Sony 9000ES as my primary CD player...

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Jeremy Hegna, Jul 5, 2002.

  1. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Happy 4th of July weekend everyone!

    I'm considering buying a 9000ES as my primary CD player and as an introduction to SACD. I have a local B&M store that will sell it to me for about $1050, new. I know that they can be had around online for about $900, but I figure air shipping, by a company that will take care of it will be close to a hundred bucks to Anchorage AK.

    I've been looking around for a while now for a dedicated CD player and I haven't found one at the thousand dollar mark that I like as much as the 9000. Am I looking in all the wrong places? Or is this unit still THAT good? It would be a backup DVD player as well, and I'm not concerned about the chroma bug.

    Is this a silly idea and price to pay for this unit in your opinions? Do you think I should continue to look around in the dedicated CD department? I know for this kind of money I can get a Rega 2000, but there is no where locally for me to audition one of them....any thoughts on the 9000 and this price are appreciated.


    Thanks,


    Jeremy
     
  2. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Jeremy, I don't care for the Rega Planet 2000. I just don't. What other playes have you auditioned? You might take a look at the Arcam DiVA CD72T. There is also the Roksan Kandy CD-1, Ah! Njoe Tjoeb 4000, Heart CD6000, and Music Hall MMF CD25. Of course, none of these units play SACDs.

    Another player you might consider, though it is not a single-disc model, is the Sony SCD-C555ES. I feel the 'C555ES is a better CD and SACD player than the 'S9000ES. Just my opinion. Don't get me wrong, however. The 'S9000ES is a wonderful unit in every way. However, since DVD playback is not important for you here, I have to recommend the 'C555ES. Currently, the 'C555ES retails for $800, so it's quite a bit cheaper than the 'S9000ES. I also feel the 'C555ES can hold its own with any sub-$1000 CD player. I own the Ah! Njoe Tjoeb 4000, and while it is very capable, I feel the 'C555ES is better -- more detail, better dynamics, wider soundstage, better layering of instruments, etc. Of course, the Ah! sells for $579, while the 'C555ES originally retailed for $1700.
     
  3. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Thanks Keith,

    I must say, that is an eye-opener. I didn't even think of auditioning the triple 5 because of it being a changer system. I've always heard that this will hamper performance. How does the 555 compare to the 333. My dealer only has the 333, so I would have to order the 555. Going that direction, I would do it on the internet. I've heard the 555 is available at Oade for under $600.

    Other CD players I've auditioned some Rotels, a Krell and Wadia (out of my price range), several Marantz models, and many DVD players on the market. I don't know if the build quality of the 9000ES is biasing my judgement, but I love its heft. How does the 555 compare in the build quality department?

    Again, this is only for music listening...and mainly redbook playback, as there isn't an SACD on the market that I can't live without. I have been looking more and more at some of the remastered CDs and buying alot of them after reading reviews. It is time to rebuild my music collection in both the digital and analog department. I'm still enjoying the LPs...and I want to take my source for digital to the next level.

    I do have a solid DVD player as well. Would it be a better option to explore stand alone DACs than a new redbook player? There is one I read about the other day for just over a grand in stereophile that upsamples redbook to 24 bit....sounded kind of enticing.


    Jeremy
     
  4. wei

    wei Auditioning

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    Jeremy:
    I own both DVP9000ES and SCDC555ES. The build quality of 555 is nothing short of what is with 9000ES. The 9000ES is listed at $1700 for its quality in both video and audio. However the 555ES is listed at $1700 for its dedicated performance in audio only -- there is more money spent on it audio performance.
    as DVD player the 9000ES is a work of art. The 555ES is the best CD/SACD player at a bargain price. You cannot go wrong with either of them. But if audio is your only concern I would say go with the 555ES.

    Wei
     
  5. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Thanks Wei,

    I will check on the same unit at my dealer tomorrow. What is a good price for it at a local B&M? Any idea?


    Jeremy
     
  6. Justin Doring

    Justin Doring Screenwriter

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    Frankly, dedicated CD players in the $1000 range don't sound all that great. I haven't heard everything in that pricerange, but the Rega, Rotel, Denon, Arcam, and Adcom that I've heard are no better than the Sony DVP-9000ES for CD playback. They're different, but not necessarily better.

