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I'm Vexed..., I'm Incredibly Vexed...

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Robin

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I need your help.

I am desperately seeking your counsel and advise regarding high-end source CD/SACD players. I have been searching / researching CD/SACD players, in vain seemingly, tubed or SS, anything which have powerful analog and DAC's as well as the ability to drive amp's directly... The only source player which meets my requirements and capabilities (below) is the McIntosh MC 201 CD/SACD player... But I really want to look at several players. I would like to have options..., to audition other players. Unfortunately, I have not been able to ascertain if a prospective player has the capability - #2 below. The other areas are more easily discernible / available...

These are the qualities I want / require:

#1. Delivers Great Sound for Music. Strong Analog and DAC.
#2. Have volume level adjustment. The ability to control / drive two
amplifiers (like the MC 201) source to amp direct without pre-amp (no
pre-amp), preferably with balanced cabling ability.

#3. CD/SACD capable.
#4. Cost $3500 - $4000 (USD).

If anyone could recommend player(s), which has all of the above qualities (especially #2) that would be wonderful. :eek:

Thanks in advance for you consideration and assistance. :)
 
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kirkawall

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Robin said:
I need your help.

I am desperately seeking your counsel and advise regarding high-end source CD/SACD players. I have been searching / researching CD/SACD players, in vain seemingly, tubed or SS, anything which have powerful analog and DAC's as well as the ability to drive amp's directly... The only source player which meets my requirements and capabilities (below) is the McIntosh MC 201 CD/SACD player... But I really want to look at several players. I would like to have options..., to audition other players. Unfortunately, I have not been able to ascertain if a prospective player has the capability - #2 below. The other areas are more easily discernible / available...

These are the qualities I want / require:

#1. Delivers Great Sound for Music. Strong Analog and DAC.
#2. Have volume level adjustment. The ability to control two amplifiers
(like the MC 201) source to amp direct without pre-amp (no pre-amp),
preferably with balanced cabling ability.

#3. CD/SACD capable.
#4. Cost $3500 - $4000 (USD).

If anyone could recommend player(s), which has all of the above qualities (especially #2) that would be wonderful. :eek:

Thanks in advance for you consideration and assistance. :)
Hi Robin,

I'm listening to the MCD-201 as I type this, via Mac and Quad amps and via my ML Vantages. Another poster here has described this machine in less than flattering terms but I can't agreee. I'm getting a wonderfully detailed sound with precise soundstaging, balanced tonality and a terrific natural sound I've not had before in this system. The volume control has 214 steps, and the output stage can swing real current. I can't think of other machines that have this direct-to-amp facility and also are SACD but no doubt there are a few. I would say, on this showing, do NOT discount the MCD201!


best,


k
 
D

dyazdani

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I used to run a CDp direct to amp, but I'm not aware of too many (other than the Mac) with SACD capabilities. I'll have to research this one...
 

Robin

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Mc 201...

kirkawall said:
Hi Robin,

I'm listening to the MCD-201 as I type this, via Mac and Quad amps and via my ML Vantages. Another poster here has described this machine in less than flattering terms but I can't agree. I'm getting a wonderfully detailed sound with precise soundstaging, balanced tonality and a terrific natural sound I've not had before in this system. The volume control has 214 steps, and the output stage can swing real current. I can't think of other machines that have this direct-to-amp facility and also are SACD but no doubt there are a few. I would say, on this showing, do NOT discount the MCD201!


best,


k
kirkawall,

I understand and respect what you are saying. :) As you know I have auditioned the McIntosh MC201 and I thought it wonderful as well and I promise will not discount it. ;) It is definitely number one, mostly because it is the only one I know..., sad to say. I wish I had more audio knowledge, so that I didn't have to ask for help at this time but unfortunately I'm at a brick wall. I just can not seem to find another brand comparable to the MC 201, in all the areas above, which is my quandary and has me so very vexed... :eek:
 

MiTT

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Robin said:
I need your help.

I am desperately seeking your counsel and advise regarding high-end source CD/SACD players. I have been searching / researching CD/SACD players, in vain seemingly, tubed or SS, anything which have powerful analog and DAC's as well as the ability to drive amp's directly... The only source player which meets my requirements and capabilities (below) is the McIntosh MC 201 CD/SACD player... But I really want to look at several players. I would like to have options..., to audition other players. Unfortunately, I have not been able to ascertain if a prospective player has the capability - #2 below. The other areas are more easily discernible / available...

