All transports are the same right? Maybe or maybe not

DomT

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Hello everyone

I have been selling some excess HiFi and thought that I would double check the need for a CDP as I have ripped my CDs and they play back very nicely from an Innuos Zen Mini.

So as I don’t have a CDP in the UK I thought that I would buy one and use it as a transport into my Luxman and Benchmark DACs. I bought a secondhand Cambridge Audio CD5. Some say that all transports are the same and so any old one will do they say. So how was it?

In my Auralic Altair G1 Stick or Twist thread I found that by using my Marantz UD7007 into the Auralic and Benchmark DACs that the UD7007 was better than playing back ripped CDs on thebAuralic Altair G1. Noticeably more conviction I wrote at the time.

I don’t have the Marantz here and so I am just comparing the Cambridge Audio to the Innuos. I expected the Cambridge to win as the Marantz CDP did before. But it didn’t and it wasn’t a subtle difference. The Innuos by direct comparison to the Auralic Altair G1 is a different sound and whilst we are not comparing exactly the same products as before I was genuinely surprised that the Innuos was better playing ripped CDs than the Cambridge playing the same CDs.

Conclusions. As a transport the Cambridge sounded perfectly fine in isolation. I had to use Toslink as that’s all that the Cambridge CD5 has (cheap Atlas Toslink cable used). Maybe as the Marantz UD7007 has SPDIF that made the difference? My SPDIF cable is also an Atlas but a better one. Or maybe the CD5 is outclassed by the Marantz? I think that it’s worth keeping an open mind on this subject.

I will be giving away the Cambridge CD5 for free in late May if anyone wishes to have it.
 
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tuga

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My first CD player was a Marantz CD-50.
When the DAC craze started I got myself an Audio Alchemy DDE v1.0 (it was all I could afford at the time), and some time later I replaced the CD-50, that I was using as transport, with Audio Alchemy's DDS II transport. Both were connected to the DAC using S/PDIF and the DDS II sounded better. This was during the early-ish days of DACs and I think that there lots of teething issues. I was deeply convinced that could hear differences between the Audioquest and Siltech coax cables I owned.
I subsequently added Audio Alchemy's DTI jitter filter which also produce an audible difference which I found improved the sound (although a test I recently found on Stereophile shows improvements in some areas but also deterioration as well).
More recently I compared a Denon DCD-1450AR with a Pioneer PD-91 into a Parasound DAC-1000 using S/PDIF and I think that could also hear a difference albeit a slight one.

All this to say that I would expect to be less difference between transports into the Benchmark than the Luxman but it is not unlikely for the Toslink and S/PDIF interfaces (particularly old ones) to have an audible impact on sound.
 

Bokke

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Aug 18, 2018
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Hello everyone

I have been selling some excess HiFi and thought that I would double check the need for a CDP as I have ripped my CDs and they play back very nicely from an Innuos Zen Mini.

So as I don’t have a CDP in the UK I thought that I would buy one and use it as a transport into my Luxman and Benchmark DACs. I bought a secondhand Cambridge Audio CD5. Some say that all transports are the same and so any old one will do they say. So how was it?

In my Auralic Altair G1 Stick or Twist thread I found that by using my Marantz UD7007 into the Auralic and Benchmark DACs that the UD7007 was better than playing back ripped CDs on thebAuralic Altair G1. Noticeably more conviction I wrote at the time.

I don’t have the Marantz here and so I am just comparing the Cambridge Audio to the Innuos. I expected the Cambridge to win as the Marantz CDP did before. But it didn’t and it wasn’t a subtle difference. The Innuos by direct comparison to the Auralic Altair G1 is a different sound and whilst we are not comparing exactly the same products as before I was genuinely surprised that the Innuos was better playing ripped CDs than the Cambridge playing the same CDs.

Conclusions. As a transport the Cambridge sounded perfectly fine in isolation. I had to use Toslink as that’s all that the Cambridge CD5 has (cheap Atlas Toslink cable used). Maybe as the Marantz UD7007 has SPDIF that made the difference? My SPDIF cable is also an Atlas but a better one. Or maybe the CD5 is outclassed by the Marantz? I think that it’s worth keeping an open mind on this subject.

I will be giving away the Cambridge CD5 for free in late May if anyone wishes to have it.
I'll take it of you want rid as I've had bad luck with second hand cd player purchasing lately. Ive come to the conclusion that they shouldn't be posted.
 

DomT

It’s all about the music
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I'll take it of you want rid as I've had bad luck with second hand cd player purchasing lately. Ive come to the conclusion that they shouldn't be posted.
Yes I only bought it for the test I paid £20. I would prefer someone to collect in Nottingham or I shall give it to charity.
 

Bokke

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Yes I only bought it for the test I paid £20. I would prefer someone to collect in Nottingham or I shall give it to charity.
Lol, Ill collect from you - I do shifts in Ripley hospital so am pretty close atm - just pm me when you want rid. Thanks(y)
 

tuga

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Hey, I had one of those as well. Adding the upgraded power supply made a really big difference to the sound quality and I used that dac and power supply in my main system for about 15 years.
Same here: added the upgraded power supply and kept the 3-piece CD playback system for over a decade.
 
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