The Denon Ceol N9 has now been released!
The Denon Ceol RCD-N8 is likely to impress you in every way you can think of and cater for all of your music/audio needs. This music system includes a CD mechanism, and also a built in WiFi antenna which allows you to stream music from any servers or compatible devices on your home network. Since the last version of the Ceol (RCD-N7), Denon have added AirPlay support for the system which means you can now stream your music straight from an Apple device and iTunes. Thanks to the WiFi antenna you can also control it using the new Denon Remote App for iOS and Android.
When you first boot up the system it will launch the Quick Setup mode which will take you through network and language settings. Setting both of these things in an absolute breeze and should take you no more than 5 minutes maximum. With the included remote you can enter your wireless network key with ease, or also use the WiFi Protected Setup (WPS) button on the back of the main device to connect.
One thing I was quite worried about was the strength of my WiFi signal and whether the Denon Ceol would actually pick it up. Within a few seconds of searching for my wireless network it appeared on the screen and I input my password, that was it. The signal never dropped once when listening to the internet radio or streaming from my music server which I was very surprised at due to the strength of it. This could partially be thanks to the addition of a diversity antenna.
Choosing between the different input sources is made easy with the remote and also the nicely sized OLED screen. When using the remote you can change the music source with a single push of a button, or alternatively scroll through the different options using the screen and remote. The screen shows an array of useful information depending on what source you are listening to such as radio station, track name, artist and playing time for the current song. You can also adjust the brightness of the display using the remote which can be useful when using the system in different lighting or at night.
The arrow keys are used to navigate through the different menus shown on the OLED display and it works as you’d expect with the left arrow key taking you back to the previous menu item, while the right takes you to the next. A nice feature was that instead of having to navigate through all of the source options on the screen there is a button for each of them on the remote which changes the input directly to the one of your choice.
Amazing. That really does some it up for the Denon Ceol RCD-N8 audio system. Hooked up to the SC-N7 speaker system the Ceol delivers high quality audio with a nice balance for all genres. The lower frequencies, including the bass are crisp and without any adjustment can be clearly heard without overpowering everything else. Even when playing low quality audio files such as those at 192kbps the audio is still crisp and sounds much higher quality than it does on many other systems. Of course to get the best sound quality possible higher bitrate songs are preferable. Even the internet radio audio quality seems to sound a lot better than when it is played on similar devices.
Overall the sound quality of this system is incredible, and you would definitely struggle to find something on the market that is on par with it for this price, never mind better the quality.
The RCD-N8 is a really nice looking system, with all parts finished in a shiny gloss. It’s available in 2 colours; glossy white and glossy black. The device itself is actually quite chunky being 112mm high, but this is needed to fit in all the features and of course the relatively large OLED display. It must be said the glossy body is a fingerprint magnet and even the slightest touch will leave a mark, but nothing that a simple wipe can’t fix. To get an extra mark from us we would like to see a slightly improved body that makes it less ‘plasticky’ to touch and look at.
The front of the device includes the CD drive that blends in well, a vast array of buttons including power, volume, CD eject and navigational arrows. It also includes the USB port, as well as a headphones and 3.5mm input jack. The USB port is compatible with mass storage devices such as iPhones, iPods and iPads.
The rear of the device includes the impressive backboard of ports and sockets including the ethernet, subwoofer output and 2 analogue stereo inputs. Also located on the back is the WPS push button to quickly connect to your WiFi network.
Located on top is the iPod 30-pin dock. To access the dock you must push down on a small section of the plastic which then flips up to reveal the docking station. This works really nicely and when it isn’t being used you can fold the plastic section back down to hide the dock and give it a more clean look.
The actual device measures in at 112mm x 280mm x 299mm (Height x Width x Depth) while each speakers measure at 233mm x 145mm x 224mm (Height x Width x Depth) each. However the speakers pictured above don’t come as standard and will set you back an extra £99 which is unfortunate.#
The Denon Ceol RCD-N8 is an audio system that delivers top quality sound and is also feature jammed! The audio sounds crisp and with the wide array of input options you’re sure to be able to find a way to get your music to play into this system. It’s unfortunate that you have to dish out extra money for the speakers and we feel this may put a few people off, but for us it wouldn’t change things! The sound quality of this system is incredible and the endless list of features packed into it would certainly seal the deal if we were buying!