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CD Transports

CDs are still widely regarded as the best audiophile medium to enjoy your music, and a wide range of CD playing solutions exist, ranging from one box CD players to multi-disc players and SACD players. We also offer a range of separate DACs and CD transports which can offer superior performance and are considered the optimum way of enjoying CD playback.

CD Transports essentially take the transport section of a CD player and place it into one box, removing the DAC. Why? The act of separating the CD transport from the DAC, like a separate power amplifier and pre amplifier, is designed to offer better performance than a single box unit by virtue of being designed for a single purpose, not sharing components and having separate power supplies, etc. We provide free UK next day delivery on all of our in stock products, so you can have your kit ready to use in no time at all!

Unlike CD players housed in a single box, dedicated CD transports take the CD reading mechanism and house it separately in one box, taking the pure digital information from the disc, and requiring an external DAC to then convert this information back into analogue and a form which can be fed to an amplifier. . You can only connect them directly to your amplifier if your amplifier has a digital input.

If digital information is just a series of 1s and 0s, then why is one CD transport different to another, and why are they priced differently? The answer is jitter. Jitter when reading digital media such as a compact disc can have undesired effects on the quality of the audio achieved – often manifested through clicks, skipping and poor audio quality. Ensuring you have a good quality CD transport, delivering a good quality signal and disc read therefore, can have a significant impact on the sound quality you experience. Some manufacturers offer improved CD clocks as upgrades for your existing equipment that can also affect and reduce the presence and effect of jitter on your music.

High end CD Transports seek to avoid jitter wherever or however possible, through various technologies and isolation techniques. These units are designed to read the CD as accurately as possible without any possibility of interference of other circuitry such as a DAC, and high end models go to great lengths to isolate the transport from the power supply, through anti-resonance measures and damping techniques which prevent vibrations from the power supply affecting the ability of the transport’s laser reading the disc. Many high end models will seek to avoid the mechanised loading trays of some one box CD players. As these mechanisms require power to eject and insert discs, avoiding these can prevent the need for additional circuitry and power, thus further isolating the CD reading mechanism from resonance.

Most CD transports will offer both coaxial and optical digital outputs, giving you flexibility to use existing cables and to pair with a range of DACs or integrated amplifiers with different optical inputs. 

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