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Mr. Clark

WTB: CD Player (Marantz, Rotel, Adcom, Others?)

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So after completing a few extra jobs as well as off-loading some stuff, I find that I have a little extra cash to upgrade some components of my systems. I normally listen to my turntable but thought it time to get a proper CD player (as I'm just using a JVC DVD player that I picked up at a thrift store). 

 

Now, I want to add that I am usually pretty skeptical of CD player upgrades because I don't really know what I'm getting into. For me, the difference between a nice turntable with a great cartridge against a junk table has been night and day. I don't know if I've heard a CD player that has provided me the same difference. That being said, I'd like to lean on some of you here that probably have more experience in the CD player department.

 

While I don't know much, I know that part of what you're paying for when you're buying a CD player is the DAC, and that some players are known to have much better DACs than others. This is where I could use some help because I know absolutely nothing about that stuff.

 

BRASS TAX: So, I'd like to buy a used CD player below $300. That's not a lot, but I got other things in mind for the money too. 

 

Questions: What are some nice brands and models I should be looking into for that kind of money? I've heard Rotel and Adcom are good. I know Marantz to have made great vintage receivers, but that's about it. What should I be looking for? Am I hopeless if i don't have an external DAC? 

 

My current power sources are  a Marantz 2230 and Sansui AU-717. 

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Although a little bit more than you'd like to spend, I would recommend the Marantz CD6005. I bought one last year and am very happy with it. It won't be going anywhere. It also gets great reviews. You may well find one used for 300ish.

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I have owned many fine CD players including a Denon DCD-3520, three Cambridge Audio 840C's, CA 640C v2, Adcom carousel players, NAD C542, etc.  Of all I have owned, none, not even the mighty Denon DCD-3520 and CA 840C have sounded as good as my NAD C542.  It is fast and punchy with detail in spades and will easily come in under your $300.00 threshold.

 

http://app.audiogon.com/listings/cd-sacd-players-nad-c-542-c542-cd-player-with-hdcd-2015-06-05-digital-01060-florence-ma

 

56598.jpg

 

Factory refurbished with warranty from Spearitsound for $249.00 including shipping.

 

Bill

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Have a look at the used professional/studio models for Marantz or Tascam. They are a good value and within your price range.

The usual audiophile brands are very pricey, and if they are less than $30, then they are either ancient or beat to crap.

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Oppo are great.  Do you need super audio support?

If you only need a CD, grab an older Oppo dvd player.

 

If it is part of the HT system get an Oppo 103 (7.1 RCA outputs, toslink, etc.)

It is a 3D blu-ray with 4K upscaling, wired or included wireless dongle (has pandora, netflix, built in etc.) 

It support DSS audio.

It has 2 HDMI ins (you can hook up an AppleTV) and 2 HDMI outputs.

It has two extra USB, you can hook up a Amazon stick.

The USB can mount a hard drive, it reads mp3, flac, etc., it will read video and picture files as well.

The bonus for the older receivers, it has volume control on the remote.  The old DVD players do as well.

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I have owned many fine CD players including a Denon DCD-3520, three Cambridge Audio 840C's, CA 640C v2, Adcom carousel players, NAD C542, etc.  Of all I have owned, none, not even the mighty Denon DCD-3520 and CA 840C have sounded as good as my NAD C542.  It is fast and punchy with detail in spades and will easily come in under your $300.00 threshold.

 

http://app.audiogon.com/listings/cd-sacd-players-nad-c-542-c542-cd-player-with-hdcd-2015-06-05-digital-01060-florence-ma

 

56598.jpg

 

Factory refurbished with warranty from Spearitsound for $249.00 including shipping.

Very good point - you can never go wrong with an NAD CD player. In fact my very first CD player back in 83 or 84 was NAD. Probably one of the reasons I enjoy my Marantz so much, it reminds me of it.

Mr Clarke cannot lose with either brand as far as I'm concerned.

 

Bill

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Anyone have any thoughts on the NAD 522? Seems to be quite reasonably priced. 

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I purchased a used Oppo DV-980H DVD player a few months back and its DAC is excellent.  Don't know what 'chip' it uses but it's way better than anything I've used previously for a CD player.  This is for my two channel setup.  The build quality and sound of this used 980H made me purchase their BDP-103 for my HT.  Guess I'm an Oppo fan boy now.

Here is a 980H on the bay:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Oppo-DV-980H-Universal-DVD-Audio-SACD-Player-with-Original-Remote-Manual-/381290031663?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item58c6a82a2f

 

My two channel receiver is a Harman Kardon 730, similar vintage to your Marantz 2230.  Opus is right: a huge bonus (for me) is having a cd player with volume control.

 

Nothing against any of the other brands suggested.  Good luck Mr. Clark.

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Give the Emotiva ERC-2 or ERC-3 a listen. Both sound amazing at decent prices. You can try the ERC-3 free for 30 days direct from the manufacturer if you like!

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Oppo does sell refurbished units when they are available for just a little more than your budget.  Highly recommend the 103, I have one and love it.

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