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Marantz CD5004 Questions (Updated with Review)

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 

Recently I have been thinking of purchasing a good cd player that has a headphone out. I'm not looking to spend a lot and at the $300-$400 price range, I have set my eyes on the Marantz CD5004 CD player. I have heard good things about it so far from here Stereophile and other review sites. Currently I have a Fiio E10, anybody know how the sound quality of the E10 compares to CD5004 and where it would compare to Schiit Bifrost. Also how is the built in headphone amp for CD5004. On their website all it says is that it has a headphone buffer jack, but didn't find any measurements on the output. I have KRK KNS 8400, Denon AH-D2000 and Hifiman HE-500. I would like to know how the first two phones would work with it. I'm pretty sure that the HE-500 will not be getting powered sufficiently as it needs 1 Watt. However, with the E10 on high gain, the HE-500 still manages to sound good - minus the dynamics. So who knows...but I would really like to know what type of headphones have worked or not worked with CD5004. 

 

In the near future I will be getting a Schiit Asgard for the HE-500, and thinking about perhaps hooking that to the CD5004. Any thoughts on this?

 

 

The reason I'm looking for a cd player is that I don't always to have to use my laptop or computer to listen to music. It always ends up distracting me and things just don't get done:) 

 

Edited by Zoom25 - 9/21/12 at 10:47pm
post #2 of 27
Thread Starter 

Well I just bought a Marantz CD5004. I got a good deal on it so I pulled the trigger. The CD player looks like it's built to last and weighs a bit. After a 3 hour session, the unit remained relatively cool. I checked out a lot of CD players and at this price point this is one of the most beautiful looking unit. It comes with two RCA cables so you can connect it your receivers/speakers and headphone amplifier

 

Source Material

 

All the CD's I was using were burnt though Toast Titanium at around speed 16X and were in FLAC. All CD's used were in great condition and I also used some CD's that I bought but from HMV but it didn't make a difference between the quality. I have two Late Night Alumni CDs (original + burned) and there was no audible difference between them.

 

Sound

This definitely has an analogue touch to it. Loving the warm full sound. Compared to the Fiio E10, the CD5004 has a better soundstage with better imaging. The first thing I noticed when going from E10 to CD5004 was the sense of air. CD5004 gives a more airy presentation and brings out the ambience better than the E10. 

 

Headphone Pairing

There is a 1/4" jack at the front of the unit. Denon AH-D2000 plugged straight out sounded very well. I usually listen to the D2000 on low gain with E10. On high gain, the D2000 is more dynamic for sure and hits harder but gets fatiguing for long listening sessions. The CD5004 is somewhere in the middle in terms of dynamics between low gain and high gain of E10. The vocals and mid-range have improved with the CD5004. With respect to bass, I preferred the E10 for D2000 but overall the experience of CD5004 is for sure better than E10 regardless of gain settings. I got the same results with KRK KNS 8400. I don't have the HE-500 at the moment to try it but the D2000 needs the CD5004 to be turned halfway to sound right. If I take that into consideration, the CD5004 will be worse then E10.

 

I'll update in a few weeks after more testing with different equipment, headphones and speakers.

 

post #3 of 27
Great read Zoom... Cheers!!!

I was in the same position about four years ago and I pulled the trigger on the CD5001. Great player, however the digital (pc, laptop, ipod etc.) revolution has taketh me away. The 5001 has been put away for a while now, but after reading this thread, I think I might crank her up indeed.
All my music has been ripped, converted to a master cue sheet (wav) then converted to flac and alac for various applications. Still have a bunch of Taiyo Yuden blank discs that I need to put to good use.

Thanks


Sent From My iPad From Ultrasone Planet Using Tapatalk HD
post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 

Taiyo Yuden - me too :) Those JVC disks are really good and built to last, especially if you get into their archival series. They apparently offer something insane like 100 years so one time burn and good care will last you a lifetime. 

 

When I was little I used to have one of those philips portable player and I remember the experience used to be much more satisfying then today with all the digital stuff, sitting in front of a computer or an ipod. I pulled that CD player out and it sounded terrible compared to all the computer related stuff i had but it was still more fun. In my own experience and from observing others, most people (including me) when trying to listen to music through pc/laptop or even an Ipod, don't just simply listen to the music. All these digital products recently are being built with so many multitasking  options that it's just all over the place. Sure it's super convenient but it's also distracting. I used to love the time when it was just you and the music and nothing else. I find it nearly impossible to sit in front of the computer for an hour listening to music without going to Facebook, Reddit or NBA etc. I'll admit it :) I think I, along with many others share this tendency - if the option is there, humans just can't help but explore it.

