Newbie has a question about cd players


Unregistered guest
Like most people, when looking for new electronics I drive down the road to the closest Best Buy or CC. Although recently I have discovered there is a whole other market out there that also cost alot more. My question (which may very well be a dumb one) is what makes, lets say a single disc KRELL cd player that cost $3000+ worth so much more than say the single disc $150 Pioneer, Sony, JVC, Onkyo, etc. I mean the krell may be of better build quality, but they all play cd's. So the quality is there in all of them right? They all have the same features as far as shuffle, random, stop, skip etc. Some one please enlighten me because I really cant see how a $3000 or even a $1000 cd player could be worth the extra money. Thanks

J. Vigne
Unregistered guest
What makes a Ferrari worth more than a Chevrolet Cavalier? They both have the same number of wheels.

Silver Member
Username: Edison

Glendale, CA US

Post Number: 510
Registered: Dec-03
They do sound different - if you compare side by side, this will be evident.

The sound is liquid (smooth upscale sound) and also transparent at top (pleasant quality).

I would buy Shanling 100 cd player on ebay for about ($370 inculding shipping) - this is a good deal on a player considerably better than $150 entry level ones.

Unregistered guest
you should try and keep all components in your system at sane level - don't use 1000$ cd player with 200$ amp & speakers, it is a waste of money.

the cost of the cd player should be around 20-30% of the complete system (in general)

good luck


Silver Member
Username: Wryter

Naples, FL US

Post Number: 215
Registered: Jul-04
If I may - I've been struggling with CD player problems for some time now. But before I begin, please listen carefully to anything that J Vigne says. He knows. Period.
OK - If you only want to play CDs - get a CD-only player. Chances are you'll get better electronics than you will with an "all-in-one" player.
But - BUT - chances are you also want to play DVDs and maybe even the new SACDs or DVD-As. Right? Now you've got a problem.
The differences - thanks to very educated folk such as J Vigne - are in the details inside that cabinet. Better stuff makes better sound. I learned that the hard way!
I'm using a new JVC XV-N55SL. I bought it discounted for $75. Good recommendations. Sigh.
When I upgraded an old, worn-out stereo system I thought I'd be getting great CD sound. WRONG.
after a lot of help from folks on this forum, I realize my mistake. Now, I'll be in the market for a new player - probably a Denon 2910 when it comes out.
Now - why is Krell, et al, "better" than a Sony or Denon? Because it uses Mr. Vigne's Ferrari parts - BUT - that will ONLY sound light-years better (here's the important part) if you plug it into amp and speakers that are of equally high quality.
I'm running a new Onkyo 701 amp and some Polk RTi6 speakers. Would the Krell sound as good as it could sound on my system? Nope.
So - if I were you, I'd plan on getting a CD player that fits your system. What do you have? Think about that, and try to find a CD player just a bit better - you might be upgrading that amp in the near future!
Look at the new Denon 2910 or the Samsung 941 when they come out in September. But again - if possible, audition the unit at a stereo shop.
I made some mistakes and hope that my humble words might be of some help.
Respectfully, Larry R.

Good post Larry R,
If you can try an experiment.
Add a $1500 DAC to a $300 CD player and see what results you get. A good DAC handles Jitter correction, phase and timing issues therefore eliminating the need for such a 'Ferrari' CD Transport. You can see where i'm going with this can't you?
Just something to try.
I'll go along with what your saying about amps but I'd be a little dubious about your claims of speakers. Speakers only amplify the signal that is sent to them. You'll find a lot of speakers performing way beyond there suggested 'budget price' range when used in conjuction with quality equipment.

Silver Member
Username: Black_math

Post Number: 165
Registered: Dec-03

A Ferrari won't get you through rush hour traffic any faster than a Chevorlet and won't hold up to everyday use like the american model will. You do, however, look cooler driving a Ferrari.

I would not take anything from any poster as gospel. Everybody has their own opinion, right or wrong as it actually may be. I feel that the main advantage that a $1,000 player will have over a $150 is the components used in a players output stage. This isn't always consistant and better parts will not always equal better sound. The best thing to do is determine what you want and how much you will spend. Do you want single disc, do you want HDCD, do you need CDRW playback capability, etc...? I would also reccoment going to an independant dealer and listen to some of the more expensive players. The dealer may let you take one home to listen to.

Silver Member
Username: Wryter

Naples, FL US

Post Number: 223
Registered: Jul-04
Anon & Ben James - No way can I afford one of the DACs you mention - would love to! And you are right about the speakers - example, my RTi6s sound much better with FM broadcasts than they do with the JVC player. Sigh. Saving up. . .
Agree on the auditioning in showrooms, with one caveat: remember that the sound there is different than at home, and that they may play DVDs with vastly different amps, etc., than you have. When I was auditioning speakers, for example, I tried very hard (probably failed) to get as close as possible to my level of electronics, and room acoustics. The latter was impossible, of course.
What I have (so far) been unable to do is to take my liddle JVC in to a hi-end dealer, have them hook it up, and then A-B compare it with one of the "better" players. For some reason, our little town's hi-end dealers are, uh, a bit snotty about such things. Don't understand - but maybe they take one look at me and think: "no chance for a sale here!" G R I N
Respectfully, Larry R.

Unregistered guest
Thanks for all the info, right now I have the sony cdp-cx355. I would like to upgrade as far as sound quality yet I would like to keep my cd's stored as they are. Does any one know of a higher quality 200 or 300 disc cd changer other than the sony, pioneer, kenwood, or jvc.

Unregistered guest
I don't think any 100+ CD player comes in that high quality.It's like the above mentioned Ferrarri- it only comes in tiny sizes.You won't find any large-sized Ferrarri.Likewise, high-quality CD players only come in single-disc versions...

Bronze Member
Username: Knightshade

Taunton, Somerset England

Post Number: 32
Registered: May-04
For those of you interested in the DAC option, here's a little something that may interest you.

New member
Username: Djwages

Post Number: 5
Registered: Jan-05
There is a threshold for everyone. Sure you can go spend the 3 grand on a Linn but if you dont have the room and complimentary equipment you will never make use of it. I have a philosophy.."buy something cheap and you always get something cheap. But just because you bought something expensive doesn't mean you got your moneys worth".
Case and point...Buy the Porsche Carrera or the C6 Corvette? The Corvette is half the cost and out performs the Carrera. And will probably make fewer trips to shop. But some people have to have the Porsche name and thus they spend twice as much. Me ? I'd rather have the Vette and the other $50,000 in my retirement account. There is alot of super expensive equipment out there that is there just to help fill some folks ego. Anyone know anyone with the $36000 EDGE MonoBlock Amp?

Remember Eriks 10/10 value rule. When you have to spend 10 times as much to improve by 10%. This is a good threshold.

I think there is definitely a value threshold.
Where there is real value is finding quality well-built equipment for less than or equal to the JUNK they sell at Jerkit Silly (Circuit City), Best Buy and other dealers.

And this forum can help you find that value.
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