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Thread: Audiophiles, need your help!

  1. #21
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    krell kav 280 cd player

  2. #22

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by ricohflex View Post
    krell kav 280 cd player
    How much would they cost?

    Editted: They might be good, but I personally don't consider 3500 USD listed price as cheap.
    Last edited by Daniel Nielson; 6th April 2007 at 03:12 PM.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Oh, ok, the Krell response is out-of -bounds. Did not check the price of that Krell.

    actually a $600 Sing can buy a reasonable CD player.

    Will Rotel be good enough for you?

    try the seasonal hifi sale at Adelphi.

    can go to good second hand shops.
    like CK Audio, Roxy Square, sim lim square, etc...

    They have high end 2nd hand as well as budget 2nd hand.
    I saw Mark Levinson power amps there before.

    Personally, I use a DVD recorder to play back and now cannot be bothered with my Marantz (low end) CD player which I disconnected and kept aside. Because the DVD recorder can play back almost most formats like DVD RW +, -, CD RW + , - , CDR+, -.......
    So useful when I copy the CDs.

    The advantage of being able to copy CDs easily and play back in DVD recorder may overide the improvement in sound using pure CD player. Well, at least for me.

    Removing the CD player can prevent having too many cables all over my hifi/tv area.
    Last edited by ricohflex; 6th April 2007 at 06:16 PM.

  4. #24

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Ricohflex,

    Thanks for the comments.

    Rotel is good enough for me. I just need something that sounds better than a typical auntie's karaoke set. But at the same time I am also suspecting that my current speaker is just pulling me towards that direction.

    Can I say that you can tell slight difference in sound quality between low end dedicated CD player and your DVD recorder? How's the difference like?

    Here is my current setup
    - A borrowed budget LG DVD player
    - Rotel RC-970BX pre amp
    - Carver AV-405 power amp
    - 2 x Carlson CA6300F speaker

    The highs and the lows are too strong for my taste (playing music). I wonder if this is due to the player, I'd imagine that this sort of sound is more suited for home theater. But if the sound of budget DVD player isn't actually that different from a lower end dedicated CD player I'd be going for the former for the versatility and price.

  5. #25
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Nielson View Post
    Ricohflex,

    Thanks for the comments.

    Rotel is good enough for me. I just need something that sounds better than a typical auntie's karaoke set. But at the same time I am also suspecting that my current speaker is just pulling me towards that direction.

    Can I say that you can tell slight difference in sound quality between low end dedicated CD player and your DVD recorder? How's the difference like?

    Here is my current setup
    - A borrowed budget LG DVD player
    - Rotel RC-970BX pre amp
    - Carver AV-405 power amp
    - 2 x Carlson CA6300F speaker

    The highs and the lows are too strong for my taste (playing music). I wonder if this is due to the player, I'd imagine that this sort of sound is more suited for home theater. But if the sound of budget DVD player isn't actually that different from a lower end dedicated CD player I'd be going for the former for the versatility and price.
    The best way is to compare the dedicated CD player and a cheap DVD player side by side.
    Use the same CD and play the same song. Close your eyes and listen if you can hear the difference.
    The output frequency response of DVD players is flat. This means highs and lows are set equal. I don't think your problem is due to player. Anyway, you can still adjust the bass and treble on your pre-amp.
    As Ricohflex mentioned, one good thing about DVD players is that it can play several formats (CD-DA,MP3, some with DVD-Audio or SACD).
    One disadvantage of DVD players against dedicated CD players is lower Signal to Noise Ratio.
    This is due to the video signal output. To improve this, disconnect the video cable if your listening to CDs. To compare Signal to Noise Ratio, try to listen to those soft music.

  6. #26
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Nielson View Post
    Ricohflex,

    Thanks for the comments.

    Can I say that you can tell slight difference in sound quality between low end dedicated CD player and your DVD recorder? How's the difference like?

    The highs and the lows are too strong for my taste (playing music). I wonder if this is due to the player, I'd imagine that this sort of sound is more suited for home theater. But if the sound of budget DVD player isn't actually that different from a lower end dedicated CD player I'd be going for the former for the versatility and price.
    The LG player may have settings in it that affect the sound. You can read the manual. It may be set to something like say, "cinema sound" or "3D Surround" meant for movie playback.

    Change this to "2 channel stereo".

    Please note that in LG models, there is a setting called "Dynamic Range Control" What this does is to compress the dynamic range, so that the user can watch a movie show at low volume and still hear the clarity between the loudest sound and quietest sound.
    This will not be good for audio listening of music/vocal CDs played through a pre/power amp hifi set.

