Naim CD5 XS CD player Associated Equipment

Thu, 11/02/2017

COMMENTS
Ortofan's picture

... Esoteric/TEAC Grandioso K1 or K-01X, the Marantz SA-10, the TAD/Pioneer D1000MK2 or D600 and the Yamaha CD-S3000.

supamark's picture

Ole'!

lol

tonykaz's picture

Of course there are outfits that only make superb products.

That said,

being an Audiophile mandates individual product selections from a wide range of offerings thought to be the best gear selection available.

Audiophiles are music System builders with their own individual design preferences.

Being an Audiophile is a Mix & Match Statement.

No Audiophile could be happy with an all LINN system, an all Meridian system or even an all Goldmund system.

"Audiophile Nervosa" is the Hobby part of being an Audiophile.

Don't try the Audiophile thing at the Chevy Dealer, they'll send you across the street to the Auto Parts store to hang out with the hotrods.

Hmm, it makes me wonder if the Enthusiast Network would tolerate the Review of a Complete "One Brand Music System" ?

Wouldn't that be a hoot.

Who would be willing to do such a thing ? It'd make for some interesting reading.

Tony in Michigan

supamark's picture

Compare several such systems. While there aren't a lot of mainstream companies that offer a full line of high quality stuff, I could see a real interesting "shootout" between:

Linn
McIntosh
Bryston (they do make a turntable)
Technics (their new TT's and speakers are interesting and well reviewed)

You could bill it in int'l terms - US vs Canada vs Britain vs Japan since all have a lot of successful high end audio equipment makers or in style terms since each company has a strong identity (and all but Technics have a sort of house sound). Is there a German or Scandanavian company that has a full line and meets Stereophile's review criteria for availability in the US?

tonykaz's picture

Of course a big Shoot-out would be a gigantic undertaking. Who could house such an adventure?, RMAF possibly?

Europe has lots of music system suppliers.

I'm kinda looking forward to having a go with Mark Levinson and his latest music system.

Just now, we're able to have Genelec and even Kii make their entire music system contained inside their Loudspeaker enclosure. Phew!

The Genelec even does Room Eq corrections.

Tony in Michigan

supamark's picture

I've still got my pair of Genelec 1031A's that I bought new in 1992. Right now just savin' up a li'l dough to have them serviced/refurbed by the Genelec rep in the US (lightning strike shorted one of the power supplies ~6 years ago) - that's one of the great things about Genelec, they still have the parts to refurb my 25 year old speakers to original spec's (early version, amps are discrete instead of IC's, w/ hand written serial numbers - higher peak SPL for better transients than later revisions). Their new pro monitors, besides the DSP and cast aluminum enclosures, show some very innovative thinking/design. Hell, all those waveguides you see now? Genelec was doing that in the 80's (and popularized it with the 1031/1030 models in the 90's).

That's one thing I don't see mentioned when talking about active speakers - passive x-overs seem to dull transients a smidge more than active x-overs.

It's not just Genelec with room correcting DSP, Dynaudio professional has been doing it for well over a decade (as has Genelec). I'm really surprised it's taken as long as it has for Dynaudio to release active monitors into the consumer market. In the pro audio near/mid-field monitor market, everyone follows what Genelec (and to a lesser extent Dynaudio) does. Barefoot Sound is another company to keep an eye on with their MicroMain and MiniMain systems.

Those new Kii speakers do sound intriguing, but I'm still not sold on moving D/A to the speaker - I don't want to have to replace my speakers when new/improved digital tech comes out and I don't want my volume control in the digital domain. Hell, I'm still running a pair of (partially rebuilt) Boston Acoustics T1030 speakers from 1990 (their last acoustic suspension flagship model) until my Genelecs are refurbed.

Man, I really miss acoustic suspension speakers being common... the bass is so much better. My T1030's bass is the best I've personally heard in a full range speaker, but I've not heard the Magicos - I'd assume their S3 and up models are better in the bass than my "90% of a Matrix 801 at 20% of the price" T1030's per the review in Audio Magazine (I think by Tom Norton, wish Audio was still around though many of their reviewers are here at Stereophile and Sound&Vision).

tonykaz's picture

including B&O are exciting.

Not for the "hair shirt audiophile" who needs to ponder various Amps, Wires, Trusses, room treatments, room placement, peer approval.

