I know I know...I know that a lot of people think I am crazy to compare a $150 DVD player with $1000 CDP. I've been reading a lot of good things about the Apollo over the internet, so I bought one. I am happy with it. Look and sound nice. Few days ago, I tried to compare the Oppo DV-970 with the Apollo. I am very surprised that although the Apollo sound better, but to me, not worth the 8X price! The Oppo came close to the Apollo in sound, 8 with 10. I am using NAD C370 with Dynaudio A42. What do you think?
If the Apollo sounded better, it probably is better. 8 times better? Is that a question of price vs. cost. I don't know how to do the math when figuring out value for the dollar for someone else's budget.
Diminishing returns is the usual story with audio. I have a 5 yr old Panasonic DVD player that was a "giant killer" in it's time and it sounds 7 or 8 tenths as good as the Apollo...but I don't regret a bit having bought the Apollo.
I know that the Apollo looks much better on the shelf the cheap Oppo. If I have an expensive system on the shelf, I don't want to see the Oppo next to my Classe, or Bryston, or Naim,...I will feel ashame if people come to my house and saying things like I have that, my cousin have that too,... I want to have something people never heard of, look professional,... Just my thought...
Then what's the point LocQho? I thought it was all about music and how the components should make music as close to the real thing (live music) to your ears. It's not about looks or what your friends think. It's about you, your ears and your budget. If you're buying for the brand name only you won't get much interest on this forum. Sure, looks can be appealing, but what good are looks to how things sound?
Nick, I used AQ King Cobra, KK PBJ, and didn't like them. Now I am using Nordost, and I think it's better but I am still not satisfy. I will try KK Silver Streak to see if they are better. Into audio world is fun. You never satisfy with what you have...
I think Nick might be on the right track. I have the Oppo, and although it works fine as a source, there are things that it just does not do well...at all. I'm not as big a fan of the Apollo as many here, but I would think you would hear quite a jump in overall sound quality.
Depending how you have the two connected you may not be getting anywhere near the Apollo's best. Only as good as the weakest link....and all that.
Try Chord cables with your Apollo. I like how they sound together. I prefer van den Hul but not until you get to silly money. The Chameleon Silver Plus by Chord is reputed to be very good with Rega...I had the Chorus and liked it...the Chorus 2 is supposed to be better but at quite a cost. The Siren is not enough for the Apollo IMO.
I didn't say that I don't like it. Looks nice and sounds nice! I just said that it's a little over price. I am selling it while it's still hot, and will buy it again when cool down, or get a better player at the same price. Technology items losing value everyday...later always better...
I see, well don't get caught in that vicious cycle... Even if you buy a better item at the same price later, that item will also suffer from "depriciation" that's the nature of the electronics game (as well as others). Buy an item not because it's "hot" but because you like (or even love it) and plan to keep it for that.. I think that brings the most satisfaction! ;)
Darren, I know what you meant! To tell you the true, I haven't found a true love system for my self yet! I've tried so many brands, each brand I found some strong things and some weak things. So I am still in search for a love one that I will live with for a long time (beside my wife and my son)
Well, there are at least three of us here who have recently jumped from a low/mid budget CDP + NAD370 to the Naim CD5i.2/Nait5i.2 combo and we're just thrilled with life!
As for whether 10 x Price = 10 x 'Better'... I think audio is far too subjective to judge solely in those terms. It's all about finding something that you love listening to and can afford - this Forum can help suggest avenues of exploration (for example, pointing me in the direction of Naim), but others can't actually decide what works for you. You're on your own there!
Start by asking yourself what it is that you are looking for. What is lacking in the Apollo and other gear you are listening to ? If you can start to put your finger on that, you'll at least have an idea where to start looking. There's no right or wrong answer, and you shouldn't feel that you have to please anyone else but your own ears. Looks count for nothing if it doesn't please the soul.
Art, my intention of "...lacking in the Apollo and other gear..." is really just...what is lacking. Period. If it isn't sounding good, for whatever reason, what does "good" sound like ? Can't start hunting til you know what you're hunting for.
Well Art, when I had NAD amplication I could well and truly hear what was lacking in previous cdp's like the NAD 542, the Marantz 4300, Denon 2900 & 3910. That doesn't mean something else wasn't lacking - I know it was - but he can do worse than NAD to know an Apollo can show what many other cdp's lack.
It sounds like the NAD is the root of the problems to me. Your criticisms of what's missing was exactly why I moved away from NAD.
If you want to hear an Apollo or any other Rega CD player in its best light, a complete Rega system is the minimum IMO. Very few other systems, regardless of cost will show you what a Rega source is fully capable of. Naim, Bryston, Densen, and Roksan will show its true worth, albiet at a higher price.
