Anyone else NOT like the G08? What ended up working for you?
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Gopher

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I ended up with a Meridian G08 in my quest for emotionally engaging one-box digital sources, and it just didn't work out for me. In the words of a recent audiogon seller "it somehow lost out on the soul of the music. It does have a full rich sound. I couldn't get involved with the PRAT and boogie factor. It just was not my cup of tea."

I'm using a Berensen CDP-1 source now which is much more engaging, but its missing out on a lot of the things the G08 could do (at the expense of soul/emotion) such as ultra transparancy, layering of soundstage, extreeme detail etc.

I generally am not a fan of tubes in source gear, but am considering picking up an Exemplar 2900 or Audio Aero (I don't care for cary digital) as a possible replacement. What have those of you who have been discontent with the Meridian gone with? I want to keep it under $2300 to leave budget for a speaker upgrade).
 
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Canman

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Gopher, the $2300 aside, I would recommend looking into a Wadia 302. It is a damn nice sounding cd player and a departure from the classic Wadia sound. When I had one for a couple of days I was impressed with the liquidity combined with detail. It has been awhile though...way before I had my G08. I also know a certain head-fier who likes his Esoteric DV-50 better than the G08.
 
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dhwilkin

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Out of curiosity, what do you not like about the Cary players, and does this include the 303/300?
 
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Gopher

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Canman,

I might give the Wadia a listen one of these days. Now that I'm back in NY (as opposed to AR) for summer vacation, when I get the time off from work it will probably be possible to audition one at a dealer.

dhwilkin,

I don't know if its limited to Cary digital, but I've never cared for the cary signature. The 300SEI didn't do it for me (and I wanted too like it/considered purchasing) and I'm not sure which CDPs they were, but I'd heard Todd R and Grinch's carys at meets and disliked what I heard.
 
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Jon L

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I believe you should look into good CDP/DAC's that does not upsample, or at least is defeatable. There are not that many players out there that does upsampling well. This can result in sound that is technically impressive but smooth over the critical low level information in the midrange.

People who put a lot of thought into upsampling do make great upsampling player/DAC's but rare. In general, look for upsampling players that do 88.2, 176.4 kHz, not fixed to 96 or 192 kHz, and make sure the upsampler is defeatable. The new APL players upsample to 88.2kHz, which is acceptable. McCormack UDP-1 is another great player that has all the PRAT you want and sounds great on redbook.
 
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I listened to the predecessor, 588, when thinking of getting a Classè CDP-10. I think I had a similar impression like you. The 588 was a very, very fine player: Dead accurate, solid sound, a perfectly straight frequency response in my ears, no colourations - simply a very fine CDP. Then I auditioned the CDP-10 and it had almost all of what the Meridian had, but it also had something in addition: A personality, which appealed to me. To me, that Classé sounded more organic, living and breathing. But still with a very accurate and balanced sound: Not a foot placed wrong. However, I would not describe it as engaging. Rather then: settled and composed but lso "poetic" (
)

My guess is, if partnered well, the Meridian is a very good source. Meridian self claim to be the for-runners in digital reproduction, and they do undoubtly have an impressive history. But - perhaps sound reproduction is not always about a measurable perfect reproduction.

EDIT: Besides a radically different design, I have not been able to find any significant difference between the 588 and the G08.
 
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philodox

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Definately give the Wadia a listen, it is amazing.
 
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morphsci

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I was just wondering what cans and amp you were using with your G08?

I listened to both the G08 and a Wadia 861 Standard and preferred the G08 for myself. This was not in my home system but I did listen to both with my own CD's and my SR-71 and Allesandro MS-2's, Ms-Pro's and Grado HP-1's.

I have heard the G08 described as laid back but my description is that it conveys the music with a sense of ease. I was particularly impressed with how it conveyed some of the very "busy" tracks from Brian Wilson's "Smile".
 
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morphsi,

I don't do the headphone thing anymore and listened in my dedicated 2 channel rig. It consisted of a Sonic Frontiers Line 1 preamp, VTL TT-25 mono blocks, Von Schweikert speakers and all Grover UR cabling.

The player did indeed convey music with a sense of easy and had no problem accurately resolving complex tracks--it was something deeper it lacked IMO. I wanted to love it (I mean, I did drop three grand on one) but it just didn't keep my attention at all and isolated me farther from my music rather then drawing me in. *shrug* I'm glad others like it, and if they're genuinely enjoying them not just keeping up with the FOTM then more power to them--I don't want to trash this player so much as 1) get an underrepresented (but seemingly common ) opinion out there and 2) get some advice on my own rig as to whereto go with it.

