Personal opinions are of course subjective, but having had the Audiolab 8200CD and using the DAC via USB from my laptop for playback, I'm much more impressed with the DAC in the Pearl-lite I'm now using.
Pioneer 656 mark Wharfedale diamond 155
I have finally purchased a Pearl Lite CD. Payed £430 on an auction site. It is clearly a very capable player, well built and nicely finished. I am slowly getting used to it and was not too sure at first. It has a weighty, very wide sounstage with open voicing. It manages to be both detiled yet warm and dynamic yet not clinical. This is not easy to achieve.The biggest thing that strikes you though is the bass perfomance. In my small room it may even be too much at times on certain tracks, but what it manages to pull out of the baby Spendors bass driver is startling. (credit due to the Arcam A 38 here as well) Have tried Spotify through DAC and sounds fine. Tried a High Res file as well which sounded very good. All in all for what I paid I am pleased so far. Need to decide what else to play through the digital inputs, so any suggestions here would be appreciated. Have consdered Airport Express. Apple T.V or a Squeezbox.
Arcam A38, Marantz Pearl Lite CD , Spendor A3, Rega Planar Ortofon Red
In my small room it may even be too much at times on certain tracks, but what it manages to pull out of the baby Spendors bass driver is startling. (credit due to the Arcam A 38 here as well) Paul
I have the Pearl Lite SACD player as well, running through Roksan Caspian Mk1 amp and Neat Petit SX speakers. I too sometimes find it a bit bass heavy on rock tracks particularly. Hardly ever on classical, which is the majority of my listening. Overall though, I am extremely satisfied with it and often thought of adding the matching amp, but not sure if it would be an upgrade on my 13 year old Roksan.
I have contacted Spendor about using some bungs to tame the bass response a bit. Also experimenting with speaker placement and isolating electronics.Its a lovely well equipped CD player but be aware of the strong bass response!
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