Discover the immersive home theater experience of the Marantz Cinema 70. Our review dives deep into this high-end 7.1 channel AV receiver, exploring its advanced audio processing technology, support for Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, and user-friendly features.
The amount of features that Marantz was able to cram into its slimline series has always astonished us. Because of their expertise, Marantz was able to create an AV receiver that not only maintained a high standard of audio output but also featured several inputs, outputs, and other features. As such, this Marantz Cinema 70s review will center on the most recent product the firm has released in this specific market.
The Cinema 70s follows the release of the Cinema 60 in November 2022 and the release of the Cinema 50 in March 2023 as the third and final chapter of the new Cinema series. The new Cinema 70s stands out from other releases since it has kept the show’s signature elements. To sum up, we get the same elegant appearance in a more portable container, with functions that would wow the proud owner of a full-size AV receiver.
So, before we get down to brass tacks, let’s briefly go over the technical details. The most recent Cinema 70s model is a 7.2-channel, 50-watt-per-channel receiver that supports Dolby Atmos, DTS:X, up-mixing, and virtual audio technologies. Among its numerous features are three bug-free, 40Gbps HDMI 2.1 connections and an Audyssey MultEQ audio calibration system.
Reading about The Cinema 70s on paper, it sounds like a little update designed exclusively for gamers. Does this modern-looking, high-priced device have any other notable features? So, let’s dive into the numbers and find out.
Design And Build
And although Denon seems to have taken it easy in 2022, Marantz fully redesigned their system and remote. The new release is a breath of fresh air compared to the stale aesthetic of prior Marantz goods; it keeps parts of the lavish and elegant flair that has been synonymous with the brand, but has a lot more modern vibe.
The new unit has been rethought from the ground up, yet its proportions aren’t wildly different from the NR1711. The Cinema 70s’s new dimensions are 17.4 by 15.1 by 7.0 inches (442 by 384 by 178 millimeters), however the antennae may be turned to make it even more compact (just 4.3 by 109 millimeters) without reducing the signal strength. Weighting in at 19.2 pounds (8.7 kg), the unit is somewhat larger than previous slimline AV receivers produced by Marantz.
We can’t help but think of the Cinema 70s as a miniature version of the Cinema 60 in terms of design and aesthetics. This appears to be the case given that there aren’t many observable differences between specimens other than height.
While Marantz refreshed the look of their products, they maintained their distinctive characteristics. There are two huge round knobs for choosing inputs and regulating the volume, and the front circular porthole has been upgraded to an OLED display.
Just beneath the central porthole and the two knobs is a row of eight circular buttons that let you to pick between M-DAX, Pure Direct, Zone 2, Internet radio, Dimmer, Status, and Sound modes. On the left is the microphone jack, while on the right is the USB port for expanding storage. Despite Marantz’s assertions that they have improved the design, there is still no HDMI input on the front of the device. Something like this could return someday, but in a different form.
The front of the Marantz was given a touch of elegance thanks to the use of a slightly curved and textured pattern on the right and left sides. On the left side is the little circular power button, and on the right is the socket for the headphones.
Standard components, such as high-current, low-impedance discrete power amplifiers, are used inside. Marantz doesn’t specify what kind of digital audio controllers (DACs) are built into the Cinema 70s anywhere on the page. The new DACs are mentioned in the Cinema 50 but not in the Cinema 60 or 70. They clearly aren’t AKMs, but the historical record is mute on the topic of what they replaced them with.
The remote control also got a facelift when Marantz updated the design of its products. The new remote is not vastly different from older Denon/Marantz devices, but it does have a more contemporary look and feel that is more in keeping with the updated audio/video components.
The remote’s inputs are at the top, the standard volume, channel, and navigation controls are in the middle, and the playback controls, comprising three buttons, and the selection controls, including four buttons, follow below. A drop-down menu with four audio profiles appears below.
The remote, however, has received more than just cosmetic work; it now also includes an LED lighting. The button to activate it is located on the side, rather than the top, and there is no motion detection involved. A specialized button on the remote is ideal, but having a button on the side is almost as good because it saves you from having to fumble with the other buttons. It has always been unclear why the backlight control was included among all the other controls.
The Cinema 70s is like a hybrid between their newer, sleeker models and their smaller, more portable slimline series. This AV receiver is perfect for any space due to its small size and modern style.
