at a crossroads: upgrade the analog rig or go sacd?
Jun 3, 2002 at 7:05 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 14


High Fidelity Gentility• redrum....I mean redshifter• Pee-pee. Hoo-hoo.• I ♥ Garfield
Aug 12, 2001
i have a decent anaolg rig: one of the "big" denon tt from the 80's, stanton eee cart, akai preamp to a good sony deck. not great, but it sounds pretty good--good enough for making analog tapes for my dd9 walkman. now that i have to buy a new stylus i've been contemplating a new tt, new preamp, ect., just a complete upgrade of the analog rig.

i've read a few posts comparing sacd to analog. now, a complete upgrade of my analog rig might run over $1000, while i can get a sacd player for under $200. i could use either to make my tapes for portable. my record collection is probably about a dozen mint condition lps that i would consider taping.

anyway, i can budget $1000+ for this upgrade. should i just save my money for music and get the sacdp, or stick with analog?
Jun 3, 2002 at 8:00 PM Post #2 of 14
redshifter: how about giving that Sony NS500V a try? Everyone is raving about it, it plays both SACD and DVD, so at the very least you get a multi-format player for $170 including shipping. It won't sound as good as the Sony ES DVD players, but Tuberoller said it still sounds great.

I'll know more when mine arrives
Jun 3, 2002 at 8:25 PM Post #3 of 14
The MMF-7 turntable will kick a lot of digital butt for under 1000. But why not get the inexpensive Sony suggested by McDef, then save another 150 or so and get the very nice 'table?
Jun 4, 2002 at 12:23 AM Post #4 of 14
What is your music preference? Is it available on SACD?

I listen mostly to Classical and Jazz and there isn't enough music on SACD out there yet.

So, I had an easy decision half a year ago and pluncked some money down on vinyl.
Jun 4, 2002 at 1:17 AM Post #5 of 14
Well, even though it's only a dozen, you can't play a single one of them on your SACD player.

I vote turntable.

But you could do both. Ration out US$800 for the TT/arm/cartridge/phono stage/etc., and then get the aforementioned Sony.
Jun 4, 2002 at 2:12 AM Post #6 of 14
I don't know what more to say than I couldn't be enjoying the music I am without a turntable. So, there you have it, another vote for an upgrade of your analog kit. It leaves you worlds of creativity in tuning your music incrementally and gives you access to incredible volumes of incredible music for many times less than digital.

Buy them both, but know that the other half of your purchase will suffer. SACD is almost there.

Jun 4, 2002 at 2:42 AM Post #7 of 14
that sony sacdp tuberoller mentioned set this whole question off. let me know what you think of yours.

good point. i listen to mainly rock, but i like all kinds of music--literally all kinds.. if it's good.

i like the "get both" votes. if i do both it won't leave much money left for the music, though.

my problem with analog is a lack of good vinyl. every time i buy used vinyl there is something wrong with the record (noise, scratch, etc.). even new vinyl i've bought (and spent a lot on) has arrived warped, scratched, poorly pressed, etc. my distrust of the whole lp world is growing. and i don't want to have to drop another $300 on a nitty gritty machine.

but analog is just so much more musically involving for me. can sacd offer the same tactile realism of good vinyl? i also like work on and tweak my equipment, which makes analog the obvious choice.

i'm going to check out what's really available right now on sacd and see if it is worth investing in.

dusty, how about a sacdp that also plays lps?
Jun 4, 2002 at 2:49 AM Post #8 of 14
Get a Wadia and learn to love Redbook. :wink:

Really, now is an awful time as we are all between a rock and hard place. At least the Sony will play my redbooks...

If I were in your shoes I would go with the SACD setup and keep that along side your vinyl until you get your catalog replaced and/or the TT gives way.

Still I somehow doubt that a $200 USD SACD player is going to compete with your vintage vinyl gear (well, not really vintage but the alleteration sounded good).
Jun 4, 2002 at 3:58 AM Post #9 of 14

Actually, they're thinking of upgrading SACD (SSACD? S^2ACD?) to 8 bit with 64 times I would definitely go analog...just read that today...

And then, in my case, I tried to upsample an upsampled signal and got terrible results, so, depending on your CD collection (mine is, that's an understatement...Greatgooglymooglyinsane...yeah, that's more like it), you may also want to take the advice of getting one last player that will actually provide enjoyment out of your CD collection...

PS WRT pops and crackles -- I've heard the advice, "invest in a good record cleaner, you'd be surprised at just how much of that can be taken care of".
Jun 4, 2002 at 4:48 PM Post #10 of 14
As a huge vinyl fan and owner of many many turntables my heart says upgrade the analog.As a recent budget SACD convert my common sense says you'd be nuts not to at least try the cheap Sony.I still prefer analog but for a dedicated headphone rig,the Sony spanks all but my most expensive CDPs and turntable/ cartridge combos.In the real world you can do both.Those MMF-7 tables are now available without a cartridge(the main drawback to an otherwise stellar table) and can be had for $650 all over the place.You buy that and trade a junk cartridge for a Clearaudio Aurum Beta for $255.00 with trade in and you'll have a analog set-up that can't be touched by anything for less than 10 times the price.
Jun 4, 2002 at 5:06 PM Post #11 of 14
Tuberoller: Have you compared the cheap Sony with a Phillips SACD-1000 (at about 10x retail price...)?

Or did you mean "most expensive" as "more than $1000 retail?"
Jun 4, 2002 at 5:49 PM Post #12 of 14
redshifter, I'm surpised you have so much trouble with your new vinyl purchases. I've had excellent results from recent Stax and Sundazed releases (also both reasonably priced), you might want to check those out. Fortunately I have a local supply for new vinyl, and if it doesn't sound good I can take it back.

I bet you'll be surprised how good a $1000 analog setup can sound. SACD availability is still a major letdown for me, so the choice between vinyl and SACD is an easy one. I have both, but my new vinyl purchaces are greater than 10X (in quantity) of my SACD purchases.
Jun 4, 2002 at 6:40 PM Post #13 of 14

Originally posted by eric343
Tuberoller: Have you compared the cheap Sony with a Phillips SACD-1000 (at about 10x retail price...)?

Or did you mean "most expensive" as "more than $1000 retail?"

Nope,I've compared the cheap Sony to my Marantz SA-14 at about 14 times the price.It is not 14 times better than the Sony.As far as SACD availablity goes,the Sony reps at the NY show promise a much larger catalog in the coming months.some of the SACD sites have as many as 120 new titles listed for each of the next few months,including some real gems.I think that the sonic rewards you will get from trying the sony far exceed the $170.00 cost.I have spent much more to get much less of an improvement.SACD is amazing and at the cost of the Sony it is a must audition format.
Jun 4, 2002 at 9:01 PM Post #14 of 14
Did anyone listen to CDXP 775 or whatever is current Sony's "cheap" SACD/CD (not DVD) player? In Canada the NV500 has the price of $400 Canadian and that's the price of aforementioned 1-disk player as well (5 disk player is another $100), so it is not nearly as appealing as it is in the US.

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