• 02-01-2005, 01:56 AM
    hershon
    OK Explain this My JVC DVD Receiver sounds better than Marantz CD Player (CD5400)
    I really would appreciate a good explanation for this, if nothing else this might save someone some money in the future. Yesterday, I went to an excellent High End Audio Store in LA called Shellys (for some reason there are about 5 or 6 big electronic stores in that area within walking distance of each other) & the sales people were excellent and gave great service. I basically reiterated to them what has been a recurring theme of mine on this board, even though I'm happy with my CD sound played through a JVC DVD 500watts receiver (JVC RX-DV31SL) & Orb Speakers, how could I improve on my music sound quality. The sales people basically advised me to start with a new CD player, they all but guaranteed the sound would be better as they said it was better to play CD's through a CD player not DVD player & not a DVD receiver & then get a better receiver. I should add the sales people were great, they didn't try to hard sell or push anything on me. They seem to be the only store that carries Marantz in the area and I heard 3 of their CD players which they recomended I listen to on headphones and they said I'd notice a difference in the sound.. I brought in a remastered CD by the Byrds & I listened to their $150, $350 & $750 Marantz CD players. There was a significant difference between the $150 & $350 model but not as much between the $350 & $750 one, I actually preferred the $350 sound believe it or not. The salesman let me buy a floor model of it (Marantz CD5400) that was on display for a month (it was actually dated when it went on display) for $50 off with the regular warranty & features & accessories and said no problem returning it if I didn't hear a difference. So I got home all excited. I should mention I connected everything digitially via an Optic Cable. For the fairest comparison, I pressed 2 CDR's of the Beatles "Revolver" a CD I was never particularly thrilled with the sound & placed them in both in the JVC DVD & the Marantz CD player. I played several songs back to back between the 2 machines, all the receiver settings were the same (I played them on my all channel 5 speaker mode)& to my shock and dismay, the sound from my JVC DVD was alot better than that of the Marantz. The Marantz if this makes any sense at all seemed to have a harsher in your face sound yet it spread the sound thinner over a wider area while the JVC had a fatter warmer sound in a narrower area. I put on another Beatles CD, Rubber Soul, and same results.
    Finally, I listened to both systems on my headphones attached to my receiver. Again same results. I'm returning the Marantz to the store tommorow. Can someone please tell me what exactly is going on? Just to show you I wasn't biased or delusional, I played the same stuff for my sister & she had the same conclusion I had. Your thoughts on this will be appreciated.
  • 02-01-2005, 03:01 AM
    drseid
    What sounds better to one person may not sound better to another. In your case, it looks like when used as a transport through your optical digital out you prefer the JVC. Nothing wrong with that...

    I would not send the Marantz back just yet though... Have you tried listening to the unit through its analog audio outs (the left and right RCA jacks)? The reason why I ask is that I suspect that the Marantz has better DACs than your receiver, and in theory, that could allow you to hear an improved sound if you use it that way, as opposed to using the optical digital out. By using the optical digital out (as you are currently doing), you are relying on your receiver to do the D/A conversion as opposed to the CD player... I would try the Marantz and your JVC CD players using the analog outs too for comparison to see if it makes a difference...

    That said, you still may not hear any difference between the two on your system. I have found that the differences in sound between CD players are quite subtle at best... it frequently takes quite a bit of time to hear any noticable differences... and that is even on some relatively high resolution gear.

    I would just not jump to any conclusions one way or another...

    ---Dave
  • 02-01-2005, 04:53 AM
    kexodusc
    I'd just add that it could be that you are use to the sound of the JVC and interpret it as better, because it is what you are familiar with. For all you know, the reproduction of the Marantz might be EXACTLY what was intended. Hard to tell, give it a bit more.
    To be honest, I'm a little surprised you noticed such an immediate difference. If you have an SPL meter, I suggest you try this again, as the gains from the DVD unit and the CD might be off by a bit...this impacts a/b testing significantly.
    Interesting results...You might end up saving yourself a ton of money.
  • 02-01-2005, 07:55 AM
    hershon
    I also tried to listen to the Marantz through the Analogue cables which the salesperson funny enough suggested initially. It sounded even worse. I honestly, subconsciously wanted the Marantz to sound better, if anything I was more biased to that, but as I said there was a noticeable difference in favor of the JVC. The one thing I'll acknowledge if this is a factor, and I'm not sure it is, I made no attempt to change the settings/reequalize the Marantz. I honestly do not think my interpretation of the sound was subjective as my sister heard the same things I did.


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by kexodusc
    I'd just add that it could be that you are use to the sound of the JVC and interpret it as better, because it is what you are familiar with. For all you know, the reproduction of the Marantz might be EXACTLY what was intended. Hard to tell, give it a bit more.
    To be honest, I'm a little surprised you noticed such an immediate difference. If you have an SPL meter, I suggest you try this again, as the gains from the DVD unit and the CD might be off by a bit...this impacts a/b testing significantly.
    Interesting results...You might end up saving yourself a ton of money.