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  1. #1
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    Are portable CD players being phased out? Recommendation please!

    Am I a dinosaur to be shopping for a portable CD player?

    I don't own an iPod and don't think I want one at this time.

    I only listen to ONE CD at a time and I prefer that
    listening experience to be (at least) 16 bit/44.1 kHz, etc.

    I've been online shopping for a nice quality portable and
    it seems like Sony, etc...is phasing out their high-end models.

    So...the questions are...

    Can anyone recommend a very good sounding portable CD unit?

    Are they being phased out?

    The current Sony model I have (not sure of the number) has crappy bass
    and then BOOMY awful bass once you hit that stupid BASS button.

    Is my 'snobbery' at listening to mp3s unfounded?

    Is it time to suck it up and make the jump to the POD world?

    What do you folks think?

    I'd appreciate your thoughts/opinions/suggestions very much!

    Thanks...

    -todd amodeo

    http://toddamodeo.com

  2. #2
    Class of the clown GMichael's Avatar
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    IPODs that can hold hundreds (or thousands) of songs at a fairly high quality are making it hard for portable CD's to sell. The market is pushing them out. My wife's 2GB (this is very small compared to the 60 & 80GB ones available) can hold 500 songs. Played through her new Sennheiser PMX 100 it sounds very good to me. You may have higher standards. But who can carry a set of Magnepans around with them?
    WARNING! - The Surgeon General has determined that, time spent listening to music is not deducted from one's lifespan.

  3. #3
    Do What? jrhymeammo's Avatar
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    Maybe someone can recommend a PCDP with digital output, portable DAC, Headamp, and a pair of really nice cans. I'll never walk around with $2000 worth of gears in my 'hood though..

    JRA

  4. #4
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    come in out of the Mesozoic era..

    Personally, portable cd players are just too bulky and limiting. I'd give lossless a try or just rip to wav. You'll sacrifice run time if you rip to wav when using a hard drive player however.If you've never had an 'mp3' player before, there are a lot of other formats that you can experiment with for quality (ogg,flac, mp3, wmv etc). I'd also look at iRiver and Cowan. iPods are not the only game in town.

  5. #5
    rockin' the mid-fi audio_dude's Avatar
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    yeah, iRiver and Cowan come to mind thinking non-iPod, but my all time fave non-ipod is Rio, the BEST BEST BEST!!! if you can find one online, BUY IT!!! you won't regret it, and plus, they have SD expansion, BEST VALUE AND non-iPod EVER!
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  6. #6
    Crackhead Extraordinaire Registered Member Dusty Chalk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toddamo
    Are portable CD players being phased out?
    Yes, absolutely they are. I was disappointed to find this out as well.

    Here, get this one: ...ack, they don't have it any more!

    I ended up getting a Kenwood DPC-X337.
    Eschew fascism.
    Truth Will Out.
    Quote Originally Posted by stevef22
    you guys are crackheads.
    I remain,
    Peter aka Dusty Chalk

  7. #7
    Big science. Hallelujah. noddin0ff's Avatar
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    I think mp3 player is an unfortunate misnomer. Most play other file types as well.

    The 1G iPod shuffle (cheapest smallest option) can play WAV or AIFF files which are both identical to the CD. No compression, no fidelity loss. 1G is about 100 minutes of music, or approximately 1.5 CD's worth. (it also plays mp3, AAC, and Audilbe formats at many different bitrates)

    Other iPods (not the shuffle) can play Apple's Lossless compressed format. Again, no fidelity loss. The output is identical to the CD (16 bit/44.1 kHz). But you can fit 2-3 times the music per Gig compared to WAV or AIFF

    Non-apple players can possibly play other lossless compressed formats like flac. Worthy suggestions above.

    I use my iPod shuffle for WAV files. It's important to remember that MP3's can be made in different resolutions/qualities. Most that you purchase are at 128kbps, which kinda suck. But if you rip up around 256 or better 320 it gets VERY hard to hear the difference from a CD. I'm asking for a iPod nano for Xmas so that I can play Apple Lossless files which is the BEST solution in the Apple world! (I don't know why the shuffle doesn't support Apple Lossless, but it doesn't).

    I also think that iPods have superior sound relative to the portable CD players I've had because I've always heard a hum associated with the
    Anti-Skip buffering. And I think the motor noise, the extra care required for moving parts, keeping CDs from scratching, and bulky size are all detracting.


    **If you need something to make you sleepy, read on***
    The PCM/CD bit rate is 1411kbps. Approximately equal to 16bits X 44.1 KHz X 2 channels (L/R). Lossless compression can create files that deliver the IDENTICAL information, but when compressed only require on average a transfer rate around 800kbps to deliver the goods. When they are uncompressed for playback, a PCM 1411kbps signal is generated and converted to analog. If you lose some info and compress to make an MP3 you can lose significant info and require only 128kbps to deliver the goods OR lose a tiny amount of info and require 320kbps to deliver. But, my point is you should compare the 320kbps bitrate of an MP3 to the required bit rate for a LOSSLESS COMPRESSED format which can be as low as 500kbps or up to around 1000kbps depending on the kind of music. 800kbps is a good average.