    Unless you have $2000 or more to spend on a dedicated CD player, I'd stick with the DVP-9000ES, as it offers excellent DVD, SACD, and CD playback for the money. I haven't personally heard the changers, but I would get the 9000ES over all Sony's current SACD players except the 777ES.

    $1050 is not a great price for the DVP-9000ES, as I've heard of people getting them new for $800, but I paid $1100 shipped over a year ago, and still feel the player is worth that amount.
     
  7. wei

    wei Auditioning

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    Jeremy:
    the price for the 555ES at your local dealer will definitely be more expensive than ordering from web dealers such as J&R. You can use the web dealers' price as a reference point when negotiating with the local dealer. As others have mentioned the web dealers' price range is between $530 to $600.

    Wei
     
  8. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Jeremy, I forgot to mention Rotel. They make some nice players in your price range, but I would still go with the 'C555ES. Changers are typically inferior to comparably priced single-disc players, however, the 'C555ES is a bit unique. We might be inclined to compare it to sub-$1000 CD players since it currently retails for $800, but it originally retailed for $1700. Is the 'C555ES as good as $1700 single-disc players from audiophile companies? I think it will compete with some of them, but probably not all of them. Nevertheless, the 'C555ES is an outstanding value at $550-600 by mail.

    I agree with you in regards to the build quality of the 'S9000ES. The drawer is really slick. My brother has one, and it is a beautiful, solid piece. It weighs around 27.5 lbs. However, the 'C555ES is very solid as well, weighing in at 24.5 lbs.

    As you may know, I have the 'C333ES and 'C555ES (actually two of the latter in different systems). The 'C333ES is in my second system, which not as revealing as my main system. Still, I have compared the two changers and prefer the 'C555ES. Sony is using Burr-Brown DACs in the 'C555ES, which I believe leads to better performance. The 'C333ES is still excellent, but I would recommend the 'C555ES.

    Regardless of which CD player you choose, you can always add an outboard DAC later on. The one you are thinking of that was reviewed favorably in the last two issues of Stereophile is the Musical Fidelity A324. It gives you the option to play CDs at 16/44.1 or upsample to 24/96 or 24/192. It typically sells for $1200 and is considered a bargain. I am seriously considering buying one myself.
     
  9. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    Jeremy,

    I agree with just about everthing said here.. I've had the Sony 9K since Dec '00 and the 555ES since last Oct. For redbook/sacd playback, the 555 is excellent. I paid $800.00 for it from Oade. I hear it can be had for $600.00 now (grab one!). Tweeter sells the 9K for $800.00 now, i paid $1200.00. For music only, the 555 wins hands down... no competition. BTW, i use the 9K for movies only and love it. The remote is outstanding and navigation is second to none.
     
  10. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Chip, I figured you would "chip" in eventually. [​IMG]
    You said:
     
  11. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    Keith,
    That's where the "I hear" came from, hahaha.. [​IMG]
     
  12. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Thanks fellas...thought I was the only HT geek that decided to stay home on the 4th of July weekend[​IMG]
    Is that Music Fidelity DAC able to be used on a DVD player? My Denon 2800 has had some problems recently, I've sent it back to Denon on a couple of different occasions to replace the ICs, due to cold solder joints. Denon is replacing my unit with the 2800MKII. Couldn't ask for better service, being that mine is a year and a half old (one of the very first batches).
    I'm wondering how the Denon 2800 MKII will take care of jitter and work as a transport ONLY. If I could add that MF DAC for redbook playback, maybe this is the best option.
    I will also consider the triple 5. I have been trying my BEST to spend money at this shop I'm talking about. Ever since I got into this hobby 3 years ago. They sell Mcintosh, Velodyne, Snell, B&K, Pioneer Elite, Marantz, and Sony. Unfortunately, I found SVS before I could buy a Vel sub...I chose the 5800 over the 307, B&W over Snell, and Rotel (outboard amps) over the Marantz Monos. Pioneer didn't release the 49TX until a year after I had my 5800, yada yada[​IMG]
    I really like the owner of the shop, so I don't mind spending an extra hundred or two. However, I learned my lesson with the 5800 and buying retail. I'm actually a bit embarrassed to go back and tell him I've decided to go a different route with the CD decision...oh well, I guess that is how it works. BTW, he is also a Proceed dealer, but that deck is $3500! Richard, the owner of the shop, is also the only VERY knowledgable Turntable dude in town that I've found. He knows them inside and out, so this is a valuable resource on the analog front. I think I'm sold on the 555ES. I will drop a line to J&R and Oade this afternoon.
    Keith, the Rotel decks are good...but they do not allow for SACD or DVD A playback yet. I am having a hard time dropping this kind of money on anything any more without one of the two capabilities.
    Chip,
    How's that 5803 treating you? My 5800 goes in for the upgrade in the next couple of weeks.
    Jeremy
     
