Resolving CD Transports Crowd Sourcing

Hi everyone! A couple of years ago I purchased my endgame CD transport- a Pro-Ject CD Box RS2T. Loved almost everything about the unit--highly resolving presentation, dead quiet background, balanced placement of instruments in a believable 3 dimensional soundstage, and  the synergy it had with my components. In fact I loved the transport so much I had two of them because Pro-Ject quality control and customer service is the pits. After almost a year of hassles, I'm swearing of Pro-Ject.

I'm in the market for a replacement CD transport that has the same qualities of the Pro-Ject minus the quality issues and customer service.

PS Audio, Jay's Audio, CEC, Audio Research (which are CD/DAC units) come up in my search. What are your thoughts? With all the bells and whistles the Pro-Ject was around $3300, so that gives you an idea of my budget, though I could go higher.

Thanks in advance!



The sound quality from TIDAL/Aurender is very, very good. But, CDs played through a terrific transport/DAC combination always sounds better.

Saying CD’s always sounds better is bit of a reach. This may very well be your experience with certain recordings but simply not possible across the board. I have heard and compared recordings on both formats and they both can sound stellar to mediocre. Why? Because of provenance and mastering of a recording. They are the key differentiator between us loving or hating a recording, IMHO. 

My system - Aurender N30SA ➡️ Merging Technologies DAC with external power supply and both DAC and N30SA are synchronized by external Merging +clock. 

The sound quality from TIDAL/Aurender is very, very good. But, CDs played through a terrific transport/DAC combination always sounds better.

I may be wrong but I thought that David was clearly referring to his specific listening experience with his own audio system and not making a general proclamation for all.



"You got a lot of recommendations here to build a short lists. I am so sorry to say at this point you have to listen, compare and contrast by yourself. "

I have a great deal of respect for the cumulative insights and knowledge of the forum members. If I'm going to pay thousands of dollars for a CD transport I can't audition, and possibly not return after purchase, I'm going to ask lots of questions.

You have provided a great deal of valuable info about Jay's CD transport. Did you have an opportunity to audition it in your system before purchase?




Definitely is my experience on my audio equipment. You got me thinking with your response how CD remastering and reissues can make absolute statements like "always sound better of CD" anachronistic. For instance, how many "Kind of Blue" remastering reissues are there? I have two on CD, two on records. TIDAL has more than that. I'm sure I can find a reissue on TIDAL that sounds better than the $1.99 copy I purchased at CD World in the early 2000s.

So yes, point taken.



One of the great discoveries I made via streaming was this Dexter Gordon gem.

Dexter Gordon Featuring Joe Newman. It’s not a particularly great recording, with some questionable editing of songs. But the musicianship is top rate.

Dexter Gordon - Dexter Gordon Featuring Joe Newman album cover

More images

Label: Monad Records (2) – MOA 806
Series: Monad Classic Series

CD, Album

Country: US
Genre: Jazz
Style: Bop, Hard Bop