The Marantz Cinema 70 is a high-powered home theatre system with a number of useful extras. Its 7.1 channel surround sound capacity is one of its most notable features, allowing for a truly immersive audio experience that puts you in the middle of the action. Further audio depth and dimension are provided via Dolby Atmos and DTS:X technologies, which are supported by the Cinema 70.
The Marantz Cinema 70 is a fantastic option for people who love movies and video games because it not only has great audio capabilities, but also a wide variety of video features. It’s compatible with 4K Ultra HD and High Dynamic Range, so you can enjoy pictures that are incredibly detailed and vivid. You may plug in your favourite gadgets with ease thanks to the system’s many video inputs.
The Cinema 70 was built with the user in mind, thus it has a straightforward interface that makes it easy to access the various menus and customise the various aspects of the device. It has many helpful functions, such as an in-built FM/AM tuner and automated room calibration.
To a large extent, the supported audio formats are the same as the previous version. This means that modern audio formats such as DTS:X and Dolby Atmos can be played back in the Cinema 70s. Up-mixing methods, such as DTS Neural:X and Dolby Surround, can also turn standard stereo recordings into enveloping, high-quality surround sound.
Since there aren’t any physical speakers in a given space, virtualizers like DTS Virtual:X and Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization can make it seem as if the sound is coming from all directions.
These virtual technologies can’t compare to having genuine physical speakers, both in terms of quality and accuracy, and they’re very restricted in terms of where they can be used. The sound is also often noticeably over-processed, which is something we have never been fans of. The Cinema 70s don’t support the more advanced audio formats used on the Cinema 50 and above, such as Auro-3D and IMAX Enhanced.
Dolby Atmos’ height virtualization can be used with both DTS and Dolby Digital audio files. Dolby’s approach wins out since DTS Virtual:X is limited to use with DTS songs. Dolby Atmos Height Virtualization can be difficult to activate because there isn’t a dedicated button for it.
Prior to activating surround sound, you’ll need to locate the relevant option in the menu’s Audio subheading. Using the Dolby Surround sound settings requires first activating the Speaker Virtualizer. This is how the Dolby virtualizer will be switched on. This is not a simple or easy task, and not even the manual provides complete clarity. Marantz hasn’t changed anything about this setup since the first time it was utilised, despite our hopes for a simplification.
Incredibly, for an AV receiver that’s less than half the size of its bigger sibling, the Cinema 70s appears to offer essentially the same support as the NR1711 did in the past, as well as the brand-new Cinema 60.
All modest rooms and recreational spaces can benefit from the Cinema 70s’s seven channels of built-in amplification, which produce a theoretical 50 watts of power (8 ohm, 20 Hz-20 kHz, 0.08% 2ch drive). The output does not decrease with the increase of channels, and this is not made clear in any of the advertising materials you have seen.
Two subwoofer systems can be powered by the receiver, but unfortunately four subs aren’t supported. About what you’d expect from a product of this type. You can use a 5.2 system with the available channels to create a 5.2.2 Dolby Atmos setup if you don’t care about the overhead layer.
Let’s see what our networking options are like at a movie theatre from the 1970s. When you consider the limited real estate, the slimline series has always offered a wealth of networking options. We’ll be taking a look at the possible seismic upheavals in ’70s film soon.
For the sake of concision, we shall run down the list of front-facing connectors once more: a USB port for attaching external storage, an Audyssey microphone port, and a headphones jack. Not a thing has changed there. To that end, it includes a similar number of HDMI inputs and outputs, as well as a similar number of speaker connectors in the back that are all hooked to amplifiers. There is a single output and six inputs.
This is where the NR1711 starts to diverge from the Cinema 70s. The HDMI 2.1 standard, which allows for greater bandwidth, is supported by three of the six HDMI ports. All 2020 AV receivers with HDMI 2.1 connections were faulty due to a Panasonic chip, which prohibited them from transferring certain data, including 4K/120Hz RGB signals from the Xbox series X, resulting in a black screen.
Nevertheless, the Cinema 70s appears to feature an updated version of this HDMI 2.1 chip, as it supports all signals with a 4K@120Hz configuration and offers up to 40Gbps of bandwidth across three of its HDMI connections. This includes the Xbox Series X.