  8. #8
    Color me gone... Resident Loser's Avatar
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    A bit ago...

    Quote Originally Posted by toddamo
    Am I a dinosaur to be shopping for a portable CD player?

    I don't own an iPod and don't think I want one at this time.

    I only listen to ONE CD at a time and I prefer that
    listening experience to be (at least) 16 bit/44.1 kHz, etc.

    I've been online shopping for a nice quality portable and
    it seems like Sony, etc...is phasing out their high-end models.

    So...the questions are...

    Can anyone recommend a very good sounding portable CD unit?

    Are they being phased out?

    The current Sony model I have (not sure of the number) has crappy bass
    and then BOOMY awful bass once you hit that stupid BASS button.

    Is my 'snobbery' at listening to mp3s unfounded?

    Is it time to suck it up and make the jump to the POD world?

    What do you folks think?

    I'd appreciate your thoughts/opinions/suggestions very much!

    Thanks...

    -todd amodeo

    http://toddamodeo.com
    ...sort of in the same boat, I purchased a bare-bones (no shock protection) GPX CDP @ Sears...cost me $7USD, after rebate...the included 'phones are cr@p, but I bought a pair of Koss for $5 at el Waldo-Marto...may not be of so-called "audiophile" quality, but really there ain't all that much (if any) difference...and yes I have two component digital players and my cans are vintage Senn HD-414s and a pair of STAX SR-44s...

    jimHJJ(...and besides it's only 1s and 0s...)
    Hello, I'm a misanthrope...don't ask me why, just take a good look around.

    "Men would rather believe than know" -Sociobiology: The New Synthesis by Edward O. Wilson

    "The great masses of the people...will more easily fall victims to a great lie than to a small one" -Adolph Hitler

    "We are never deceived, we deceive ourselves" -Goethe

    If you repeat a lie often enough, some will believe it to be the truth...

  9. #9
    Just passing thru topspeed's Avatar
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    iPods and the like have made pcdp's about as useful as vhs. As others have mentioned, you can easily rip lossless thereby losing nothing in the translation. I experienced severe trepidation before making the leap a few years ago from cd to a Shuffle, likely for the same reason you do: MP3's sound like sh!t. Thankfully, the good members of this board enlightened me to the fact that you can rip not only in different formats but also different bit rates. These make a world of difference. Apple's compression format is far, far superior to MP3 and the music doesn't have that "swooshy" sound that 128 MP3's do. When you include the fact that these players don't skip, aren't nearly as fragile, don't devour batteries, and are infinitely more portable, there really isn't a compelling argument to not have a iPod or similar.

    Take the leap, you'll be happy you did.
    "If you can leave black marks on a straight from the time you exit a corner till the time you brake for the next turn, then you have enough horsepower." Mark Donohue

  10. #10
    Forum Regular Registered Member Rock&Roll Ninja's Avatar
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    Sadly the 'high-end' PCDP is no more
    Which is a shame, because iPods and their ilk have 1 seriosu limitation: You need your home computer to put music on it.

    99% of the time this isn't a problem, but if your on vacation and pick up a few albums, you need to wait till you get home to hear them. (Especially bothersome if you're in a foriegn country and are simply dying to hear the latest in beijing/paris/berlin music).

    That being said I keep a (very) cheap Durabrand CDP around for just such emergencies. Although I've probably only used it 2 or 3 times instead of my iPod.

  11. #11
    rockin' the mid-fi audio_dude's Avatar
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    ohh, just go to Wal-Mart or similar cheapo store, and pick up a CDP from so japanese/chinese brand you've never heard of, look at the features, pick one thats around $30, these will give you the best sound/buck ratio... right now, i have a Misakai MCD01-BL which is a WONDERFUL player, great sound, and, it will even CHARGE AA's if you plug in a power adaptor! meaning no more wasteful expensive AA"s!!!

    yeah, my iPod needed to be sent in for repairs like 2 DAYS before my family went off to europe, and this CD player kept me happy the whole way!
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  12. #12
    Forum Regular Registered Member DiscoRage's Avatar
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    The thing most people don't realize is the quality of the software used to rip mp3s make a huge difference. If you're using a program like iTunes or Windows Media Player to rip CDs, they're not going to sound great.

    On the other hand, if you use a program like EAC (Exact Audio Copy) to rip, and LAME to encode, they'll sound fantastic. I've been using this combination for about five years now, and I'm currently ripping at variable bitrate. My mp3s sound fantastic.
    Yamaha RX-V800
    Paradigm Studio 60 V.3
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    Paradigm CC-170 V.3
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  13. #13
    Forum Regular royphil345's Avatar
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    Very true. There are some pretty bad CD rippers / mp3 encoders out there. EAC is a great ripper. There are even better front-ends for LAME that will give you more options and control. A 256 kbps mp3 encoded by LAME sounds pretty good to me.... and I'm picky... LOL...

  14. #14
    rockin' the mid-fi audio_dude's Avatar
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    meh, most of my music collection is lossless anyway, but if I must rip to MP3 or some other lossy format, i use the highest bitrate possible and enable VBR.
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