 

Over the past few years, I have accumulated around 1 GB of pure FLAC and transferred it into an external hard-drive. So every time I plug it in to listen to music, I see folders upon folders which makes it so hard to pick the album. This is where seeing the physical CD helps. Once you plug it in, that's it, you're stuck with it (or alteast you try telling yourself). So you're less impulsive and spend more time actually listening to the whole CD. With computer files, you can change playlist CDs in a matter of seconds and cue a bunch of them. I have noticed many of my friends can barely finish one song before having to jump into the next. So much restlessness to jump from one thing to next. With CD's it is much more relaxed. 

 

So right now I'm in the transition to burn those lossless files onto CD's. A typical CD has 700 Mb and not all cd's use up all the space and taking into account the compression factor of FLAC files (average 5 compression), you're looking at 500 Mb for a whole CD. So 1 GB of FLAC is worth about 2000 CD's give or take. I admit that is a lot of CD's to burn, and so this project is going to take me a few months going little by little, but it's so worth it. I have a couple of CD holder cases - each one can hold up like 300+ so stashing CD's isn't a problem.

 

Also, the cost of 2000 CDs is much more than 1 GB of external hard drive but I think it's completely worthwhile of the time and money. A lot of us here spend money on dac's, headphone, speaker, amplifier, cables etc. you name it, but I frankly think all of that is going to waste until are listening with the right attitude to enjoy and appreciate music, which I just haven't been able to do so. Now one may think that i'm old school and a not a big fan of digital - which is actually the quite opposite . Whether for hobby, work or events I use applications ranging from Final Cut Pro to Logic Pro, Ableton Live, Pro Tools etc. The point is I am well versed with the digital world and actually quite like it for the purpose they are supposed to serve. However for music, I just don't think it's the right thing despite all the convenience (unless you are travelling a lot or at work, then External Hard Drives are the key).

 

^^^ I just realized how off topic I got from CD5004. In my defence I am writing this at 3 AM. My point is that those who haven't experienced listening to music solely without the distractions on a regular basis should definitely give it a try and I think this CD5004 is a great start. A soild built in DAC with options to later use it as a transport, although you'll be more than happy with CD5004; a good headphone built-in amplifier which will work nicely with a lot of headphones. Also the CD-text display on this unit is designed quite intuitively so it works naturally for all the digital lovers. For $349 or less, I think the value of this CD player is completely justified and everyone should try a CD player at some point, especially the younger generation who may have been only exposed to the era of iPods, PC, laptop etc. Who know they might find the experience to be more satisfying, if not, you can always sell it - head-fi sale/trade forums are great for this.

 

aaaannnddddd I think I'll call it a night and stop this rant(?) 

post #5 of 27

I hear ya Zoom.  Nowadays, you have the convenience of basically having music everywhere.  Back in the day, you looked for cars (when purchasing) that had cd players.  Now they all come equipped with an aux input for ipods, phones etc.  You can fill a 160gb iPod Classic with lossless music and have music for a very very long time in your car without repeating anything for a while.

 

I still like to go old school every now and then....Cheers...beerchug.gif

 

 

700

post #6 of 27

Nice.  Glad to know that a few of us still like CD players.  :)

 

I was in the same boat a few months back, and checked out players from Marantz, NAD, and Cambridge Audio.  I wound up going with an Onkyo C-7030 because I was feeling a little cheap ($200) at the time.

post #7 of 27
Thread Starter 

Yea CD players all the way :) I was lucky enough to get a good deal on a used player which cost me around $250 that was straight out of a Marantz showroom so it came with a full warranty as well. Although now knowing the performance of the CD5004, I would've gladly paid the retail $349 for it. I was checking the exact same companies as well, especially Onkyo at Amazon, they have some really good deals on Onkyo in general. Whereas Marantz usually sells for retail. How do you find the C-7030? 

 

 

Nice clean setup there HeatFan, good looking stand as well. I'm going to try to make my own stand but if I don't get around to it soon I might just order one of those. The new aluminum and chrome models look gorgeous.

post #8 of 27

I saw the Onkyo player on Amazon.  It had good reviews (with lots of shots of the internals) and looked to be built quite well for the price, so I went for it.  Very happy with it so far.

post #9 of 27

Thanks!!!