I can imagine a listening room that only has two loudspeakers and no rack full of gear, the listener controls the speakers from his iPad. Just as we see Mr. JVS doing in Jana's video of Jason in his home system. hmm.

I want us to have what Jason has, without the fussy, a DSP music system.

Tony in Michigan

ps. the new "1" Genelec series is for the Consumer. ( in colors )

supamark's picture

https://www.genelec.com/studio-monitors/sam-coaxial-studio-monitors (their "The Ones" point source range, really interesting design)

I didn't think they had a consumer version yet. I've always wanted a pair of their long discontinued S30C compact 3 way active with ribbon tweeter. The 1031A was the pro version of the HT208, mine are in the original wood veneer (w/ discrete amps) instead of the textured finish (and IC amps) of the later "producers version".

tonykaz's picture

Yes, I think I am pointing to these 1's with their DSP.

Seems like all of the technically ( engineering ) capable, European Music Companies ( i.e. B&O thru Genelec ) are moving in this direction.

From here ( I suspect ), we'll see the Smart Phone entry level music System ( like the LG Tone ) with the Genelec type speaker being the Up-Grade .

Tony in Michigan

spacehound's picture

And I would also describe it as 'realistic', you have nailed Naim's approach 'down to a T', so to speak.

Three points:
1) Even the entry level Naim CD players are so good one wonders if they are competing with themselves? I realise that they are 'covering the market' with the variously priced players, but owning an earlier lower cost one I wonder if the differences between them is worth the extra cost.
2) At this price I don't see many adding the external power supply when even the lower cost power supply is almost as expensive as the player itself.
3) Using the Naim 'manual' CD tray is in fact much quicker than using the usual self-loading ones. And it never jams. Don't lose the puck :)

Tony in Michigan:
I don't think you would be in any way disappointed in an 'all Naim' system. I have just that with two exceptions, a Chord Dave DAC, mostly used via USB from a computer (I will no longer buy expensive DACs that use someone else's 5-10 dollar 'off the shelf' chip to do most of the work, which I see as merely implementing someone else's ideas as best you can), and Tannoy speakers.
And I arrived at Naim 'accidentally', I did not start off with Naim in mind. But now it's Naim CD player, phono stage (for my rare ventures into vinyl), pre and power amps, and 'streamer'.

I have no connection with Naim other than as a customer.

Pages

Naim CD5 XS CD player Specifications

Thu, 11/02/2017

COMMENTS
Ortofan's picture

... Esoteric/TEAC Grandioso K1 or K-01X, the Marantz SA-10, the TAD/Pioneer D1000MK2 or D600 and the Yamaha CD-S3000.

supamark's picture

Ole'!

lol

tonykaz's picture

Of course there are outfits that only make superb products.

That said,

being an Audiophile mandates individual product selections from a wide range of offerings thought to be the best gear selection available.

Audiophiles are music System builders with their own individual design preferences.

Being an Audiophile is a Mix & Match Statement.

No Audiophile could be happy with an all LINN system, an all Meridian system or even an all Goldmund system.

"Audiophile Nervosa" is the Hobby part of being an Audiophile.

Don't try the Audiophile thing at the Chevy Dealer, they'll send you across the street to the Auto Parts store to hang out with the hotrods.

Hmm, it makes me wonder if the Enthusiast Network would tolerate the Review of a Complete "One Brand Music System" ?

Wouldn't that be a hoot.

Who would be willing to do such a thing ? It'd make for some interesting reading.

Tony in Michigan

supamark's picture

Compare several such systems. While there aren't a lot of mainstream companies that offer a full line of high quality stuff, I could see a real interesting "shootout" between:

Linn
McIntosh
Bryston (they do make a turntable)
Technics (their new TT's and speakers are interesting and well reviewed)

You could bill it in int'l terms - US vs Canada vs Britain vs Japan since all have a lot of successful high end audio equipment makers or in style terms since each company has a strong identity (and all but Technics have a sort of house sound). Is there a German or Scandanavian company that has a full line and meets Stereophile's review criteria for availability in the US?

tonykaz's picture

Of course a big Shoot-out would be a gigantic undertaking. Who could house such an adventure?, RMAF possibly?

Europe has lots of music system suppliers.

I'm kinda looking forward to having a go with Mark Levinson and his latest music system.

Just now, we're able to have Genelec and even Kii make their entire music system contained inside their Loudspeaker enclosure. Phew!

The Genelec even does Room Eq corrections.

