Review: Sony SC-D777es CD Player
In the endless pursuit of better sound, I could not resist picking up a demo SCD-777ES at a reasonable price. I was very impressed with the build quality, as many are, but I was concerned about the CD sound quality since I have an extensive collection of Jazz and Classical CDs that I do not plan to replace with SACDs.
I am happy to report that the CD quality is quite good if you prefer a richer more dynamic sound. It was not overly bright, and was very musical. The different filter options let you easily tailor the sound for the CD you are playing.
However, it cannot compare with the Perpetual Tech P1/P3 DAC in terms of detail, and that magic 'you are there feeling'. The Perpetual P1/P3 comes very close to the SACD sound I heard from the Sony 777, but that is another review.
On SACDs this machine is outstanding. Every aspect of the experience was virtually flawless. Even tonality across a wide bandwidth limited only by the rest of your system, and the soundstage...oh my, an out of body experience is the only way describe it. Close your eyes and you are no longer in your room. It IS that good.
Some have complained about the load time. I did not find to be problem, and is just enough time to get settled comfortably in your chair. I suppose if you just listen to a track or two vs. whole CDs it could become more tiresome.
Mechanically it has been fairly reliable. After about 2 years, the 'stepper' motor had to be replaced, but at no cost since it has a 5 year parts and labor warranty.
There are now 3rd parties that claim to modify the 777 to make it a best in class CD player, but I did not explore this option.
My recommendation: if you can find a 777 used for a reasonable price, lets say less than $1,500, grab it!
Musical Fidelity A3CR Pre/Power
Perpetual Tech P1/P3 Dac w/Modwright
Reference 3A MM DeCappo Speakers
Naim CDX, Rega, Arcam, Denon