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MC-X3
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2 channel CD player advice

I hope this is the right place to post this question. I have an older 2 channel system in need of a new source. This system consists of Levinson No. 28 preamp, No. 27 amp, Magnapan 3.5R speakers. The old source RIP was a Proceed MRC 100.

I have been searching reviews and asking around at the local high end shops. Here are a few that I have interest in:
Ayre CX-7e
Primare CD31
Marantz sa-11s1
Class

pearsall001
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Re: 2 channel CD player advice

I would also recommend that you add the Cambridge Audio 840C player to your list. Well worth a listen.

linden518
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Re: 2 channel CD player advice

I strongly second pearsall001's recommendation. My Cambridge 840C is pretty killer w/ the Plinius 8150. Best of all, it has a great Analogue Devices DAC running in dual differential mode (Esoteric players use the same DAC) & so my Squeezebox runs through it, too. You really can't lose.

I did hear the Primare CDP and it was excellent, although I heard it paired w/ the Primare I30 amp... the synergy was probably the clincher. I'd be interested to hear the Primare CDP w/ a different amp.

David123
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Re: 2 channel CD player advice

I'm pleased that you think highly of the Cambridge 840 C. It has received very strong reviews. I am currently running their 640 C v.2 (which I feel is a fine sounding bargain) through a McIntosh MA6900 amp into Monitor Audio SR6 speakers. I am considering upgrading to the Camb 840 C and inputting digital SACD from an OPP0 Universal player. Do you think this makes sense? Another option would be the Marantz 8000 or some other Universal player in the $1000 to $2000 range. Any opinions / recommendations would be very helpful.

Elk
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Re: 2 channel CD player advice


Quote:
I am considering upgrading to the Camb 840 C and inputting digital SACD from an OPP0 Universal player. Do you think this makes sense?


This does not make sense for two reasons:

1) The Oppo does not output SACD in digital form. A SACD's equivalent to a CD's PCM is DSD. DSD is not streamed digitally from the Oppo or any other consumer device.

Even if it was the Cambridge unit could not decode it. The Oppo sends a lower resolution PCM transcoded digital out when playing SACDs, if it even sends any digital out with SACD play. It very well may not. The Oppo won't even send 24/96 PCM, unceremoniously truncating the 24 bit signal to 16 bits.

2) The Cambridge has a much better transport than the Oppo. A CD played on the Cambridge directly has a good shot at sounding better on the Cambridge than if it is played on the Oppo and sent to the Cambridge. This is even before we consider the potential issues of sending the signal over a cable from one unit to the other.

The Oppo is amazing for the money, but it isn't that amazing.

fkrausz
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Re: 2 channel CD player advice

In the January 2008 issue, Kalman Rubinson says "the Oppo DV-980H can output multichannel SACD via HDMI, not only by converting it to PCM, but directly as DSD." That's no reflection on whether the combination of Oppo and Cambridge makes any sense -- I would think the only sensible use of the Oppo's digital output is to send it to an AVR or similar device without its own transport rather than to a more expensive player, and certainly not to a device that isn't equipped for decoding SACDs -- but probably that is what David123 is thinking about.

Elk
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Re: 2 channel CD player advice

Thanks! This helps a great deal. It had not occurred to me that the OP was referencing DSD over HDMI - I immediately assumed over S/PDIF.

(To the OP: the Cambridge CD player does not have an HDMI connection nor SACD decoding so it cannot take advantage of the Oppo's output.)

If I found video interesting I probably would have thought of HDMI first and not considered S/PDIF.

How many AV pre/pros are there that recognize DSD over HDMI?

silvertone
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Re: 2 channel CD player advice


Quote:
I hope this is the right place to post this question. I have an older 2 channel system in need of a new source. This system consists of Levinson No. 28 preamp, No. 27 amp, Magnapan 3.5R speakers. The old source RIP was a Proceed MRC 100.

I have been searching reviews and asking around at the local high end shops. Here are a few that I have interest in:
Ayre CX-7e
Primare CD31
Marantz sa-11s1
Class

David123
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Re: 2 channel CD player advice

Elk and Perfessor, I have been away on bidness. Thanks for the insight. It sounds like you take the Oppo as it is, and by all reports that is pretty good especially for the money. The 840C is probably best as a stand alone as well.

Regards,
David

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