Tony in Michigan

supamark's picture

I've still got my pair of Genelec 1031A's that I bought new in 1992. Right now just savin' up a li'l dough to have them serviced/refurbed by the Genelec rep in the US (lightning strike shorted one of the power supplies ~6 years ago) - that's one of the great things about Genelec, they still have the parts to refurb my 25 year old speakers to original spec's (early version, amps are discrete instead of IC's, w/ hand written serial numbers - higher peak SPL for better transients than later revisions). Their new pro monitors, besides the DSP and cast aluminum enclosures, show some very innovative thinking/design. Hell, all those waveguides you see now? Genelec was doing that in the 80's (and popularized it with the 1031/1030 models in the 90's).

That's one thing I don't see mentioned when talking about active speakers - passive x-overs seem to dull transients a smidge more than active x-overs.

It's not just Genelec with room correcting DSP, Dynaudio professional has been doing it for well over a decade (as has Genelec). I'm really surprised it's taken as long as it has for Dynaudio to release active monitors into the consumer market. In the pro audio near/mid-field monitor market, everyone follows what Genelec (and to a lesser extent Dynaudio) does. Barefoot Sound is another company to keep an eye on with their MicroMain and MiniMain systems.

Those new Kii speakers do sound intriguing, but I'm still not sold on moving D/A to the speaker - I don't want to have to replace my speakers when new/improved digital tech comes out and I don't want my volume control in the digital domain. Hell, I'm still running a pair of (partially rebuilt) Boston Acoustics T1030 speakers from 1990 (their last acoustic suspension flagship model) until my Genelecs are refurbed.

Man, I really miss acoustic suspension speakers being common... the bass is so much better. My T1030's bass is the best I've personally heard in a full range speaker, but I've not heard the Magicos - I'd assume their S3 and up models are better in the bass than my "90% of a Matrix 801 at 20% of the price" T1030's per the review in Audio Magazine (I think by Tom Norton, wish Audio was still around though many of their reviewers are here at Stereophile and Sound&Vision).

tonykaz's picture

including B&O are exciting.

Not for the "hair shirt audiophile" who needs to ponder various Amps, Wires, Trusses, room treatments, room placement, peer approval.

I can imagine a listening room that only has two loudspeakers and no rack full of gear, the listener controls the speakers from his iPad. Just as we see Mr. JVS doing in Jana's video of Jason in his home system. hmm.

I want us to have what Jason has, without the fussy, a DSP music system.

Tony in Michigan

ps. the new "1" Genelec series is for the Consumer. ( in colors )

supamark's picture

https://www.genelec.com/studio-monitors/sam-coaxial-studio-monitors (their "The Ones" point source range, really interesting design)

I didn't think they had a consumer version yet. I've always wanted a pair of their long discontinued S30C compact 3 way active with ribbon tweeter. The 1031A was the pro version of the HT208, mine are in the original wood veneer (w/ discrete amps) instead of the textured finish (and IC amps) of the later "producers version".

tonykaz's picture

Yes, I think I am pointing to these 1's with their DSP.

Seems like all of the technically ( engineering ) capable, European Music Companies ( i.e. B&O thru Genelec ) are moving in this direction.

From here ( I suspect ), we'll see the Smart Phone entry level music System ( like the LG Tone ) with the Genelec type speaker being the Up-Grade .

Tony in Michigan

spacehound's picture

And I would also describe it as 'realistic', you have nailed Naim's approach 'down to a T', so to speak.

Three points:
1) Even the entry level Naim CD players are so good one wonders if they are competing with themselves? I realise that they are 'covering the market' with the variously priced players, but owning an earlier lower cost one I wonder if the differences between them is worth the extra cost.
2) At this price I don't see many adding the external power supply when even the lower cost power supply is almost as expensive as the player itself.
3) Using the Naim 'manual' CD tray is in fact much quicker than using the usual self-loading ones. And it never jams. Don't lose the puck :)

Tony in Michigan:
I don't think you would be in any way disappointed in an 'all Naim' system. I have just that with two exceptions, a Chord Dave DAC, mostly used via USB from a computer (I will no longer buy expensive DACs that use someone else's 5-10 dollar 'off the shelf' chip to do most of the work, which I see as merely implementing someone else's ideas as best you can), and Tannoy speakers.
And I arrived at Naim 'accidentally', I did not start off with Naim in mind. But now it's Naim CD player, phono stage (for my rare ventures into vinyl), pre and power amps, and 'streamer'.

