CD Player
not_so_new
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#1
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
  #1
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CD Player

Hey gang.

I am looking for an okay CD player to use to reference mixes and check CD burns against.

Must have XLR AND RCA outs (long story).

Nothing expensive, this is more for background music while setting up and such. I don't have a problem with something used but I am not sure what to look for.

Would be nice if it were 1 RU and could play MP3s but not a big deal.

Does not need to be able to burn just playback.

Any ideas?

Thanks.
C/G
#2
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
  #2
C/G
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Most CD players with XLR are generally considered more into high end territory, so they might be pricey. I say buy used.

Check out www.audiogon.com It is like ebay for hi fi gear.
#3
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
  #3
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flail19's Avatar
 

I used to have this before I convinced myself that it was not worth having around. You never gave a price range (depends on your definition of expensive) so this may not fit the bill.

http://www.zzounds.com/item--DENT625
#4
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
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max cooper's Avatar
 

No XLR, sorry, but FYI, the Oppo is about $200 and sounds very good. It does SACD, DVD audio, has optical and coax out, etc.



http://www.oppodigital.com/dv981hd/index.html

Last CD player I had with XLR was a California Audio Labs.

Can't you use a box to get to XLR?
not_so_new
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#5
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
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You guys are right, I didn't really mention a price.

I could use a Masterlink with a lot more in the way of "studio" features" and I see them used for around $450 or so. I don't need the recording / editing capabilities so I was hoping to get something for a couple hundred bucks or less. The big deal is the XLR / RCA outs. I see XLR units and I see RCA units but not allot of stuff, that I have seen anyway, have both.
not_so_new
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#6
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by max cooper View Post
No XLR, sorry, but FYI, the Oppo is about $200 and sounds very good. It does SACD, DVD audio, has optical and coax out, etc.



http://www.oppodigital.com/dv981hd/index.html

Last CD player I had with XLR was a California Audio Labs.

Can't you use a box to get to XLR?

Well maybe I should explain a bit.

I don't want to take up a point in my patchbay. I want to use the external input on my Tonelux CR2 to listen to CD's through my S2A's and I want to be able to listen to CD's with my headphones on a Hearback system that I will be getting soon.

I could convert the S/PDIF out of my current CD player into channels 1/2 of an ADAT light pipe with an Alesis digi converter and then use the light pipe into the Hearback along with 8 analog channels from my Tonelux but that seems like a really messy way of getting there.

With XLR outs I can go into the Tonelux ext. input and the RCA outs can go into the Hearback mixer in the aux input (convert from RCA to 1/8).

The end goal is to hear CD's with the Tonelux and the Hearback without any extra patch points in the bay.
#7
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
  #7
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O.F.F.'s Avatar
 

My Studer A727 got three outs: xlr, rca(fixed) and rca(variable) and cost me £125s/h.
Bit difficult to find though...
#8
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post

I could convert the S/PDIF out of my current CD player into channels 1/2 of an ADAT light pipe with an Alesis digi converter and then use the light pipe into the Hearback along with 8 analog channels from my Tonelux but that seems like a really messy way of getting there.
Dunno if it helps, but the Oppo has toslink optical output.
#9
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
  #9
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loujudson's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post
You guys are right, I didn't really mention a price.

I could use a Masterlink with a lot more in the way of "studio" features" and I see them used for around $450 or so.
Slightly off topic, but thanks for the reminder about Masterlinks. I have two of them that don't see much use but hey, they ARE CD players too! Now I don't have to buy one for a certain gig coming up...

Thanks, the power of suggestion...

Lou
not_so_new
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21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loujudson View Post
Slightly off topic, but thanks for the reminder about Masterlinks. I have two of them that don't see much use but hey, they ARE CD players too! Now I don't have to buy one for a certain gig coming up...

Thanks, the power of suggestion...

Lou
not_so_new
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#11
21st March 2007
Old 21st March 2007
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Soooooo.... bump?



Anyone else?
#12
22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
  #12
cdplayer

I would have a look at Sony, Marantz, Tascam./Toby
#13
22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
  #13
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#14
22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
  #14
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Just a thought - why not get an iPod and a Radial Duplex (twin passive DI box - rackmountable if you want). The Duplex would give you your XLR and RCA outs - with transformer isolation to stop ground loops. I believe you can store wavs on an iPod, so you don't have to put up with compressed audio. This will solve your CD storage issues too.
not_so_new
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#15
22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
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Thanks guys.

All good ideas but they are all hovering around the price of a used Masterlink and while I don't think I would record much to the Masterlink it does have a bunch more features that would make it more useful in the studio.

