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What CD player should I get?

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by agw_01, Aug 28, 2004.

  1. agw_01

    agw_01
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    Hi,

    I'm not sure whether this is in the right forum, so my apologies if it isn't.

    I'm looking to replace my Sony CDP-XE270 with something of higher quality. I've heard good things about the XE570, but wouldn't mind trying a different brand.

    I've always had a soft spot for NAD players, but have been hearing good things about Cambridge Audio players.

    Can anyone recommend some good players which I should check out. I have about £150 to spend.

    Thanks :)
     
  2. tom_nieto

    tom_nieto
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    The XE570 is an absolutely awesome player. It really does punch above its weight. I'm annoyed that I didn't listen to people who said that I should upgrade my AV amp's front power to a decent integrated. My XE570 really did well with my new speakers and amp. It lost all the brightness that I thought it had, and I was amazed with the detail that it produced. I'm going to sell it to my brother, but I wouldn't mind keeping it at home for headphone work.

    Look second hand. If you want something really good for your money then this is the only way to go. CD has been about for ages, and a player that once cost a lot of money will still be a really good player. It's a shame that people sell them to buy universal players and the like.

    Check out some of the Marantz players. The 5400 is meant to be really nice.
     
  3. nsherin

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    You could try looking for a NAD C521 or C521i - either new or used for that money. Failing that, try and stretch to the NAD C521BEE - at £200, I reckon it's cracking value for money. Sound definately errs on the side of warm, which is one of the characteristics I like about it. Not sure how much of a step up the CDP-XE570 would be over the 270. I used to own it's brother, the XE370 - basically a 270 but with remote. Not a bad starter player, though.
     
  4. agw_01

    agw_01
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    Thanks for the replies.

    tom_nieto, so the 570 is that good is it? I've had the 270 for quite a few years and always been pleased with it's output. Shortly after getting my player, I saw the 570 for a little more, and seeing all the extra features it had, was pretty annoyed that I could have got a much better player for a little more money had I waited another few months.

    I've been looking at 2nd hand hi-fi gear for a while, mainly on eBay. I know this is probably one of the worst places to look, so could you please recommend some good places to buy from.

    nsherin, I think it was the C541 (or something like that) that I've always had my eye on. Sorry I can't remember the model number, but I'm guessing the C521 is the next model up? I know someone who has a NAD CD player and he says, "What they lack in features, they make up for in musicality". Is this true? I would expect so, coming from NAD.

    So basically, I should look at Marantz and NAD players? I'm going to take my time with this one, as I've made too many costly mistakes in the past by buying the first bit of hi-fi that I've seen... just look at my sig :laugh:
     
  5. Daneel

    Daneel
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    Make sure you have a demo against your old player. I've found very little difference between CD players in this price range.
     
  6. agw_01

    agw_01
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    Thanks for the tip Daneel.

    So, even a player at the bottom end of the market, like my Sony, could sound very close to something by NAD or Marantz?
     
  7. nsherin

    nsherin
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    The C521 is the model below the C541. These were then replaced by the C521i and C541i models, respectively. The latest replacement for those are the C521BEE and C542 models.

    I'd agree with the statement about "What they lack in features, they make up for in musicality" - this is definately true. Whilst there's a couple of features that I wish my C521BEE had - namely optical out (but I've solved this by using a coax to optical converter) to connect to my MiniDisc deck. The other feature is more than annoyance rather than a necessity - when the CD player is in 'Program' mode, you cannot see the time remaining. Also, the player only shows the total disc time remaining, as opposed to track as well when it is in normal mode. Having said that, I'm really being picky here - for the price and performance, it really is an excellent player.

    As has been suggested, demo them against your current Sony and also the Marantz players. It might also be worth having a look at Denon if it is possible.
     
  8. Ovation

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    I'd also give the Cambridge 540C an audition. Or, and I know this is an unconventional idea, the 540D. I compared them head to head when I was looking for a CD player (they cost the same, at least in Canada) and while I fully expected the 540C to be better (it was better to me than other CD players I'd auditioned), the 540D was actually better to me. You might prefer the 540C, but as they are around your price range (I think--not sure about prices on your side of the pond), you should at least try the 540D as well. You might be surprised.
     
  9. tom_nieto

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    Ebay isn't bad, you can pick up some real bargains. Having said that you do have to be a bit careful. If you can arrange pickup then it's better.

    The 570 is really nice, but you could probably do a lot better second hand. It all depends how much you want to spend really.
     

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