Great cdp's with analog volume control?

My list so far is-

Audio Aero Capitole
Resolution Audio Opus 21
Musical Fidelity CD-Pre 24
Krell KPS-20 - not sure of that model number

Anything else of note? Also, do people think there's anything to be said for having a dedicated pre-amp when using one of these cdp's as your ONLY source?


P.S. Sorry for any weird formatting, I'm writing this from my handheld!
Add my Quad CDP-99 24/192 to the list.
I have heard an improvement in performance of CDP with analog volume control, when the analog output passes through the SCE Harmonic Recovery System box on its way to the amplifier inputs.
This is not a preamp, but an optimizer of signal transfer, which actually is rather impressive, and reasonably priced, especially when purchased used on Audiogon.
For those who want to use a CDP without its own analog volume control, I have been using the EVS Ultimate Attenuators, which plug directly into the amplifier input jacks, providing stepped volume control.
Using both of these devices in the signal path from CDP to amplifier can provide great sound in a single source system.
I have personally owned the following CD players and DAC with on-board volume control:

Theta Miles-balanced version(2X the DAC chips of non-bal.)
Cary CD-308
Resolution Audio Opus 21
Musical Fidelity CD/Pre-24
Quad 99 CD-P

Monarchy Model 33 DAC/Pre-amp
Birdland Odeon Lite DAC

All were at least very good. The Resolution Audio Opus 21 was easily the best!

I currently own the MF CD/pre-24 and Quad 99 CD-P.

I don't miss the hassle or cost of a pre-amp AT ALL!


Hi Reubent,

Thanks for the additions. Looking to sell your CD-Pre24? ;)

I too have heard the Resolution. Fantastic. Have you heard the Audio Aero Capitole?
I'll also advocate for the Opus 21. I've used the Cary 306/200 and Ayre CX-7 (both in need of pre's) and am very happy with my Opus in use of course w/out a preamp.

I've also read/heard wonderful things about the Capitole (who hasn't on the Gon), but I too have not heard it so no help here. When I get the bucks and tire of the Opus, I'll make the move to the Capitole.

Reubent, how would you compare the MF and the Quad?

The Levinson 390S was excellent.

Sorry I didn't see your reply yesterday.

About the comparison between the MF CD/pre-24 and Quad: I have not compared them directly yet. I have listened to both separately and I think they are both very good sounding CD players and they both have excellent functionality (with the MF having many more features and supporting analog inputs). Unfortunately, the MF CD/pre-24 is a little too large for the shelf I need to put it in, so I bought the Quad to stick in that spot as it is much smaller.

I'm taking both to a friend's house this weekend. He has a truely world-class system and I want to see how both do in that type of setup. If you want to know the results, e-mail me next week by using the link on this page. My user name is Reubent.

Lastly, I am probably interested in selling the MF as I don't really want to buy a different audio rack to support it. If you are interested, let me know. It is about 2 months old and I bought it new from a dealer here on AudiogoN.