I'm thinking maybe the Berendsen will be enough for now to keep me satisfied even with a speaker change, but its just rough knowing how much more information there is on these little plastic discs that isn't getting resolved.
 
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Young Gopher, can't you hear the dark side calling you?
Feel the power of the dark side spin thru your senses!
Licorice is your destiny!
Submit to the revolution!
 
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morphsci

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Gopher
morphsi,

I don't do the headphone thing anymore and listened in my dedicated 2 channel rig. It consisted of a Sonic Frontiers Line 1 preamp, VTL TT-25 mono blocks, Von Schweikert speakers and all Grover UR cabling.

The player did indeed convey music with a sense of easy and had no problem accurately resolving complex tracks--it was something deeper it lacked IMO. I wanted to love it (I mean, I did drop three grand on one) but it just didn't keep my attention at all and isolated me farther from my music rather then drawing me in. *shrug* I'm glad others like it, and if they're genuinely enjoying them not just keeping up with the FOTM then more power to them--I don't want to trash this player so much as 1) get an underrepresented (but seemingly common ) opinion out there and 2) get some advice on my own rig as to whereto go with it.

I'm thinking maybe the Berendsen will be enough for now to keep me satisfied even with a speaker change, but its just rough knowing how much more information there is on these little plastic discs that isn't getting resolved.



I think your opinion on the player is valuable, at least to me. Knowing what the supporting cast is important for me to put the comments in context.

I in no way think that an opinion of someone who simply did not care for a player in their system is in any way trashing the player. I am secure in my decision to purchase this player.

It is certainly the best player I have had in my home system. However, I do not consider it the end-all-and-be-all of disc players. My entire 2-channel system is too new (and at this point still incomplete) to know if the G08 will stay. But since I bought it used, i am also not too worried about recouping my funds.

I will be interested in your Cd journey since it is a few months ahead of mine. Good luck.

Oh. I also realize that my previous post looked as if I was recommending you do not audition the Wadia 861. On the contrary, I suggest you do listen to it as it is definitely different sounding than the Meridian, not necessarily better or worse, just different.
 
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Gopher,

To many, the G08 is simply too smooth, it upsamples to 176 and that simply may be too much - with vinyl, the smoothness is natural and effortless while still retaining that punch, that bite and drive, it has balls to keep up with you rhythmically and really move your body and get to you emotionally.

The G08 tries to achieve that same smoothness but that midrange is almost to a point glossed over and some of those rhythmic aspects of music that really hit you, and purely from an "emotional" aspect to many it can appear dull. Meridians major weakness is smoothness and non-fatigueness at the sacrifice of punch, usually when we talk about something hitting us emotionally there is something special in the PRat department that is amking us feel that way, but then again not necessarily so.

Naim cdp's are nice and punchy, not as smooth as the meridians but they've got a nice attitude and will definitely grab your attention. To me, my G07 is plenty smooth, i wouldn't want it any smoother to be honest with you, however its nice because i have a hard day at work and i can just fall into the music, and i can even sleep to my G07 as well which is nice; however, our interests and listening preferences our different, good luck on your cd journey!
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Canman
It has been awhile though...way before I had my G08. I also know a certain head-fier who likes his Esoteric DV-50 better than the G08.


Yup-a-dup!!!

But then again, I also loved my Cary 306/200, that I sold for my G08. That player indeed, was potent and had personality!
 
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Quote:

Originally Posted by morphsci
Oh. I also realize that my previous post looked as if I was recommending you do not audition the Wadia 861. On the contrary, I suggest you do listen to it as it is definitely different sounding than the Meridian, not necessarily better or worse, just different.



Without knowing Gophers budget I would suggest if he felt that a Wadia might be for him then it is worth checking out the Wadia 861 GNSC versions. They mod the Wadia's.

Between the 861 basic and standard it's a matter of digital inputs. With the 861 se it's a more secure platter version.

But Gnsc can take it regardless of model and improve the overall sound quality. I enquired about an 861 se a few months back for a second system and asked about mods and converting it to 240v. This was possible and steve at gnsc was very helpful. But I decided against the Wadia as I felt there were other players I had not auditioned which were equally worthy of consideration.
 
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gopher ,

try out a high end naim cd player . it might be the signature sound you are looking for....
 
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