Denon’s replacement for its all-conquering DVD-1930 is here – and with its smooth edges and black or silver casings, it’s as well-built as its predecessor.
In a nod to green concerns, standby power use has been halved and the power lead itself is now detachable, making it much easier to pull out the unit and fiddle with the connections.
There are more changes under the bonnet, with the player using an advanced Faroudja DCDi chipset and 12-bit video. Like the 1930 it upscales up to 1080p over HDMI, and outputs multichannel audio via digital coaxial or six-channel analogue.
With the 1930 already the class-leader in video output, kudos to Denon for improving the picture even further. Edges are sharper still, allowing for an improved depth of field. Colours look clean and vivid, while skin-tones are rendered superbly naturally.
What happened to the surround?
Denon has also tweaked the sonics, and here the results are less impressive. DVD soundtracks seem a little subdued and lacking in dynamic reach, allowing competitors like the Cambridge Audio Azur 540D to steal a march.
Multichannel music playback (the 1940 supports esoteric formats such as DVD-Audio and SACD) has improved, however – great news for the dozen people in the country who actually play these types of disc.
If picture quality is your main concern, the 1940 is strongly recommended. But surround-sound fans might like to hunt around for a discounted 1930 instead.