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The Denon Car Audio brand is being revived in the United States through Red Mountain Audio, a start-up company here that has acquired the rights to sell both Denon and Audisson.
Kevin Campbell, president of Red Mountain, said the company offers two high-end Denon head units that feature superior dynamic range as well as a 12-disc CD changer.
"In 1996 or 1997, Denon walked away from car audio in the U.S., but it continued to design and build product under its name for the Japanese and Korean markets for all these years. Denon didn't feel they had the right product offering at the right price points to compete with the larger companies in the category in this country. We reached an agreement with Denon to import it here, and Denon since modified the tuner sections so they'll receive North American radio frequencies," explained Campell.
Capping the Denon models is the DCT-Z1, a CD/tuner with Alpha 24 Processing Plus, which uses special 24-bit decoding and which Denon originally employed in its home theater line. It has 8 volts out balanced and 4 volts out standard, as well as a copper plated chassis for rejecting RF interference and silver braided RCA cables. Signal-to-noise ratio is 115dB and dynamic range is 110dB, exceeding the dynamic range of a DVD player, said Campbell. Suggested retail for the CDT-Z1 is $2,500.
It is joined by the DCT-R1, a CD receiver that uses a 1-bit DA converter rather than a 24-bit processor. It has built-in 12.5 watt by 4 power into 4 ohms and optional red/orange or green illumination. The DCT-R1 is available in either silver titanium or black anodized finish at $1,200. Also under the Denon label is a 12-disc CD changer called the DCH-470 at $700.
Campbell said the company is not planning to import Denon speakers and amplifiers at this time. "What we've focused on is just re-introducing Denon, and the best way to do that is to focus on their top-end product. I want to establish an identity for this product as the ultimate high-end alternative."
Red Mountain currently sells to approximately 60 retailers in the U.S., mainly in the West. About a third of those carry Denon products, he said.
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