So there are no XLR / RCA CD players out there for $200 or so then? That sucks.
#16
22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
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#17
22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by not_so_new View Post
You guys are right, I didn't really mention a price.

I could use a Masterlink with a lot more in the way of "studio" features" and I see them used for around $450 or so. I don't need the recording / editing capabilities so I was hoping to get something for a couple hundred bucks or less. The big deal is the XLR / RCA outs. I see XLR units and I see RCA units but not allot of stuff, that I have seen anyway, have both.
The Masterlink is a nice box for storing final mixes, and I use one for this, with an external converter. That being said, the Masterlink does not, to my ears, have very good sound as a standalone CD player. I was recently demonstrating this to a friend who is picking one up for the research dept. he works with. When switching between the analog output on the Masterlink and the analog output of the outboard RME ADI-2 converter which was taking a digital feed from the Masterlink, the difference is VERY noticable. I'm not going to go off on hyperbole and call it "night and day", but it is significant. My buddy was pretty surprised actually and it pretty much elicited a "wow..." response. It's just kind of muddy sounding. I'm guessing the D/A and the analog output stage of the Masterlink may be an afterthought. I'm still keeping this Sony CD player in the rack for CD playback givent that it also sounds a fair bit nicer than the Masterlink for this purpose. Nothing against the box as I think it's a great tool. I just don't use it as a CD player, and I'd suggest looking elsewhere if that's all you need. Getting a good player with balanced outputs for low $$ could be tough. You could get something like a Pass Labs player or a BAT player, but those ain't cheap. There's probably something out there...good luck on the search.
not_so_new
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#18
22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by centurymantra View Post
The Masterlink is a nice box for storing final mixes, and I use one for this, with an external converter. That being said, the Masterlink does not, to my ears, have very good sound as a standalone CD player. I was recently demonstrating this to a friend who is picking one up for the research dept. he works with. When switching between the analog output on the Masterlink and the analog output of the outboard RME ADI-2 converter which was taking a digital feed from the Masterlink, the difference is VERY noticable. I'm not going to go off on hyperbole and call it "night and day", but it is significant. My buddy was pretty surprised actually and it pretty much elicited a "wow..." response. It's just kind of muddy sounding. I'm guessing the D/A and the analog output stage of the Masterlink may be an afterthought. I'm still keeping this Sony CD player in the rack for CD playback givent that it also sounds a fair bit nicer than the Masterlink for this purpose. Nothing against the box as I think it's a great tool. I just don't use it as a CD player, and I'd suggest looking elsewhere if that's all you need. Getting a good player with balanced outputs for low $$ could be tough. You could get something like a Pass Labs player or a BAT player, but those ain't cheap. There's probably something out there...good luck on the search.
That is a VERY good point... thanks.. The big complaint from most everyone with the Masterlink is the converters. I could use my DA16x but now we are talking about more patch points or special wiring... pain in the a$$...

This is not as easy or as inexpensive as I was hoping it would be.
not_so_new
Thread Starter
#20
22nd March 2007
Old 22nd March 2007
  #20
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LOL

Thanks man... I am laughing because I have each of these auctions saved already and they just got advertised to a very large audience. No big deal, I don't think many folks around here would be interested in these but you never know.

Seriously, thanks for looking them up for me, very cool. To everyone else KEEP AWAY!!!! LOFL
#21
23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
  #21
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CD Player

You're going to think I am completely nuts, but I'd like to share a little audio secret I learned from a high end equipment dealer in Dallas.

Take a look at the Denon DVD-757 (or try to pick up last years model - the 756). These retail at just under $350 new, and you can take a look at one at Circuit City. (I can hear the giggles now.)

The 757 doesn't have balanced connectors, but it's a great unit for use in a small studio reference audio system as it has an excellent player mechanism and optical pickup system. While the 757's D/A circuits are very musical for a sub-$750 unit, it really shines as a player platform when using its digital output. The reason this is ideal for a home/project studio is that you probably already have (at least)one 'audiophile grade' D/A converter that you use for your music. Patch the 757 into one of your studio D/A's and then route the analog output to your reference
system amp.

(Are you rolling on the floor in hysterics yet?)

My studio reference system has three inputs: 1) the 757 for CD/DVD playback, 2) a Sound Devices 744T portable digital recorder, and 3) an analog feed from a Rosetta 200. This lets me listen to everything in my studio, or anything I record remotely.

