they can produce deeper and more vivid reds, greens, and blues, and show more shades in between. Deep shadows aren't simply black voids; more details can be seen in the darkness, while the picture stays very dark. Bright shots aren't simply sunny, vivid pictures; fine details in the brightest surfaces remain clear. Vivid objects aren't simply saturated; more shades of colors can be seen.
This requires much more data, and like ultra high-definition video, Blu-rays can't handle it. Fortunately, we now have Ultra HD Blu-ray, a disc type (distinct from Blu-ray, despite the name) that can hold more data, and is built to contain 4K video, HDR video, and even object-based surround sound like Dolby Atmos. Just be aware that you can't play them on regular Blu-ray players; you need dedicated Ultra HD Blu-ray players or a relatively new game console to play them.
Online streaming also offers HDR content, but you need a reliably fast connection to get it. Fortunately, if your bandwidth is high enough to get 4K video, it can get HDR; Amazon Video and Netflix's recommended connection speeds for 4K content are respectively 15Mbps and 25Mbps, regardless of whether that content is in HDR or not.
What Is Color Gamut?
This is where HDR gets a bit more confusing. Wide color gamut is another feature high-end TVs have, and it's even less defined than HDR. It's also connected to HDR, but not directly. HDR deals with how much light a TV is told to put out, or luminance. The range and value of color, defined separately from light, is called chromaticity. They're two separate values that interact with each other in several ways, but are still distinct.
Technically, HDR specifically only addresses luminance, because that's what dynamic range is: the difference between light and dark on a screen. Color is a completely separate value based on absolute red, green, and blue levels regardless of the format of the video. However, they're tied together by how we perceive light, and a greater range of light means we'll perceive a greater range of color. Because of that, HDR-capable TVs can often show what's called "wide color gamut," or a range of color outside of the standard color values used in broadcast TV (called Rec.709).
This doesn't mean HDR guarantees a wider range of colors, or that they'll be consistent. That's why we test every TV for both contrast and color. Most TVs today can hit Rec.709 values, but that leaves a lot of color that the eye can see but that those TVs can't show. DCI-P3 is a standard color space for digital cinema, and it's much wider. Rec.2020 is the ideal color space for 4K TVs, and it's wider still (and we've yet to see any consumer TV that can reach those levels). And here's the kicker: Rec.2020 applies to both SDR and HDR, because HDR doesn't directly address color levels.
Types of HDR
HDR isn't quite universal, is currently split into two major formats, with a few others gaining momentum.
Dolby Vision is Dolby's own HDR format. While Dolby requires certification for media and screens to say they're Dolby Vision compatible, it isn't quite as specific and absolute as HDR10. Dolby Vision content uses dynamic metadata. Static metadata maintains specific levels of brightness across whatever content you watch. Dynamic metadata adjusts those levels based on each scene or even each frame, preserving more detail between scenes that are very bright or very dark. By tweaking the maximum and minimum levels of light a TV is told to put out on the fly, the same amount of data that would be assigned across the full range of light an entire movie or show uses can be set across a much more specific, targeted span. Darker scenes can preserve more detail in shadows and lighter scenes can keep more detail in highlights, because they aren't telling the TV to be ready to show opposite extremes that won't even show up until the next scene.
Dolby Vision also uses metadata that's adjusted to the capabilities of your specific display, instead of dealing with absolute values based on how the video was mastered. This means that Dolby Vision video will tell your TV what light and color levels to use, based on values set between the TV manufacturer and Dolby that keep in mind the capabilities of your specific TV. It can potentially let TVs show more detail than HDR10, but that ultimately depends on how the content was mastered and what your TV can handle in terms of light and color. That mastering aspect is important, because Dolby Vision is a licensed standard and not an open one like HDR10. If Dolby Vision is available in the end video, that probably means that Dolby workflows were used all the way through.
HDR10 is the standard pushed by the UHD Alliance. It's a technical standard with specific, defined ranges and specifications that must be met for content and displays to qualify as using it. HDR10 uses static metadata that is consistent across all displays. This means HDR10 video sets light and color levels in absolute values, regardless of the screen it's being shown on. It's an open standard, so any content producer or distributor can use it freely.
From four different TV I have had in the last ten years I have had to disable the HDR on every one. People were always completely black and no dark grey detail could ever be seen. After playing with the settings for about a week on every television set I found the only way to have a decent contrast was to turn HDR off.
This could have been poorly implemented HDR from the earlier days (Samsung 75 and 55 inch sets) but my recent two Sony Bravia sets now did the same thing. I feel HDR may have had some use during night time watching, with no room ambient lighting, but during the day times with any window light whatsoever, HDR needed to be turned off or we were staring at a 90% black screen. Just poorly done IMHO.
Another problem that has cropped up on all four sets was the automatic brightness and power saving options. For some stupid reason they all started with a reduced brilliance, below where you could barely see an image during day time lighting, and had to be disabled. Of course, then you suffer through the burned eyeballs when watching in a darkened room. The manufacturers love to toot how few Watts their sets take, with the screen darkened beyond usefulness to humans. **SIGH**