We report. You decide.
63 responses Add your response
I am very sorry to learn about your loss. If you don’t have a large collection of physical media (CD or Vinyl), I would suggest to invest in a decent streaming system.
You can get CD or better quality playback through streaming services like Tidal or Qobuz for a monthly fee of $19.99 or less.
Let us know if you’re interested to learn more about streaming setup.
millercarbon, yes the obvious options are teh streaming service lalitk (Ialitk?) suggests and a turntable. How available are vinyl LPs these days, and how much do they go for?
I lost a few boxes of vinyl LPs and a few hundred CDs in the fire as well.
The vinyl was old rock and roll, and the CDs were almost all mainstream jazz and classical, what I listen to now. Haven’t had a turntable in decades but I have listened to the same LP on CD and vinyl on a very good system and there is no comparison. I want to go vinyl, but I need to get a sense of the vinyl source world, what’s out there, how expensive is it, before buying a turntable.
Thanks fo you both.
My condolences for your loss. This is never an easy experience no matter the Audio system's cost. The best news is that there has never been a better time for a cd player, especially, if you are going to continue purchasing CDs.
You owned classic Creek models. If you like the house sound seek out one of the newer players. Unlike the 43/53, the newer spinners are sourced to china. Make certain parts are available for repair/service. Otherwise, find a local or nearest dealer/retailer and listen, listen, listen. Have fun discovering modern players.
That’s amazing that Best Buy will stop selling CD’s. I wonder if they will still sell vinyl. That would be an incredible turn of events if they did.
Too bad insurance won’t just give you the money the player is worth. Are you required to replace the item? Research what the law and policy says. if so, do you play Blu-ray? Maybe you could get a nice unit that plays all formats.
i recently pulled some CDs out from a rack for the first time in many years.... to temporarily tape them to a wall or sound baffle while I bounced a laser beam off them for positioning speakers or sound baffles for first reflection point. the CDs nice reflective surface and light weight make them ideal. I’m glad I finally found a use for CDs.
For a CD player with outstanding analog output that is likely to hold value, I'd recommend the Bryston BCD-3 or an OPPO disc player (you'd have to look on the secondhand market). Hard for me to guess as to what's equivalent to a Creek Audio CD53 though.
For what it's worth, I still buy a lot of CDs and even if Best Buy stops carrying them in stores you will still be able to order CDs online. Target has exclusive versions of CD releases, as does Japan.
I believe to get equivalent playback from vinyl as from digital, vinyl is more expensive, both in hardware and software. Since your post refers to CD playback I will suggest that you consider the purchase of a CD transport and a DAC. Having separate DAC will allow flexibility for the addition of streaming services.
What is your budget?
If you don’t replace the CD’s or vinyl, streaming is the most logical path. The debate is whether streaming is as good as direct source play depending on system components and sources. It also depends on how much you want to invest in system components and if replacement parts are still available for used gear. A high end CD transport might set you back $2-4K backed by a separate DAC costing the same. Integrated units solve for both, but I’d focus more on the DAC either in a separate or integrated player. Certain R2R or FPGA DACs provide for best digital to analog conversions, but cost more and are harder to find in an integrated combination.
Marantz, Denon, Onkyo and Yamaha all make decent players at a range of prices. If you’d like to stay with a British brand the Cambridge Audio AXC35 is a good bet. I have the Cambridge CXC transport and think it’s a great value. If you want to add a separate DAC later most have a digital output in addition to the analog output.
Picking up from your post above, the cost of Vinyl and setup varies. I don’t own Vinyl so I would defer the advise to someone else.
If you’re not ready to give up on CD’s yet then like other have suggested, buy a CD player and continue to rebuild your collection. I would highly recommend a Marantz player.
Before you re-invest in a CD player, visit a friend or a store for a demo on streaming setup. I think you will be pleasantly surprised how good digital streaming has gotten not to mention the accessibility of all of your favorite tunes at your finger tips.
