If I had an SACD Transport, I would buy....

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Robert A. Willis Jr., Sep 29, 2001.

  1. Robert A. Willis Jr.

    Robert A. Willis Jr. Second Unit

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    Hello Everyone,
    I just received my Music Direct catalog (www.musicdirect.com). This is a company similar to Acoustic Sound (www.acousticsounds.com). The first few pages are dedicated to SACD releases. Well if there was a SACD transport with digital outs (oh yes, DVD capable) I would buy 24 SACD's in the next few months. 11 would be repeat buys and I mean repeat buys. Miles Davis' "Kind of Blue" or Santana's "Abraxas"... Well I am embarassed to say how many copies I have purchased over the years (LP, LP, CD, Remastered, DTS.....) I can't help it I love that music.
    And my kids love it because they all have copies (I kept the LP's) now.
    I have listened to a few SACD's through the available players and the only one I would have bought was the original Sony. The DVD/SACD players' D to A converters leave a lot to be desired in my system. Much like listening to DAD's through my Cal Audio's D/A converters, then using the digital outs to let my Proceed AVP do the processing. There is a significant difference.
    Anyway this is a music forum and the point of my post is that there are good number of SACD's from various (there needs to be more) sources. The brain dead labels' greed is getting in the way of me enjoying my favorite past time the way I want.
    But it may not matter to you if you had digital outs. What may be important is how many titles would you purchase if you (and I know some of you do) had the capability to play SACD's.
    Somehow we need to convey at least that to the companies so that they will start cranking out more titles. I am addressing SACD and not DVD-A because I can't find a list of more that 15 releases.
    rw
     
  2. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Robert, first, you ought to note that the web address for Music Direct is http://www.amusicdirect.com
    By the way, what SACD/DVD players have you listened to? I would guess it would have to be the Philips SACD-1000 and/or the Sony DVP-S9000ES. From what I have read, though I have never seen one in a store, the Philips model is so-so. It hasn't garnered the positive reviews I would have hoped for. For what it's worth, Stereophile only rated it a "Class B" component, whereas the Marantz SA-1, Sony SCD-1, and Sony SCD-777ES were rated "A+" components.
    As for the 'S9000ES, most people say that SACDs sound great on it, but that CD playback is lacking relative to Sony's same-generation audio-only SACD players when using the analog outputs. DVD players often are lacking with CDs relative to similarly priced CD players, so that observation with the 'S9000ES doesn't really surprise me. Given that the 'S9000ES was Sony's first ES video product, it's first progressive-scan DVD player, and it's first DVD player with SACD playback capability, it is possible that Sony put a bit less effort into CD playback.
    I don't think anyone really knows when and if we will see the ability to run SACDs through digital outputs. For now, you can get an excellent stereo SACD player in the 'C333ES for $600 or less. It's been discontinued, but should be available if you look around. Otherwise, you should check out the 'C222ES for $575 from Oade Bros. Initial reviews I have read on Audio Asylum have been quite favorable. On the other hand, if you are not on a tight budget, take a look at the Sony SCD-XA777ES single-disc, multi-channel SACD player. It retails for $3000, but Oade Bros. is selling it for $2000. It uses a new six-DAC system that many people have spoken highly of in anticipation of hearing it. In stereo mode, three DACs are used for each channel, while one DAC is used per channel in multi-channel mode. I am waiting to hear how it sounds in comparison to the original '777ES and SCD-1.
    ------------------
    My:
    HT Pics ; Equipment List ; DVD Collection ; LD Collection
    KeithH: Saving the Home Theater World Before Bedtime
    [Edited last by KeithH on September 29, 2001 at 12:57 PM]
     
  3. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

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    A list of all SACD releases can be found at www/sacd.philips.com/b2b/news/titlelist.html. It has over 350 available. Hopefully Virgin and Universal announcing their support of the format will lead to more releases. I have a couple of dozen SACDs but have bought few recently for the reasons noted by Keith. I have a 9000ES in the bedroom since I wanted a progressive scan machine and since the bedroom backs to the main system I can enjoy 2-channel SACD in both systems. I would also concur that for CD playback the 9000ES is just OK. I had the opportunity to listen to the Marantz 2 channel player and it is a bit better for SACD and a great CD player too but of course is about $1200 more than the Sony and won't play DVDs. I am content to wait to see the next generation of players since I am happy with what I have for now and there are not leaps and bounds to be gained. Also, Wolfson Microelectronics, www.wolfsonmicro.com, a UK based chip manufacturer announced on September 3 that they have developed a chip that will do mutichannel SACD and DVD-A. Their products have been used by cos. like Harmon Kardon, Levinson and Rega and they are well respected in the high-end community. I would expect by this coming summer to see the first hybrid players that will do both multichannel formats and make future decisions a little easier.
     
  4. Robert A. Willis Jr.

    Robert A. Willis Jr. Second Unit

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    Thanks. The same catalog I mentioned has 25 DVD-A's listed as opposed to 4 pages of SACD's. I will listen to the models you listed. I have listened to the Philips, two Sonys and one Marantz. The SCD was the best of the lot but I don't want to pay more than $3k for a unit and really want it to play DVD's. I have to save a bit of money for the upcoming Proceed AVP upgrade and I don't have enough real estate to have a separate LD, DVD and SACD in my rack.
    I would like to have digital outs because good cables are very expensive in a high end (don't mean to sound snobbish) rig and we are talking about 5 of them. I did that for my preamp to amps connection and the pain was substantial.
    I don't have a clue what is the hold up releasing titles other than greed and politics. All I know is that I want the best sounding music and want lots of titles. I purchase around 5 cd's a month; which is all I really listen to seriously if I want to also listen to other music. Right now I am seriously considering cutting back on new purchases in anticipation of a lot of new releases in SACD and/or DVD-A. Its a pain to know that better sound is possible and could be more available (numbers of titles). This is sort of like the problem a few years ago when we were anticipating DVD players and titles.
    rw
     
  5. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Phil,
    Good information there about the forthcoming multi-channel SACD/DVD-Audio chip. Thanks. It will be interesting to see how things develop there.
    Robert,
    You said:
     
  6. Phil A

    Phil A Producer

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    Robert - in the same boat waiting for the AVP upgrade - for now I use the Sony 9000ES in the bedroom with the 2nd set of audio outs into the AVP and a device that lets me use the remote in the next room. I will be running cables and wall plates in the next few weeks from one wall to the other since I have not gotten to finish the basement yet and if I need to pull a piece of equipment such as a LD to the other side of the room it will be easy. I make most of my own cable and power cords for that reason - once you invest in the tools and buy some wire that is wrong and make your mistakes it is cheaper in the long run. They just used a couple of my cables to do a HT demo/seminar in a local shop on Sept. 22. It gets expensive buying good connectors when you need lots of them. I will be waiting to see what the next generation of players looks like and still have the 6 channel inputs of the Sony 444ES receiver in the bedroom and would love to replace the old Onkyo 6 changer that feeds the 4 remote rooms via a speaker switcher with a good changer that can play multi-channel too.
     

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