Burmester 089 Belt-Drive CD Player

More and more companies at all price ranges are releasing disc players that can also function as a DAC/preamp for other digital sources. Burmester is no exception, bringing their new top-of-the-line CD player to market with both Toslink and SPDIF along with a pair of analog ins on the back and a selectable volume control.

But what makes the $28,995 Burmester most interesting is its belt-driven transport which the company says has the advantage of decoupling the laser from the drive motor, resulting in a significantly higher readout of the CD, which is not afflicted with digital jitter.

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Comments
Norbert's picture

What comes after the belt drive CD player? A pre-amp powered with whale oil? A water mill powered subwoofer? No one from Mensa will buy this item.Thanks.Norbert

Prashant's picture

It amazes me the audacity of a company that could charge this rediculously hefty amount. The world has moved on from CDs a almost decade ago. It's .mp3 everywhere!This is hard to swallow but is a harsh truth.The so called ''hi-end audio'' is dead. & in any case, all Blu-ray/DVD players do play CDs well.However I am sure there will be buyers for this 30 grand CD player. The world still has many rich kids who have a problem figuring out what to do with their wealth!

Paul S.'s picture

I must admit that I have never met anyone who could easily afford a 30K amp. I guess they are hoping to sell a few units to the executives at AIG?

Paul S.'s picture

Oooops, meant to say 30k CD player.

Peter G.'s picture

How long is the belt expected to last? How much will the belt cost to replace? Are there now high end CD belts that will further reduce jitter? I can only hope that one can spend another five grand on belt modifications after replacing the stock power cord and fuses. It's silliness like this that is killing the industry. I would assume that a loss-less file played through a Wadia dock and a decent DAC would at least be as good.

Mike Rodman's picture

As a retired newspaper reporter, I generally continue to abide by the unwritten rule to honor thieves of my own kind. But sometimes I see a report so bereft of journalistic endeavor, I can't help myself (so sue me). Mostly, I'm talking about this: If this 30K piece of jewelry is Burmester's new "top-of-the-line," what's to happen to the poor sap who might've paid a life's savings (or certainly, a reporter's life savings) on the recently introduced, two-box mammoth Model 069? This supplants it because of a few connectors? My point: Ask the damn question. I assume you'll say covering a CES is hard. ... Well, cover a few house fires or multiple murders and try to tell me the same thing. If you can't perform like a reporter, don't try just for the free eats. Feel free to publish my e-mail, my address in Fayetteville, Ark., and anything else to establish this is no anonymous pot-shot. That's Mike R-o-d-m-a-n (just like the despicable basketball player) and I'm in the book.

John Atkinson's picture

Thank you for your comment, Mr. Rodman, but no thanks for the cheap crack about "free eats." Please understand that the role of these blog reports is to _report_ what we saw and heard, not to editorialize. We will publish an editorial wrap-up in the next few days, where we will comment on the wider issues raised by products like this. But for now, all we are offering is accurate reporting.

Dino Milch's picture

It continues to amaze me how netizens or Yanks are so easily angered by items they could not afford. There are plenty of cheap "stereos", feel free to go elsewhere if you feel intimdated by the price tags...

Erik Warberg's picture

Well, just to clear up some misunderstanding. The new 089 CD player from Burmester, is NOT the TOP-OF-THE-LINE, it belongs to Burmester's category "Top Line". the Burmeste 069 is stil the Reference product, hence the link to the "Reference Line", which is the notch above. The latter comes in 2 different versions, with or without external power supply. The fun part, was that I was visiting the Burmester Factory in Berlin today going through the whole line up, production etc. Very interesting!

norbert's picture

They aren't going to tell you how long the belts will last (weeks? months? years?) or how many thousand dollars it will take to change one.That's why we have land-fills.Enjoy this product while people in Haiti die from lack of water or medicine.

bwright's picture

I visited the Burmester room at CES, and was duly impressed by the incredible speed and accuracy of their flagship system. I heard one techno piece sound crystal clear, lean and sharp... and just when I was about to leave (and write it off as another analytic high end offering), an acoustic disc was placed in the deck, and the room was filled with incredibly warm, organic and compelling music. It was somewhat like watching a top NFL running back sprint through a defensive line. Is he expensive? Yes. But the man has an exceedingly rare athletic ability. The price is certainly fair by those standards.

GEORGE's picture

Watching an NFL running back MAKING the money to buy this over priced joke, isn't interesting either. BOTH are over priced/paid garbage. Except CD players don't commit as many crimes as the grossly overpaid football players. You where impressed, if you didn't know the absurd price tag attached to this, you would have listened, and left, without of course coming to the conclusion of how wonderful it is. Another audiophoole.

Ethan Winer's picture

But is this really journalism? What Mike Rodman, and most of the other posters, object to is the implied endorsement of this overpriced silliness. Does Stereophile mention every product encountered at the show? If Stereophile didn't think it was worthy it wouldn't be on this blog page. Or maybe the copy could have included "In the category of most ridiculous product pricing, we were amused to see the Burmester" or some such.

Michael's picture

Obviously, a write up of this silly product is akin to a porn centerfold. Unattainable.

Heywood Jebloumi's picture

Explain to me again why home audio is a threatened hobby.

Jim Anderson's picture

I am always completley amazed by people who obviously have no clue about audio (and video) state-of-the-art. Furthermore, if I find a product is priced too hight, I simply do not buy it, even though I might admire it.

adam's picture

Such hysteria and all over a report of the existence of a CD player. Would you all get so worked up about an expensive car or a house or a watch? If you have some deep heart felt objection to the price of something that you have never heard or experienced, then turn the page. Get off your stupid soap boxes and address the other issues you surely have in your life. I have used a Burmester Cd 001 for 10 years now on a daily basis. The belt is still fine and it represents one of the best musical investments I ever made as it is now worth about a half of what I paid for it.

adam's picture

Such hysteria and all over a report of the existence of a CD player. Would you all get so worked up about an expensive car or a house or a watch? If you have some deep heart felt objection to the price of something that you have never heard or experienced, then turn the page. Get off your stupid soap boxes and address the other issues you surely have in your life. I have used a Burmester Cd 001 for 10 years now on a daily basis. The belt is still fine and it represents one of the best musical investments I ever made as it is now worth about a half of what I paid for it.

Jim Anderson's picture

I have to agree with Adam. How many of you deep pocket gentlemen, have high maintenance wives/GF?:)

Jim Anderson's picture

I just received my 089 yesterday. It is the singular most impressive piece od audio gear I have ever owned. It cost over 3x as much as my old McIntosh MCD500, but is easily 10x better. The soundstage of my Burmester 089 is wide, deep and very 3D like. I see see more into the music and it is very dynamic, yet liquid and very anolog. In fact, when you close your eyes and listen, it sounds like a stat-of-the art turntable. It just does not sound digital in any way.

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