Is it possible to upgrade Denon avr 3803 to include Dolby PL IIx? [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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07-01-2004, 03:05 PM
Since the Denon avr 3803 has some sort of RS-232 port, is it then possible to update the firmware to include Dolby Pro Logic IIx?
Is't that why receivers have the RS-232 port, to upgrade the receiver with new DSP program and audio formats, so that it actually is compatible for 10+ years?

07-01-2004, 03:12 PM
You might call Denon and see. If it's a software change, which I doubt, then it'as possible. If it's a hardware change, then it's perhaps possible but would in all probability be prohibitively expensive.

07-01-2004, 03:41 PM
I would seriously doubt that. If the Denon uses a flash upgradeable ROM, then it's theoretically possible to do that kind of upgrade. But, since I think Denon would rather get you to buy their AVR-3805 than give you DPLIIx for free, then it's probably a moot point.

Onkyo did offer an upgrade for one of their midlevel receivers a couple of years ago. You needed to hook up your PC to the receiver and run a cable to the RS-232 port. Customers had to pay for the upgrade and it basically added DPLII and some other features. Denon also had an upgrade for their 5800 series, but you had to bring in the receiver and get a couple of processor boards swapped out in addition to the firmware upgrade.

The RS-232 port theoretically can be used for firmware upgrades, but typically when the receivers go through their annual update, a lot more than just the processing capability changes. The more common use for the RS-232 port is for home automation applications. Like it or not, receiver manufacturers would rather have you buy a new receiver every year than give away new features or extend the shelf life of discontinued models.

It's similar to the cycle of planned obsolescence that's driven much of the computer industry over the years. The only difference is that receivers aren't really obsolete after only a few years, as much as people with a vested interest would like you to believe otherwise. For one thing, the only digital formats that you truly need for the vast majority of material are PCM CD audio, 2.0 Dolby Surround, and 5.1 Dolby Digital. ALL of the other formats go into "nice to have, but not mandatory" category. I would count DPLIIx in that group as well.