I haven't compared it to the CDPs on your list (though it handily beats a Meridian 508.24), but I very much like my Granite 657 tube cdp. Red book is great; it has no sacd, though, I'm afraid. Call Don Hoagland at Granite direct if you're interested. He's been fantastic to deal with (No affiliation, of course.)
Shanling T200 does only 2 channel SACD. Sony XA777ES does multichannel SACD. Not familiar with Audio Aero, but I believe only 2 channel.
I have just finished breaking in a new QUAD 99cdp. WOW is all I can say. The TAS review is correct, great sound, extremely smooth, upsamples to 24/192. Check it out.
Thanks guys. Please keep the suggestions coming. Banksfriend, one other person outside of the forum also recommended the Quad. I am going to check it out. Others?
Does Quad still use those "funky" DIN connectors like they did on their older gear or have they come round to using something a little more universal ? Converting cables from RCA to DIN is a real PITA !!! Sean
I can highly recommend the Sony SCD XA777ES CD/SACD player.
I had one in my system before buying the Meitner Dac6 and
it sounded damn good. I gave it to my brother for his B-day
and it sounds damn good in his system, too. And, his system is totally different from mine. This tells me that the Sony
is not that finicky and will sound good in a lot of systems.
I don't think you will go wrong with the Sony and you can
usually purchase a used one on Audiogon for around 1,600.
Which, IMO, is a pretty good deal for the quality.
Have not heard the Prima or the Shanling T-200.
I highly recommend the Audio Aero Prima. Read my review. This is one sweet cdp. I've been raving about it since I purchased mine, back in Janurary. At this price (about $2200)--I have found nothing that comes close and quite frankly, the Prima goes tete a tete with cdps costing twice the price. It's 90% of its' big brother, the Capitole. And that's a $8500 player. I can turn you on to the guy I bought mine from. He's an authorized AA dealer. Killer prices, honest, patient and audio savvy. Your search may well be over. peace, warren
You miight consider one of the nicer SACD, DVDA, DVD, players with a digital out and use the Benchmark DAC1 for 16/44. The Benchmark was at least as good as the Sony SCD1, at least in our initial comparisons, which is no small feat. I have great respect for the Sony. SACD use changes the comparison, but the major factor will be what you use as software. I have been auditioning the Benchmark and it is better than my Phillips SACD1000 by a large margin in space, articulation, and speed. The DAC1 is not warm and colored as is the Phillips. It is very neutral. Jallen
If you can sacrifice the SACD, you might be able to pick up an Audio Research CD2 for about $1,500 or so. Smooth, liquid and musical, and built like the proverbial tank.
Audio Aero Prima cdp. Had mine well over a year now and no regrets. The $2200 is msrp, so do not let that price scare you, it can be had for less, as mine was. I thought about getting an SACD player, but the AA was far much better as Warren explained earlier. When I am ready for SACD, I will most likely get a Sony SACD player with dvd to go along with my Audio Aero cdp. Another nice thing about the AA is you can skip a preamp and go directly to a power amp. This cdp has a tube variable output stage to this. Good luck in your search.
Eldulcesol, your post confuses me. I own the AA Prima as well. There is NO hookup that allows for a preamp. You're thinking of the Capitale, obviously. I don't understand your post. Is your Prima first generation? I don't get it. That must be powerful stuff you're smoking?? peace, warren
Warrenh, first of all, I do not smoke. So please do not make any assumptions. OK. I do have an earlier version of the AA cdp. What I have is the one that is in the Soundstage review from Ecoustics.com a couple years ago. What I should explain is I can bypass a preamp and connect the cdp directly to a power amp. I have done this with my AA Prima MKI int. amp which has provisions to use it as a pre-amp, power amp and a hybrid int. amp, as I currently use now. When I do connect the cdp to the pre-out power-in, which is the same RCA jack, the volume and input select are bypassed. Therefore, I have to use the volume button on the cdp remote control to adjust the desired listening volume.
I hope this explains to you what I meant in the earlier post. Also, please do not confuse yourself with the int. amp either. Mine is an earlier production model that came with 3 inputs and can be used as a pre amp or power amp.
BTW, I did double check myself before I wrote this to make sure I was not smoking anything. I am not. It works as I explained earlier. Eldulcesol
Just fool'n with ya Eldulcesol. You thought I was serious about the smoking bit? Getoutta here. I didn't realize you had such a thin skin. I'll be more gentle next time. peace, warren
OK Warren. Now getting back to Pen man question about cdp's. Audio Aero Prima cdp is a few steps above the rest in its price range. For stereo listening you can not go wrong.
S#@T, damm it. Hey Warren, you see my lighter anywhere?
Thanks guys, you have definately provided me some food for thought. Any others?
I would just add that, as tempting as some of these
CD players are, I think you also want to start enjoying
SACD. So, again, I recommend the Sony SCD XA777ES. Instead of starting with a CD player and
then adding a SACD player that also plays DVD, I
would recommend getting the Sony SACD player
and then a Pansonic XP-50 DVD and DVD-A player.
That way, between the two boxes, you've got everything
covered and you don't have video play-back mixed
with your CD and SACD playback. You'll end up with
great music AND great video playback and you'll get
it at a decent price.
Thanks Rsbeck. I was also thinking along those lines but was a little unsure of my reasoning. I currently have a Denon 3800 that I use for DVD video and DVD-A which I like very much and it seems to do a very good job. While I would like to add multichannel SACD, I am afraid the redbook CD would suffer too much. Hence, this is really the delima I am facing--SACD vs. redbook. I have read the reviews but what does everyone think about the Sony XA777es for redbook? If I go this route should I consider a DAC as Jallen suggests for playback of redbook? Is there a significant difference between the Sony and the Audio Aero for redbook? Once again, any and all input is appreciated.
I have not heard the Audio Aero, but the Sony SCD XA777ES is great on redbook AND SACD. Your
Denon 3800 plus the Sony would be a great pair --
you'd have all the formats covered. Since DVD-A
needs to be paired with DVD, IMO, it makes sense to
bundle the DVD-A with a DVD player while keeping
CD and SACD playback separate from DVD.