What CD Player can top this

Hello Audiogon Friends,

I currently have a Cal-Audio Icon Mk II without mods. I am looking for a new or used CD player that can top the Cal sound without spending a "mint"

The Integrated I have is a Krell 400 XI and Aerial 7B Speakers---

Is there a sleeper player out there that you like?

Thanks for your comments in advance!


They do not last long check back often
I had a CAL Icon mk2 with no mods for a while. I didn't care for its soft presentation and lack of transparency. My Audio Aero Prima mk2 was significantly better in all aspects IMO and I absolutely recommend you give one a try.

I've been using a Rega Apollo for a few months.
Ergonomics aside, it has excellent sound.
the cal icon is not soft at all. i owned one and sold it.

what is it that you hope to gain by replacing the cal ?

i think the older cals are much superior--the aria and tempest, e.g. .

i also consider the audionote cd2 superior. it is my reference player. this player is mid 90's in vintage.
Try one of the original Sony Playstations with RCA audio outputs. It puts to shame most stand-alone CD players. Ebay price: $15 + shipping. It sounds silly, but I have compared the sound of this with some nice Wadia, Naim, and SACD players, and it is as good or better than most.

You don't have much to lose...

Try one out.
I second the Audio Aero Prima - excellent player and the best value at that price IMO. Try to get one of the newer ones with Sony transport so that part availability won't be an issue. The Prima captures the texture of instruments and voices better than any other player I heard so far (which includes Rega Planet, Linn Genki, Unison CD, and others).

With Jaybo...Keep the CAL. It beats up on my Audio Aero Prima MkIII. Had to sell that thing. Many 24/192 players just have no soul.
A second vote for the Rega Apollo.
Leahy: You're an absolute riot! So what's it like going through life deaf?
Sony xa 777es. Lots of ways to go with it and a solid to excellent performer depending upon the setup. Naturally.