These are the qualities I want / require:

#1. Delivers Great Sound for Music. Strong Analog and DAC.
#2. Have volume level adjustment. The ability to control / drive two
amplifiers (like the MC 201) source to amp direct without pre-amp (no
pre-amp), preferably with balanced cabling ability.

#3. CD/SACD capable.
#4. Cost $3500 - $4000 (USD).

If anyone could recommend player(s), which has all of the above qualities (especially #2) that would be wonderful. :eek:

Thanks in advance for you consideration and assistance. :)
Robin, curious why Requirement #2 is of such importance to you as I know you plan to use a pretty high end processor for control of other sources and even plan to add vinyl at some point in time.
 

DrJRapp

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Robin

You may want to take a look at a Shanling CDT200 SACD. I have a CDT100 CD only player and it has volume control. The 200 is the SACD version so I think it may have the same feature.

The Shanling sounds great with my Summits and two NuForce Ref9 monos.

Jerry Rappaport
 

Robin

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Audio System Only...

MiTT said:
Robin, curious why Requirement #2 is of such importance to you as I know you plan to use a pretty high end processor for control of other sources and even plan to add vinyl at some point in time.
Tim,

I'm looking to build an audio system only. This would be gradually built in easy stages. This proposed future music system of mine would be separate from my HT system.

I plan on beginning with two mono block tube amplifiers driven directly by a powerful source CD/SACD player only. This basic audio equipment would be the basic gear powering Summits or some future, next speaker-up from the current Summits, that is if ML actually produces a bigger ESL speaker...

Then later to complete the system, add-in a TT with phono tubed pre-amp (for phono only, not for CD/ASCD - as this would remain separate and direct). As I envision my music system would be a strictly music listening in a dedicated music listening room exclusively.
 

Robin

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OK... Good... The Shanling SACD T200 Player.

DrJRapp said:
Robin

You may want to take a look at a Shanling CDT200 SACD. I have a CDT100 CD only player and it has volume control. The 200 is the SACD version so I think it may have the same feature.

The Shanling sounds great with my Summits and two NuForce Ref9 monos.

Jerry Rappaport
Jerry,

OK, I shall look more closely at the Shanling SACD T200 fantastic player.

Thanks for that suggestion / recommendation... ;)
 
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Rik_Rankin

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Robin said:
kirkawall,

I understand and respect what you are saying. :) As you know I have auditioned the McIntosh MC201 and I thought it wonderful as well and I promise will not discount it. ;) It is definitely number one, mostly because it is the only one I know..., sad to say. I wish I had more audio knowledge, so that I didn't have to ask for help at this time but unfortunately I'm at a brick wall. I just can not seem to find another brand comparable to the MC 201, in all the areas above, which is my quandary and has me so very vexed... :eek:
Make sure you get a careful long home audition. Unless there was something seriously wrong with the demo unit, I thought it sounded grainy and flat as well as uninvolving in an all Mac system!!!!! i TOOK THE COVER OFF and the transport was a cheap plastic piece of junk. Mac is changing to a new transport shortly according to Chuck in service. Don't necessarily assume your cd player is going to sound better plugged straight into the amp. Sometimes it does and sometimes a good tube pre-amp actually adds some nice warmth and fattens the soundstage. Mark Levinson 390s has a volume control. I think the later Sony Sacd player did too, but I'm not sure. If you don't already have sacds, I'm not sure why you would want to start; most don't sound so great.
 

Robin

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OK... Excellent... Mark Levinson 390's.

Rik_Rankin said:
Make sure you get a careful long home audition. Unless there was something seriously wrong with the demo unit, I thought it sounded grainy and flat as well as uninvolving in an all Mac system!!!!! i TOOK THE COVER OFF and the transport was a cheap plastic piece of junk. Mac is changing to a new transport shortly according to Chuck in service. Don't necessarily assume your cd player is going to sound better plugged straight into the amp. Sometimes it does and sometimes a good tube pre-amp actually adds some nice warmth and fattens the soundstage. Mark Levinson 390s has a volume control. I think the later Sony Sacd player did too, but I'm not sure. If you don't already have sacds, I'm not sure why you would want to start; most don't sound so great.
Rik,

I wonder if McIntosh will just change the transport device in the current MC 201 model or come out with an all new model? :confused:

I shall check out Mark Levinson's 390's as well... I would like a player that plays both CD's as well as SACD's. Thanks for the recommendation... I really appreciate it. :)
 