I have no connection with Naim other than as a customer.

Pages

Naim CD5 XS CD player Page 2

Thu, 11/02/2017

COMMENTS
Ortofan's picture

... Esoteric/TEAC Grandioso K1 or K-01X, the Marantz SA-10, the TAD/Pioneer D1000MK2 or D600 and the Yamaha CD-S3000.

supamark's picture

Ole'!

lol

tonykaz's picture

Of course there are outfits that only make superb products.

That said,

being an Audiophile mandates individual product selections from a wide range of offerings thought to be the best gear selection available.

Audiophiles are music System builders with their own individual design preferences.

Being an Audiophile is a Mix & Match Statement.

No Audiophile could be happy with an all LINN system, an all Meridian system or even an all Goldmund system.

"Audiophile Nervosa" is the Hobby part of being an Audiophile.

Don't try the Audiophile thing at the Chevy Dealer, they'll send you across the street to the Auto Parts store to hang out with the hotrods.

Hmm, it makes me wonder if the Enthusiast Network would tolerate the Review of a Complete "One Brand Music System" ?

Wouldn't that be a hoot.

Who would be willing to do such a thing ? It'd make for some interesting reading.

Tony in Michigan

supamark's picture

Compare several such systems. While there aren't a lot of mainstream companies that offer a full line of high quality stuff, I could see a real interesting "shootout" between:

Linn
McIntosh
Bryston (they do make a turntable)
Technics (their new TT's and speakers are interesting and well reviewed)

You could bill it in int'l terms - US vs Canada vs Britain vs Japan since all have a lot of successful high end audio equipment makers or in style terms since each company has a strong identity (and all but Technics have a sort of house sound). Is there a German or Scandanavian company that has a full line and meets Stereophile's review criteria for availability in the US?

tonykaz's picture

Of course a big Shoot-out would be a gigantic undertaking. Who could house such an adventure?, RMAF possibly?

Europe has lots of music system suppliers.

I'm kinda looking forward to having a go with Mark Levinson and his latest music system.

Just now, we're able to have Genelec and even Kii make their entire music system contained inside their Loudspeaker enclosure. Phew!

The Genelec even does Room Eq corrections.

Tony in Michigan

supamark's picture

I've still got my pair of Genelec 1031A's that I bought new in 1992. Right now just savin' up a li'l dough to have them serviced/refurbed by the Genelec rep in the US (lightning strike shorted one of the power supplies ~6 years ago) - that's one of the great things about Genelec, they still have the parts to refurb my 25 year old speakers to original spec's (early version, amps are discrete instead of IC's, w/ hand written serial numbers - higher peak SPL for better transients than later revisions). Their new pro monitors, besides the DSP and cast aluminum enclosures, show some very innovative thinking/design. Hell, all those waveguides you see now? Genelec was doing that in the 80's (and popularized it with the 1031/1030 models in the 90's).

That's one thing I don't see mentioned when talking about active speakers - passive x-overs seem to dull transients a smidge more than active x-overs.

It's not just Genelec with room correcting DSP, Dynaudio professional has been doing it for well over a decade (as has Genelec). I'm really surprised it's taken as long as it has for Dynaudio to release active monitors into the consumer market. In the pro audio near/mid-field monitor market, everyone follows what Genelec (and to a lesser extent Dynaudio) does. Barefoot Sound is another company to keep an eye on with their MicroMain and MiniMain systems.

Those new Kii speakers do sound intriguing, but I'm still not sold on moving D/A to the speaker - I don't want to have to replace my speakers when new/improved digital tech comes out and I don't want my volume control in the digital domain. Hell, I'm still running a pair of (partially rebuilt) Boston Acoustics T1030 speakers from 1990 (their last acoustic suspension flagship model) until my Genelecs are refurbed.

Man, I really miss acoustic suspension speakers being common... the bass is so much better. My T1030's bass is the best I've personally heard in a full range speaker, but I've not heard the Magicos - I'd assume their S3 and up models are better in the bass than my "90% of a Matrix 801 at 20% of the price" T1030's per the review in Audio Magazine (I think by Tom Norton, wish Audio was still around though many of their reviewers are here at Stereophile and Sound&Vision).

tonykaz's picture

including B&O are exciting.

