Marantz SA14 vs. Shanling T-100 vs. Philips 1000

I would appreciate anyone’s feedback, especially from those who have compared at least two of these CD players or own one. I live in a geographic location where actual comparison-shopping is very difficult. I've read most all posts here in Audiogon as well many threads in AA on these units. I am looking for a player that plays back redbooks CD's well. SACD would just be an added bonus. My budget would permit me to have the Philips player modified. If I go with either of the other two, mods would have to wait a while. Of course the quality of sound if of utmost importance, I also value a unit that it built well with good reliability.

At this point, I’m leaning towards the Marantz, but would have to settle for a used piece, which really is not a problem. The Shanling is a very new product with very mixed reviews. I’m assuming that build quality and reliability as still up in the air. The Philips is a great buy right now while you can still get one since the unit has been discontinued. I feel that the build quality with the Philips is a notch below the Marantz and Shanling. I’m sure many of you would suggest the Sony XA777ES but it is really beyond my budget especially if I want to have it modified in the future. Besides I’ve been told that with normal redbook CD’s in stock form, the Sony would rank below all three.

Your feedback is greatly appreciated.
Then I would recommend you look at a used Sony 777es or SCD-1.

In my opinion, CD, XRCD, and SACD can all sound as fabulous as the other on the SCD-1. Ultimately, the sonic superiority is in the recording, not the format.

Islandflyfisher, if you look at Stereophile's summary review of the SCD-1 and 777es in the recommended components about 6 months ago. There you will find their summary spot on. They rated it class A+. And though reviewer's comments should always be taken with a grain of salt, I would concur with their summary entirely. And there they claimed that redbook playback was nearly as good as SACD.

As an owner of the SCD-1 and a dvp s9000es, I would highly recommend the SCD-1, 777es (which sonically is supposedly identical to the scd-1). And if budget is really tight, then perhaps a used dvp s9000es which does so many things so well. But clearly the SCD-1 is superior in every sonic category when compared to the dvp s9000es.

Stay on course. Stay away from the Sony product. The Marantz is a great choice.
Don't bother listening to Natalie - He has nevered offered any proof that he has ever heard the new Sony let alone a modded unit. Just review the recent thread where Bwhite
offered his opinions on cdps and Natalie in general.

Unfortunately I can't offer any opinion on these units as I have yet to hear them but advise you listen to those who have as opposed to those who beat their chests for attention...
I have a Shanling CD-T100 and I have posted a fairly comprehensive review here. I can confirm that the sound of it has improved even more since then... smoother and more coherent still.

I do not think reliability is an issue with the export production models, which is what you would get if you bought one in the U.S. or Canada today. I cannot speak for earlier models; export models are marked with a sticker on the back panel. My own machine, from the first North American batch ( thus with the earlier "Plunge" and "Hind" skip button labels), has shown no problems whasoever and seems absolutely rock-solid. I love it. Its only disadvantage for me, which I noted in my review, is that it's a major light source.

There was some talk awhile ago at AA about interconnects and the Shanling. Let me set the record straight here: if you use a $29 Monster IC you will get the sound you pay for. I use Ensemble Masterflux and the player sounds gorgeous. I am certain the CD-T100 is no more sensitive to IC issues than any other player in its class.

Finally, Thorsten Loech has posted an interesting and positive review of the player. You can get to it via the Canadian distributor's site at However Mr. Loech marks the player down on PRAT, and I believe this was because he did not have the machine for the necessary 200 hours break-in time (he suggests as much in his review). I note in my own review that the machine sounded tame during break-in but picked up beautifully once this was over.
BTW, you could inquire with Ric Shultz at as he is familiar with the stock Philips and the modded version and what their respective pros/cons are.
I have a Stan Warren modded SACD 1000, and I think this is the way to go(I guess I am bias though). I did own a stock SCD-C333ES, and it was not in the same class as the 1000. I must admit I have not heard the better Sony's.

I know Stan has modded the Sony 9000ES, as well as a SA14, and Stan likes the 1000 best. The 9000 was not in the same class, the SA14 had better low end, while the 1000 had better detail in the mids and high end. Stan said he would pick the 1000 even if they were the same price, but given the price difference, it became a no brainer.

I've just purchased the Philips SACD 1000 (no mods) and have been very impressed with its build quality and sonic performance. Also has a very nice look. Only real drawback is no PCM digital out. I have a cheap carousel player that will digital out to a Camelot Dragon jitter box so I had a workaround for that shortcoming. Otherwise a fine unit IMHO for Redbook, stereo and multi-channel SACD, and DVD-Video playback. Haven't heard the other players, but with the remaining stock of new/warrantied SACD-1000's going at +/- $1,000 US, I decided to go ahead. Good hunting and good listening.