Sorry about the fire and your loss. I would not hesitate on getting a new CD player or transport/DAC combo. CDs will be around for quite some time even though Best buy is discontinuing them also I wouldn't listen to the vinyl only crowd that CDs will be gone soon (isn't that what they said about vinyl 30 years ago).
I currently own a Rega Saturn R and CEC TL2X in my system the Rega is my DAC and backup CD player This past fall I sent the CEC transport to the only service center here in the US and had the "Royal treatment" done to it. The piece is 26 years old and is a gem IMHO it was worth th$700.00 to have it refurbed.
The point I'm trying to make is yes get yourself a good player or transport/DAC.
One of the biggest problems with streamers are that technology has become the master not the servant. I still like the physical media.
Audiolab CDT6000 transport and a musical fidelity v90 dac do it for me. Terrifically detailed sound with a touch of warmth. This is on top of both my Marantz sa8005 sacd player and Marantz compact hdcd1 redbook player I own. I am experimenting.....Marantz makes some really nice cd players, and uhm some nice amps too.....rest in peace ken ishiwata.
I'd highly recommend to the OP the Marantz cd5005, it's a really nice player with top notch sound for retail of $399, however I've seen it go as low as $299 occasionally on Amazon if you hit it right.
I too am sorry to hear about your unfortunate fire incident. Until recently I too was a streaming holdout, but I’ve converted and am very happy I did. I find the quality of streaming Qobuz comparable or better than spinning CDs, and although the convenience and flexibility is off-the-charts better than playing CDs, even better is the variety of music I now have at my fingertips. As a result I’ve got a whole new library of albums and tracks I probably would’ve never gotten exposed to otherwise. It’s like whole new musical worlds are being opened to me. So I’d highly recommend turning lemons into lemonade and take this opportunity to enter the streaming world. Very good DACs have never been so cheap, and you can buy a relatively cheap CD player as a transport and pair it with something like a Wired4Sound reclocker and get great results for spinning your CDs (although you may find yourself not spinning many anymore after entering the wonderful world of streaming — I don’t). Obviously going this route will also negate the need for you to repurchase most of your lost CDs as they’re probably already available for streaming. Or, alternatively, you might consider something like the Innuos Zen Mini Mklll, which at around $1500 could be your CD player, DAC, and streamer all in one. Upgrade the DAC later and you’d have a pretty killer front end.
Qobuz was recently offering a special $15/month for their hi-res streaming subscription to early subscribers, and I’d recommend taking advantage of that if it’s still available. I did, and it’s the best 15 bucks I spend every month. Sorry again for your loss, and best wishes for rebuilding better than ever.
Sorry to hear about the fire. I actually love that streaming is taking over to a certain degree. I use a few shops on Ebay for cd's now and buy for really cheap (moviemars, getimportcds, to name a couple). Best Buy now has switched to a random bin of cds in their stores and it is near impossible to find anything. Their vinyl section is growing and can be found back by their home theater department.
IMO vinyl has not peaked in popularity yet. Been buying and playing records from 1959 on. Had a reel to reel or two. Switched to cd for convenience and I thought superior sound at the time, 1983. Did not play vinyl again until just a few years ago. Still have some imports and Mobile Fidelity. There are 3 places to buy vinyl where I live, Redding CA. But no better quality electronics than the local Best Buy provides. BB does not have a Magnolia in the store-but can order for you.
If you have the electronic gear to support it, SACD might be the way to go. SACDs are harder to find, ebay works for me. They sound better, to me, than regular CDs.
Sorry to hear of your loss, especially any pictures or family items. I am not in favor of Chinese products, however my Oppo BDP 95 was not much of a choice, especially used. If your insurance will allow, used gear from Audiogon or other places, lets your money go much further.