Not for the "hair shirt audiophile" who needs to ponder various Amps, Wires, Trusses, room treatments, room placement, peer approval.

I can imagine a listening room that only has two loudspeakers and no rack full of gear, the listener controls the speakers from his iPad. Just as we see Mr. JVS doing in Jana's video of Jason in his home system. hmm.

I want us to have what Jason has, without the fussy, a DSP music system.

Tony in Michigan

ps. the new "1" Genelec series is for the Consumer. ( in colors )

supamark's picture

https://www.genelec.com/studio-monitors/sam-coaxial-studio-monitors (their "The Ones" point source range, really interesting design)

I didn't think they had a consumer version yet. I've always wanted a pair of their long discontinued S30C compact 3 way active with ribbon tweeter. The 1031A was the pro version of the HT208, mine are in the original wood veneer (w/ discrete amps) instead of the textured finish (and IC amps) of the later "producers version".

tonykaz's picture

Yes, I think I am pointing to these 1's with their DSP.

Seems like all of the technically ( engineering ) capable, European Music Companies ( i.e. B&O thru Genelec ) are moving in this direction.

From here ( I suspect ), we'll see the Smart Phone entry level music System ( like the LG Tone ) with the Genelec type speaker being the Up-Grade .

Tony in Michigan

spacehound's picture

And I would also describe it as 'realistic', you have nailed Naim's approach 'down to a T', so to speak.

Three points:
1) Even the entry level Naim CD players are so good one wonders if they are competing with themselves? I realise that they are 'covering the market' with the variously priced players, but owning an earlier lower cost one I wonder if the differences between them is worth the extra cost.
2) At this price I don't see many adding the external power supply when even the lower cost power supply is almost as expensive as the player itself.
3) Using the Naim 'manual' CD tray is in fact much quicker than using the usual self-loading ones. And it never jams. Don't lose the puck :)

Tony in Michigan:
I don't think you would be in any way disappointed in an 'all Naim' system. I have just that with two exceptions, a Chord Dave DAC, mostly used via USB from a computer (I will no longer buy expensive DACs that use someone else's 5-10 dollar 'off the shelf' chip to do most of the work, which I see as merely implementing someone else's ideas as best you can), and Tannoy speakers.
And I arrived at Naim 'accidentally', I did not start off with Naim in mind. But now it's Naim CD player, phono stage (for my rare ventures into vinyl), pre and power amps, and 'streamer'.

I have no connection with Naim other than as a customer.

Pages

Naim CD5 XS CD player

By no means could I undertake a survey of candidates for Your Last Perfectionist-Quality CD player—so far, my ongoing series of reviews has focused on models from Audio Note, Bryston, EAR, Luxman, and Metronome—without including Naim Audio. After all, it was Naim that brought to market the first really good-sounding CD player of my experience: the two-box CDS, introduced in 1991 at a then-staggering price of $6999. In doing so, they convinced me that a digital future might not be so bad after all.
Thu, 11/02/2017

Bill Evans, The Riverside Recordings at 45rpm

For all the stir over newly excavated tapes by Bill Evans (and the stir is justified), the heart of his discography—the stuff for which he's most celebrated now and will likely be for eons to come—beats in the albums he recorded on the Riverside label from 1956–62. All 10 of Evans' albums from this period, plus a Cannonball Adderley album featuring him as sideman, are included in a limited-edition boxed set by Analogue Productions—Chad Kassem's audiophile reissue house in Salina, Kansas—mastered at 45rpm (so the 11 albums are spread out on 22 discs).
Wed, 11/01/2017

Don't Fear The Reaper

Halloween Music: It Was a Graveyard Smash!
Tue, 10/31/2017

Music in the Round #87: Oppo UDP-205 Recordings in the Round

Tue, 10/31/2017

COMMENTS
Anton's picture

It was educational, as well....and I own one!

As a two channel guy, I will add: This baby is even better than Kal said!

tonykaz's picture

Hmm, $1,300.

All things being equal I figured OPPO stuff would be in the $5k range by now.

It's better in all manner of ways, isn't it?

Egads, seems like Oppo is lowering their prices.

And,
this is the same outfit that MSB in Watsonville says is so very high level. Phew.

And it's the Player that Mr. JVS has sitting amongst those very pricey Wilsons.

I'm heading to 6moons to double check your appraisal.

So-far, I'm stammered by your reviewing discoveries.

