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Please recommend portable CD Player

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hi all,

I'm looking for a new portable since my old one has finally died.

My major priorities are:

-Sound Quality. It has to sound pretty good. I'll be using mostly the Sony MDR-CD3000 (60 ohm) and the Sennheiser HD590 (130 ohms) headphones with it, and will listen mostly to classical and rock.
-Total compatibility with CDR media, or even better, with CDRW media also.
-Some Anti-Skip mechanism. I don't jog or do anything too active with it, in fact, I usually have the portable in a fixed position and use it mostly indoors in rooms where my main equipment isn't available. If it doesn't skip while you're in a car or in a bus, it's probably good enough for me.
-It can't be something too exotic or old, or it will probably be impossible to find around here. We do have tons of Panasonics and Sonys tho.

Not important:

-Battery life. I plan to use 1600 NiMh rechargeable AAs, so even the most energy greedy will take some time to empty them.
-Quality of included headphones.
-Looks or features that don't really influence sound quality.
-Price. I don't mind paying more for *sound quality* but I dont want to pay for stuff I won't need (Better anti-skip, car kits, fancy firmware features, etc)

Any suggestions?

Thanks everybody.
post #2 of 14
what price range do you have? Do yu want an amp to go with it? I'll bet the senns need some juice...
post #3 of 14
I have absolutely no idea about the Lennox portable that is mentioned a few threads down

It seems to fit MOST of your needs, but some of em - CDR+/W playback, and it sure as heck aint available in lisbon. You CAN order it on-line, and you'll get a 20 mw. player for under USD 70 (how much can shipping be?)....the next best thing (Panasonic...) would be much more.

And you can get it here:

post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
Neruda: The Senns had acceptable performance with my previous JVC player. I don't know the output specs, but it's a pretty old player with no anti-shock, it was cutting-edge (and pricey) stuff 6 or 7 years ago.

I'm thinking about spending no more than $180 for the player, and was not planning to get a headphone amp, unless the players performance turns out to be poor because of the amplification. (I'm trusting the 60 ohms of the MDR-CD3000 will help).

coolvij: The Lennox looks interesting and cheap, but I really doubt I can get one around here. (well one never knows).

Panasonics are indeed very easy to find. Which models are better?
I have noticed that the cheap SL-SX270 has some acceptable reviews, but has anyone here used it with good headphones?

Perhaps go for a cheap player and get a headphone amp, or will it be smarter to invest in a more solid player and get an amp only if sound isn't realy enjoyable?

Also, what's the deal with those systems to "normalize" (perhaps the right term is compress) the volume? Using portables I think those would be useful with music that goes from a whisper to a loud deafening crash (like some classical). It would butcher the music, but it might be useful sometimes. Any portables offer those features well?
post #5 of 14
I think what you're talking about is AVLS. My Sony D-E446 has it. I don't really use it but it was sometimes worth putting on if I was doing homework and didn't want volume spikes to distract me. Also it makes it so I can set the volume lower without one side cutting out (from the dirty volume control). The very bottom of the volume control screws up a bit.
post #6 of 14
I find that my Panasonic SL-CT480 (the "newer" version of the highly acclaimed 470) is great for my purposes. Cost, sound, anti-skip, even aesthetics. I paid $69.00 for it at Circuit City. I use it with my Cmoy amp and some Senn MX500s. It sounds great with my Grados as well.

My one gripe (and it's a big one), it doesn't have a line-out jack!!!
post #7 of 14
Hi, JMT, have you ever compared CT 480 with CT 470? which one has better sound? 'cause they are priced the same.

Anyone knows which models of Panasonic/Sony portable CDPs have line-out?

post #8 of 14
The SL-CT480 is actually a lower model than the 470. The SL-CT580 is the replacement for the 470, SL-CT780 is the replacement for the 570, and the 480 is the replacement for something else. (Not sure what the model was).
If you can get the 470 instead of the 480 go for it. The 470 is overall quite a bit better I think if you can still find it.
post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
What about the 270? Is it good?
post #10 of 14
beowulf, 270 is also discontinued, with no true replacement. At my local Best Buy (or any other Best Buy store in the U.S.), the SX280 is the replacement for the S262 - but the "replacement" for the SX270, the SX285, is basically an SX280 with a wired remote control and a jogger belt!
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
What about the Sony, guys?

And their AVLS system, is it any good?
post #12 of 14
Most of the current Sony portable CDPs are overpriced for the sound that you get - what with only 5mW amps rather than 8 ~ 10 mW ones.
post #13 of 14
Beowulf, the older Sonys like mine had an AVLS that keeps spikes in the volume down. I don't use it, if you turn the volume up it will sound like an old tape where the volume fluctuates. The new Sony's AVLS just keeps the volume level from going above 3. There is nothing technical about that.
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
What about the following Panasonic?
I found these 3 at a store nearby.


From the specs, it seems the 228 is the most basic, the 230 adds a AC Adapter, and the 240 has the AC and higher battery time (probably ships with a proprietary rechargeable battery).

Anyone has any of these and can comment on the audio quality?
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