The two digital inputs (the 757 and the 744T) feed a Lavry DA10 and the analog signals are routed to a Creek Destiny integrated amp which drives B&W 804S speakers. As the studio is acoustically treated, the sound is pretty good. (Yes, the Lavry D/A circuits are sonically better than those in the 744T.)

I've had a number of people visit my project studio, including a few audiophile friends, and the usual comment is that my system sounds better than most people's main stereo system.

My audiophile friends are simply dumbfounded. They have repeatedly accused me of 'souping up' the 757. Nope. It's a stock unit from Circuit City. The only thing 'special' is that I have it plugged into a Shunyata Hydra power unit. (Also, I have it setting on 3 Golden Sound small cones and DH squares for better vibration isolation - which gets another 10-15% improvement in definition.)

Anyway, that's the best advice I have to share.


Note: I've been a Gearslutz lurker for many years and have decided it's time to start giving back in the few areas where I can. Thanks people. You've helped me spend a small fortune on gear . . . (a Tube-Tech CL 1B being my most recent addition).

Good Listening and Regards - Jungle-Jim
#22
23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
  #22
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Cellotron's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by flail19 View Post
I used to have this before I convinced myself that it was not worth having around. You never gave a price range (depends on your definition of expensive) so this may not fit the bill.

http://www.zzounds.com/item--DENT625
Seconding whole heartedly the recommendation of the Denon T625 as really great bang for buck!!
Balanced (on XLR), unbalanced (RCA) & more importantly coax SPDIF output (so you can listen through the DAC's of your choice) on this one.
The CD Text display is also great to have as an extra check to make sure any CD Text you've encoded on the CD-R was written correctly.
The remote works for it very well also (although I do in fact wish the rewind / fast forward during playback would kick in a little smoother).

The cassette deck on this thing (also with balanced i/o on xlr and unbalanced on RCA) is really nice sounding too as an added bonus.

Best regards,
Steve Berson
#23
23rd March 2007
Old 23rd March 2007
  #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jungle-Jim View Post
Note: I've been a Gearslutz lurker for many years and have decided it's time to start giving back in the few areas where I can. Thanks people. You've helped me spend a small fortune on gear . . . (a Tube-Tech CL 1B being my most recent addition).

Good Listening and Regards - Jungle-Jim
welcome, jj..

..

hey, nsn - what about hhb used??? oops, just checked...a bit more than what you wnna spend..

...
#24
24th March 2007
Old 24th March 2007
  #24
Gear maniac
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jungle-Jim View Post
(Also, I have it setting on 3 Golden Sound small cones and DH squares for better vibration isolation - which gets another 10-15% improvement in definition.)
wow 15%!?! Could you elaborate please?
not_so_new
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#25
24th March 2007
Old 24th March 2007
  #25
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Thread Starter
Hey guys, thanks for the ideas (Jungle-Jim, nice first post! ).

The Denon T625 looks interesting but what is that thing next to the CD player?

LOL

I have not used a cassette deck in 5-6 years but it probably would not be a bad idea to have one around at all either.

I am leaning towards getting a used Fostex CR300, I have used these things for years as a free lance cat and they were always reliable and sounded okay. I would not be using the recording features but might not hurt to have them around as well who knows?

Anyway, anyone have a CR300 used they would like to get rid of?
#26
24th March 2007
Old 24th March 2007
  #26
Banned
 

We have about 24 of the Denon 625s, four or five Denons 630s and a handfull of $600.00 single rackspace SONYs. The SONYs don't tour (I have one in my studio.)

The Denons have traveled in roadcases to about 20 cities per year for five years and play an average of 125 randomly burned CDs per weekend. Do the math. They are VERY dependable.
ONE 625 HAS FAILED IN THAT BUNCH AND THAT WAS ONLY AFTER IT WAS DROPPED IN A RACK ABOUT FIVE FEET!

The downside to the Denons is that the XLR and RCA outputs are EXTREMELY hot.
I think that the XLRS are at +8db and the RCA outs are way hotter than -10db!!!!

The Denons will play almost anything, but the SONYs are somewhat pickier.

The Denons cost about $500.00, but there is a model with just a CD player that is in the $350.00 range. It has all of the features (minus the cassette deck) EXCEPT it doesn't have all of the CUE and REPEAT features.
not_so_new
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#27
24th March 2007
Old 24th March 2007
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbbubba View Post
We have about 24 of the Denon 625s, four or five Denons 630s and a handfull of $600.00 single rackspace SONYs. The SONYs don't tour (I have one in my studio.)