    You can set this to "off".

    Some LG models have an Optical Audio jack which you can plug in an optical fibre optic connector to your pre-amp (if it has such jack).
    In addition, they also have Coaxial Digital audio output jack.

  7. #27
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    this may be old but have you tried the oppo dvd/cd player yet?

    x-audio at bkt timah may have some still.. the last time i heard it.. i felt it was superbly value for $$..


    if you are gonna get a 2nd hand player, check what transport model it uses, cuz if the transport mechanism is hard to find.. it will be hard to repair your player when problem arises..
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------
    second issue is : "2 x Carlson CA6300F speaker" .. these speakers are MIC, and often touted around in vans, and renamed from carlson usa to pure acoustics and god knows what.. dont expect too excellent sonics from these speakers.. this is usually a bottleneck... changing speakers & positioning will change the sound the most, followed by the source, then the amplification, and subsequently all that lil nitpicky stuff like cables

    your pre amp's british.. your power amp's american design.. (carver went out of production already i think..).. its a little hard to tune the system this way.

    perhaps i should suggest that you listen around first, to other people's system etc, find what you like before deciding the direction you are heading.. tweaking components one by one like right now, you do not know what you are getting, and when you try to make the best out of these bits and pieces.. its a waste of good $$~..

    its easy to come up with a list of recommended equips, many with hefty price tags.. but how many people had actually had experience with all these components put together? or even heard the player itself than based on reviews etc..? its like i can tell you how good a meridien 808 cd player is (i've only heard it once though)... i definitely cannot tell you the sound you will get when i drop this sgd 20k cd player into your system. there are many other factors involved..
    chezburgr i can haz?

  8. #28
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    oh, in view of the psychobiologist comment, do check out two UK speaker brands.

    Bowers and Wilkins ( B & W ), no...not the German filter maker.

    Spendor

  9. #29

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Get a Marantz CD63 or CD67 off Ebay and have it modified by local tube maven TS Lim or do it yourself - the instructions are on the web.

    An unmodified CD63 or 67 is already inherently musical. Mr Lim's mods take it to another level.

    Unmodded, the players are good enough for the gear you are using.

    I'd also agree with the the suggestion the dump the speakers for something else.

    TS Lim's website is here: www.divaaudio.com

    BTW, TS Lim is a member of CS - his nick is tzesian.

  10. #30

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Thanks all for your wonderful inputs, I've certainly learned a lot, and way more to learn too.

    There is no sound setting except toggling "3D Surround" on and off. So as you guys agreed the culprit seems likely to be the speaker.

    I've heard the American and British thingie. I also agree that I am beating in the dark and not sure of what I want.

    I heard to tube stuffs are costly to maintain? How much would the second hand Marantz CD63 or CD67 cost?

    While walking around in Sim Lim, I bought a Sound Blaster Digital music SX, I've heard that external sound car has much lower noise and not susceptible to the interference inside the PC casing, it also says 110 db S/N ratio. I can hear sound improvement with my PC speaker over my old Sound Blaster Live. But when connected to the amplifier it buzzes significantly more than the DVD player at highest volume setting. But it isn't bad though, the buzz is inaudible at normal listening volume and distance. I guess I'm getting what I paid for.

    It seems to that if I were to spend $300 on a CD player, I might as well spend the money on a pair of more decent used speaker and use the DVD player or the PC to play instead. That way I'd get more improvement over the sound quality. Yes? No?

    I hope this will not become my hobby, I can see how this can become a much greater curse than photography.

  11. #31
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Nielson View Post
    Thanks all for your wonderful inputs, I've certainly learned a lot, and way more to learn too.

    There is no sound setting except toggling "3D Surround" on and off. So as you guys agreed the culprit seems likely to be the speaker.

    I've heard the American and British thingie. I also agree that I am beating in the dark and not sure of what I want.

    I heard to tube stuffs are costly to maintain? How much would the second hand Marantz CD63 or CD67 cost?

    While walking around in Sim Lim, I bought a Sound Blaster Digital music SX, I've heard that external sound car has much lower noise and not susceptible to the interference inside the PC casing, it also says 110 db S/N ratio. I can hear sound improvement with my PC speaker over my old Sound Blaster Live. But when connected to the amplifier it buzzes significantly more than the DVD player at highest volume setting. But it isn't bad though, the buzz is inaudible at normal listening volume and distance. I guess I'm getting what I paid for.

    It seems to that if I were to spend $300 on a CD player, I might as well spend the money on a pair of more decent used speaker and use the DVD player or the PC to play instead. That way I'd get more improvement over the sound quality. Yes? No?