R

Rik_Rankin

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Robin said:
Rik,

I wonder if McIntosh will just change the transport device in the current MC 201 model or come out with an all new model? :confused:

I shall check out Mark Levinson's 390's as well... I would like a player that plays both CD's as well as SACD's. Thanks for the recommendation... I really appreciate it. :)
it's going to be the same model with a different transport in the last quarter of 06. The levinson unit is much more expensive. Do you have SACD's now?
 

kwr

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Robin said:
These are the qualities I want / require:

#1. Delivers Great Sound for Music. Strong Analog and DAC.
#2. Have volume level adjustment. The ability to control / drive two
amplifiers (like the MC 201) source to amp direct without pre-amp (no
pre-amp), preferably with balanced cabling ability.

#3. CD/SACD capable.
#4. Cost $3500 - $4000 (USD).

If anyone could recommend player(s), which has all of the above qualities (especially #2) that would be wonderful. :eek:
http://www.audioaero.com/

Audio Aero Prestige SACD/CD player meets three of your requirements. I do not know the cost in the US. The website has been updated to a flash site and is less user friendly but worth a look

Do you really want SACD? The Phillips SACD/CD mechanism has received a bit of flak for being unreliable. Also (personal opinion) unless you are right into classical music SACD is a gamble. Have you heard a player such as the Audio Aero Reference CDP? Pretty good and you may decide SACD not worth it.

Kevin
 

kirkawall

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Rik_Rankin said:
it's going to be the same model with a different transport in the last quarter of 06. The levinson unit is much more expensive. Do you have SACD's now?
Rik:

This is interesting -- there's no doubt that there have been problems with this current transport (six firmware upgrades!) and I for one have been cautious about going ahead with it. That said, I have been blown away by the sound and I've had some top disc-spinners (Naim, Cary, MF, Ayre) to compare to.


Robin:

There are rumbles about a new MF SACD player in the A series and the new Nad may have a basic volume control. You might also consider a basic pre from the likes of Channel Island to use "in the meantime."

best,

k
 

Robin

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SACD Player

Rik_Rankin said:
it's going to be the same model with a different transport in the last quarter of 06. The levinson unit is much more expensive. Do you have SACD's now?
Rik,

Unfortunately not at this time. Been waiting saving-up funds to hopefully purchase this dream player I want (listed above). I have SACD's though but I can't play them. I just look at them and wonder. Sometimes I bring them with me to audition SACD players in audio stores... Kinda sad huh? :(
Oh well maybe someday soon. And now I have the Shanling T200 and the Levinson 390's to Audition and research. Thanks to kirkawall and yourself... ;)

I'm hoping for the spring of 2007 to come to a decision and purchase. :)
 

Robin

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OK... Very Cool... Now We're Rolling.

kwr said:
http://www.audioaero.com/

Audio Aero Prestige SACD/CD player meets three of your requirements. I do not know the cost in the US. The website has been updated to a flash site and is less user friendly but worth a look

Do you really want SACD? The Phillips SACD/CD mechanism has received a bit of flak for being unreliable. Also (personal opinion) unless you are right into classical music SACD is a gamble. Have you heard a player such as the Audio Aero Reference CDP? Pretty good and you may decide SACD not worth it.

Kevin
Kevin,

Thanks for the third CD/SACD to check out. Excellent recommendation! Thanks for your help... :D I do have my heart set on a CD/SACD player. ;)
 
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dyazdani

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Robin said:
And now I have the Shanling T200 and the Levinson 390's to Audition and research. Thanks to kirkawall and yourself... ;)
I owned the previous Levinson model (No 39), it did great going direct to amp - I tried it both ways. I didn't think that the 390 did SACD though...I can't afford it anyway, so I never looked too close.
 

patlad

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You may want to look at the new Wadia 581. It will be out of your budget probably but can serve as a reference.
 

DrJRapp

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Another approach you may want to explore if you are going to limit yourself to a 2 channel SACD system is to use a Benchmark DAC1 with any decent universal DVD player you may already have. The DAC1 has a volume control, balanced outputs and has special circuitry for jitter reduction. It also has the benifit of only costing $975. Sounds phenominal.
 

attyonline

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Glad to see you back, Jerry. Where have you been? Still got the Summits? :)
 

DrJRapp

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attyonline said:
Glad to see you back, Jerry. Where have you been? Still got the Summits? :)

I never left....only been a member here for a couple of weeks.

Yup I'll have the Summits til ML dreams up something better.
 
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