Marantz UD7006 review

The Marantz UD7006 is a universal player that's master of all trades – including 3D Tested at £550

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

A great deck, particularly for music lovers, though its price premium is a hurdle


  • +

    Superb picture

  • +

    great sound, particularly with music

  • +

    luxurious build and appearance


  • -

    Just one HDMI out

  • -

    limited streaming services

  • -

    costs more than the similar Denon

Why you can trust What Hi-Fi? Our expert team reviews products in dedicated test rooms, to help you make the best choice for your budget. Find out more about how we test.

If the Denon DBP-2012UD sets high standards, Marantz’s UD7006 – also the recipient of a significant price cut in recent months – is just as impressive, which is no surprise given that the two players are nigh-on identical.

Certain controls are located slightly differently, but only in the name of styling consistency with other Marantz components: the guts of this player are just the same, including its Anchor Bay upscaling, Analog Devices video DAC, Burr-Brown audio DAC and key socketry.

That means the 7006 has the same strengths (and minor weaknesses) of its stablemate. It’s well-equipped with analogue outputs, so it’s easy to integrate with older home cinema kit and into hi-fi systems, but it includes only one HDMI out.

That’s a problem for prospective buyers with older amps who want to get into 3D. On the other hand, if you don’t want 3D, it won’t matter a jot.

That issue aside, we’ve few reservations about the Marantz. It’s predictably excellent with Blu-ray, most especially with a good 2D transfer such as True Grit.

The epic vistas are wonderfully vivid, with consistent, noise-free backgrounds and beautifully crisp details. The film’s stately camera pans are handled in an assured fashion, too

Good spec, but a couple of shortfalls
Like the Denon, the Marantz particularly impresses when asked to upscale DVD to 1080p. It produces dense, largely noiseless backgrounds and solid blocks of colour with Cars 2 on DVD, and keeps motion inconsistencies and shimmering edges well in check.

That’s great news if you’ve a large collection of DVDs to go with your burgeoning stock of Blu-rays.

The Marantz is just as accomplished sonically. With the Ramones’ rip-roaring Sheena Is A Punk Rocker, there’s an infectious swagger to its approach, plus a welcome injection of bassline energy, suggesting that the player has a little more sparkle in stereo than the Denon DBP-2012UD.

Switch to surround sound music and the margin of difference narrows, while movie sound, particularly when delivered via HDMI, is indistinguishable between the two players.

As we noted with the Denon, the UD7006 endows your discs with more detail, drive and scale than you’d get from a budget player, despite the fact that, in theory, your AV amplifier bears the lion’s share of the responsibility for the sounds you hear.

No online film streaming
With streaming, once again, it’s a case of ‘Okay, but must try harder’. The Marantz has no truck with online movie streaming, and it won’t handle FLAC music files, although it sounds fine with good-quality AAC and WAV content.

Overall, the UD7006 remains just as compelling as ever, not least because of its new, more competitive price.

However, unless you’re specifically interested in its slightly better sound quality with CD, there’s little to justify the Marantz’s price premium over the otherwise identical Denon.

See all our Blu-ray players Best Buys

Follow whathifi on Twitter

Join whathifi on Facebook

What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London, Reading and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.

Read more about how we test