The Denons have traveled in roadcases to about 20 cities per year for five years and play an average of 125 randomly burned CDs per weekend. Do the math. They are VERY dependable.
ONE 625 HAS FAILED IN THAT BUNCH AND THAT WAS ONLY AFTER IT WAS DROPPED IN A RACK ABOUT FIVE FEET!

The downside to the Denons is that the XLR and RCA outputs are EXTREMELY hot.
I think that the XLRS are at +8db and the RCA outs are way hotter than -10db!!!!

The Denons will play almost anything, but the SONYs are somewhat pickier.

The Denons cost about $500.00, but there is a model with just a CD player that is in the $350.00 range. It has all of the features (minus the cassette deck) EXCEPT it doesn't have all of the CUE and REPEAT features.
Thanks Danny.

Well you guys really have me thinking about the Denon now.

So because I would use it now and again now hot is the headphone amp? Could it keep up when playing drums to a CD? I don't play in bands anymore but I like to jam along to a CD to keep my chops up... well and because I still love playing drums.
High Fidelity
#28
24th March 2007
Old 24th March 2007
  #28
High Fidelity
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C/G View Post
Most CD players with XLR are generally considered more into high end territory, so they might be pricey. I say buy used.

Check out www.audiogon.com It is like ebay for hi fi gear.
Indeed XLR balanced outputs means higher end CD players:

- Unison Research Unico CD (Italy)
- Primare (Sweden)
- Micromega (France)
- Meridian (UK)

Plan B: a decent CD unit (Rega, Creek, Atoll) with DIY passive Lundahl or Sowter transformer (still -10dBu or so) or DIY output board with symetrical line driver Analog Devices SSM 2142, That 1200 series, etc.
#29
24th March 2007
Old 24th March 2007
  #29
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Dozing:

Good question about my claim of increased fidelity when using an aftermarket CD vibration damping device.

(Please note that I am new at this Gearslutz answer business. So forgive me if I answer with too little or too much detail. I am a retired engineer who is having fun learning the art and science of recording music. Worse, I worked in R&D for many years, so both my social and communication skills should be viewed suspicously until proven otherwise.)

The simplest way to answer you is to get you to perform your own experiment, which will cost about $25 (US).


1. Buy 4 'Vibrapods' for your CD player. These cost about $6 ea and are available from many on-line audio dealers (e.g. Music Direct - www.musicdirect.com; Elusive Disc - www.elusivedisc.com; Acoustic Sounds - store.acousticsounds.com) (Better yet, buy them from your local Audio Dealer and give them one of your business cards.) Viprapods are sold by their load-bearing (weight) capacity. Just like shock absorbers for your car, buy the correct size for your equipment.

2. Pick a piece of soft choral music with which you have trouble understanding the words, and listen to it.

3. Install the Vibrapods and listen to the music again. See if you can understand more words.


If you are interested in why this works, read on. (However, if you have a real life, skip it.)


You've probably ridden in a car and hit a pothole. When this happens, energy is transferred and you react by being jolted. If a child is in the car, they are thrown around even more. If there is a bag of groceries in the car, perhaps some of the contents will be thrown out of the bag. So, when energy encounters an object, the lighter the object, the greater the reaction. Also, the faster you are traveling, the greater the jolt.

The tracking drive and laser pickup assembly in a CD are small (and lightweight), and the disc drive spins fairly rapidly (about 200 to 500 rpm depending on the track). If you (a 150-250 lb person) are feeling the 'thump' 'thump' 'thump' of a bass drum, so is everything else in the room - including your CD player. CD equipment makers have done a lot of very clever things to reduce the influence of vibration on the final sound including the use of a very powerful Crossinterleaved Reed-Solomon Coding (CIRC) scheme. However, just as some car makers make better suspension systems than others, and some have better Anti-skid and better Anti-lock Breaking Systems than their competitors, so too it is with CD drive makers.

Some people find that their car 'ride' improves by installing aftermarket suspension gear. Would everyone who drives the same car feel the same difference? No. A lot of it depends on the condition of the roads where you
live, the way your drive, and the way you maintain your car. It's the same thing with CD players. In my room, on the shelf where my player sits, with the type of music I play, and the volume I play it at, my poor little CD player needed some extra help.

Hopefully, this will better explain my comment and give you a way to test things for yourself.

Happy Listening - Jim
#30
24th March 2007
Old 24th March 2007
  #30
Banned
 

I have probebly never plugged a pair of headphones into one of the Denons more than once or twice while testing them!

I usually plug them up to a powered Mackie SRM450 on the test bench.

Sorry for the lack of help there.
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