CD v. DVD players- sound quality of audio CDs

 

Bronze Member
Username: Jamshed

Mumbai, Maharashtra India

Post Number: 14
Registered: Feb-06
I would really like to know if there would be any dramatic difference in the sound quality of audio CDs between a good CD player (such as the NAD C542 or C521BEE, both of which I believe to be good)and a good DVD player (such as the Harman/ Kardon DVD 32, which I am planning to buy for an all round purpose).
I would like to know if buying a good CD player instead of a DVD player would be better for playing back audio Cds. I could then buy a Cd player and a cheaper DVD player as I rarely watch DVD's. I have a stereo amp (harman/kardon, again) and B & W speakers.
Also, what exactly does a DAC do? I have read that the NAD C542 has a 24 bit DAC whilst the NAD C521BEE has a 20 bit DAC. Does this make a difference to the sound?
What other good CD and DVD players are out there in the market right now for about USD 350 -400?
Thanks in advance...
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 3014
Registered: Feb-05
"I would like to know if buying a good CD player instead of a DVD player would be better for playing back audio Cds."

Yes Yes Yes!!!!!

My Audio Refinement CD Complete Alpha has an 18 bit DAC and runs circles around my old C542. Bits aren't as important as the quality of the sum of all of the parts.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jamshed

Mumbai, Maharashtra India

Post Number: 15
Registered: Feb-06
Thanks a lot Art. I just went and had a demo of the Denon Cd players and I felt that they sounded quite good. What do you think? Are there any other good mid (price) range cd players around?
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 3016
Registered: Feb-05
Cambridge Audio has a couple of mid priced cd players. I'm at work now so I really can't do any research to get the model #'s. One of the best sounding low priced CD players on the market is the Marantz CC4300 changer. I'm not real fond of changers but this machine sounds better than the Denon players all the way up to about 1k (keep in mind that my that I have the Denon DVD2910 in my system with the AR).
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 2131
Registered: Dec-04
Dramatic, yes, perfect, perhaps.
I recently aquired a Rotel 1072 cdp, and the match is perfect for my Rotel amp and listening style.
Good cdp,s can be rather particular in sound, listen very closely.
In short, a good cdp will best a very good, or great dvd player.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Jamshed

Mumbai, Maharashtra India

Post Number: 16
Registered: Feb-06
Thanks guys; will check out the marantz. Don't think that rotel or cambridge audio are widely availible in India though (am from Mumbai).
What about quad and wharfdale? I do know that quad makes cd players and have heard them. They are a bit expensive though...
 

Gold Member
Username: Artk

Albany, Oregon USA

Post Number: 3019
Registered: Feb-05
Quad makes a very nice CD player but it is expensive. It's certainly better than the Marantz but it's 4 or 5 times the price.
 

New member
Username: Jack_dotson

Post Number: 10
Registered: Mar-06
And as a bang for the buck CDP, I'll throw in the Arcam CD-73T.
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 2190
Registered: Dec-04
I have nearly 80 hrs on the Rotel 1072cdp now, and the product is delivering exactly as promised.
This player may over-expose other parts of a less-than-ideally matched system.

The Rotel is capable of incredibly accurate reproduction, is relentless in it's delivery, andwill rock and roll like no other player I have heard.
As of the last week, I have listened to the Nad c542 and Marantz 4500(?).

If the Nad is Berny Mac, family friendly, easy going, then the Rotel is Dennis Miller.
Accurate, articulate and straightforward. In short, a rocker's dream.
The guitars and vocals from the Eagles greatest hits are right there. Zeppelin never sounded this accurate(I never thought that they were).

The Rotel is levelled off a bit with the H/K reveiver as used as pre. The Rotel amp can sniff the cdp and the whole thing sounds well balanced, fast and in your face accurate.

If you want a rock and roll cdp, while spending enough for a good appearance and warranty to match, the Rotel 1072 is a solid piece of equipment for a fair price.($800CDN)
 

New member
Username: Napoleondynamite

Post Number: 5
Registered: Jul-06
Hello! I've recently acquired a HK HD970 CDP, sound quality is fantastic for its price ($530AUD), plus has other bells and whistles (digital input, MP3, etc). I auditioned the Arcam CD73, which was already recommended by someone else in this thread, it did sound nicer, however did have a higher price tag.

