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Best portable CDP?

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 
I have a Panasonic SL-SW850 and a Sony D-EJ721, but I could always use slightly better sound quality at low volume settings. I used to own a Panasonic SL-CT580, but the lid broke within four months.

Can you please suggest a good portable CDP? I need it to be skip-proof and have a long battery life. And please don't suggest one that has ESP of less than 40 seconds (or G-Protection or equivalent) or one that eats expensive alkaline batteries like mad (i.e.: lasts less than 15 hours on two AAs).
post #2 of 36
I just did a close comparison of my Sony D-E446CK (2 year old model with ESP2) and my Panasonic SL-CT470.

Everyone here seems to think the 470 is the best sounding player, but the Sony sounded a lot better to me. It was hard to match the volumes cuz the Sony plays a lot louder (15mw/ch amp) and the Sony doesn't have numbers on the volume control, but I started out listening to them both at max volume with the Sony EX70LP's. The Sony sounded a lot better at max with deeper clearer bass and just clearer overall sound (not to mention a lot louder) then I tried turning to down to match the Panasonic's max volume and it still sounded better. Note:don't listen to the Sony at max volume for long or you'll go deaf. I only did it for a short amount of time.

Another thing to mention I got a splitter for the headphone jack so my sister and I can both listen to music on trips and plugging 2 sets of headphones in doesn't seem to decrease the volume level at all and you can still run them both at extremely loud levels. I don't know why this is, I thought it would cut the volume in half on both headphones. Seems like it would take a lot of power to run the inefficent EX70's plus a pair of Sony streetstyles at high volumes.

Also, the Sony's a lot more durable than the Panasonic. I haven't dropped the Panasonic at all but it doesn't seem like it's tough enough to handle it. The Sony's been dropped about 12 times and I only had to have it fixed for a factory defect that wasn't caused by dropping it.
post #3 of 36
basically go with Panasonic for sound quality, and Sony for most other things like antiskip, "features", build quality...

New Panasonics and SOnys have great battery life, and are really small, so these factors don't matter too much. However, the new models also don't have room for internal AA's... they use small "gumstick" batteries inside the player, and you need to attach an external battery case for AA's...
post #4 of 36
Thread Starter 
The one thing that I like about my Sony D-EJ721 is that it uses AA batteries inside the main unit - unlike the Panasonic SL-CT580, which uses flat gumstick NiCd rechargeable batteries inside the unit. Both CDPs also have an external battery case for AAs - but beware: The one for the Sony D-EJ721 simply dangles freely!
post #5 of 36
Comparing my Panasonic SL-CT470 and Sony D-E446CK, I'd say the good things about the Panasonic are: portability (smaller, better antiskip with antiskip turned on)

Sony: sound quality, max volume, durability, harder to skip than the Panasonic with the ESP turned off.

Eagle Driver, do you put your cd player in a pocket or just walk with it in your hand? With the Sony you can walk with it in your hand w/o ESP but you can't with the Panasonic. If you have to put it in a tight pocket where theres a lot of bouncing around the Sony might not hold up to the bumps even with ESP, while the Panasonic would.
post #6 of 36
Thread Starter 
Deuce, I usually put my CDP in a carrying bag - either over-the-shoulder or at the waist.
post #7 of 36
I like the Panasonics overall but came across a Philips EXP 103 that I think has better sound overall. The Panasonic has a darker tone while the Philips is a little clearer and more detailed.
post #8 of 36
Heh, i voted for Philips. I've only used Sony and Philips portables, and so far, the Philips had better control of dynamics, and looked "prettier." The Sonys were much "cooler" but sounded "junkier".

Just my experience......

EDIT: If big kids can't say the "c" word, i guess a dude like me shouldn't either.....TEMPORARY LAPSE - FORGIVE ME, HEAD-FIERS!
post #9 of 36
I love my Panasonic SW-SL870 for build quality (like a tank), sound quality (very good), battery usage (2 AA seem to last forever), skip protection (even with it off, while walking it still doesn't skip), reads every disc perfectly, and price (paid $84 including shipping at Overstock.com). All of this based on Neruda's recommendation (thanks again, Neruda).
BTW, I also have the RS 3904 (paid $40)..........other than sound quality, which is also very good, there's absolutely no comparison with the Panasonic.......not even in the same league.
post #10 of 36
Thread Starter 

Change of words in the poll

Thanks, Ian, for changing the word "c***" to the word "junk".

I should be using less of those words than I have been (i.e. I should have said "horrible" or "bad" instead of "crappy"). hehehe... Though Tyll often uses that word, it doesn't mean that I should use it as well. My bad.
post #11 of 36
Eagle_Driver, my pleasure

I'm a fan of the Radio Shack 3904 - if you get it at the sale price of $35, there really is no need for anything better, if sound is your main concern. But I don't use portable CDP's much (and when I do, its only for flying...with a TA of course), so I don't have any need for a more expensive unit.
post #12 of 36

Battery life issues

Has anyone tried NiMH batteries with a CDP? They are usually much higher capacity than NiCd, and they don't have the "memory effect."
post #13 of 36
Originally posted by thomas
[B]basically go with Panasonic for sound quality, and Sony for most other things like antiskip, "features", build quality...
Panasonic for sound quality and Sony for other things? I'd say Panasonic for reading discs without skips (man, these Panasonics can read hacked up discs and not skip at all, where my Sonys go nuts).

But as for sound quality, I'd give it to my Sony.
post #14 of 36
Eric, I have a Nimh battery pack for my Sony discman. The battery pack is about 3 years old and still holds a good charge. My friend used it in his discman until it got stolen so I took his battery. It's been used constantly for 3 years. The battery life is way better than nicads and doesn't have the memory effect. Plus it looks cool, it's black and orange. :-)

Rutland or eagle or whatever now, lol, my Sony discman won't skip in a carrying bag with the ESP off. The Panasonic sometimes will with the ESP off, it doesn't like side to side motions.
btw, how did your lid break off? how was it being used to make it break like that?
What don't you like about the Sony D-EJ721 that makes you want to replace it.
post #15 of 36

Re: Battery life issues

Originally posted by eric343
Has anyone tried NiMH batteries with a CDP? They are usually much higher capacity than NiCd, and they don't have the "memory effect."
Indeed -- that's all I use in my portable amp and CD player. Head over to http://www.thomas-distributing.com/ to check out some really great NiMH selections. Between the guys at the office and myself, we've probably close to 100 NiMH batteries from them with a load of chargers (I prefer Maha brand for both).
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