Hmm... that now prompts my question. I currently have a boutique headphone amp from Meier Audio of Germany, and to my ears it shows off the Apollo very well. But, I am wondering does anyone have experience with the Rega Ear? And if so, can you give me a description of it's sonic signature? Unfortunately most dealers don't have any in stock to audition..
Stu, How about Rotel? I've never heard them before, but I have heard that they provide what I am looing for. Is it true? Actually, I had the Brio when I bought the NAD, and I prefer the NAD over the Brio, sounds better to me. Maybe the Mira will make difference...
"How about Rotel? I've never heard them before, but I have heard that they provide what I am looing for"
Are you into movies? Buy a Rotel. You listen to music? Rotel can eat my (!).
"Actually, I had the Brio when I bought the NAD, and I prefer the NAD over the Brio, sounds better to me."
Rega overall makes a product that is more musical than NAD. But people tend to forget every Manufacturer makes products that are cheap and expensive, and that tends to follow the performance of the product. A 1000 dollar NAD will $#!t all over the 500 dollar Brio. I heard the Brio...not impressed at all...thin sounding..sucked to me. The Mira on the other hand is a different story. It sounds better than any NAD integrated amp in the classic series musically. Try the NAD masters series if you want something to compare to the Mira.
"How will he know what's lacking in the Apollo by listening to it through an NAD"
What???!!! NAD, Rotel, eat me Yamaha, Sony, whatever the amp, he should still be able to hear the clear difference from an Oppo to an Apollo. My system sounds great and I am using a NAD as a pre. What? So? Yeah it can sound better for sure, but that doesn't mean it doesn't sound great the way its setup now, and I couldn't still hear a huge difference in Amps and CD Players.lol. I love u guys. Is it bad to have this many beers so early?
"If you want to hear an Apollo or any other Rega CD player in its best light, a complete Rega system is the minimum IMO."
What!!!??? So a Brio and a pair of R1's? LOL COme on. Rega is better than Rotel, NAD is better than H/K, Naim is better than Wahhoo, Cambridge is better than Yahoo. Whatever, so your telling me if he had a NAD M3 worth 2800 CDN vs a Rega Brio worth 3 cents the Apollo will sound better with the all Rega System. Again, what he used for a product before should be based on what it actually is not only by Brand, but by model, and rage of product line. Whatever though, I love u guys. Im not hear to argue. Where the hell is the follow up?lol Art?
I have a Rotel player in my second system with B&W speakers and am looking to score a nice Rotel integrated for cheap...excellent synergy...not as good as the Rega system but mighty fine budget gear none-the-less.
As a relative newbie to the group and high end audio in general, I'm going to go out on a limb here and feed back some of what I have learned in my short time with these knowledgeable folks. First,source first, first. If I am comparing a $50 used video game machine to a $9,000 reference CD player, and playing both through a $200 HT amp in 2-channel mode through... oh h_ll you guys know what I'm saying, how much difference can I really be expected to notice other than my checkbook? Take that same pair of decks and put them through something far more detailed that reveals everything back to whether someones Neumann mic in the recording session was just not quite right and you have quite a different question. I personally would not be alarmed by this difference and would look downstream for subsequent improvements. The Apollo (based only on what I have read and heard here--but it tends to apply in general) will increasingly pull away from much lesser gear as the total system quality is upgraded. At some point (maybe way beyond where you want to go), the Apollo will have nothing more to offer at which point the source must be upgraded to offer higher levels of sound quality. The money question is how much do you hear and want to hear versus how good do you want to look? [Nobody sees my stuff so I have my answer.] On the positive side, you are reacting to what you hear and that is always the most important thing. Just don't draw conclusions about incremental improvements in the source until you think of the system as a whole and where you want to take it.
I know I know..im just ranting. Pardon me. I know that rega setup is a great little entry setup. But you know what im saying. Every Manufacturer has their up's and downs in the lineup. Comparing the downs to the up's is unfair...Maybe I am not making sense.lol.I agree with all u guys as well though. Im off to bed.lol. Cheers.
"Apollo will have nothing more to offer at which point the source must be upgraded to offer higher levels of sound quality"
Thats my point...it was said that the Rega Apollo would not be able to be fully appreciated behind a NAD integrated. So your telling me that a 1200 dollar CD player would not be able to be appreciated behind a 2800 dollar NAD integrated??ahhhhh wrong. NO!! your right...if wouldn't be appreciated behind..say the 315bee integrated which is a cheap amp. The gentlemen never said which amp he had. Just said NAD...and people assumed it was crap. Ive heard the M3...it is well well worthy of any Rega product. NAD's others...ahh well maybe not. Anyway im realy going to bed now.lol. I hope somebody can make sense of this.
