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Megamicron 17th January 2009 10:46 PM

Marantz CD63 and Headphones
I listen to a standard CD63 with Sennheiser HD595s, solely using the socket on the CD63 as it's better/cleaner than through an amp (at least the ones I tried a few years ago when I decided to give up on buying a replacement amp in the 200 region for that reason). Things move on and I wonder if a 75 Pro-Ject Headbox or stretching to a 150 Rega Ear would improve things - more detailed bass mainly. I don't live near a suitable retailer to try one out and don't want to buy and be disappointed. Any views/experience welcomed.

philpoole 18th January 2009 06:25 AM

You'd get much better results than the CD63 from what I recall.
You had to use the remote to change volume don't you? It uses digital attenuation which is bad news compared to analogue attenuation - you lose resolution/bit depth the quieter you have it.

But, I don't want to sound like one of those dull DIY forum posters, but this is a DIY forum... Why don't you build one? You could knock up a cheap opamp based Cmoy or similar, for a very small amount.


Megamicron 22nd January 2009 09:27 PM

Thanks for the response Phil and apologies for my delay. I looked up your suggestion and found some ideas on Headbitz. Also seen a Tangent Cmoy kit of parts on eBay(currently 20) which would be good for a complete beginner like me. My concern is still that I don't know whether it would be better than the built-in system and would be disappointed to spend 20 and time for zero benefit (except experience of making the amp of course).

Glenn2 22nd January 2009 10:45 PM

Why don't you get one of these and one of these and one of these.

Plug the RCA to 3.5mm lead into the CD player's line outs, the coupler goes on the end of that, turning the 3.5mm plug into a 3.5mm socket, and the headphone volume thingy plugs into that.

The line outs sound better than the headphone amp. The HDAM modules will drive headphones with ease. You leave the CD player's volume at maximum and use the control on the cable.

This sounds way better than plugging phones into the front and running the volume at a low level. I know, I do it (on my CD63).

At least get the volume control lead, and use that volume instead of the player's. Even via the headphone amp it's will worth it.

...and there's the added bonus of the volume not going back to max when you turn it off and on again. :D

Hope that helps!

philpoole 23rd January 2009 09:24 AM

I did build a discrete headphone amp once, basically a buffer made out of emitter followers and current sources and I was really pleased with the result, but its was open loop and I was interested to see what difference feedback can make.

So, I built a very simple headphone amp out of bits and bobs I had lying around. A volume pot, and an inverting opamp (I think non inverting would be better - not because its non-inverting, but the input impedance should be higher - as its the input to the opamp itself, not in series with a resistor), and it sounded really good. I think for 20, you'd be pleased.
I think for higher volumes, some discrete buffer (perhaps enclosed within the feedback loop) after the opamp would help in driving my 32ohm, Grados, but it sounded good.

I think you'd be surprised with what you can do, and how much mark up some of this audiophile stuff has.

Megamicron 25th January 2009 12:02 AM

Thanks both. Already have leads and adapter so will buy the volume control as this is a quick fix. I will also go for the ebay kit and give it a go - should be an interesting experience and if I get on well with it I might be confident enough to try some of the simpler CD63 mods on this forum that are very tempting.

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