Back to vinyl, they were also called biscuits back in the 70s. My favorite electronic variety store Putos 96002, sells new 180 gram reissue records at 25 a pop, he also has used records for sale. He is surprised how fast they march out the door. At other forums the quality of the reissue mix on new records seems to be a bone of contention for purists. Used/new records are available on Discogs as well as ebay. You have so many good choices to make. When possible listen to the hardware with you ears, or in your listening space. Don't forget the various vinyl tools, cartridge alignment in 3 dimensions, cleaners, bubble level and Zerostat. Good luck and happy listening.
I recently moved across country and left quite a bit of stuff behind. I bought a Pro-ject Beatles turntable off Ebay. It should arrive shortly. I see lots of used Pro-ject and Rega turntables on Ebay for a decent spend. There seems to be quite a thriving market for vintage Technics as well. I see lots of vinyl records online via Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Amoeba records. There is more available on vinyl that first meets the eye for a fan of 60s, 70s rock, jazz and blues.
For my Kpop, Jpop, Cantopop and Mandopop fetish, I have to look more at CDs. I picked up an inexpensive Sony CD/SACD player on EBay, which will serve.
It's not the highest audiophile stuff, but as I am retired, I don't have the cash to throw at my hobbies like I used to.
I buy digital for my player/phone and stream music as well. It's definitely more convenient when you are traveling.
Thank you all so much for bringing me into the present of the audio world.
Thanks for your sympathy too. I’ve learned that State Farm (I’ll never swtich) will replace everything I lost with new stuff...but I have to buy it then get reimbursed. If I choose to just take the money instead, say for my 35 year old Pinarello bike, they will accept the value of a new one (3K) as replacement value, then depreciate it 10% a year, up to 80% depreciation...I’d get $600. But if I buy a new one and show them the receipt, they will reimbursed me the full 3K. They will make you whole, IF you have the cash to replace things. Just for those who asked or commented about the process. State Farm came through incredibly on my damaged property. Fortunately the brush fire didn’t get the house significantly, just the storage building.
Anyway, Soix, your great post convinced me what to do. It made me recall that, even with a few hundred CDs, I often had trouble thinking of one I’d like to hear. The greater variety available with streaming will bring enjoyment that will more than make up for small differences in quality. But, I plan to buy a turntable too eventually.
Soix, when you say "Innuos Zen Mini Mklll, which at around $1500 could be your CD player, DAC, and streamer all in one" do you mean that it connects to the internet and does what my computer would otherwise do? Could I get just as good of sound quality if I simply buy a good DAC and hook it to my computer?
Thank you guys very much, now I’m going to have fun studying all the equipment you guys suggested. And they say it’s women who love to shop. :-)
@river251 — The Zen Mini does it all so would take the place of using a computer along with all the other stuff. Hook it into your internet and plug its analog output to your pre or it’s digital out to a DAC and you’re off and running. I was thinking this would make it as easy as possible to make the switch to streaming rather than dealing with a buncha computer crap, which I personally abhor. The Zen Mini also has its own disk drive where you can take your remaining CDs (especially more obscure CDs that might not be available through streaming subscriptions) and just feed them into the unit and it automatically and fairly quickly downloads them to its internal storage so they’d then be as easy to access and play as music through your streaming service. Butt removal from chair no longer required.
I looked and the price of the Zen Mini Mklll it’s actually $1249, but adding the separate power supply would bring a meaningful performance boost down the road. If it fits in State Farm’s budget it would be a big step up to their Zen model at $2599. I’d recommend reading Darko’s reviews of both units not only to get a better idea of their performance level and functionality but also for some good general info on the ins and outs of streamers. Hope this helps, and glad to hear you’re open to the idea of streaming. I find the streaming experience kinda like EZPass — once you have it, the thought of having to wait in line and dig for change to pay a toll seems absolutely absurd and there’s no going back. If that makes any sense. Anyway...
I just started listening to vinyl about a year ago after finding my old vinyl at my moms house. I was torn about a CD player as I had a decent collection. Was going to sell them and just get a node 2i streamer. Ended up getting entry level NAD player which has it’s own DAC. I did also recently get the Node as well. Not ready to give up on CDs just yet.