 

Well Zoom, I took her out and made some room for her in the home office.  The CD5001 is getting some love indeed with some Beyers..

 

Cheers!!!

 

700

post #10 of 27

Does anyone know if the side panel things on the CD5004 and other new Marantz designs are plastic? I can tell the middle part is the standard brushed aluminum but those sides look different. And is the construction similar on all Marantz models? It would be weird if the CD5004 is really close in appearance to the new SA15S2 limited. 

post #11 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ishmael View Post

Does anyone know if the side panel things on the CD5004 and other new Marantz designs are plastic? I can tell the middle part is the standard brushed aluminum but those sides look different. And is the construction similar on all Marantz models? It would be weird if the CD5004 is really close in appearance to the new SA15S2 limited. 

 

I felt the CD5004 on all the sides and it was hard to tell if it was pure aluminum, alloy or plastic. Although after considering the temperature of the parts, it's definitely aluminum/alloy and not plastic. The outer body looks lightweight but is really tough. Besides the reference material, the new amplifiers and receivers ending in X004 and not the older X0003/X002/X001 look like they have the same top and side. The only difference is that on some of the front model panels, it's brushed in some parts, kinda like the Fiio E10. All the Marantz products are built quite well and look damn good, at least in my eyes. The CD5004 is brushed in the middle of the front panel where all the buttons are. The two rectangles on the side of that are just normal. Even though the design looks like it is brushed, when you feel it, you actually can't tell from the texture, it's really smooth.

 

I'll take pictures and update over the weekend.

post #12 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoom25 View Post

 

I felt the CD5004 on all the sides and it was hard to tell if it was pure aluminum, alloy or plastic. Although after considering the temperature of the parts, it's definitely aluminum/alloy and not plastic. The outer body looks lightweight but is really tough. Besides the reference material, the new amplifiers and receivers ending in X004 and not the older X0003/X002/X001 look like they have the same top and side. The only difference is that on some of the front model panels, it's brushed in some parts, kinda like the Fiio E10. All the Marantz products are built quite well and look damn good, at least in my eyes. The CD5004 is brushed in the middle of the front panel where all the buttons are. The two rectangles on the side of that are just normal. Even though the design looks like it is brushed, when you feel it, you actually can't tell from the texture, it's really smooth.

 

I'll take pictures and update over the weekend.

 

Thanks. I guess that's what I was asking about was the faceplate. Sorry for being unclear. I just thought it would be odd if the front panel was brushed aluminum in the middle and then plastic on the side "wing" looking parts. 

post #13 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ishmael View Post

 

Thanks. I guess that's what I was asking about was the faceplate. Sorry for being unclear. I just thought it would be odd if the front panel was brushed aluminum in the middle and then plastic on the side "wing" looking parts. 

 

Late update, been busy with university. I got a JDS Labs O2 in the meantime.

 

@Ishmael - The brushed aluminum mid plate isn't really noticeable until it's under direct light on some angles. The brushed aluminum texture wise is very smooth and looks very nice.

 

Right now at uni, I use the CD5004 into a JDS Labs O2 to Denon AH-D2000 and HE-500. Sounds really, really nice. The ambience comes out quite nicely on both HE-500 and D2000. The soundstage is also great in width and imaging. The depth is also good, but could be better (although very pleasant to listen to still) - not sure if that's the amp or DAC.

 

With the HE-500, I'm very happy with the combo. The bass turned out much better then expected, full extension all the way through. It sounds quite transparent for electronica, trance. 

 

I read somewhere that the CD5004 goes for a vintage warm sound. The O2 is supposed to be dead flat. Overall this combo is really transparent, quick transients, ambience is great for this price. The bass is detailed, fast - impact isn't through the roof but I am actually liking it a lot - I can listen to the HE-500 for a lot longer now - no boominess. Vocals - you can hear the whole envelope with this system, any little dip in pitch is easily noticeable. If you're primarily a tubes kind of person, this perhaps might not work. Although for most genres and song - I find the vocals to be perfect, also makes it really good for when I'm studying, so they aren't all up in my face. It still sounds very musical, but they are not really up in your face. Over time, I have actually started to prefer this.

 

Also, drums and percussion elements are really really good on this system. Perfectly happy with the bass on HE-500. I haven't used my D2000 for a while since I got this combo, the D2000 doesn't sound as well when I switch from my HE-500. Can't tell if it's just how the D2000 fits into the system or if the HE-500 is just working really well. 

