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FennerMachine's picture
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Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

I currently use my PC to play Blu-ray (BD) and DVD. I have a Cyrus CD player. Other kit listed in signature.

As the AVR is quite old the PC currently handles audio decoding and I use the multi channel inputs on the Denon. I need to buy new software for the PC to play some newer BD discs. I have also been thinking of buying a Quad 67 CD player to replace the Cyrus as I have liked the change the Quad amps have made from Cyrus amps and hope that their CD players will also sound really good.

So I'm thinking of getting a dedicated BD player to do everything.

Would a dedicated BD player do a better job than my PC?

Would a highish end BD player like the Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD do the job and be a reasonable replacement for the Cyrus? I say replacement as I would sell the Cyrus CD7Q and PSX-R to partially fund the BD player.

Instead I could just buy new software for the PC and try the Quad 67 CD player.

So, should I get an all rounder BD player to do everything or would I miss a dedicated CD player?

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

A dedicated bluray player will beat a PC, no question there..  Software updates for newer films is always going to cause an issue, even for Cambridge audio. As for a player to do it all.... I would consider the Oppo 105 too, this can be your CD player and bluray player in one. The Cambridge is great and really an oppo under the hood and will do the job too, but this new Oppo is something else!

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

Personally I don't miss a dedicated CD player, though a couple of things - 1) like any player that does so many things it takes a bit longer to recognise discs than one that only plays CDs and 2) I mostly use my Stream Magic or Spotify via Airport Express for music and hardly ever plays discs, so I may just not be fussy any more.

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

Thanks for the replies.

From what you have said and some reviews I think the 751BD might do the job.

BD players have free updates for new Blu-rays? Some PC software you have to buy a new version every 2 years!

Disc loading times are not an issue for me.

This player might kill 3 birds with one stone!

Dedicated BD player, no longer need to have my PC turned on for movies, and a change for CD audio.

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

Software updates are free, so don't concern yourself. As long as you have an internet connection, you can do it through the menu system.  As for the frequency of updates, these happen when needed. It certainly will not be 2 years before the next update, more like 6 months at most.  All depends on the company and what problems they are trying to iron out or features they are activating on your player.

Load times on the Oppo 105 are very quick, even with CD changes.

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

I bought a Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD today.

Had a quick demo in the shop first.

Only had a chance to do a few tests so far.

Blu-ray looks a bit better I think, I need to do a few more tests.

Movie audio is different, maybe better. A few more subtle bits coming through and dialogue clearer.

Not sure about CD's yet. They seem to be missing something that the Cyrus CD7Q does.

I'll be giving it a good testing Tuesday and Wednesday.

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

Congratualations on the purchase Smile Interesting about the CD playback on the Azur.  Remember if you are unhappy you can always return it and try the alternatives like the new Oppo 105 or 103 for a more direct rival. Granted that the Cambridge Audio is an Oppo underneath (as reported) but the new Oppo range is certainly something different.

 

 

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

I found that my751BD was better at the DAC side of things than my previous PreXpdQx , it's a great machine (as is the Oppo, which uses many CA components ;-).  

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

752BD is likely to be launched in Feb.

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

DandyCobalt wrote:

(as is the Oppo, which uses many CA components ;-).  

Or the other way round!  Wink

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

bigboss wrote:

DandyCobalt wrote:

(as is the Oppo, which uses many CA components ;-).  

Or the other way round!  Wink

Hence the pirate face smiley Wink The best upgrade from the 751 is surely the Oppo 105 !

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

Thanks all for your suggestion of the Oppo 105 or even 752BD.

I got the 751BD for £700.00, the Oppo is £1000.00, I didn't want to spend that much.

Maybe I'll have to!

Before trying other Blu-ray players (if I decide not to keep this one) I need to work out what is missing from CD audio. I've only used it for a couple of hours. I have the next two days off so can do some good testing.

Its weird as the Cyrus Q7 DAC was £350.00 almost 10 years ago and the 751BD has roughly the equivalent of a £350.00 modern DAC in it (not quite the same as a separate DAC but similar).

The 751BD presentation is cleaner whereas the CD7Q seemed slightly muddled at times but projected the music more. Difficult to describe in writing!

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

I did some testing yesterday and have given it a good testing today for CD's and a bit for movies.

The bass seems lacking in comparison to the CD7Q, although the bass could be a bit overblown at times with the CD7Q.

Detail and clarity are much better but it seems to be missing something. Its not as forward which is a good thing for some music but it is less engaging, almost too safe.

Do you think any of the audio 'issues' will iron out over more time or should it be at its best straight out of the box? I know some Hi-Fi equipment,especially speakers, can change a bit over time and I have experienced that, but not too sure about things like amps/CD players.

On a seperate note, I have a ground loop on the front speakers when using the front pre outs from my Denon 3801 AVR. Its not very loud but is a bit annoying! It increases with more volume on the Quad 44. Other inputs on the Quad 44 including from the dedicated stereo outs from the 751BD work fine with no hum. That's going to be fun to fix (NOT!)

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

There certainly is a run in period  for speakers with the cones softening over time and sounding better. The same applies to electronics, like AV receivers, TV's etc and even speaker wire. You could keep it and see if it sounds better over time. The chances are your ears will adjust to it and you may think it sounds better.

This argument about burn in time has been a frequent porblem. if you want my advice I would go and demo an already settled unit (burnt in), say the one in the shop and compare it. This way you will be fully satisfied that it either does sound better, or there is no change according to your ears.

 

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

Good idea to go listen to a well used one, except where I got it from they only had the one that I bought, it was new. I would have to go to Leicester, if they have one.

I have 7 days to return it for a refund. The thing is, what would I replace it with? The Oppo 105 looks good after having read its specs & from what others have said. Is it as good with the 7.1 analogue outputs? Is the bass better from the dedicated stereo outputs? How good is the dedicated stereo out in general? The 751BD is so almost there...

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RE: Cambridge Audio Azur 751BD or dedicated CD player?

You could also consider a good "budget" BD and a separate DAC. You could even start of with something like Sony BDP-S390 which would give you an ok budget for finding a suitable DAC.

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