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  1. #1
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
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    Swapping CD Player, will hear a difference?

    I'm a mid-fi guy. I can't see spending 4 figures on single disc CD player for my primary HT/Music listening station. For the past 4 years I've been using a Yamaha CDC-697 5 disc CD player and I've been pretty happy with it. Recently so the CDC-600 has fallen into my lap for cheap. It uses a higher level Burr/Brown DAC and is 24/bit as opposed to 16/bit. Also the 600 has I-pod (which I don't possess) and USB hook-ups. But my primary question is, will I hear a difference in my CD playback switching to the player with the higher bit rater and better DAC?

    Thanks in advance...

    Worf

  2. #2
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Worf101
    But my primary question is, will I hear a difference in my CD playback switching to the player with the higher bit rater and better DAC?
    I guess it depends upon how you qualify "better DAC", but I haven't found that higher bit rates per se have any effect on 16 bit Redbook playback. I have a couple of 24 bit DVD players that cannot hold a candle to a ten year old CDP with a Crystal 20 bit set and and an even older DAC with an 18 bit set. I think the difference has more to do with the power supply and the analog stage. Look at the new Oppo intended for audio use. The focus is on the power supply and balanced differential output.

    rw

    edit: At Crutchfield, the 697 is available for $250 and the 600 for $330. Aside from the ability to plug in your iPhone to the latter, I seriously doubt you'd hear any difference.
    Last edited by E-Stat; 02-07-2011 at 03:49 PM.

  3. #3
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    As far as the analog outs go, I have heard differences with different makes of players. In the case of a Marantz multidisc player that my brother possesses its analog outs sounded better that the digital output ran on a coax cable to a receiver. He also had an old Pioneer DV-37 Elite unit whose analog output failed to impress me as against the Marantz; I think the digital output to a receiver may have been close to the same. Years back I had a Sony laserdisc player which may have been the MDP-333. The digital sound from the analog outputs playing a CD were the best I ever heard menaing the music produce was pinpoint sharp and clear as against just about everything else that I have heard on the market. I once had a JVC single disc unit with analog outs only and it sounded somewhat awful except when I used some Recoton Boa Cables which was very compliant to making that player sound at least decent. From what I heard from the MDP-333 it tells me that IMHO most of the manufacturers think they know what there doing but may not know too much. Now I cannot sware to megabuck units but had that Sony unit delivered a good LD picture which it did not, I would have kept it. Although not loud in volume output of the digital soundtracks from a laserdisc, the quality of the digital audio knocked the crap out of any Pioneer LD player because the sound was more natural, cleaner and properly equalized on LD digital tracks but its analog fm tracks were atrocious while Pioneers units were ok on the digital LD tracks but lacked equalization but whose FM analog tracks were great. I still have a working CD-M90 and it does play CD tracks about as good as most players but not in the league with the Marantz unit.

  4. #4
    Forum Regular swan24's Avatar
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    I could never hear the difference between CD players unless there was at least a grand seperation in the price... And sometimes not even then... Once in awhile, a benchmark unit comes along that might break this perception for me...

    Early on, I bought a Magnavox ( Philips) unit, and I lived with it for many years... Could not hear any difference between that unit, and ones costing four times as much, really... (m.)

  5. #5
    RGA
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    You'll have to tell us. What can and can't be heard depends on the rest of the stereo, the listener, and the designs of the players. Many CD players have a like sound - which is why there was so much DBT debate on them.

    There are some IME that are significantly better than your average player - and it has zilch to do with higher bit rates or using Burr Brown DACs.

    I think most people who like music can be an audiophile - but you need to get the stuff home to try for a week - or even just a weekend. Plopping in just a CD player may or may not work - bring home a complete stereo at a slightly higher price than you can "imagine" spending and hear what it does.

    The front end can be so important. I was running a Marantz receiver with my little Tannoy speakers - cheap two ways I paid $60 for at a pawn shop (Maybe $300 new) mainly to be used as "tester" speakers so I don't blow my main speakers when hooking stuff up that could malfunction. And the little Tannoys sound decent and all. Well just connected up my "B" stereo Rotel/Cambridge Audio gear and what do you know those OK speakers snapped into line and really improved their game significantly - makes me feel like it was the best $60 I ever spent in this hobby and I have to say they sound better than the B&W' 302s I had, and the 303s for that matter, that got all the press.

