what about Oppo?
Oppo is usually considered to excel far above its price range, and... they are coming out with new improved versions.
But... it is always possible that better speakers, room treatments or digital 'shaping' of the speakers (e.g. DEQX or other) would be much more cost effective.
or.. maybe the source material can be upgraded with remasters, etc.
Opo has always allowed you to try a unit for 30 days, a very generous policy, so...
I can tell you positively that an Arcam CD93T is a fantastic player,, if you can locate one. 4 Wolfson DAC's per channel with 24/192kHz upsampling. My friend has had one for years and it sounds great." Acousteel" damping material for vibration and emi/rfi rejection. Independently regulated analog and digital power supplies. One of Arcam’s finest sounding IMHO.
The OPPO BDP105D is great also. It has a fantastic audio section.
Thanks for the suggestions.
My budget does allow for one of those BEE players, so that is an option.
Another one is a Rega Apollo.
Anyone have experience with the Apollo and Creek?
Another option is perhaps to replace the MF V-DAC 2 and use the Arcam as a transport. That would also upgrade my PC music.
I'm not sure if I want to get into the adventure of finding another DAC
IMHO, the NAD516BEE would not be an advancement. I have not auditioned any of the other BEE CD players. I see that the NAD546BEE employs a Wolfson DAC.
Unfortunately I cannot offer any guidance with the Creek equipment. But the Apollo R is built like a tank and sounds fantastic and it employs the Wolfson 8742 DAC. Here is what Rega has on their site...
The original Apollo CD player launched in 2005. It was a huge success selling almost 20,000 units worldwide. The Apollo was a unique player featuring Rega’s own software and control system ensuring no other manufacturers player could sound the same. This key element is carried forward and improved into Apollo-R.
Analogue & digital outputs
Development of the analogue, digital and control domains ensured direct improvements of both analogue and digital outputs making the Apollo-R a perfect partner for the Rega Brio-R amplifier and an ideal ‘CD format’ front-end for the Rega DAC-R. The Apollo-R internal circuitry has also been improved by tightening the PCB layout.
Compact case design
Apollo-R is a top loading design housed in a custom, compact aluminium case matching the Rega DAC-R and Brio-R amplifier.
Dedicated CD mini system remote control
A new dedicated CD remote handset is supplied as standard which also has the advantage of Rega amplifier functionality .
Digital to analogue conversion
The DAC-R and the output amplifier of the Apollo-R have been enhanced using the Wolfson WM8742 digital to analogue converter, the same integrated circuit found in the Rega DAC-R.
The ‘digital’ power supplies feeding the CD processor, optical block, laser diode amplifier and slicer have been enhanced. This is achieved by using the same high performance, low noise power supplies found in the same location within the Isis CD player. This vastly improves the playability, error correction and the ‘inner core’ processing of the digital CD ‘spinner’ part of the Apollo-R.
The discrete output amplifier has been tweaked to reduce the overall THD from typically 0.005% to 0.0025%, whilst at the same time improving the overall sound quality of the output amplifier.
We have improved the user interface control by using a dedicated display micro-processor, which eases the workload on the main control processors giving an improvement in the control code stability, usability and improved speed of initialisation of the disc being played which now matches that of the Isis CD player..."
Based on my budget, I have a shortlist from used classifieds. Any recommendations from these to go with the Creek:
1) Arcam CD73
2) Exposure 3010
3) Exposure 2010s2
4) Creek Evo
5) Creek Destiny or Rega Saturn (would require almost doubling my budget but if it keeps me satisfied longer it may be worth it)
6) Rega Apollo (as recommended here as well)
(just a bit reluctant on the Used Rega because of the potential mech issues)
While this thread isn't that old (~5months) my system has went through alot of changes since.
I ended up buying a Creek Destiny CDP which upon arrival had busted caps. I recapped it and while it was good, it wasn't as good as I'd expected for a top of the line CDP. (I was also never sure if the busted cap may have lead to some sort of damage). For example, it wasn't significantly better than a basic hrt microStreamer DAC.
This lead for a system overhaul where I replaced my speakers to PMC DB1i (super happy about these) and then I sold the CDP and bought PS Audio Nuwave DSD DAC.
I eventually replaced the Creek ammp although that was the least significant improvement (if any at all) and I still think it is an amazing amp. In hindsight I may have just held on to it.
Not from personal experience but the NAD should be a super combo with it.
Please update on your findings
The Creek Classic 5350SE took about 2 weeks to open up. I was surprised by that. I thought it just wasn't as good as my Rotel for a long time. It finally surpassed the Rotel; but by that time my heart had been stolen by the Belles Aria. So the Creek is going back as soon as I get a reply from the eBay seller. During the last days with the Creek at it's best there was quite a difference between the NAD C546BEE and the Oppo BDP-95 on redbook CDs, with the NAD edging out the Oppo by virtue of smoothness and musicality. Unfortunately, keeping them both is a luxury I will no longer be able to afford if I want that Aria any time soon, so I'll be posting it in the near future.
In the meantime my interest has been piqued by a Krell S-300i that I could get for about $700 less than the Aria; but no chance of an audition first. Has anyone had the good fortune to have heard them both...or their close relatives?