CDP-Front load with Top qualities

Hi there,

I am starting to get the itch for a new CDP. I have been researching and it seems that all of the qualities in a player that I am looking for exist predominately in a top loader. The problem is that I have rack constraints and need a front loader. Based on the reviews and feedbacks that I have found, the players that I would love to have would be:(in no particular order) Audio Aero Capitole MKII, AudioMeca Mephisto II.X, Einstein The Last Player,
Electrocompaniet EMC 1Up, Audio Research CDIII plus a few more that my CRS keeps me from thinking of at this time.

What I would like is a front loader that would give me a more refined sound like the above mentioned players.

Any and all suggestions would be more than welcome.

Thanks and good listening,

Steve Bachman
Phoenix, AZ

Assuming your budget isn't limited EMM Labs is a fine player, the best I've heard yet.
Interesting- I have the same rack issues as you, and that is why I picked up a Vecteur L-4 CDP. Slimline front-loader, but heavy and with excellent build. I now use it as a transport into an Audio Logic 24MXL dac, but can highly recommend the Vecteur for either digital application.
I have been using an Accuphase DP-75V with stellar results, in my system. 1 of the top few players for redbook. It can also drive poweramps directly, no preamp necessary.....
You might want to consider adding the Mark Levinson 390s and the Meridian "G" Series CDP to your list.
Wadia 861 would work well and depending on your budget GNSC does some nice mods. If your system consists of only one source you can also run the 861 direct with no need for a preamp and it is one of the only front loaders that can compete with some of the very best single box players out there today.
Steve, what amp and speakers are in your system and what music do you favor?

Like you I wanted a more refined CDP (even though I still love my Shanling in tube output mode). I chose the Vecteur L4.2 CDP because it is so musical, built like a Swiss tank and has a DAC that more than holds its own with many outboard DACs. A better, more revealing system, especially tubed gear, shows off the L 4.2 best. See

Good luck!
If you you love music (as opposed to audiophile sound) and your system is revealing, I second the Vecteur L-4.2 reccomendation. It's musical, built like a Swiss tank and a super value at $4950. (see Incidentally, their Actinote cables are great with it and are also good value.
I also have the Vecteur L-4- makes a great transport, however I use an outboard (Audio Logic) dac and the combo is much, much better...
Don't use one box, if have budget, i would strongly recommend transport and DAC. Any transport+DAC (even old, cheaper one) will sound better than "one box" player.