Dedicated CD Player Recommendation

Hi All,

Feel free to check out my virtual system to see my full system. In a nutshell, I've got an EAD CD-1000, Bryston BP-20, Bryston 4-NRB, and PMC LB-1 loudspeakers. I've got a small 9x9 room and listen to the PMCs nearfield. Last year, I added an inexpensive universal player, Pioneer 563a, and a turntable, Rega P-25, to the system. These, along with some aging ears, have exposed limitations with the CD-1000. Specifically, the treble glare is driving me nuts. The player has tons of detail along with articulate bass, but sounds a bit harsh with most female vocalists or strident recordings. I can throw the same disc into the Pioneer player and lose the glare. While it overall doesn't sound as good as the CD1000, it's a lot easier on my ears.

I've had a chance to audition a variety of players from Arcam, Jolida, Primare, Rega, and Simaudio. Of sub-$1200 players, the Jolida and Rega Planet had a nice smooth sound, but lacked the detail I've come to expect. At the higher price points, the Arcam CD-33 is very nice, but the Simaudio Equinox really grabbed my ears. I haven't brought it home for an audition yet. I would like to hear some other recommendations for players to look at new or used under $2500. I'd really like to hear from any other Bryston/PMC owners what players have great synergy in your system.

I highly recommend the Resolution Audio Opus 21.
It has all the attributes you have mentioned.
Very smooth sound, no treble glare, almost analog sounding in terms of its musicality. You might want to check the reviews here and on Audio Asylum.
Used price is between $2,000 for the older units and $2,500 for the newer units. (The very first batch had some minor transport noise issues, as well as a remote that did not have direct track access. The later units have no such problems.)

My two cents worth anyway.
You might consider a used Sony 777es or Sony SCD-1 cdp. Both are excellent value for the money.

I've got an Audio Research CD 2 and it also might just be what you're looking for. With your digital glare you also might consider an IC change with the correted ICs your music can be the magic you're seeking. I've got aged ears also and Robert @ Ridge Street Audio put synergy in spades into my system with his help by changing IC.
Thanks for the recommendations! I've got a dealer about an hour and a half away who carries Simaudio, Quad, Musical Fidelity, and Audio Aero. I'm going to check and see if I can hear all of these on the same system.

I had a chance to listen to the Audio Research CD3 at a local dealer, but thought it was out of my price range. It had a very smooth organic sound.

Might also want to listen to the Ayre CX7e. The "E" players of recent vintage are a marked improvement over the original CX7. It really doesn't sound digital at all.