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Help me find a bright sounding CD Player


nokitsch
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Hi all,

 

I know this is a primarily audio streaming forum, but looks like you guys are quite knowledgable and passionate about music overall. Quick story - I gradually upgraded my audio/video system last year. The last upgrade was the OPPO BDP-103, and the aim was to replace two boxes (BD/DVD Player + CD changer) with one. I read all the rave reviews about the OPPO's CD playback capabilities. I installed it expecting a nice sound improvement over my 15-year old Yamaha CD changer. Well, guess what - I don't like it! I know it's supposed to sound "neutral" and Yamahas are knows for sounding "bright," so I guess I like the "bright" sound better, where I can hear the minutia of the high notes, such as the high hats of the drums and those tiny sounds at the end of the acoustic guitar chords (think Nirvana Unplugged). I listen to mostly rock and industrial music, some electro (trip hop, etc.), so I guess that's why I like the bright highs. I will leave the OPPO to play other media, but now on the hunt for a good CD transport with the "bright" sound under $1k. Or perhaps I've got the nomenclature wrong and I am looking for something else?

 

Rest of audio set up - Focal Aria 926 front towers and Nuprime Audio IDA-8 A+D amp. My go to testing album is the remastered Pretty Hate Machine by Nine Inch Nails. All leads appreciated - TIA!

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I don't know the answer to your question, but two things you might want to consider are (1) the high-frequency roll-off with the Nuprime might be part of the problem, and (2) room correction/equalization might be a better way to do what you want.

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You could find one of the old Sony players from the 80's - 90''s for not much money. They would fit the bill.

If you want something new, just use something very cheap, and you will probably find what you want.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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You could find one of the old Sony players from the 80's - 90''s for not much money.
Or Marantz. Or newer Cambridge Audio (excellent upsampling DACs!).
What’s true of all the evils in the world is true of plague as well.
It helps men to rise above themselves.
 
  ―  Albert Camus, The Plague.

 

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I don't know if its worth you having a play with mains cables if the brightness you require is slightly more than what you have?

 

I found 2.5mm twin and earth cable to be rather bright, as well as some of the Nordost cabling.

 

I bought a solid core silver cable (without even thinking of a demo as it was highly recommended) and found this to be way way way too smooth (not bright at all) what ever I used it on in the audio chain.... it has been in the cupboard for years! until my tweeter amp required repair, slotted in a temp replacement amp, way way way to bright! after a week or so not playing music as it was tooooo bright, I remembered the solid core silver cable, put this in and all is almost back to normal..

 

IMO they make a difference...

 

2.5mm twin and earth is pretty cheap to try out ;-)

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I will leave the OPPO to play other media, but now on the hunt for a good CD transport with the "bright" sound under $1k. Or perhaps I've got the nomenclature wrong and I am looking for something else?

 

Rest of audio set up - Focal Aria 926 front towers and Nuprime Audio IDA-8 A+D amp. My go to testing album is the remastered Pretty Hate Machine by Nine Inch Nails. All leads appreciated - TIA!

 

Are you using a digital connection from the Oppo to the Nuprime? If so, there's no realistic way it could have or lack brightness. Someone will mention jitter, but it would need to be quite severe to make an obvious difference, and I doubt the Oppo is that bad.

 

If you want to tailor the frequency response, use an equaliser. That's a far more efficient way of getting what you want than hunting for components that happen to have just the right flaws.

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Are you using a digital connection from the Oppo to the Nuprime? If so, there's no realistic way it could have or lack brightness. Someone will mention jitter, but it would need to be quite severe to make an obvious difference, and I doubt the Oppo is that bad.

 

If you want to tailor the frequency response, use an equaliser. That's a far more efficient way of getting what you want than hunting for components that happen to have just the right flaws.

 

I am using the RCA connectors, but the amp digitizes that input. I want to make sure I am not misunderstood - the only thing I swapped out was the Yamaha CD changer for the OPPO - everything else in my system stayed the same but my CDs sound duller now. Again, perhaps it's the "right" way, and maybe it works better for jazz or classical, but I don't like it.

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I am using the RCA connectors, but the amp digitizes that input. I want to make sure I am not misunderstood - the only thing I swapped out was the Yamaha CD changer for the OPPO - everything else in my system stayed the same but my CDs sound duller now. Again, perhaps it's the "right" way, and maybe it works better for jazz or classical, but I don't like it.

Try S/PDIF or Toslink instead.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have been through a few players/transports in the last few years.

 

My Linn Majik sounded superb, however it was a reliability nightmare and an expensive lesson in purchasing "demo" players.

The replacement, Cambridge CXC (transport) sounded good, especially at it's respective price point, through my DAC (D100).

 

Naturally, I thought I could do better and recently demoed the Moon Neo 260D transport, fell in love with it. Ordered one earlier this week. A day later my CXC started locking up and skipping so it is back for replacement/repair under warranty. Not sure if I will keep it as back-up or sell it upon return and use the funds for a better headphone amp.

 

The 260D (player or transport) is definitely worth an audition of you have $2K to $3K to spend.

 

This will be my last CD player ever as I try and learn as much as possible (with the help of this place) about computer based audio.

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