Tony in Michigan

ps. I'm not a TV / Video guy so I don't follow this 4K stuff.

Anton's picture

Awesome.

"Didn't" find a way to bring up vinyl!

;-D

Kal Rubinson's picture

In a "Manufacturers' Comment," Jason Liao announces that the UDP-203/205 models are now Roon Ready devices and, therefore, can be controlled by Roon via Ethernet. This is, of course, good but please note that this support does not extend to DSD or to multichannel. IMHO, this is unfortunate.

tonykaz's picture

Roon is only music, so far, aren't they?

I thought that they were an off-shoot of MQA people who are an off-shoot of Meridian.

Egads, so many intrigues.

Overall, I contend that things are getting pretty darn good, especially compared to those old 100lb. TV sets sitting in everyone's basement, patiently waiting for a safe way to dispose of them.

I admire your work ( and Professor Waldrip's) in this area buuuuuuuut, as a one time retailer, I can't see regular civilians willingness to spend for quality music gear at the entry level, much less the 5 Channel versions. ( as of today )

Futuristically, I see all music delivery as surround type format, it's the method that can place listeners in the experience. Music in the Round is like being in the Holidome, I suspect it's a logical application of the emerging 4th Generation of music formats.

We have a wonderful music future ahead of us ( I think; in the next 10 years ).

Tony in Michigan

ps. we've come a very long way in the last 70 years, which is only the beginning.

Kal Rubinson's picture

Yes, Roon is just music, afaik, not movies/video. Also, there is a back-story about their relationship to Meridian but they are now quite independent.

tonykaz's picture

I just got an email say'n that our Bernie Sanders is Larry David's cousin, he looks strong enough to run in 2020 ( where I'll again be delighted to help )

This Internet is Shrinking the world around us.

I'm watching Roon

Tony in Michigan

ps. the RMAF17 Seminars are starting to be YouTube released, they're pretty darn good.

Richard D. George's picture

Great review, Kal.

I used to be a big Oppo fan, and I fully realize that the focus of the review is music. But....
If you don't actually spin music discs anymore (which I don't, anymore), the new Sony UBP-X1000 ES is a better purchase if you want to use the player for spinning 4K HDR video discs. I traded in an Oppo 105 and a 103D for two of the Sony units in one house, and will trade in two similar Oppo's in our mountain house next year when the other equipment is 4K HDR ready. The build quality of the Sony is very good (not like "consumer" Sony Blu-ray players) and takes 3-prong IEC power cords so you can use an upgraded power cord. It also has features that are useful to custom installers (Control 4 friendly). And... you can stream video through it, a feature that Oppo has dropped. The Sony unit is half the price of the Oppo.
I love listening to music, particularly high rez files and Tidal (and Spotify) and bit-perfect ripped CD's. I just don't play CD's or SACD's anymore.

Kal Rubinson's picture

Great review, Kal.
Thanks.

I used to be a big Oppo fan, and I fully realize that the focus of the review is music. But....If you don't actually spin music discs anymore (which I don't, anymore), the new Sony UBP-X1000 ES is a better purchase if you want to use the player for spinning 4K HDR video discs.
Thanks but I am not particularly interested in 4K video although I have a Samsung 4k player in my work room.

Richard D. George's picture

Fair enough

Richard D. George's picture

I suspect that there are more than a few Stereophile readers that:

- Already have a decent DAC, in one form or another
- Do not regularly play SACD or DVD-A discs

For the same money as the Oppo, these good folks could buy a Bluesound Vault 2 and connect it to their existing DAC (with a good coaxial digital cable) and:

1) Buy high rez files from HD Tracks and have them automatically download to the Vault 2 (2 TB capacity)
2) Take their existing CD's and rip them (bit perfect) directly into the Vault 2
3) Access existing music files on other NAS's using the Vault 2
4) Stream high rez Tidal using the Vault 2. There is also support for MQA.
5) Access all of the above in different locations in the house if additional Bluesound devices are added later.

I used to be a huge fan of Oppo and have purchased 5 of their players, including a few flagship 105's. In the brave new world, their appeal is now quite narrow in my opinion.

Kal Rubinson's picture

For the same money as the Oppo, these good folks could buy a Bluesound Vault 2 and connect it to their existing DAC (with a good coaxial digital cable)
AFAIK, no BlueSound device does multichannel. Thus, I prefer using my Baetis Prodigy-X server with an external DAC to do those things.