  6. #6
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    Cd Players

    [
    Early on, I bought a Magnavox ( Philips) unit, and I lived with it for many years... Could not hear any difference between that unit, and ones costing four times as much, really... (m.)[/QUOTE]

    I believe that I am familiar with that model that you owned. My brother and I each had one of those units. They did deliver some pretty good sound quality overall. In fact now that I recall it was my first cd player but eventually crapped out. I now remember buying some kind of Emerson unit that was part of a big report on cd players at that time in some magazine over their sound quality and doing double blind tests but I do not recall the results of those tests but I did buy the Emerson and it gave me great service for quite a few years with very nice audio quality.

  7. #7
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    I have noticed huge differences in different CD players and different Op amps. Going from a Denon DVD player to a Music Hall 25.2 was drastic. There were huge differences between my Music Hall, Marantz 8001 SACD, Cambridge Audio 840c and 740c. Swapping out Op amps in the Music Hall player and in my Van Alstine DAC also made drastic differences in sound. The difference between the $1K 740c and the $900 Marantz was night and day with my preference for the 740c. The difference between the 740c and 840c more subtle. By the way, I'm not a big fan of Burr Brown Op Amps, even the high end OA's. I find them to have less air and be more forward sounding when I have swapped them out.

    With that being said, I don't think that you would hear as much difference between low Fi players.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
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  8. #8
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Since both of these players are current, I doubt you'll hear a huge difference. The CDC-600 likely uses the 24-bit DACs because it plays MP3s and other audio formats that can be encoded at up to 24-bit resolution. As others have said, things like the analog stage can make more of a difference than the DACs might. With both of these CD players coming from the same manufacturer and using the same transport for not a huge difference in price, I doubt the analog stage will differ much. You're really paying for the iPod connectivity, MP3/WMA compatibility, and USB connector more than anything to do with the analog playback.

    If you go back more than a decade, I recall that Yamaha made their own DACs that they called ProBit. Go even further back, and their early CD players gave you the more direct option of switching off the digital filtering. Comparing a newer player with a vintage player, especially ones with experimental features like that zero-filtering pure playback mode used in Yamaha's earlier CD players, would probably be more interesting.

    Of course, that begs the next question -- IF (and that's a big IF) you hear something different, does that mean that you hear something better?
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  9. #9
    Feel the Tempo eisforelectronic's Avatar
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    It's not quite comparing apples to apples, but my BAT cd player sounds much better than the PS3. Although that could also have more to do with analog connections Vs HDMI.
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  10. #10
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by eisforelectronic
    It's not quite comparing apples to apples, but my BAT cd player sounds much better than the PS3. Although that could also have more to do with analog connections Vs HDMI.
    WHICH DAC is used is the major diff.
    You can save a ton on CD players, and get better results if you use one as a transport,
    and shoot the output through an outboard DAC .
    Iffen you have a decent DAC in your receiver or pre-pro why duplicate the purchase by
    buying a megabuck CD player for its DAC?
    Although I HAVE done that. Sometimes you just can't resist a great DAC. Been awhile, tho.
    LG 42", integra 6.9, B&W 602s2, CC6 center, dm305rears, b&w
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  11. #11
    Feel the Tempo eisforelectronic's Avatar
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    I wouldn't say megabucks because I got the BAT used, I never would have spent full retail for it.
    Audio Physic Avanti IV w/upgraded mids and crossover
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  12. #12
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by eisforelectronic
    It's not quite comparing apples to apples, but my BAT cd player sounds much better than the PS3. Although that could also have more to do with analog connections Vs HDMI.
    Or the fact that a PS3 is about as far from an audiophile piece of gear as you can get(puts
    on head to toe body Armour).
    HERES a good rule of thumb. If your gear has an excellent DAC then use the analog outs,
    if you have a sucky DAC use the digital out (RCA OR TOSLINK) and plug it into something better.
    FOR INSTANCE , my DVDA player, although eight years old, has excellent audio
    capabilities. Panny wanted it to be a showcase for the then new DVDA format , so I plug
    its analog outs into the CD input, let it do the decoding..
    The type of connector is not very important, its the DAC.
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    LG 42", integra 6.9, B&W 602s2, CC6 center, dm305rears, b&w
    sub asw2500
    Panny DVDA player
    sharp Aquos BLU player
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  13. #13
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woochifer
    Of course, that begs the next question -- IF (and that's a big IF) you hear something different, does that mean that you hear something better?
    That is of course the $64 dollar question. Guess I won't know till I give em a listen. Interesting concept, the interelated of gear, trasport/DAC/Receiver/speakers etc... mix and match. Kinda like alchemy, certainly NOT science.

