I can tell from personal experience that the 963 is a little less bright for standard Redbook playback (especially when upsampled). I was not able to compare SACD playback but the redbook difference was pretty noticable.
However, if you are looking for more functionality, and DVD-Audio playback -- I would go with the 2200. It is probably the best "bang for the buck" piece out there. My dad owns it and he absolutely LOVES it. It is a really nice unit -- very intuitive controls and very hassle free compared to the 963 (don't even get me started on the Philips remote).
However I am still happy with my 963.
BTW I compared the two players using one of the newest Sunfire reference AMP and preamp, playing through some Meadowlark Kestrel 2's.
Good luck with your decision. If I could do it all over again I would be pretty stumped as the Denon beats out the 963 in MANY ways. However the SQ of the Philips does have it beat by a bit.