Three of the HDMI ports on the Cinema 70s are 2.0 variants with a maximum bandwidth of 18Gbps; the other three are HDMI 2.1 variants that support cutting-edge audiovisual technologies like 8K/60Hz and 4K/120Hz video passthrough, 40Gbps bandwidth, 4:4:4 Pure Color sub sampling, HDR10, HDR10+, Dolby Vision, Hybrid Log-Gamma (HLG), Dynamic HDR, 3D, BT.2020 passthrough (QFT).
The Cinema 70s has been updated along with the rest of the Cinema range, so it no longer has the widely-reported fault in HDMI 2.1. You may connect a wide range of gaming accessories to the device at once thanks to its three ports.
Just to be sure, we connected our PlayStation 5 and Xbox One X to the Cinema 70s, and both consoles functioned well. There were no interruptions, no blackouts, and no problems with the HDMI handshake. Both game consoles were able to get a sharp 4K@120Hz signal, and VRR worked perfectly.
In addition to the 3 stereo analogue inputs and 1 phono analogue input, there are 7.2 channels of multichannel pre-outs and 1 Zone-2 analogue multi-room output. Connectivity options include the usual FM, AM, WiFi/Bluetooth aerials as well as an Ethernet port, an IR flasher input, remote control input and output, an RS-232C port, a 12 volt trigger, and so on.
To be clear, much like the rest of the new Cinema series, neither composite nor component ports are featured here. With this update, Sound United no longer provides either composite or component video outputs. This is in line with what has been seen in recent Denon AV receivers, so it’s not too shocking.
The device has built-in wireless LAN (WLAN) connectivity that operates on both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz networks and has been upgraded such that it now supports IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n/ac.
The Cinema 70s, like most Marantz receivers, supports Bluetooth 4.2 and Bluetooth streaming. We don’t get why Sound United is still utilising Bluetooth 4.2 when so many other companies have upgraded to Bluetooth 5 already. This is not acceptable for a product of this quality.
We can identify three major changes in 1970s films. Some users may first be dissatisfied due to the lack of component and composite ports. But, even the pickiest gamers will be impressed by the three HDMI 2.1 connections that enable 40Gbps.
Comparatively, the NR1711 only offered 2.2 channels for pre-outs, but the new device provides 7.2. With the Cinema 70s’s pre-amplifier mode, you can connect external amplifiers with higher efficiency to boost the unit’s power output without taking up additional room.
When it comes to sound quality, the Marantz Cinema 70 is in a league of its own. The state-of-the-art features and superior audio processing capabilities of this AV receiver are meant to elevate your existing home theatre setup to the next level.
Dolby Atmos and DTS:X audio format support are among the most notable features of the Marantz Cinema 70. The Cinema 70’s support for various file types allows for enveloping, engrossing surround sound. As a result, you’ll feel like you’re right in the centre of the action, just like in a movie.
Nevertheless, that’s not all the Marantz Cinema 70 can accomplish. With its cutting-edge audio processing technology, it enhances the sound of every speaker in the system. This ensures that everyone in the room can enjoy perfectly tuned and balanced sound. The end result is sound that is completely undistorted and unaffected by outside sources.
Also, the Marantz Cinema 70 is compatible with a wide range of streaming services like Spotify, Pandora, and Tidal. This means that you may listen to music or watch movies from a broad variety of sources while still receiving the same high-quality audio reproduction.
The Marantz Cinema 70 is extremely simple to install and operate. The audio settings may be easily adjusted and fine-tuned to your liking thanks to the straightforward UI and user-friendly features. The Marantz Cinema 70 is a great option for those who wish to listen to high-quality sound in their living room, whether they have a passion for home theatre or not.
The Marantz Cinema 70 delivers a superb performance overall. It’s a top-tier AV receiver because of the high-quality sound it produces, the ease with which it can be set up, and the fact that it’s compatible with cutting-edge audio formats like Dolby Atmos
In conclusion, we can say that the Marantz Cinema 70s was a pleasure to use. It packs all the values for which Marantz is known into a compact package and can deliver outstanding performance with either movies or music. As it lacks the capacity for larger tasks, it is obviously only suitable for such settings, but the included materials ensure that you will have no trouble establishing it in even the most intricate of small-scale environments. I would advise everyone to read this book.
Pros And Cons