    I hope this will not become my hobby, I can see how this can become a much greater curse than photography.
    The British and American thing is a bit of bovine excrement if you ask me. Just tweak and play around as you wish. Synergy is key in audio, forget about branding for now although it's true that certain brands have their trademark tonal signatures.
    Sound is also a very subjective matter. Opinions should be considered only in relative terms.

    eg.

    "XXX amp is bright, YYY amp is neutral, ZZZ amp is dark sounding" isn't very helpful since you might consider XXX to be neutral, YYY to be slightly dark and ZZZ to be very laidback if you actually heard them.

    "XXX amp is slightly brighter sounding than ZZZ amp" would help if you already own ZZZ amp and want something brighter. Or if you have heard ZZZ amp as compared to what you have and know what the tonal differences are.

    I absolutely wouldn't recommend that you use a PC soundcard for your listening. Especially not a Creative (that includes EMU). Another thing to avoid is to try and use one of those cheap DVD players or even an expensive Oppo universal player.
    Just buy a 2nd hand Marantz CD5400, 6300 or a Rotel 991 and you're good to go.

    As to Lim Tze Sian's modding service, you either like his signature sound or you don't.
    I fall in the latter category and I wouldn't touch any of his modded equipment even if you put a gun to my head. Kinda like trying to eat a cup full of caramel at one shot if you ask me. A little too extreme a twist in sound for some to accept, so do, do, do audition the modded players before you send yours in.
    There are those who absolutely love that kind of sound though. No offence to TS Lim but it's really not my cuppa.

  12. #32

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Firefox View Post
    As to Lim Tze Sian's modding service, you either like his signature sound or you don't.
    I fall in the latter category and I wouldn't touch any of his modded equipment even if you put a gun to my head. Kinda like trying to eat a cup full of caramel at one shot if you ask me. A little too extreme a twist in sound for some to accept, so do, do, do audition the modded players before you send yours in.
    There are those who absolutely love that kind of sound though. No offence to TS Lim but it's really not my cuppa.

    His modded players like a shot of caramel? Really?
    I didn't find the sound slow or overly sweet at all - maybe you were listening to it via tube amps which could explain your assessment. But on it's own and plugged into neutral sounding amps, the modded player isn't bad for what it is. I found it to have good rhythm, to be open sounding and to be pretty linear across the frequencies. And not sounding like Conrad Johnson components of yore (extremely sweet, slow and fat sounding).

    For sure, one should audition the player before deciding.
    Last edited by Tetrode; 9th April 2007 at 05:26 AM.

  13. #33

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Nielson View Post
    Thanks all for your wonderful inputs, I've certainly learned a lot, and way more to learn too.

    There is no sound setting except toggling "3D Surround" on and off. So as you guys agreed the culprit seems likely to be the speaker.

    I've heard the American and British thingie. I also agree that I am beating in the dark and not sure of what I want.

    I heard to tube stuffs are costly to maintain? How much would the second hand Marantz CD63 or CD67 cost?

    While walking around in Sim Lim, I bought a Sound Blaster Digital music SX, I've heard that external sound car has much lower noise and not susceptible to the interference inside the PC casing, it also says 110 db S/N ratio. I can hear sound improvement with my PC speaker over my old Sound Blaster Live. But when connected to the amplifier it buzzes significantly more than the DVD player at highest volume setting. But it isn't bad though, the buzz is inaudible at normal listening volume and distance. I guess I'm getting what I paid for.

    It seems to that if I were to spend $300 on a CD player, I might as well spend the money on a pair of more decent used speaker and use the DVD player or the PC to play instead. That way I'd get more improvement over the sound quality. Yes? No?

    I hope this will not become my hobby, I can see how this can become a much greater curse than photography.
    You can source a CD63/67 from the UK Ebay site where they go for a song. Used players have become scarce and expensive in Sg as a consequence of the popularity of TS Lim's modding service.

    You can buy a modded player from Echoloft for about $320-380 (they don't come up too often) from private sellers or for $550 from TS's agent in Bukit Timah plaza (can't remember the name of the store).

    You can also do the mods yourself by searching the internet for the schematics. But replacing components on the cheap circuit board takes a bit of soldering skill as the tracks are prone to lift easily. There aren't a lot of changes to be made to the player.

  14. #34
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Nielson View Post
    Thanks all for your wonderful inputs, I've certainly learned a lot, and way more to learn too.

    There is no sound setting except toggling "3D Surround" on and off. So as you guys agreed the culprit seems likely to be the speaker.

    I've heard the American and British thingie. I also agree that I am beating in the dark and not sure of what I want.

