Send an email to Chris West at Naim USA repair.
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I am a big CD fan and own more than 5000 CDs ... perhaps double that number. I have a lot invested in CDs. In the last year or so, I have been buying 'extra' cd only players to have, in the event that I can not get a reasonably priced CD player in the future.
I would not buy a used CD player that is older than 10 years. By that point, a new laser or transport or sled motor or any number of things can start failing.
I have 3 systems, so there are 3 CD players to be concerned about. I have a 14 year old SONY ES SCD 555 SACD changer and it creaks every so often. There is only one SONY facility repairing these SACD players, which is in Loredo. I heard last year that SONY stopped making parts for these players. OK ... My 10 year old Rega Apollo just came back from authorized Rega repair and fortunately Rega is still stocking laser assemblies, as that cost $300 to repair. I have a 12 year old Musical Fidelity CD PRE 24 and so far, so good, but it is a waiting game.
Attached is a link for an article on common cd player malfunctions .
in my humble opinion,go on the site called Vintage Knob, read about the top of the line vintage CD players.
Remember that the cd optical reading system principles have not changed in the last 20 years, but manufacturers have made them lighter and cheaper . As an example, I have a vintage Sony CDP-X7ESD, which weighs 40 pounds has two Burr brown chips(just got those upgraded),and is built like a tank. In order to get the same quality of build and sound, with today cd players, you probably need to spend upward of 5000-6000$. Why Sony:they did invent the process in cooperation with Phillips. And Accuphase still use the Sony Cd Optical reader system from Sony.
Lastly, there are rumours that a new DSD system is being perfected, and would be on the market in the next few months, with sound as good as vinyl! Just rumours!
I'd buy a really well built player to be used as a transport and invest the real money into a DAC. As DACs keep becoming obsolete, you can replace or upgrade them while sticking with a solid transport. Personally, I'd pick up a great universal player as the transport to make sure that all of your discs can be read properly.
"Remember that the cd optical reading system principles have not changed in the last 20 years, but manufacturers have made them lighter and cheaper . As an example, I have a vintage Sony CDP-X7ESD, which weighs 40 pounds has two Burr brown chips(just got those upgraded),and is built like a tank. In order to get the same quality of build and sound, with today cd players, you probably need to spend upward of 5000-6000$."
You have to be careful, though. They played games back then just like they do today. Take the Philips CD 80 for example. It has a reputation for being well built and indestructible. Its very heavy like the Sony. The only problem is all the weight is in the 2 cast iron side plates bolted to the player. Remove the plates and you weigh in at isle #3 at Best Buy. My Wadia 850 and 861 weigh about 40-50lbs. But most of the weight is in the solid Aluminium case.
In some cases I have to agree with your logical explanation. But the fact remain that , to satisfy the accountants, engineers today have to cut cost when building cd players, unless you start looking in machines that are in the upper level of costs, meaning a few thousand dollars.After reading the explanation, I removed the top of my cd player, and ,still, a lot of the weight is actually parts. The technician who upgraded it as been working on HiFi equipment for the better part of 30 years, is certified from different brands, and he mentioned that vintage cd players might be outdated, but as transport, they are still excellent.
I would echo Elevick's comment that you consider an external DAC and your transport of choice. It's been my experience that the DAC and its output stage have more to do with the quality of the sound than the disc spinner and pickup.
It seems that a great deal of the R&D and innovation in audio systems lately has been focused on digital to analog conversion. There are great DACs available these days for not too much money. Pick up one of those tried and true players with a solid transport and digital output and couple it with a state of the art DAC. when the transport dies - as they all eventually do - get another one.
I have tried the Oppo route from the 95 to 103 to a ModWright Oppo 105. This coming from Marantz, Mnintosh MCD500, GNSC Wadia S7i and Burmester 089. I now own a ModWright Elyse DAC. I tried a EAD CD-1000 as a transport (for a week) and the sound combination was the best digital I have ever heard. But, no parts are available for the EAD, so I returned it, and now am looking at a mint Esoteric DV-60 as cd transport. I love the sound of a cd system, when done right. I also use my MacBook Pro with Audirvana.