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post #31 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by CamelBackCinema
So there is no place online where I can buy this player with free shipping? I'd rather avoid tax but I think there is one near my house.
I am in the UK so maybe somebody else here knows a good online dealer in the USA. This player is a pretty popular recommedation on this forum and a friend of mine has one. It really is a cracking good machine and I'm sure you'll be very happy with it. Sorry I can't be more help.
post #32 of 66
A lot of high end audio companies will only allow online stores to sell (or at least advertise) their players at MSRP or a second price they call MAP (Minimum Advertised Price.) I'm not sure what NAD's policies are with this. If you can call a NAD dealer and talk to them you may or may not get a good price this way - maybe some NAD owners can chime in on this. I've found this to be certainly true on other high end brands. The difference in price is sometimes quite large, eclipsing the tax.
post #33 of 66

Just Use Ebay

If you know the seller is reliable & no how to bid right or use the buy it now feature, just use Ebay. Do not buy though from a seller with little feedback or someone who describes the item as sold "as is" & or doesn't have a photo of it. I've bought almost all of my stuff used in very good or better condition on Ebay at great prices & haven't had any problems whatsoever. I wouldn't buy a used DVD player or recorder though as they tend to have limited lives from use.
post #34 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by memepool
Get something like a NAD 521BEE. This is a no-frills budget player with reasonable build quality and outstanding Sonics for the money. It will sound way better than most DVD or Universal players without spending silly money.
I think we have determined that this is actually open to debate, I own a
NADC542 and a DVD player and have difficulty determining a big difference between the two. One would expect the NAD to destroy a low end DVD player, but I did not find this to be the case as such, though the NAD is a mite quieter mechanically. I also find the NAD 542 to be rather physically lightweight, certainly compared to my old Rotels.
post #35 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by hciman77
I think we have determined that this is actually open to debate, I own a
NADC542 and a DVD player and have difficulty determining a big difference between the two. One would expect the NAD to destroy a low end DVD player, but I did not find this to be the case as such, though the NAD is a mite quieter mechanically. I also find the NAD 542 to be rather physically lightweight, certainly compared to my old Rotels.
That's the only reason I'd spend a little more money on something other than a Toshiba. Even though I can barely tell my flagship Rotel and Toshiba apart, I still use the Rotel because the Toshiba interface sucks.
post #36 of 66

HCIMAN Test for You

I know from personal experience one can not assume someone else will hear the same things but as an experiment burn 2 CDRS of a melodic rock recording you like. Make sure they're burned at the same volume, settings, etc. Then if you have 2 identical optic cables attach them to your DVD & CD player. Make sure
your receivers input settings are identical. Now play say 45 seconds of a song on the DVD player & then 45 seconds on your CD player. See if you don't notice a difference in tone, brightness, presense, warmth, etc, even if you don't hear any different instrumentation. If you still don't, so be it. I really think you'll notice differences if you consider that.
post #37 of 66

NAD retailer

Won't comment on the CD, DVD issue except to say that my Sony $120 DVD player did not seem to play as well as either of my CD players. Concerning the CD players, I am not sure if there really is much difference between them. I have generally found that the only major difference in components is in the transducer (i.e., headphone or speaker), and that the electronic circuitry makes subtle differences at best. Doesn't stop me from wasting too much money and time on this website.

Regarding the NAD retailer, I bought a Cambridge Audio D500SE CD player from http://www.spearitsound.com/specials.htm a year ago. They seem to get good deals on refurbished and overstocks with Cambridge, NAD and others. Spoke with one of the owners, and he actually suggested I buy the cheaper Cambridge (new and not refurbished for about $279 back then) instead of the NAD, since he had been receiving several returned NAD units lately. He also was a Grado SR325i fan himself.
post #38 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hershon2000
I know from personal experience one can not assume someone else will hear the same things but as an experiment burn 2 CDRS of a melodic rock recording you like. Make sure they're burned at the same volume, settings, etc. Then if you have 2 identical optic cables attach them to your DVD & CD player. Make sure
your receivers input settings are identical. Now play say 45 seconds of a song on the DVD player & then 45 seconds on your CD player. See if you don't notice a difference in tone, brightness, presense, warmth, etc, even if you don't hear any different instrumentation. If you still don't, so be it. I really think you'll notice differences if you consider that.

I have done something like this several times, however I do not have a separate DAC (I use a dedicated headphone amp M^3 without DAC) so I must use the analog outputs, all my RCA audio cables are the same brand and model and I have a passive switch box so I dont have to swap cables but can swap sources very quickly.

It is still not a perfect test as it is hard to do it blind and it assumes that the voltage of the RCA outs is the same - this can vary though most are approx 2V, it is known that a spl difference of 1db makes a big difference perceptually, but I have tried this many times with many different A/B combinations.

However in the spirit of adventure I will do this again with the Philips and the NAD and see what happens, dont get me wrong I really wish that I could honestly say that the NAD was superior as it cost me a load more cash...
post #39 of 66
The best way to A/B sources is really the way we did it in the meet, just one headphone amp and headphones, with a switchbox between the players and the amp, and playing exactly the same CD on both players simultaneously. Ideally using same interconnects (and even swapping them anyway once in a while during the auditions, something we didn't do at the meet for lack of time).