    I heard to tube stuffs are costly to maintain? How much would the second hand Marantz CD63 or CD67 cost?

    While walking around in Sim Lim, I bought a Sound Blaster Digital music SX, I've heard that external sound car has much lower noise and not susceptible to the interference inside the PC casing, it also says 110 db S/N ratio. I can hear sound improvement with my PC speaker over my old Sound Blaster Live. But when connected to the amplifier it buzzes significantly more than the DVD player at highest volume setting. But it isn't bad though, the buzz is inaudible at normal listening volume and distance. I guess I'm getting what I paid for.

    It seems to that if I were to spend $300 on a CD player, I might as well spend the money on a pair of more decent used speaker and use the DVD player or the PC to play instead. That way I'd get more improvement over the sound quality. Yes? No?

    I hope this will not become my hobby, I can see how this can become a much greater curse than photography.
    the american/british thing is subjective, because there are people who had grown up in british audio, studio monitors with british amplification and thus adapted to the sonics of it. its not uncommon to see people fervently praising harbeth speakers and their characteristics. there's also a bunch of naim lovers as well.

    its just confined to a musical identity perhaps and an identifiable distinctive sound, and not all like it, neither are all able to discern it, one can keep mixing equipments from everywhere and talk about synergy, and there's no end because how can perfect synergy be defined?

    burnt over 10k learning things the hardway back then. changing this lil bit and realizing it doesnt fit, and another piece to realize it doesnt fit as well.. to eventually realize i could have gotten a whole set of something else i liked, then end up with a set of odds and ends.

    if you are a music lover, then enjoy the music with a decent system with the characteristics you love. if you immerse too much into this hobby you will even encounter people who frequently diy thinking that putting the best parts together will give the best sound.. and that what they made is the holy grail etc.. soon to be accustomed to their own sound as a benchmark. not that its bad, but its just an endless pursuit and will definitely be more costly tha photography in the long run. hearing, is ultimately a personal thing, because we dont share ears.

    jump into a few audio forums, i've no idea what are the current surviving ones though, and if possible just hop into people's place for a listen. jump into shops too, but note that whatever that sound good in shops would not be easy to replicate at home either.


    and out of all these ramblings, its still my opinion to be considered, that the speakers might have to go first. a couple of years back there was a shop in adelphi that compares marantz cd5400 vs a modded 5400, with a reimyo cdp-777 on almarro amplification and a pair of huge ass genesis speakers.. it was an "interesting" experience.. and much as me and my friends had reserved our comments at the shop, i'll reserve them here as well.

    but its still my principle to leave every shop and every system auditioned saying..."good, awesome, impressive, lovely, etc". not exactly because the sound was what we liked, but the effort in putting everything together, that people had found the right combination for themselves/their own hearing, and pride in their own systems.
    chezburgr i can haz?

  15. #35

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Nielson View Post
    I hope this will not become my hobby, I can see how this can become a much greater curse than photography.
    Then you should junk hifi and go for professional audio stuff instead..

    Here are some leads...
    http://www.alesis.com/product.php?id=27
    http://www.alesis.com/product.php?id=110
    http://www.yamaha.com/yamahavgn/CDA/...560502,00.html
    http://www.mackie.com/products/hr824/index.html
    http://www.dynaudioacoustics.com/Default.asp?Id=3680

  16. #36

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Some pointers for your considerations:

    1) The Carver amp is built for AV purposes, you might be getting much better performances from a 2 chanel Rotel power amp to match with your rotel pre, since your major intention is to listen to music. Try to post a ad in echoloft to trade it for a 2 chanel rotel power amp.

    2) Try to get a better pair of speakers. You dont have to get expensive ones, a pair of entry level pre-owned mordaunt short, tannoy, kef, epos etc that cost around $150 to $400 may give you much better performances.

    3) cd player wise, can leave it to the last. For most newbies it's more difficult to tell the diff between cd players. I dont mean that the diff is small, but usually you need a more transparent system and more seasoned ears to tell the diff. A dvd or multi purpose players may sounded hazy compared to a dedicated cd player, my old CEC cd transport and an ancient Audionote DAC trashed a Marantz SA-17 SACD player that I previously owned, it simply sounded much more transparent. But with a lower-end system the benefit may not be as obvious. It may sound different, but you may not perceived it as improvements.