  13. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Alright fellas,

    I called JandR and tentatively set up a deal with them on the 555. The price of the unit is $599.88, shipping is just under 40 bucks to Alaska. Not bad. I'm going to check the local price this afternoon and go from there.



    Jeremy
     
  14. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    "Chip,
    How's that 5803 treating you? My 5800 goes in for the upgrade in the next couple of weeks."
    Jeremy, man it's sweet... Pure Direct mode... whew, nice! On the surround sound side, i just finished watching Starship Troopers again. Lotsa headroom for those big passages..The 5803 is a great piece.
    Hey, that's a real good deal from J&R man, i'd jump all over that. $40.00 to Alaska?!
    [​IMG]
    I've bought a # of things from J&R....never a problem.
     
  15. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Jeremy,
    You could use the Musical Fidelity DAC, or any other outboard DAC, for that matter, with a DVD player. The DVD player plays CDs, and the DVD player has digital outputs, so it will work as a transport. [​IMG] I don't know how good the '2800 MkII is as a transport, however.
    Note that Rotel makes the RDV-1080 progressive-scan DVD-Audio player. It's been out for awhile and is based on JVC's first-generation XV-D721BK/D723GD. Rotel upgraded the innards quite a bit, particularly on the audio side. The '1080 is probably a bit long in the tooth on the video side, but it is a quality audio component. In my opinion, build quality could be better for the current price of around $800-1000.
    $600 is a good price these days for the 'C555ES (the retail price is $800). However, Oade Bros. might come in cheaper. I've bought from both J&R and Oade Bros. and have never had a problem.
    Chip said:
     
  16. Doug_B

    Doug_B Screenwriter

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  17. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Thanks Doug, and I agree wholeheartedly. The problem is, locally, they want $1200 for the triple 5...OUCH!

    I bought my big receiver locally for the reasons you mentioned. However, after finding out that Denon WILL service online purchases and the WILL upgrade online 5800s, I am willing to go the mail order route when it saves me several hundred bucks. If the price difference was
     
  18. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Jeremy, ask your local dealer how they can be asking $1200 for the 'C555ES when it now retails for $800. When the 'C555ES was released in April 2001, it retailed for $1700. In October 2001, Sony dropped the retail price to $1200. However, in March 2002, Sony dropped the retail price further to $800. Perhaps your local dealer has not gotten wind of the most recent price drop. Go in there and inform them! [​IMG] Note that Crutchfield, which charges full retail for Sony ES products, is selling the 'C555ES for $800.
     
  19. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Keith,

    I will give him the heads up! For sure! They haven't ever carried the model "in store," just as a special order item. This will eliminate the need for them to make the money back that they bought if for wholesale. I will call them in the morning before I seal my deal with J&R. I have not heard back from Oade yet.


    Jeremy
     
  20. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Jeremy, that reminds of a Tweeter store in New Jersey that I went into last fall. It was a couple of weeks after Sony had dropped the retail price of the 'C555ES to $1200. They still had the display model marked $1700. When I told a salesman that Sony had dropped the price to $1200, he checked the computer system, and it was still listed for $1700. As it was a Sunday, he had no way to make a call to look into the price drop. In the end, he told me that they didn't even stock the 'C555ES; it was a special-order item. Hopefully you will be able to reason with your dealer regarding the price drop to $800. Just print out the 'C555ES information from Crutchfield's web site. I wouldn't expect your dealer to argue with that.

    By the way, I am not surprised that you have not heard from Oade Bros. yet. They are not open on weekends.
     

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