How does my 13 year old Sony CDP-C50 5 disc changer stack up to the new players?

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Chris PC, Jul 12, 2002.

  1. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I always wonder how my old player stacks up in terms of specs and listening quality. I like it. I might find something "better", but for a 13 year old CD player with dual 4 times oversampling DAC's, it seems to sound good. Nothing un-usually annoying or bad sounding about the player in my experience. I have compared the sound to my Panasonic CV51 DVD player and to my laserdisc player, my Pioneer CLD-79 but I haven't done extensive comparisons of their analog outs, and therefore, their DAC's. I haven't noticed anything substantial in terms of differences, but then again, I should compare more. I am thinking very seriously about replacing my Sony 5 disc with a Sony 400 disc changer. I will not let the Sony 5 disc go, as it will find a happy home in a second room. It was my first Cd player and I'm rather attached to it.
    So does it fair against the newer players? Being one of the first adopters of the 5 disc carousel, I paid a then hefty $503.00 CAD including tax (PST and GST) in December of 1988 or January of 1989, I can't quite remember. My biggest regret was not ordering the other model I was vaguely aware existed at the time, the nearly identical Sony CDP-C5F which I believe had digital output. Back then, it was weird and bizarre. I thought, what the heck would I want that for? On the way home, for whatever reason, I bought my first CD GREEN by REM. Ah, the memories of the beginnings of my audiophile life [​IMG]
     
  2. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    I gave away my almost 10yr old Sony 5 disc changer to a friend who has no gear at all (also sold her my old receiver for a ridiculously low, make the deal formal, price). She is very happy with it. Will you notice the difference between the one you have and a new one in roughly the same price range? Highly unlikely. To really hear a difference, you will likely need to move at least a step up.

    I replaced the Sony with a Marantz CC4000, which annoyingly died in 6 months of use, taking one of my favorite CDs with it. I was not happy with some of the features, or lack there of, nor was I really that impressed with the sound even over the aging Sony, so I was asking the same question. The 4000 was about twice the price of the Sony, and while I could hear a difference, it was not a significant one. I immediately returned it and started listening to various players. Many sounded the same, so I went and listened to some more expensive stuff - NAD, Creek, Arcam, others, and I could definitely hear a difference. I am not ready nor willing to pay $1800 (on sale!) for a CD player though, but I proved to myself that there is a difference.

    I happened upon the V3 Minis, so I decided to give them a listen, and in the listening room was a Sony CA70ES. I auditioned the Minis with a 7200 and the 70, and there was a noticable improvement from the 4000 and old Sony. They offered me a great deal on a brand new one, so that is what I am listening to right now (literally) >NP: Shawn Colvin - Fat City.< I wanted to go SACD, but there are apparently new models in the works and I could not find a 222 or 555ES locally (I wanted something NOW), so I figured I'd just wait to see the new models and go with the CA70.

    Audiophile you say? I would recommend giving an SACD player or two a listen also.
     
  3. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Chris, CD player technology has changed quite a bit over the years. Certainly DAC technology has changed. The 'C50 might have been a quality player in its day, but I think you could find a better CD player among current models in and around the price you paid for the 'C50. Consider the Sony SCD-C222ES, Marantz CC4000OSE, Denon DCM-370, Sony CDP-CA70ES, and NAD 523, which are carousel changers. Two single-disc players to consider are the NAD C 521i and Arcam DiVA CD62. All of these players are quality models. Give them a listen to see which sound best suits you.
     
  4. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Well, when I say audiophile, I use the term loosely, which is probably not wise around here [​IMG] But really, I just mean that I invest a great deal in my audio and I do it in the search to create an audio experience that results in sound that is striving to be closer to real, rather than just loud [​IMG]
     
  5. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Chris, perhaps "audio enthusiast" or "music enthusiast" suit you better than "audiophile". I prefer the first two over "audiophile". That's just me.
     
  6. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    True enough. I like audio, but I'm no big spender. I can barely justify spending the 3 to 5 K I have spent on audio video equipment. I can't imagine spending over 3 K for speakers alone, or 10 K for a projector. I could spend lots on audio if I kept it for 20 years, but otherwise, I am not sure I could hear the difference or even justify the cost even if did hear a difference.
     