Some people suggest instead to simply do a long audition of one player, then swap to the other players after a few days, or even weeks, and start to see slowly what's missing, or what's better. Haven't done that myself, but I think the instantaneous A/B switch method is much more trustworthy and reliable. For one thing, besides the instantaneous comparison, it can also be done for days and weeks, and with plenty of samples of music, as long as you have two copies of the CDs you want to sample.
post #40 of 66

As I Said, I noticed an Immediate Difference

When I played my Cds in my Harmon Kardon 31 DVD player, while there was nothing that sounded technically wrong with them, I just had a sense that they should sound differently but couldn't put a finger on it. When I got my Pioneer PD-59, the overall sound quality was immediately different. The sound was warmer, had more presense, was smoother, sounded more alive, had a sweeter sound & the soundstage was better distributed. It's not like I didn't hear something that I didn't hear on the DVD but the CD player felt like I was seeing 2020 with glasses on when I had 80-40 eyesight, if that makes any sense. I was now aware that my DVD player produced a bright slightly muddied sound.
post #41 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hershon2000
I know from personal experience one can not assume someone else will hear the same things but as an experiment burn 2 CDRS of a melodic rock recording you like. Make sure they're burned at the same volume, settings, etc. Then if you have 2 identical optic cables attach them to your DVD & CD player. Make sure
your receivers input settings are identical. Now play say 45 seconds of a song on the DVD player & then 45 seconds on your CD player. See if you don't notice a difference in tone, brightness, presense, warmth, etc, even if you don't hear any different instrumentation. If you still don't, so be it. I really think you'll notice differences if you consider that.
Wouldn't this defeat the the purpose by bypassing the internal DACs? I KNOW the Rotel chassis is superior.
post #42 of 66
Speaking for myself, and I seem to be in the minority when I post this, I do notice differences in sound quality when I use different toslink cables & when I listen to different DVD & CD players when connected by toslink. In fact on some players I prefer toslink to analog players for sound. Alot of people claim that a $10,000 DVD or CD player will sound identical to a $50 player when connected by digital cable but in my opinion that is total BS.
post #43 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by hciman77
I think we have determined that this is actually open to debate, I own a
NADC542 and a DVD player and have difficulty determining a big difference between the two. One would expect the NAD to destroy a low end DVD player, but I did not find this to be the case as such, though the NAD is a mite quieter mechanically. I also find the NAD 542 to be rather physically lightweight, certainly compared to my old Rotels.
Ok but from what I understood the original poster was asking what is a good cd player for 300USD and is it worth spending say 1000USD? Ie will I hear enough difference straight off to warrant the extra 700USD and I think the answer would have to be 'no'.
The NAD is a stunning player for the money and does a fine job of playing CD's with minimum of fuss. It's only when you have lived with a system like this for a while that you will start to notice it's shortcommings.

As far as budget DVD players go, yes I would agree that they offer a total bargain in that they do everything pretty well and if you are strapped for cash or space then it's probably a good choice. I have a Pioneer DV-575A which would be the equal or superior of the NAD and cost around the same or a few pounds less but maybe this is the exception.
But if you just want a straightforward machine for listening to music then it's an ergonomic distaster to use and has a noisy transport just like most DVD players.

As far as vintage machines go, again I am in total agreement with you as to their sonic merits, I have quite a collection of them, but I wouldn't recommend it to someone who just wants a fuss free cd player.
Take for instance my Studer A727 which is an awsome chunk of Swiss engineering and sounds sublime. I went through 3 of them before I got one which was in perfect order. I scoured the world chasing down original Philips CDM mechs in Canada ( I am in England ) after the original one gave up. That'll be 500USD please!. Then I spent almost a year chasing insurance companies after having the fixed machine and it's replacement dropped by careless couriers. Life is too short for these kind of shenanigans if you just want to play your CD's.
post #44 of 66
I'm not sure what the intent of the original poster was, but I would like to know at what point, if any, a CD player sounds better than a hard drive based set up to a $1000 DAC (say Benchmark).

For example, upload in Apple Lossless or AIFF with error correction to hard drive, over airport express with toslink, benchmark. At which price (or which CDPs) does the dedicated red book player provide better sound (assuming the rest of your system is good enough to hear it.
post #45 of 66
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by memepool
Ok but from what I understood the original poster was asking what is a good cd player for 300USD and is it worth spending say 1000USD? Ie will I hear enough difference straight off to warrant the extra 700USD and I think the answer would have to be 'no'.
The NAD is a stunning player for the money and does a fine job of playing CD's with minimum of fuss. It's only when you have lived with a system like this for a while that you will start to notice it's shortcommings.

As far as budget DVD players go, yes I would agree that they offer a total bargain in that they do everything pretty well and if you are strapped for cash or space then it's probably a good choice. I have a Pioneer DV-575A which would be the equal or superior of the NAD and cost around the same or a few pounds less but maybe this is the exception.
But if you just want a straightforward machine for listening to music then it's an ergonomic distaster to use and has a noisy transport just like most DVD players.

As far as vintage machines go, again I am in total agreement with you as to their sonic merits, I have quite a collection of them, but I wouldn't recommend it to someone who just wants a fuss free cd player.
Take for instance my Studer A727 which is an awsome chunk of Swiss engineering and sounds sublime. I went through 3 of them before I got one which was in perfect order. I scoured the world chasing down original Philips CDM mechs in Canada ( I am in England ) after the original one gave up. That'll be 500USD please!. Then I spent almost a year chasing insurance companies after having the fixed machine and it's replacement dropped by careless couriers. Life is too short for these kind of shenanigans if you just want to play your CD's.

Just the answer I was looking for. Well I want to start out small so is it correct for me to assume that any CD player that will be used with analog out will pretty much sound the same from 300 to 1000 dollars?
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