    Thanks for the opinions and information folks.

    Worf

  14. #14
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Check HyFi's thread about comparing his Oppo to his Rotel.
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  15. #15
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eisforelectronic
    It's not quite comparing apples to apples, but my BAT cd player sounds much better than the PS3. Although that could also have more to do with analog connections Vs HDMI.
    The PS3's not really well situated for analog playback. It uses the same gimpy A/V connection that the earlier Playstation models used.

    However, its digital decoding is purportedly excellent (it uses a software-based implementation coupled with a very powerful processor) and it does upsampling for CD audio.
    Wooch's Home Theater 2.0 (Pics)
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    Directv HR44 and WVB
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  16. #16
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
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    Well...

    I swapped em out and I believe I like the new CDC better. Seems to give me a fuller, richer sound. All subjective I know and I'd have to really dod a dBT to see if I'm not imagining to justify, but I've neither the room nor time right now for such a thing. However, the discussions here have made me wonder about using the CDC as a transport to a decent mid-level separate DAC. Any suggestions of something high end I could buy used or mid-level DAC I could buy new?

    Thanks in advance...

    Worf

  17. #17
    Feel the Tempo eisforelectronic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woochifer
    The PS3's not really well situated for analog playback. It uses the same gimpy A/V connection that the earlier Playstation models used.

    However, its digital decoding is purportedly excellent (it uses a software-based implementation coupled with a very powerful processor) and it does upsampling for CD audio.
    I'm not using the PS3 for analog playback, it's connected through HDMI
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  18. #18
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eisforelectronic
    I'm not using the PS3 for analog playback, it's connected through HDMI
    And I assume that the BAT uses the analog connection?
    Wooch's Home Theater 2.0 (Pics)
    Panasonic VIERA TH-C50FD18 50" 1080p
    Paradigm Reference Studio 40, CC, and 20 v.2
    Adire Audio Rava (EQ: Behringer Feedback Destroyer DSP1124)
    Yamaha RX-A1030
    Dual CS5000 (Ortofon OM30 Super)
    Sony UBP-X800
    Sony Playstation 3 (MediaLink OS X Server)
    Sony ES SCD-C2000ES
    JVC HR-S3912U
    Directv HR44 and WVB
    Logitech Harmony 700
    iPhone 5s/iPad 3
    Linksys WES610



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  19. #19
    Feel the Tempo eisforelectronic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woochifer
    And I assume that the BAT uses the analog connection?
    roger that.
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  20. #20
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    [ However, the discussions here have made me wonder about using the CDC as a transport to a decent mid-level separate DAC. Any suggestions of something high end I could buy used or mid-level DAC I could buy new?

    Thanks in advance...

    Worf[/QUOTE]

    Whats your price point Worf? I would look for a Used PS Audio Digilink III.

    http://www.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....gital-link-iii

    http://www.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....gital-link-iii

    http://www.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....gital-link-iii

    http://www.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....gital-link-iii

    There is also a Bel Canto DAC-1 for sale-

    http://www.stereophile.com/content/b...ocessor-page-2

    http://www.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls....el-Canto-DAC-1
    Last edited by blackraven; 02-16-2011 at 01:19 PM.
    Pass Labs X250 amp, BAT Vk-51se Preamp,
    Thorens TD-145 TT, Bellari phono preamp, Nagaoka MP-200 Cartridge
    Magnepan QR1.6 speakers
    Luxman DA-06 DAC
    Van Alstine Ultra Plus Hybrid Tube DAC
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    Vintage Luxman T-110 tuner
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    Monitor Audio S1 speakers, PSB B6 speakers
    Vintage Technic's Integrated amp
    Music Hall 25.2 CDP
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    Cables- Cardas, Silnote, BJC
    Velodyne CHT 8 sub

  21. #21
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    You will hear a difference if you go with CDP with the famous TDA 1541A chip. They aren't made anymore but are not expensive if you can find one on ebay. My old Rotel RCD-855 has this chip, cost under a $100 and will smoke anything made by Oppo. Redbook on the Rotel sounds like SACD on an ES.

    Google TDA 1541A and you'll see tons of CDP's that use this wonder chip. Phillips and Magnavox sold zillions of them back in the day.

  22. #22
    Sgt. At Arms Worf101's Avatar
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    Thankts

    Great minds think alike. I'd already started looking into used PS audio equip. I'll have to wait until after I get my tax refund to consider this. I just wonder If I'll be able to hear the difference?

    Thanks I appreciate the information.

    Worf

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