    4) You don't have to worry too much over the ratings behind the carver amp, it's unlikely that it will fry the speakers that you are likely to get. Unless you are always listening at a level which the neighbours/security/police frequently come to knock at your doors, you shouldnt have problem. A pair of 8 ohms speakers doesn't mean that the impedence will stick to 8 ohms all the time, in real life the impedence will change across the frequency range, the magnitude of the change depends on speakers design. Some speakers which is rated at nominal 8 ohms may dip to 3ohms at certain frequency range, could be harder to drive than one which is rated at 6 ohms nominal but only dipped to 4 ohms min. But those entry level speakers that you are likely to get are usually design with cheaper, lower power amp in mind and is usually not too unfriendly to amps.

    The link to echoloft buy & sell section:
    http://www.echoloft.com/cgi-bin/buys...eindex&start=0

    Just browsed thru some ads which may be of some interest to you:
    Marantz CD 6000KI: http://www.echoloft.com/cgi-bin/buys...num=1176121744
    Jolida Hybrid integrated amp: http://www.echoloft.com/cgi-bin/buys...num=1176100154
    Mission M51 bookshelf speakers: http://www.echoloft.com/cgi-bin/buys...num=1176023922
    System Audio SA205 speakers: http://www.echoloft.com/cgi-bin/buys...num=1175922025
    Castle Harlech speakers: http://www.echoloft.com/cgi-bin/buys...num=1175866915
    Wharfedale Diamond 8.1 speakers: http://www.echoloft.com/cgi-bin/buys...num=1175829907
    Last edited by Kongo; 9th April 2007 at 10:43 PM.

  17. #37

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Man that's a lot of information to digest, I guess it'd take me sometime to think it through. Also, my wallet would appreciate some breather.

    I actually never have a plan to get a hifi set. I was just thinking to make use of something that was given to me, with as minimal investment as possible. However, if that is my starting point, may be I shouldn't ask too much in term of sound quality.

    The Carver amp is a gift, I'd feel kinda bad if I were to sell or trade it.

    I guess if I were to do something, I'd first replace the speaker. I was told to get a KEF or Mission floorstander around 100-200W model. I was also told that the ideal will be one that has at least 8" woofer. But that was just a plan, I don't even know how much they cost yet. Will probably get them used.

    After the speaker is settled then I'd start to figure out the player. I'm not sure if the transport mechanism of a CD player would survive a DHL trip from UK. But that was an interesting thought nonethless and would keep that in mind.

  18. #38

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Nielson View Post
    Man that's a lot of information to digest, I guess it'd take me sometime to think it through. Also, my wallet would appreciate some breather.

    I actually never have a plan to get a hifi set. I was just thinking to make use of something that was given to me, with as minimal investment as possible. However, if that is my starting point, may be I shouldn't ask too much in term of sound quality.

    The Carver amp is a gift, I'd feel kinda bad if I were to sell or trade it.

    I guess if I were to do something, I'd first replace the speaker. I was told to get a KEF or Mission floorstander around 100-200W model. I was also told that the ideal will be one that has at least 8" woofer. But that was just a plan, I don't even know how much they cost yet. Will probably get them used.

    After the speaker is settled then I'd start to figure out the player. I'm not sure if the transport mechanism of a CD player would survive a DHL trip from UK. But that was an interesting thought nonethless and would keep that in mind.
    A replacement transport costs $20-25 from SLT. Instructions on replacement are on the web somewhere.

    Most of the time, players are sold because the transport is no longer functioning - so you don't really have to buy a fully functioning player. One sure sign that the transport is on it's way out is if the seller says that the player skips tracks.

  19. #39
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    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Quote Originally Posted by Tetrode View Post
    His modded players like a shot of caramel? Really?
    I didn't find the sound slow or overly sweet at all - maybe you were listening to it via tube amps which could explain your assessment. But on it's own and plugged into neutral sounding amps, the modded player isn't bad for what it is. I found it to have good rhythm, to be open sounding and to be pretty linear across the frequencies. And not sounding like Conrad Johnson components of yore (extremely sweet, slow and fat sounding).

    For sure, one should audition the player before deciding.

    Nope. Not out of tube amps. I build and design my own stuff (yes, I know how the players are modded as well).
    I find the modded CD63 too sluggish, too smooth and too sweet sounding. Might be great for vocals but not something I'd choose for rock/ 'eavy metal.

    His Tocatta's are fairly neutral with a touch of boost on the low end. Yes, i do know what's used for the Tocatta's as well.
    Last edited by Firefox; 10th April 2007 at 10:02 PM.

  20. #40

    Default Re: Audiophiles, need your help!

    Anyone heard of Sony CDP-XE2000 CD player? I couldn't seem to google it. There are plenty of CDP-XE*** model but there isn't a four digit model. Too ancient to be listed?

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