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Is a hard drive a better source than cdp?


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This is what I keep hearing - that once lossless files are ripped to your hard drive, virtually any functioning hard drive, that it reads in data into the computer's memory and the software makes sure it is bit-perfect, then feeds your audio system from ram, making all the mechanical issues of a cdp a non-issue. Logically, which is the best I can do because I'm no engineer, this makes sense. But if it's true, why would anyone spend thousands to develop a cdp drive system stable enough to play with minimal error, in real time? A laptop is a lot cheaper than most high end cdps and comes with a huge display for track listings and album art, not to mention full-blown music management software...


I know I must be missing something...




I confess. I\'m an audiophool.

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CDP's predate the current crop of great sounding computer audio solutions, Tim. The cdp manufacturers, and their products, were there even before the earlier, hard-to-accomplish computer solutions. (pre)Existing industries die hard. It is that simple IMO.


--you KNOW, ...we didn't always have computers..... but the original audio equipment was created on the 5th day, along with the automatic transmission, garage door openers and the telephone. *wink*. Please: go forth and have as much or more fun with computers and music as I am!




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Hello again, Mark. I am moving forward. In fact over the course of the last couple of weeks, I've ripped hundreds of cds to this huge hard drive I bought. Right now, I'm listening by plugging my Senn 580s directly into the headphone jack of my iBook. Sounds amazingly good. Once I put a serious dac in there, like the aforementioned Apogee Duet, I'm gonna be in business.


It's hard to imagine how people continue to sell mutli-thousand dollar cdps...




I confess. I\'m an audiophool.

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I won't be purchasing another CD player again. Computers are better than many CDPs up to $10k. Currently real reference CDPs such as the Naim 555 can't be touched by a computer, but for that price I hope they are a lot better.


Given time computer sources will be better than any CDP on the market. When considering the extra features of a computer the CDP becomes even less attractive.


Founder of Audiophile Style | My Audio Systems

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I leave the nit-picky details to others who can hear them. To my ears, on my system, the hard disk and Apple Lossless files are as good as any CD player I've ever heard. Note that I'm not the high-end type; I shoot for about the 98th percentile in performance and am happy. I like music.


I use a Mac Powerbook G4 and an offboard 500GB hard drive with a Benchmark DAC 1 and a Squeezebox. I'm delighted with it.


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