Richard D. George's picture

Fair enough.

My macro level point is that Oppo players used to have very broad appeal (to people like me) and I submit that going forward they will have a much narrower appeal.

Kal Rubinson's picture

Oh, I do agree and a lot of it is that the market it is in has become splintered at the same that Oppo has deleted apps that broadened its appeal.

David Harper's picture

good review but an even better deal is the OPPO 203 which is 99% as good for half the price. I think I read that the two are identical except for a couple of relatively minor circuitry differences which wouldn't mean anything to the vast majority.

Kal Rubinson's picture

Indeed. There is a different DAC but that affects only the analog outputs. Otherwise, a great alternative.

David Harper's picture

and the replies above which criticise the OPPO on the basis of the lack of importance of playing discs anymore are simply wrong. Millions of audiophiles still want an excellent digital disc player. I have absolutely no interest in streaming and files and Tidal and spotify and all that BS.
Nobody has ever been able to reliably and repeatedly distinguish between CD and hi-res in a properly controlled double blind test.

Pages

Music in the Round #87: Oppo UDP-205 Page 2

Tue, 10/31/2017

COMMENTS
Anton's picture

It was educational, as well....and I own one!

As a two channel guy, I will add: This baby is even better than Kal said!

tonykaz's picture

Hmm, $1,300.

All things being equal I figured OPPO stuff would be in the $5k range by now.

It's better in all manner of ways, isn't it?

Egads, seems like Oppo is lowering their prices.

And,
this is the same outfit that MSB in Watsonville says is so very high level. Phew.

And it's the Player that Mr. JVS has sitting amongst those very pricey Wilsons.

I'm heading to 6moons to double check your appraisal.

So-far, I'm stammered by your reviewing discoveries.

Tony in Michigan

ps. I'm not a TV / Video guy so I don't follow this 4K stuff.

Anton's picture

Awesome.

"Didn't" find a way to bring up vinyl!

;-D

Kal Rubinson's picture

In a "Manufacturers' Comment," Jason Liao announces that the UDP-203/205 models are now Roon Ready devices and, therefore, can be controlled by Roon via Ethernet. This is, of course, good but please note that this support does not extend to DSD or to multichannel. IMHO, this is unfortunate.

tonykaz's picture

Roon is only music, so far, aren't they?

I thought that they were an off-shoot of MQA people who are an off-shoot of Meridian.

Egads, so many intrigues.

Overall, I contend that things are getting pretty darn good, especially compared to those old 100lb. TV sets sitting in everyone's basement, patiently waiting for a safe way to dispose of them.

I admire your work ( and Professor Waldrip's) in this area buuuuuuuut, as a one time retailer, I can't see regular civilians willingness to spend for quality music gear at the entry level, much less the 5 Channel versions. ( as of today )

Futuristically, I see all music delivery as surround type format, it's the method that can place listeners in the experience. Music in the Round is like being in the Holidome, I suspect it's a logical application of the emerging 4th Generation of music formats.

We have a wonderful music future ahead of us ( I think; in the next 10 years ).

Tony in Michigan

ps. we've come a very long way in the last 70 years, which is only the beginning.

Kal Rubinson's picture

Yes, Roon is just music, afaik, not movies/video. Also, there is a back-story about their relationship to Meridian but they are now quite independent.

tonykaz's picture

I just got an email say'n that our Bernie Sanders is Larry David's cousin, he looks strong enough to run in 2020 ( where I'll again be delighted to help )

This Internet is Shrinking the world around us.

I'm watching Roon

Tony in Michigan

ps. the RMAF17 Seminars are starting to be YouTube released, they're pretty darn good.

Richard D. George's picture

Great review, Kal.

I used to be a big Oppo fan, and I fully realize that the focus of the review is music. But....
If you don't actually spin music discs anymore (which I don't, anymore), the new Sony UBP-X1000 ES is a better purchase if you want to use the player for spinning 4K HDR video discs. I traded in an Oppo 105 and a 103D for two of the Sony units in one house, and will trade in two similar Oppo's in our mountain house next year when the other equipment is 4K HDR ready. The build quality of the Sony is very good (not like "consumer" Sony Blu-ray players) and takes 3-prong IEC power cords so you can use an upgraded power cord. It also has features that are useful to custom installers (Control 4 friendly). And... you can stream video through it, a feature that Oppo has dropped. The Sony unit is half the price of the Oppo.
I love listening to music, particularly high rez files and Tidal (and Spotify) and bit-perfect ripped CD's. I just don't play CD's or SACD's anymore.