 

Also, practicality wise and everyday to day use, the CD5004 would be the #1 product I have right now. Totally satisfied with it in every category. It's the one product I have that has never given me any problem whatsoever.

 

List of things I like with the CD5004

 

- Doesn't get hot even after 10-15 hours of use - only slightly warm (10/10)

- No noise when playing music - it's dead silent to me

- Even when loading the disc tray, it makes very little noise, perfect for late night if you have someone else in the same room

 

Response time and Intuitiveness

- Simply superb (10/10) - This unit turns on and off ridiculously quickly with no fuss or any noise.

- Intuitive - You can tell this was a well designed product - made for humans by humans

- For example, you can turn on the CD player by either pressing the ON/Standby button or by pressing the Eject button. If you press the eject button, the unit turns on and the disc tray comes out - quite quickly

- The buttons on the front plate are plastic, but they are solid and have a good feel to it IMO.

- The placement of buttons on the front are also quite intuitive and easy to adjust to after a week of use

- I can manage to use it in the dark and get the right button every time. The layout just works.

- I know these are little things but it's still really nice to have when using it everyday.

 

Remote

- The remote is built solidly (I dropped it couple of times) - nothing happened to it, no batteries flying out or any chips/scratches

- The material for the buttons is rubber but somewhat a bit rigid - which is actually a good thing since you know when somewhat gets pressed or remains pressed on

- The layout of the remote is also excellent - It comes with quite a bit of features, but all the main features you use everyday are all together in one area in the middle - quite intuitive to use even in the dark with no light source. 

- Actually feels like you're controlling the music and not the equipment - Marantz really did a great job with this unit

- I haven't had any problems with distance on this unit for signalling. It's not like a PS3 in terms of angle, but still manage a good field of angle range for reception.

 

Aesthetics 

- Out of any equipment I have, this is the most humble looking of them all

- Looks good to my eyes, simple with the right curves at the front, quite elegant

- No fancy blue lights like with the Marantz receiver - It just plays music and doesn't draw attention, but each time when you happen to look at it, it still looks good as ever

- The front screen with the text is also designed nicely and displays the text very nicely - right brightness, good size and font - with some previous Sony - this was a pain

 

Audio EX OFF, EX1 & EX2

- There are three modes of listening in the CD5004

- As you go from the EX OFF to EX1 and to EX2 - the sound is supposed to get better - I haven't really tried it much, I keep mines at EX2

- These modes switch off the digital displays and kill noise. So the higher the mode, the more display and internal function turns off

- With EX2, when you press play, the front panel goes blank after a second or two. Only a faint red light stays on, it's not really noticeable until you actually look for it. I use this mode because I find it annoying to have text or any moving parts to distract me. There are three stages and as you move up, it gets customized nicely to what you want.

 

Headphone Jack Output

 

The headphone output isn't too powerful but it's clean - the D2000 sound good through it. The resolution is great from it but dynamics wise, its sometimes lacking. With the HE-500, when for a while I didn't have an amp - the headphone out was fine though, lacked dynamics but sounded great - just mentioning this if you happen to get stuck in a situation like me.

 

If you get an efficient headphone like the Denon's, and can't get an amp for a while - the headphone out will also work and manage to sound quite good.  

 

I have been wanting to take some pictures, but don't have a decent camera with me at the moment, so will do that soon. Maybe even a video, if I can get some time.

 

 
post #14 of 27

Hi all, 

 

sorry to drag up an old thread, but can anyone here offer insight to how the CD5004 would buddy up with some senn HD650's running through a Graham Slee novo? 

 

Thanks 

Pete 

post #15 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pjv1990 View Post
 

Hi all, 

 

sorry to drag up an old thread, but can anyone here offer insight to how the CD5004 would buddy up with some senn HD650's running through a Graham Slee novo? 

 

Thanks 

Pete 

 

Haven't heard the Graham Slee and don't own the HD650 so I can't comment on those two. It's been around two years since I've had the CD5004 and have used it with D2000, HE-500, LCD-2 and LCD-3 in the meantime. Still a great DAC and pushes for transparency. It sounds more on the analog sound rather than cold digital sounding. It's quite neutral, nothing exaggerated. Good soundstage for sure. It should work with HD650s and give them good body provided that the amp delivers. 

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