Ray.
 

New member
Username: Tiz68

Windsor, Ontario Canada

Post Number: 2
Registered: Apr-07
I purchased a Sony DVD player couple years ago. I am not set up for home theater but did want to be able to play the occasional DVD. Recently I tried it as a substitute for my 14 year old JVC CD player and the audio was HORRIBLE. If a new DVD player sounds that bad in comparison to my geriatric CD player, then I can only imagine how wide the spread is between two modern units.
 

Silver Member
Username: Bvan

Cape Town, Copenhagen,...

Post Number: 274
Registered: Jun-05
Another option is to get the cheap dvd player and an external dac for cd playback.

I'm presently running a $200 Oppo dvd player with Monica2 dac ($125 for assembled pcb; $300 boxed and ready to go). I'm very happy with the sound(owned a Rega Apollo last year so I know what cd can sound like in my system).

dac on the used market(Audiogon) are a pretty safe bet.

Have also owned a Denon 2200 universal player and reckon these are very good all round video and audio players concsidering the price they sell for these days.

B.
 

New member
Username: Zipidachimp

Surrey, B.c. Canada

Post Number: 6
Registered: Apr-07
re: john s.:
I did the identical thing with my wife's samsung unit, labelled for cds and mp3s, and it sounded exceptionally good, played through a yamaha receiver
and paradigm atoms. it sounded better than my old sony cd player.
I'm buying a yamaha dvd player as a result.
was your dvd player specified for cds?
 

New member
Username: Tiz68

Windsor, Ontario Canada

Post Number: 3
Registered: Apr-07
Bvan, thanks for your suggestions. I had not considered outboard DAC before. Honestly, always thought here that a CD player was a CD player. But since my turntable is off for repairs, I'm starting to use my CD player and just not enjoying the sound. So obviously there must be a difference somewhere between the consumer grade decks and the high-end ones like the Rega you mentioned.

Zip, this is where I'm a bit unclear. I keep seeing references to "universal players" around, which to me would imply it plays all formats. But isn't that what my Sony CD/DVD player is to begin with? Or does the term "universal player" suggest something on a higher level than simply being able to play both DVD's, audio CD's, and some other formats like Divx and MPG.
 

Gold Member
Username: John_a

LondonU.K.

Post Number: 4663
Registered: Dec-03
John S,

On other threads, here, "universal player" for audio means that it plays CD-Audio, DVD-Video, DVD-Audio, and SACD.
 

New member
Username: Zipidachimp

Surrey, B.c. Canada

Post Number: 7
Registered: Apr-07
john s.:
your sony player should have an on-board dac, possibly 24/192, or 24/96
on amazon, one buyer related that he mistakenly plugged his rca plugs into the component jack, not the analog jack, with subsequent terrible noise.
very embarrassing to him, lol.
your sony should sound great.
here is my path: dvd-receiver-subwoofer-speakers. sound is incredible with the samsung.
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 6807
Registered: Dec-04
John S.
Yes an outboard dac is always available, the s/pdif output from your transport will work to the dac.
The dac's converters will do usually well, my Classe dac is 192bit, but overruns some music anyhow, in a good way!
 

Silver Member
Username: Rysa3

Houston, Texas

Post Number: 145
Registered: Nov-06
Still really Enjoying the Jolida CD-100a.
 

Silver Member
Username: Shane24

Post Number: 132
Registered: Mar-07
on the subject of cd players I Would say nothing can touch marantz cd players and also nad to an extent... The quality of marantz cd players are stupendous, clarity,depth,soundstage and fairly afforable as well..
Jamshedb check out dv6001(marantz) universal single side disc player, its plays about everything from dvd-audio,SACD, to divx as well 14bit dac video, its also got load of a/v inputs and related, cost about $550(23000rs/approx) I am bent on buying this player..Yeah nad also has some amazin cd players, except in terms of appearence marantz's has the exceptional look compared to nad.. both equally good in terms of quality of sound...
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