If you have a DAC you can get a CD transport. I got one on a budget that sounds great. Cambridge CXC CD transport. Sounds much better than anything you can get at Best Buy and it's only $600.00 (400.00 on sale). They say CD's are on the way out but they said that about vinyl. There are so many CD's out there, there will always be a market for a player. The Cambridge transport is a flat out steal.
Thanks again guys. The Zen mini and the Cambridge will, if I understand correctly, require a DAC. Can anyone recommend some DACs?
Thanks, spirifofradio, for the link, will look at it. Thanks badger_erich, I'll look at the Cocktail as well. Not sure what MQA is, will find out. Caljay, do you remember which NAD you have? NAD was respected back when I was checking stuff out, before I settled in with my system.
Can I only get the new Creeks from ebay?
Thanks. I'll be talking to my claim guy in the morning to learn more about the process.
Sounds like a lot of consensus on the Cambridge and Zen. Now to find a DAC.
Several mentions of Oppo, Bluesound and Cambridge which I have all three. What I can say is my Cambridge 851C is better, more refined than my stock Oppo UDP 205 but the 205 is still a great player. Today I prefer using my Bluesound Vault II through the DAC in my Cambridge 851C and since the purchase of my Vault in over a year I haven’t bought a CD as I am more than pleased streaming with Tidal. Not sure I’d spend a lot of money on a stand alone CDP but pick up a Bluesound Vault or Node and look into an outboard DAC from Schiit, Denafrips and MHDT just to name a few. The DAC inside the Bluesound streamers are decent and probably will get one by, but they’re not great but decent for the price; partner with a better DAC and forget about buying CDs for good.
The Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 Digital is a great value at $400. The DAC functionality is very good sounding, it can function as a preamp and has a good headphone output. It works at almost any available resolution and got an EISA Best Product Award. I use one in my office system and can recommend it highly.
What year is this? We have lived in California and Arizona, in close proximity to Best Buy, and I was told years ago that BB was discontinuing CDs. It’s a matter of saturation. Are there really any CDs that you want that you haven’t bought already? Of course not! Unfortunately, the same may happen to vinyl in Barnes and Noble. I was in last week and they are selling tons (yes, tons) of popular titles of vinyl for "50% OFF". Check it out.
Did your CDs survive the fire? Do you have a large collection? Are they not backed up to a HD? If the answer is yes to all 3 questions, then it seems like you will want a CD player. Unless, of course you are ready to ditch the CDs and go with a streaming service.
If you are undecided about replacing CDs with streaming, I would suggest buying a decent inexpensive streamer such as the Bluesound Node2i before buying a CDP. Try one or more streaming services—they all have free trial periods, and the Node2i works with with all of them. It has a decent DAC included, probably about the same level of quality as your old CDP.
If you decide that streaming works for you, great. If you miss CDs, then buy a CDP, and use the streamer for the Internet Radio and perhaps Bluetooth functionality .
CD players will continue to be sold. To many people have large collections that they want to play and CDs will still be sold on line.
Personally I would put most of the money in a good DAC that can be used with all digital sources
I asked myself the same question 18 months ago and because I already have a large CDs collection (I also have vinyls), I got myself a Hegel Mohican (aptly called) which I really enjoy. There will be CDs around for a while, if only in the secondhand market. I don't regret doing buying the unit. Also, call me old fashion, but I hate the idea of paying a monthly fee for streaming (and not having anything the day I decide to stop paying...)
Try, if you can, to lay your hands on a new or used Oppo BDP-103. It will roll your socks up and down. Discontinued, but still in plentiful supply in the $800 range. That way you can play your Cds and DVD and have a 4D picture experience as well. Also makes a helluva good switcher for a multi-source system, and the 103's dandy back panel will tell you what you're getting in to.