We have recently taken in the Denon DCD520 AE and the accompanying integrated amplifier the PMA 520 AE at £179 each.
For the initial test we put the Denon system with Q Acoustics 2020i £169.95 (non gloss) speakers. We linked the amp and CD player with Audioquest Evergreen 2RCA -2RCA (£30) and Chord Leyline (£2.60 per meter) to the speakers. We used "Don't say a word" by Phantom limb as the test track
Looks and feel wise they have have a very pleasing traditional appearance the PMA520 especially, not to mention the surprising weight of the amp. The draw action is solid and smooth on the CD player and the input selection on the amp has a very definite and pleasing feel.
The DCD-520AE has a built in 32bit/192khz DAC and the amp boasts 70 watts per channel. Making this a statistically formidable system at the price. We could not have been more impressed when we heard how full bodied yet controlled Yolander Quarteys powerful vocals came through. adding that to the separation of the backing instrumental gave impression of a much higher spec'ed system.
Out of curiosity we swapped the speaker cable for Chord Rumour at £15.00 a meter and where not disappointed, going to show that even inexpensive systems can still be improved with higher end cable allowing you draw every last ounce out of a system.
We where very impressed and surprised with what a £470 system sounded like (minus speaker cable) The Denon system we think could do even more allowing for system expansion should one wish. Our over all opinion is that this is a fantastic system that can suit a rage of enthusiasts from students looking to keep their room mates up, to any one looking to unwind after a hard day.