CD Player recommendations (revisited)

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Martin Rendall, Jan 14, 2002.

  1. Martin Rendall

    Martin Rendall Screenwriter

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    I had previously asked for CD changer recommendations. After some thought, I've decided against getting a changer. So, what's the best bang for the buck in terms of mechanism quality and audio quality for single disc CD players? Not interested in SACD at this time.

    To kick it off, is the NAD C541 a good price performer?

    Thanks again,

    Martin.
     
  2. Marc H

    Marc H Second Unit

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    The Cambridge Audio D500Se is an outstanding best bang for the buck. They list at $650.00CAN.

    Try and read Sam Tellig's review in November's Stereophile.
     
  3. Mickey Brown

    Mickey Brown Stunt Coordinator

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    Arcam
     
  4. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Deleted. Duplicate post.
     
  5. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Martin, the NAD C 541 gets good reviews in the British hi-fi magazines. However, I have been leery of NAD CD players because they have had reliability issues. The older C 520 and C 540 were known for problems, but the current C 521 and C 541 may be better.
    The Cambridge Audio D500SE is generally regarded to be an excellent value, however, I was shocked to see What Hi*Fi? (UK) trash it in the January 2002 issue. They only gave it [​IMG] [​IMG] out of [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] . Here are some comments What Hi*Fi? offered about the D500SE:
    For: "Smooth and refined with the right recording; high detail levels"
    Against: "Looks cheap and rough; still lacks drive and attack"
    Verdict: [​IMG] [​IMG] "Sounding reasonable is no longer enough in this market; although retuned, this is still off the pace"
    Another comment What Hi*Fi? offered:
    "Although the engineering under the bonnet is very impressive, the Cambridge looks and sounds cheaper than it is, especially with mainstream pop or dance"
    As I said, this poor review shocked me because I have never read anything negative about this player. The review appeared in a "Supertest" of CD players up to £200, which only considered single-disc players. Interestingly, What Hi*Fi? named the Sony CDP-XE570 best in the crop. The 'XE570 isn't available in North America, but it could be that the 'XE570 is the same as our 'XE370. Makes me want to try the 'XE370.
    By the way, What Hi*Fi? included the NAD C 521 in this test and awarded it [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] .
    I agree with Mickey's suggestion of Arcam. More specifically, take a look at the DiVA CD72 or the newer CD72T. The CD72T adds CD TEXT to the CD72 and is said to have upgraded innards. Also, the CD72 and CD72T can be upgraded to the much more expensive CD92 (I believe there is a CD92T also).
    Another player to consider is the Ah! Njoe Tjoeb 4000, which is a modified version of the Marantz CD4000. The most important modification is that the Ah! player has a tubed analog output stage. Www.upscaleaudio.com is the North American distributor of the Ah! and sells it for $579 US. I bought one last April and am extremely happy with it. I upgraded the stock Philips 6922 tubes in August to Siemens 7308s, which are much better. The Ah! is an outstanding value. A great thing about a tube player, of course, is that you can tailor the sound to your liking through tube rolling (changing tubes). Check out reviews of the Ah! Njoe Tjoeb 4000 on www.audioreview.com . As you will see, people love it.
     
  6. James RD

    James RD Supporting Actor

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    I wonder if there has ever been a piece of electronic equipment that has gotten nothing but raves. I just ordered the Cambridge Audio D500SE after an extensive search for a reasonably priced single-disc player. This is the first I've heard of a negative review. I guess I'll know more soon.

    Of course it may be relevant to note that there are people who think "Citizen Kane" is a bad movie.
     
  7. Martin Rendall

    Martin Rendall Screenwriter

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    Got the Nad. Thanks to all who replied. I'd had enough futz'ing around on this issue.

    Thanks again!

    Martin.
     
  8. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    For what it's worth, for some reason Pioneer players have measured exceedingly well for jitter. I have seen 160 ps for the 603 changer from a while ago. And even 200 ps for the PDR-609 CD player/recorder.

    Obviously, jitter is just one aspect of a player's sound.

    From the days of yore, Sony ES machines always got consistently high marks.
     
  9. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Producer

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    The Sensible Sound and even Stereophile have always liked Rotel for affordably priced, good quality CD performance.
     
  10. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Martin,

    Congrats. on your purchase. I'm sure you are relieved to have bought something. Hope the C 541 works out for you.

    Kevin,

    Rotel just replaced the RCD-991 with the RCD-1070. I read some good things about the '1070 on Audio Asylum the other day.
     

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