check out the new amr cd77. It retails for less than 9k and it has been compared to zanden seperates and the emm labs seperates. See the review in 6moons. To answer your question though, yes it's a great player. If you could find 1 used for under 8k than it's worth it but not for the full retail price
Two years ago I listened to Meridian's top of the line CD player at a my local Meridian dealer. I A-B'd it with the G08. I preferred the G08. If you have the money get what your heart desires. IMHO it is unwise to spend big money on digital front ends today (CDP's or DAC's) -- the technology is changing too fast -- I consider the 808 big money, but this is all relative of course.
All that said, if it is your heart's desire to own such a piece, you must take it for a test drive in YOUR system. Do not buy a piece of that calber without a trial in your system.
I agree with Pardales, once you're looking at spending that kind of money you have to hear the cdp in your system before taking the plunge. However, my experience with the 808 was the opposite, it was vastly superior to the G08. That is, (looking at my notes), the soundstage was only slightly larger but there was much greater detail and LF and HF extremes were reproduced with greater ease. While the G08 is an excellent platform, the 808 is one of the best redbook players available. But, it costs three times as much as the G08, so the bang for the buck award would have to go to the G08.
And there are several other players out there now which rival the 808's performance. Many for a few thousand less. Take your time, and insist on in-system auditions.
I'm still living the old analog world. So if you know of any CD player significantly sounds better than Meridian 808, please all by means let me know. Thanks.
Optarchie, no one in the US has yet received the AMR players, which are due to ship any day now. The 808 is $13k, the AMR is $8500, so why quibble over a few hundred when you're saving thousands, not to mention the performance. Don't expect the AMR to turn up on the used market any time soon.
Suggest you do a search here. There was a recent listening comparison, involving 5 audiophiles, that included the 808, EMM, APL, and DCS. The 808 did not come out on top. Of course, that's not to say that you would not prefer it. Just suggest you read the posts and gather more information before spending that much money.
Essential audio: I was reffering to the Meridian. This post was about the 808 and if it was a good player or not and I said to try the amr. Please read more carefully before you post
What I get out from a number of threads is that we have either (1) marketing platform; (2) difference in personal taste; (3)sensitivity to peripheral equipment; or (4) hard to find items thus limited reputable reviews and questionable long-term customer service. Basically there are options, for a price, if I want go beyond the Meridian 808. However I would then face the time required to seek out long distance auditions, or the extensive research in matching up compatible equipment, or the uncertainty in future customer services if it's from a small company. I am not an audiophile trader. I would like to buy something, then replace it about 5 years later when the technology has drastically improved.
Optarchie, thanks for clarifying. Have you heard one?
I own a Meridian 800 Dax v4, and I listen a few times to a 808. And yes this one is a great player. We comparred it to a Esoteric X-01 limited, and the Meridian was superior to the Esoteric. I sold the G08 a few times and for the money it is a great player. But the 808 is from an other leage. But you need equipment of a very high level to understand the differences. At Audiogon you can buy an 808 for about 7800 dollar. For that money you buy a very impressive player. But every part of your system has to be of the same level.
I think I should at least do some traveling to check out the Emmlabs CDSD/DCC2 SE version. The MBL and Zanden stacks require too much work, cost too much, and probably outrun the remainder of my system.
Has anyone made a direct comparison between Emmlabs CDSD/DCC2 SE version and Meridian 808? Thanks.
Secondly, somebody claims the Ayre C5xe actually gives the 808 a run for its money. Any comment?
I do appreciate the comment about AMR. It certainly arouses curiosity from many people. I am just worried if the company will survive. Secondly getting quick service from oversea when needed is not easy.
The Ayre c5xe is a great platform. It is a dedicated 2 channel CD/SACD player that costs well under $7K. It's SACD performance is outstanding, as is its Redbook reproduction. Having said that, as a Redbook player it is not in the same league as the 808. But at half the retail...
Svhoang, service on AMR products sold in North America will be done here.
I have had, in my home, Meridan, Ayre CD-5x, Wadia 861, Esoteric X-03, and the Meitner combo. For me, hands down, the Meitner won. The Meridian was a dealer demo, and fully borken in, they asked me to take it home and compare it to the Meitner stack. I found it to be more congested, and be much less accurate than the meitner, as well as more digital sounding. It reminded me of when I compare Linn to almost anything American, it had good pace, but not good soundstaging, not good definition against the meitner. It was better than the Ayre in almost every way IMHO, and the build quality is outstanding, there should be a dealer near you that has both.