Reimyo CDP-777. APL Denon 3910. Exemplar Denon 3910.
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Linn Unidisk 1.1 A true universal player. Comes in at $11K. Plays CDs, SACD, DVD-A, CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-R, DVD-RW, DVD +RW. It's CD playback is very close to the $20K CD12. Best CD player I've ever head outside of the CD12. Much less being able to play all the other formats. And you get video! Brought out details in CDs we've played 100 times I never knew were there before.
Tell us more about your current system and what you'll primarily be listening to and you'll get more informative responses. Best wishes.
Also, upcoming APL redesigned Teac Esoteric UX-1, to be called NWO-1. All formats, will drive amps directly.
Teac Esoteric X-01, for redbook and SACD: I have heard this particular player a few times and loved it more and more each time.
Teac Esoteric P70/D70 combo, redbook only: possibly slightly better at redbook than X-01. New model in Japan only is called P70VU/D70VU, said to be improved redbook only.
Ultimately, the best player is the one you will buy after falling hopelessly in love with it! It may literally be a matter of 'Love At First Bbyte!'
Frankly, when it comes to source components, I don't understand what difference the rest of the system makes in one's decision. To me, a source should deliver what's on the disk in an uncolored and unadulterated fashion. But, there are those who prefer some coloration. I believe one should add that element later in the signal chain, if desired.
It's silly to say their is one best piece at any price bracket because of personnal taste, along with many fine products are on the market at the same time. If your talking about spending $15000.00 on a redbook cd front end I would recommand you audtion the Swiss made Ensemble DAC and Transport, because I did and found it to be better than many highly regarded CDPs and DACS/transports in my system.
i find it somewhat humorous that people are listing APL's NWO-1 as a best ever even though nobody's heard it yet.
Understandable, Lazarus28. I have heard the Meitner/EMM Labs combo in the same system as the APL Denon 3910 (version prior to the latest), and the APL held it's own. It's reasonable to project good things for the NWO-1 based on what I've personally heard.
But, you're comment is true. Any recommendations made should be based on hearing the units.
My vote -- based on what I heard in my system -- goes to the new dCS P8i. Plays Redbook CD extremely well (upsamples to DSD) and works magic on SACD. You might also want to check out the Audio Aero Prestige. Although it converts DSD to PCM, it might sound great in your system. The Linn 1.1 is another solid contender, though I found it just a tad weak in the bass and I did not like paying for video components that I had no plan on using in my set up. At your price point, there are a number of very capable players to consider. Have fun listening!
Good point Lazarus28. APL NWO-1 is still only a promisary note.
There are only initial specs available at this time.
It looks very intriguing on paper, but no one I know has heard one yet.
We can only guess that -- given its design premises and underlying pedegree, it may eventually be an exceedingly interesting device Please note my usage of the word 'interesting', as in 'worthy of careful analisys'. Whether it will in the ears of some, or many, fall short of, or, equal, or possibly exceed the desirability of any contenders discussed in this thread, is an exercise entirely to be left to the eventual judgment of future digital addicts.
Jack, you kidding? I'm on my worst behavior here. I heard something at APL today that will absolutely blow your mind when it is released. Best digital I've heard to date. Yes, it surpasses the current version of the APL (which we do own). And yes, I admit it, I've started the hype. However, based upon what my wife and I heard today, the hype is well-deserved. Mamma mia! That's all I can say, or the gremlins will be after me.
Guido: I'm not certain just what TRL does with any mod on any player ... and to be frank, I don't care just what they do as long as the results prove worthy of my $550. (And they have on 9 different units for me so far). The combo that I heard was their first P70/D70 mod which went to a gentleman in the San Diego area back in February.
Let me first say that stock, the combo wasn't bad. But once TRL modified it, it had tremendous micro dynamics and stage depth layering. The noise floor greatly dropped and there was less (or better said, next to no) digital harshness. The bottom end tightened up and the stage width went well beyond the speakers on certain discs. It didn't do this stock. Overall, it sounded like analog tape, which if you view my system, I'm very familiar with.
I'm sure that most of the guys that run mod shops only have already worked on one of these combos. Given that some prefer one house sound to another, I can only assume that you'll find one that best suits you.
Boa2: I'm pleased to hear that you have found something that brings joy to your life as much as my TRL SA-14 does. It is truly a special player ...
Jack, if TRL can improve the mighty P70/D70 for $550, my hat's off to them. I auditioned an original unmodified pair last November in Toronto with an exceedingly hard-nosed vinyl-man friend of mine, and he told me that was the very first time he was not pining for his black LPs.
And you are perfectly right: who cares about the color of a cat, provided it kills 'em mice. . . on the other hand. . . I am positive calicos do 'em in much more better! Saluti, Guido
Onn a more sober note, it is worth remembering that Teac America appears to warrant only untampered players purchased first hand from a qualified Esoteric dealer. I fear that any modification, from any source may very well void the manufacturer's warranty. No prob for a 2nd hand P70/D70 which would be already out of warranty by definition. . . but modifying a new one? Auch!
Guido: I agree with your concerns about the warranty, although I've never heard of an Esoteric warranty issue. (Not like a Sony SACD player, for example). Never the less, I'd be concerned, too, although I'd probably take the chance anyway.
I'd be less inclined to take the chance if I hadn't already heard the benefits of modifiying. Stock they are a little thin and the stage is monophonic, by comparison.
I admit, it would be a tough call.
That's the one: Mikrokosmos, in 7 volumes, published by Boosey & Hawkes! Old Bela wrote another excellent two-volume collection for young students, simply called. . . For Children. Really wild stuff! But going back to the Schiff recording of the 3 piano concertos, I have not heard any players that can render the earthy nature of the first concerto and the delicacy of the 3rd with the same solid realism of the X-01.
Paolo, the Bartok concertos are on a Teldec CD (0630-16158-2). I have not compared X-01 and P70/D70 directly, but have heard them on different systems. I suspect Redbook performance differences may be minute. I have purchased an X-01 about one month ago and I am 'in un brodo di giuggiole!' My findings are on several threads here on Audiogon. By the way, I have sent you a PM. Saluti, Guido