Neil, I think I understand your point and to an extent I agree with it.
One of the things we keep stressing is system synergy. Part of that synergy is balance. Yes an Apollo through an Yamaha can only offer so much, especially if hooked up to Bose speakers. (Sorry sometimes I cannot stop myself.) It will still sound better than a used Playstation or Walkman.
Same if the Apollo was the source behind $20,000 worth of electronics with $15,000 speakers that matched the electronics. It would still blow away the Playstation or walkman.
Where I tend to disagree would be the logic of having the Apollo in either equation. I could understand it with the Yamaha and Bose if you were using it as a starting point to build up from but not with $35,000 worth of other gear.
To me there is a range where the Apollo fits, somewhere between a $2,500 and $7,500 system for example. No I am not saying this is the only situation which to use an Apollo, it is just a range that makes the most sense with me.
My point being having one piece of your system completely outclassing the rest of your gear, seems like a waste of money on that one piece, for this example, the Apollo. The recipicol of that is why let one piece of your kit drag down or limit everything else, as in my 2nd example of the Apollo with $35,000 worth of other gear.
I have both (C372) with B&W 603. I enjoy the trio with classical, jazz, and blues. I also have a Rotel HT amp that sounds better (to me of course) with the Apollo for rock.
My neighbor has an Oppo that I've borrowed. The Apollo is noticeably different to me. More detail and depth of soundstage. More control of bass. Smoother. By leaps and bounds? To me, yes, because it pulls me in more and isn't harsh. 8X more? Who's counting? It must be because I still have it. Just have fun playing with what you can afford.
Having said that. I do think the NAD is limiting. I'd like to marry the NAD and Rotel and get the best of both (not the runt of each)... so I'll keep looking toward other stuff.
"If you want to hear an Apollo or any other Rega CD player in its best light, a complete Rega system is the minimum IMO. Very few other systems, regardless of cost will show you what a Rega source is fully capable of. Naim, Bryston, Densen, and Roksan will show its true worth, albiet at a higher price"
Michael, I think I follow and thanks for your perspective. I did not intend to overstate it quite that much. The OP seemed to be complaining about the lack of much difference in the SQ from the two widely different priced sources. My point was this difference comparing the same two sources would tend to become more discernable as a function of the quality of the downstream gear up to a point where the source quality became limiting -- that's all. I think it supports the synergy argument. My sense is there's a sweet "spot" there where the gear is matched, but I sense it more as a bell curve, with diminishing influence on each side of the bell if you get my meaning. That said, you are probably right that the source has more influent on the overall SQ than the downstream gear, which is why we want to address the source first.
I vote we all have a round or two of whatever Nick was drinking.
Thanks all for giving me so much information for my searching for my perfect system . You are right Nick, I just bought a combo of the Rotel intergrated amp and CDP today. After listening to them for a few minutes, I don't think I want to keep them. Too bright for me... I am still on the road trying to find my lovers...may be Naim and Classe next... I am trying to find a affordable system that I will love but I think in this music world, money first. The more you spend, the better you get...
Locqho- I was sort of in your position a few months back. I liked my system for HT but wanted to strain toward music, so I needed to upgrade. I know the situation was a bit different for reasoning behind upgrading, but your still in the same situation. I went out there and listened, and listened and listened. Finding what I liked. I started with the Source upgrades first. I bought an Apollo. I narrowed it down between the Apollo and the similar priced Arcam. I brought both home, and the Apollo won. I then went to amplification, and bought a Bryston. My next purchase is going to be a Bryston Pre Amp. How do I know this? From listening to a lot of gear, and clearly hearing what I liked. And knowing that the NAD brings the system down. Sure it still sounds good, but not as good as the Bryston or Rega should sound. Your on the right track by listening to a lot of gear. If your ear is anything like mine, I would recommend the repurchase of the Apollo, but this time with a Mira3 integrated or a used Bryston or MAC. I have a feeling any of those combo's will make you a happy listener. Cheers.
Locqho, just to go back to your original problem for a minute. When I started to upgrade my system I upgraded the source first, which I think most here agree is a good approach. At the time I was using a NAD receiver which would be inferior to your NAD amp I expect. When I popped the new source in (remember you will not hear its best for 100-300 hours) the difference was immediate and significant. If the change is what you are looking for, you will hear the difference through that amp. Maybe not ALL the difference it is capable of, but if it is in the right direction you'll know it.