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Old 27th October 2002, 04:03 AM   #1
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Default Any good cheep CD players?

I need a new CD player but don't want to spend a lot of money.
Any ideas for a good one in the $200 to $500 bracket. Idealy one
that could be easily modifyed later on.

Thanks,

bob12345678
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Old 27th October 2002, 04:08 PM   #2
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Hi,

I think I have a sugestion. I bought a philps CD723 especially to use as a CD spinner and as mod platform... and it performs nicely for that purpuse.. but the analog out once modded is nice too.. easy to change output op-amps (not smd!), change Voltage supplies, change headphone amplifier inside, good philips designed CD spinner inside (cdm12.1).. all that for 100 Euro (98 dollar) ... out of the box it allready outperforms my sony.


goodluck,
Thijs
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Old 27th October 2002, 05:36 PM   #3
jwb is offline jwb  United States
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I bought a NAD C541i that I'm happy with. It includes an HDCD filter, the analog outputs are good, and the digital output is transformer coupled. I bought it factory reconditioned for $275. The transport is dead silent, which is key for me. I hate the sound of whirring machinery.
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Old 27th October 2002, 05:40 PM   #4
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Old 27th October 2002, 07:07 PM   #5
mlloyd1 is offline mlloyd1  United States
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jwb:
Can you say a little about what's in this player (DAC and op amp, construction, space for mods, etc.)? I'm looking for a machine in this price range. This machine has been recommended to me by a couple of other folks.

And how'd you find a factory reconditioned machine? :-)

thanks,
mlloyd1

[QUOTE]Originally posted by jwb
[B]I bought a NAD C541i that I'm happy with ... I bought it factory reconditioned ... QUOTE]
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Old 27th October 2002, 10:03 PM   #6
jwb is offline jwb  United States
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Quote:
Originally posted by mlloyd1
[B]jwb:
Can you say a little about what's in this player (DAC and op amp, construction, space for mods, etc.)? I'm looking for a machine in this price range. This machine has been recommended to me by a couple of other folks.
I tried to take it apart, but the screws wouldn't budge. Odd. I do know it has a Burr-Brown DAC and a Pacific Microsonics digital filter.
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Old 28th October 2002, 05:17 AM   #7
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Pacific Microsonics is one of the few who have correctly designed their digital filter in order to avoid aliasing-intermodulation distortion.

You certainly got a good player to start with.

What MODs would be good on this platform?

A new, low-jitter clock perhaps?

Separate PSU for the clock?

A better power supply & grounding in general?

regards,
Halcy
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Old 4th November 2002, 07:30 PM   #8
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I donít know if itís still available, but have a look at the C.E.C. CD1100. I paid 198 EU for it (which is about the same in $) After replacing the ceramic resonator with a good X-tal oscillator and replacing some electrolytic caps with ppís it sounds pretty good. Also a better powersupply was a good thing (there was room enough). Total cost for de mods: app. $50
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Old 5th November 2002, 03:08 AM   #9
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Default CD ON THE CHEAP

Quote:
I need a new CD player but don't want to spend a lot of money.
People always seem to overlook the obvious.

If you really want it cheap get a computer CD-rom.
Add an old PC PSU and get your analogue output hooked up to a little amp.
This may take some splitting but it's pretty straightforward
That's what I use in the bedroom and it isn't have as bad as cd-players costing twice as much.
The Plextor brand has a good rep on sound quality.

Ok I admit I run the CD into a SE 2A3 tube amp but if the source were bad si would be the end result.

Happy listening,
__________________
Frank
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Old 1st December 2002, 07:49 PM   #10
jwb is offline jwb  United States
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Quote:
Originally posted by jwb
I tried to take it apart, but the screws wouldn't budge. Odd. I do know it has a Burr-Brown DAC and a Pacific Microsonics digital filter.
I took this rig apart today with some proper tools. Inside, it is pretty nice. The power supply is a torroidal transformer with five secondary windings, followed by three rectifiers using discreet diodes. The main high voltage supply is regulated with LM317 and LM337. Electrolytic caps are all Nichicon. The power supplies for the digital processor and the analog condtioning are regulated with 7805 and 7808 regulators.

The DAC is a Burr-Brown PCM1732U with internal HDCD filter, which cannot be purchased on the open market. The clock is taken from a 16MHz tin can crystal, which is encased in foam and rubber cement. I guess this is to damp vibrations.

The analog filtering uses two Burr-Brown OPA2604 DIP packages.

The digital output is via a cheesy-looking sheilded through-hole pulse transformer. The output grounds are all decoupled with ceramic caps.

A good deal of internal space is wasted on the "NAD Link" misfeature.

The main modifications would probably be soft recovery rectifiers, linear technology regulators, and a stable clock. Opamps could be replaced with two OPA2227s or, more daringly, four OPA627s. There is enough room inside to mount modification boards above the main board. However, all the ICs are mounted on the bottom of the PCB.
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