DVD/CD player with Balanced XLR output and volume control

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I'm looking for a new DVD or CD player, with balanced output (XLR) with volume control... Wadia sell some nice CD players, but they are too expensive.
I'm willing to spend up to $800.

BTW: I might consider buying a DAC evaluation board from Crystal, and use my old player as transport.


CD players with XLR Outputs


Some of the upper end Denon CD players had balanced outputs with XLR connectors but they likely to be more costly than your upper $ limit unless you can find a good used one. Even then the motor bearings may need replacement. The volume controls in almost any of these is nothing to brag about. Just the typical motorized control that you find in most inexpensive consumer rated equipment.

If your mechanical section is good and the RF signal from it has a good clean eye pattern then the best way to go may be to use one of the newer add on DA converters. There are many excellent ones available that individuals have developed. Many of these are available as partial kits and can be found on various web sites.

I would use one of those instead of a development board.

John Fassotte
Alaskan Audio
No chance for brand new

I've listened to Wadia's CDP in balance and quite frankly... the most flattest sounding CDP i've ever heard. My 10 year old Sony boom box gets more twinkles.

If you want digital volume control built-in to a cdp... expect to pay BIG $$.

This is my CDP


Now does anyone know of an external DAC that USES the "Word Clock" interface to get rid of jitter? I'm sick of SPDIF and hope to run huge long lengths of interconnects.
I have never seen DVDp with balanced outputs. That would be just to do CD playback and that would be hard to justify. The older CD players Sony model CDP-XA7ES or older CDP-X777ES have fixed XLR and very nice transports. You may be able to find some on the used market not too far away from your price range.
I looked into DAC with XLR outputs and those alone are already over your price range and still no variable levels.
Must you have the volume control??
Adcom GCD-750

I found a CD-player with XLR outputs..
Adcom GCD-750

It uses 4 Burr-Brown CM-1702P, 20-bit DACs.
And the digital filter is Pacific Microsonics MD-100 HDCD..
The output stage uses MOSFET transistors instead of OP-amps... :)
It weighs around 10kg..

It costs around $740..

I think this looks like a nice CD-player, but I haven't listened to it yet.

The GCD-750


Trust your ears... comparing a CD player with built-in volume control is like comparing an integrated amp to a separate amp & pre-amp unit. We all know that in general, integrated amps don't sound as good as separates. So if getting rid of 1 less component (pre-amp) is what you're aiming for - more power to you. But don't bet on those units having better sound quality - for that hasn't been the case in my experience.

I know the GCD-750 and it doesn't have volume control. The LCD display is pretty poor and I guarantee you won't be able to read it sitting from your chair - ever worse when the sun is shines on it. You should take a closer look where the buttons are arranged - notably the EJECT button ; far from being ergonomic.

My 2nd choice besides the HHB was going to be a Denon C-680 unit "rack-mount studio gear" - most studio equipment is fully balanced. Reasonbly priced around $700usd and can fully read CDR media - a feature most HDCD CD players can't read.
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