Sherwood was demonstrating their R-963 receiver, priced at $1999 MSRP. With 120 watts per channel into seven channels with 100kHz audio bandwidth and 24-bit/192kHz audio DACs, it packs a powerful punch. Using Analog Devices' new AD-1896 sample rate converter, the R-963 "remasters" conventional 44.1kHz 16-bit sound to 192kHz and 24-bit resolution. Decoding capabilities include Dolby Digital and DTS, Dolby Pro Logic 2, DTS-ES Matrix and Discrete, plus DTS Neo-6.
Inputs include six digital audio connectors, five A/V inputs, all with S-Video, two component video inputs and even a phono connector. Multi-room capabilities include S-Video connectors, a dedicated Room 2 remote control, and the ability to configure the two rear channel amplifiers to instead power Room 2, while still providing full 5.1 sound in the main theater. The unit ships with a Home Theater Master MX-500 remote control and is available in black or silver.
For those who can survive with a little less, Sherwood Newcastle is also shipping the R-863 receiver for $1199, which features 100 watts per channel. Items dropped from the higher models include: no audio "remastering", a composite-only connection for Room 2, no reconfiguration of the center rear amplifiers, no 12-volt trigger, no dedicated Room 2 remote and a simpler main remote.