  7. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Chris, I understand where you are coming from. I think I have done pretty well with what are generally mid-fi components in the grand scheme of things. I don't have anything by Krell, Mark Levinson, Accuphase, Cary, and the like. Rather, I have Sony ES, Pioneer Elite, NAD, and Denon. I am happy with it, especially for what I spent. I guess I'm no audiophile, but that's O.K. by me. [​IMG]
     
  8. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    I'm no audiophile. "Addict" would be a better term [​IMG]
     
  9. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    John said:
     
  10. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I guess we just don't buy the generic cheesey brands you find the department stores. Who cares, as long as it sounds good. Mid-Fi seems to provide to most value for the money [​IMG]
     
  11. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
    I've reached a relative "equilibrium" in that, I am very happy with the gear I have, and while I can hear the differences in more expensive gear, but I can't justify actually paying that kind of money for the improvement. (not to mention some of them I can't actually afford [​IMG] )
     
  12. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 1999
    Messages:
    565
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  13. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Wow. I remember being on top of the CD player technology and from what I recall, 5 disc carousels only seemed to appeared in Canada in late 1988. Hmmm. I have never had much problem with mine. It skips weird 1% of the time and it always proves to be an issue with dust or hair. Otherwise works great. It is so fast. Turn it on, it identifies the discs and whammo, it plays right away. Disc changes are fast and first to last track access is very fast too. Its probably not the greatest player, and probably wasn't even the greatest back then, but it sounds pretty fair to me.

    What model Sony 5 disc carousel is the one you are talking about?
     
  14. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Chris said:
     
  15. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yes the exponential curve. Thankfully lots of good quality sound reproduction can be found on the flatter part of the dollar curve [​IMG]
     
  16. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Chris, once again, I agree with you. As with most anything, there are bargains in audio and you just need to know where to look. I feel many of Sony's SACD players are excellent bargains in that they offer performance that you would expect to have pay a lot more for. Yes, I own Sony SACD players. [​IMG] Another bargain, in my opinion, are NAD stereo integrated amplifiers, namely the C 350 and C 370. It is no coincidence that I own these integrated amps. [​IMG]
    The current issue of the abso!ute sound recommends 47 components divided among stereo power amplifiers, multi-channel power amplifiers, and stereo integrated amplifiers. Each category is broken down into five classes, with Class 1 being the top class. Included in the stereo integrated amplifier section is the NAD C 370 at $700 retail. Given that the abso!ute sound is a high-end magazine, it should surprise no one that the C 370 is in Class 5. In fact, the C 370 is the only integrated amplifier in Class 5 and is the cheapest one mentioned in the article. Despite the low price and Class 5 ranking, the abso!ute sound said, "The C 370's plain gray housing packs 120 watts per channel with a sound that's remarkably airy, sweet, and musical, yet powerful too. Astonishing for the money." A full review is supposedly coming in a future issue. It will be interesting to see what they have to say. Chip Stern of Stereophile also reviewed the C 370 favorably. He commented that it was a very good performer for the money. There definitely are bargains out there. [​IMG]
     
  17. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

    Joined:
    May 12, 2001
    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yes, the NAD are great. That and the fact that you can add the amplifier and bridge the channels for 300 watts per channel is quite impressive.
    "The C270 also makes an ideal partner for the new NAD C370 integrated amplifier. Because the built-in power amp of the C370 is identical to that of the C270, bridging the power amplifiers of both the C270 and C370 combination increases the power of your system to 2 x 300 Watts continuous into 8 ohms. You can easily triple the output power to your speakers."
    Pretty cool. Or just get two C270's for use with whatever receiver or pre-amp you have and you've got all the power you should realistically need in home with reasonably efficient speakers [​IMG]
    I eagerly await their T752 and T762 receivers. They sound like they will be quite nice. The only thing I wanted that they don't have is an adjustable crossover. They should have the THX 80 hz and also the Main-out/Mian-in loop, which allows you to use your own crossover, but it makes it impossible to switch between using the subwoofer and not using the subwoofer for music, such as during source direct.
     
  18. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2000
    Messages:
    9,413
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Chris, I have my C 370 biamped with a C 270 power amp in my main stereo system. I could bridge them for comparison, but I am afraid to do it. My speakers are a 4-ohm load, and believe when the C 370 is bridged with the C 270, we are talking about 450W per channel. That's a lot of energy to throw towards my speakers. I'm hesitant to do it.
     
  19. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 1999
    Messages:
    565
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
     
  20. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 1999
    Messages:
    11,571
    Likes Received:
    25
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    NorCal
    Real Name:
    John
     

Share This Page