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Good quality CD changer possible? Denon?

 

New member
Username: Invierno

Post Number: 7
Registered: Feb-04
I've put together a decent sound and home theatre system, the single player for it being a NAD T533 DVD player. However, for convenience, parties, etc. I'd really like to add a decent CD changer to the system. However, I've already spent too much on the system (surprise) so I'd like to limit my costs to about $250 or less.

Any suggestions for a reasonably good 5 disc CD changer in this price range with digital output to receiver. With the digital out DAC's on the CD changer aren't as important as good build quality and stability. Is it even possible to get high quality output in this price range?

I'm currently looking at a Denon DCM280 5-disc CD changer or possibly a Denon DCM380.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions or comments.
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 412
Registered: Dec-03
Invierno:

I auditioned both the Denon 280 and the Denon 380 last fall thinking I would get it to go with my Denon receiver. Frankly, they are among the worst sounding CD players I have ever heard. The sound is flat and two dimensional, with absolutely no imaging whatsover. I borrowed my daughter's Sony CD Walkman to compare it directly to the Denon 380 I was trying out at home and found it had a better sound than the Denon (and only cost $49.95). I also tried out a Marantz CD changer, with similar results. When I complained to the Marantz dealer, he pointed out that the difference in price between the single disk Marantz CD player and their changer was only $10 and told me that the difference is that the money in the changer goes toward the changing mechanism, but in the single disk player, they put much more effort into the sound's analog stages, hence it sounds much more realistic and enjoyable.

Nevertheless, I understand why you want such a player. Certainly, you will not be listening as critically when playing the changer while hosting a party, etc. Yet, the cost from one changer to the next is not that great, so it makes sense to look for a little more quality.

I would look at Onkyo, Yamaha, and Sony. I have not auditioned them, but my in-laws got a Sony several years ago and have been rather pleased. I did briefly hear the Onkyo and my local Onkyo dealer is very excited about it (same guy with the Marantz--he thinks it is a better unit, for whatever that is worth). I also know Yamaha at one time made a very good changer, so perhaps they still do.

Just some random thoughts . . .I hope it is of some help to you. Good luck.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Black_math

Post Number: 28
Registered: Dec-03
I feel the best 5 disc changers made were the Sony ES line. I am not sure if they are made any more. They were very well built, extremely reliable, and sounded good. They only had toslink digital out. The best sounding one that I heard was made by California Audio Labs. I am pretty sure Cal Audio is gone. I would look for a Sony ES model.
 

New member
Username: Invierno

Post Number: 8
Registered: Feb-04
Thanks for the suggestions. I'll see if I can look at and listen to a Sony CDP-CA70ES 5 disc changer. It lists for $300 so can probably be had for $250, and almost all the reviews are quite good.
 

New member
Username: Timn8ter

Seattle, WA USA

Post Number: 3
Registered: Dec-03
The Sony DVPNC685V is a combo player that Sony is apparently selling as a loss leader to get people to try SACD, however, it is a well constructed CD player as well and can be had for less than $250 delivered. The platter is very stable and the DAC is surprisingly good for a player in this price range.
 

Unregistered guest
We have a Bose 321 Surround Sound System, with a single disk CD/DVD player. My husband wants to add a 400 disk changer. Bose does not make a changer for the 321. My research indicates that we would be losing sound quality if we use a large changer. I am willing to pay (within reason!) what it takes to get a good system that will not scratch the disks, and not compromise TOO much on sound. Does anyone have a suggestion?
Thanks!
 

New member
Username: Timn8ter

Seattle, WA USA

Post Number: 7
Registered: Dec-03
You're much better off with a 5 disk carousel type changer rather than something that is sliding disks back and forth. A carousel changer moves the disk into position then lifts it to play it rather than sliding it to the transport. I know how "cool" it is to have a juke box but if you want your disks to last, skip it. It's a fallacy to believe that disks don't have to be treated with care. In fact I get down right angry when people put their greasy fingerprints on them and let them get scratched! ARRRRRRRRgh!
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