Kal Rubinson's picture

Great review, Kal.
Thanks.

I used to be a big Oppo fan, and I fully realize that the focus of the review is music. But....If you don't actually spin music discs anymore (which I don't, anymore), the new Sony UBP-X1000 ES is a better purchase if you want to use the player for spinning 4K HDR video discs.
Thanks but I am not particularly interested in 4K video although I have a Samsung 4k player in my work room.

Richard D. George's picture

Fair enough

Richard D. George's picture

I suspect that there are more than a few Stereophile readers that:

- Already have a decent DAC, in one form or another
- Do not regularly play SACD or DVD-A discs

For the same money as the Oppo, these good folks could buy a Bluesound Vault 2 and connect it to their existing DAC (with a good coaxial digital cable) and:

1) Buy high rez files from HD Tracks and have them automatically download to the Vault 2 (2 TB capacity)
2) Take their existing CD's and rip them (bit perfect) directly into the Vault 2
3) Access existing music files on other NAS's using the Vault 2
4) Stream high rez Tidal using the Vault 2. There is also support for MQA.
5) Access all of the above in different locations in the house if additional Bluesound devices are added later.

I used to be a huge fan of Oppo and have purchased 5 of their players, including a few flagship 105's. In the brave new world, their appeal is now quite narrow in my opinion.

Kal Rubinson's picture

For the same money as the Oppo, these good folks could buy a Bluesound Vault 2 and connect it to their existing DAC (with a good coaxial digital cable)
AFAIK, no BlueSound device does multichannel. Thus, I prefer using my Baetis Prodigy-X server with an external DAC to do those things.

Richard D. George's picture

Fair enough.

My macro level point is that Oppo players used to have very broad appeal (to people like me) and I submit that going forward they will have a much narrower appeal.

Kal Rubinson's picture

Oh, I do agree and a lot of it is that the market it is in has become splintered at the same that Oppo has deleted apps that broadened its appeal.

David Harper's picture

good review but an even better deal is the OPPO 203 which is 99% as good for half the price. I think I read that the two are identical except for a couple of relatively minor circuitry differences which wouldn't mean anything to the vast majority.

Kal Rubinson's picture

Indeed. There is a different DAC but that affects only the analog outputs. Otherwise, a great alternative.

David Harper's picture

and the replies above which criticise the OPPO on the basis of the lack of importance of playing discs anymore are simply wrong. Millions of audiophiles still want an excellent digital disc player. I have absolutely no interest in streaming and files and Tidal and spotify and all that BS.
Nobody has ever been able to reliably and repeatedly distinguish between CD and hi-res in a properly controlled double blind test.

Pages

Music in the Round #87: Oppo UDP-205

For some months now, I've lived mostly without music. To survive the dust and grit of the renovation of our Manhattan apartment, all electronics had to be covered with heavy plastic, the speakers encapsulated in large green lawn bags, and the listening room partitioned off with a temporary wall. We could listen to music with our little 3.1-channel TV system in the den (eh) or through headphones (not!), or we could decamp to our house in Connecticut, which we did as much as possible. I felt deprived. Now that it's all over, I'm grateful to have it back—and grateful for the improvements in the main system, some of them direct byproducts of the renovation.
Tue, 10/31/2017

Recording of March 1977: Direct from Cleveland

Direct From Cleveland
Orchestral works by De Falla, Bizet, Tchaikovsky, Berlioz
The Cleveland Orchestra, Lorin Maazel (cond.)
Telarc 5020 DD1 (LP). Robert Woods, prod.; Jack Renner, sound eng.; Glenn Glancy, Michael Bishop, disc-cutting engs.

Potentially the best news for perfectionists in years is the announcement of the first stereophonic direct-to-disc recording (in the US, at least) of a major symphony orchestra. Advent records of Cleveland, in collaboration with Discwasher, Inc. of Columbia, MO put four complete and usable runsthrough onto two sets of lacquers. The program was a collection of potboilers—what Sir Thomas Beecham used to call "lollypops"—much of it musically rather trivial, but all ideally suited for demonstrating what a no-holds barred recording can do in terms of sonics: works with bass drum, percussion, deep double-bass material, rich string sonorities" and so on.

Tue, 03/01/1977

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