Better CD Sound: The Search


Went Big into Vinyl last 2 years, then re-discovered my many CD’s, mixing it up plenty now.

I continue to try and find a CD Player with better sound than my existing cheapo Sony Changer that surprisingly keeps on keeping on.

I am hoping recent upgrades to the system will more readily reveal differences:

99.9999 copper speaker wires and interconnects, locking rca connectors, mx110z tube tuner/preamp overhaul by Audio Classics; cayin a88t bias by VAS; 16 ohm L-Pads replacing 8 ohm pots; and finally a I bought a sound meter to balance/refine the speaker’s L-Pads (it ain’t easy) for the best sound ever.
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CD Quest So Far:

I want dual processors, go used to keep cost down, even consider older vintage.

1. my Onkyo Grand Integra (DX-7500 I think), fixed the damn drawer opening problem several times.

2. This cheapo Sony Changer given to me, eh, use if for parties, why not.
surprisingly sounded as good as the Onkyo to me and friends, gave the annoying Onkyo away.

3. tried used Oppo 83 Video Player for it’s audio

Laser was weak, ’no disc’, found it is a common problem with heavily used lasers. Back it went

4. lightly used Oppo 105. Everything worked, but didn’t sound better than the Sony. Oppo is big, single, expensive, not sellers fault, so I sold it myself rather than return it, lost $205. on that attempt.

5. ’new original stock’ KLH (made by?). played a few discs, then the discs started mis-tracking on discs I know are ok.

found small black bits clinging to the surface in the area of the problems (cds play from the inside out, just guess how far out). Turned out, the belt(s) were dried out, thus when put into motion after years of storage (where?), they shed bits of rubber. Back it went, full refund including return shipping. never compared it to the Sony’s sound

6. Resolved: if vintage, make sure belts are available, get a low price, open it up when it arrives, watch it move ... use, replace belts, return as last choice.

7. Just Bought Two, in transit, One Single; One 6 Disc Changer. (both with oem remotes and power cords, most for sale are missing).

a. Denon DVD-2910 Single Player (big dent on the top. $52. del’d, eBay) (crutchfield keeps old info on their site)
https://www.crutchfield.com/S-6TIPMQKBMUZ/p_033DV2910B/Denon-DVD-2910-Black.html

b. Onkyo Integra CDC-3.4 six disc changer (open box/demo) ($51. delivered) (bserplus.com)
https://www.crutchfield.com/p_164CDC34/Integra-CDC-3-4.html

c. a bag of belts. because I will be keeping something, and I have other old stuff with belts
https://www.ebay.com/itm/334135204014

d. spare rare OEM remote for Integra 3.4, eBay

Keeping My Ears Crossed!

elliottbnewcombjr
I love my Oppo BD 105 Blu-ray player!
I have both my subs connected to it and use the Oppo's built in DSP to control them
I have a portable hard drive connected to it to access 100's of songs  Oh and l use it to watch moves on my 5.1 system, play CD's & SACD  I have it connected (spdif) to my external DAC (Exogal Comet Plus) for better sound quality 
I agree that an external DAC + transport is a good, cost-effective option. I'm using a Cambridge Audio CXC-V2 with a Mytek and it sounds quite good. The Cambridge Audio CXC seems very well built and (reportedly) has good customer service/warranty.

As another poster wrote, it might be best to avoid used players. Repairs are costly and parts are limited to sometimes non-existent (unlike turntables, for example).
GeorgeHiFi a while ago we had several examples of the actual CD ripped VS streaming of the same titles one off the top of my head Dennis Drakes remaster of Ella Fitzgerald Clap Hands probably according to many that know about it the best sounding of any other reissue ever done ,
The streaming issues available weren’t this one that’s for sure.  As for appreciating a more realistic human pitch and timbre I was disappointed with the Holo Audio May KTE dac that no mater what , cable chances even another system a lot better then my couldn’t produce human timbre the other dac could perhaps the May being a R2R has something to do with it the other being a FPGA topology, maybe ,..

I remember that first track we used in the comparison, a random selection of a CD sampler, ,,..I’m not a fan of samplers anyway it was a ripped DALI Volume 5 Title Thirty Five Years the track by Caroline Henderson , Be Here Now ,..This is an exceptionally well done recording,.her pitch and timbre are absolutely stunning with the other dac , 
There are many other examples I have access to thousands of CDs and I get streaming however it really starts with a great recording.
+3 (or 4, 5, 6, I lost track) on the Audiolab 6000CDT plus a DAC.
Or, just get a Rega top loader and be done with it.  I've had many players and transports,   Disk trays, slot loader, most had issues.  I have settled on a modded Rega Planet 2000, very happy with it and no issues...Solidly built and pretty good sound ( I love the Rega sound signature).  Just my opinion which means nada...
Cheers