Best Cd Player under $4000?


My system is the following:Cambridge Azur 840C cd player, Pathos Classic One MKIII,Focal Chorus 826V speakers,Running Spring Audio(Haley) line conditioner,Cardas Golden Reference AC cords and Kubala Sosna Emotion balanced inter. and speaker cables.My system sounds a little bit on the lean side and could have a better soundstage.
I mostly listen to instrumental jazz and acoustic music (piano,guitar),trios/quartets.I'm in the process of upgrading my cd player.

Esoteric SA-10,Bryston BCD-1,AMR CD777,any other ?
erasto
Not denying the importance of careful speaker placement, I would suggest not to underestimate what the source can do. Try listen to a (thoroughly burned-in) Accuphase DP500 and check out soundstage depth and intrument color (others like new Esoteric SA50, Ayre CX7MP or Modwright Transporter might provide a similar ticket, would love to try those). Such a machine will most probably lift a system's musicmaking above timberline.. at least i can say it did in mine, compared to already quite or very fine units like Lavry or Benchmark DACs or AA Capitole, or Transporter.
It may not be as sexy looking as some other pieces, but I still do not think it is the CD player in of itself. When I heard it on a well matched properly set up system, it did fantastically in regards to soundstage and muscle/impact.

You might perhaps pull more detail out of a higher end player were that your problem, but that's not what I'm reading.

Sometimes it can be hard to get a good soundstage without introducing leanness, especially if speakers must be moved far away from wall to achieve the soundstage.

If you can't get the right balance between soundstage and leanless with any single speaker placement, then I would consider looking at how the CD output impedance matches to the amp input impedance and also perhaps look at a more powerful amp.

The Pathos is a fine piece but may not be able to delver enough juice to accomplish what you want.

More power and perhaps also current will enable you greater freedom in placement for soundstage without introducing leanness.

Sometimes when things are too lean, you just need to introduce more muscle!!! The power amp and how well it drives the speakers is the key to that.
The AMR CD 77 is a truly amazing machine; it also carries a $10,000 retail price tag. If you can find a used one for $4,000, grab it! AMR is now shipping a “scaled down” CDP dubbed the CD 777. This unit will give about 80% of the performance of the 77, and will list (in the U.S. market) in the neighborhood of $4,000 - $4,500. Stay tuned!
Hi Erasto,

You know I was thinking.., regardless of what you decide to do with your system, or speakers or whatever, you should give strong consideration, into not spending $4000 on a CD Player only.

First let me say that I absolutely put tremendous value on the importance of a top-notch front-end. I also think that we're all in agreement here that your Cambridge Azur 840C is no slouch. Now, I must admit, that I have not actually listened to it, but I have read the reviews and I have heard the buzz about it, and most people on this thread seem to feel that it's pretty good.

In my opinion CD Transports have not advanced that much in the past 5 years, unless you need a Transport that plays SACD, or some other new High Resolution Formats.

I don't know how tech-savvy you are with the computer, but the future of digital is a High Resolution Music Server Set-Up. So, here is what I was thinking..., regardless of what you decide to do with your speakers. I think you should keep your Cambridge CD Player, use it as a Cd transport, and consider buying an external DAC that can handle 24Bit/96kHz or a, Logitech Transporter that plays High Resolution 24Bit/96kHz Music Files from your computer, if you were unhappy with the internal DAC of the Transporter, then an additional future upgrade can always be an external DAC that plays High Resolution Music Files.

As a matter of fact, you could always buy the High Resolution DAC "first" and use your Cambridge as the transport now, and then later, purchase a Music Streamer. If you do buy an external DAC, then please make sure that it could natively handle 24Bit/96kHz files.

See, if you think about what I'm saying, I'm actually trying to lead you down the High Resoluion Music Server upgrade path now, instead of you investing $4000 now into a better, but somewhat lateral technology move CD Player.

As a matter of fact, anyone reading this who is considering putting a lot of money into a new expensive CD Player, should also consider this path.

Rich
I really loved the Consonance DROPLET CD Player.
Great sound and awesome looks!