Should I keep my Mark Levinson No37 transport? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 30 Old 03-25-2012, 10:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Should I keep my No37 cd transport or is it time to find a new more up to date transport? I love this unit, but wonder if I have become stuck in past? What transport are others using?
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post #2 of 30 Old 03-25-2012, 10:44 PM
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What's "wrong" with it, if anything?

If it's "new" within say the last, 10 or 15 years, apart from non-CD playback features (like SACD, DVD-A, Blu-ray, net-streaming, etc) you really won't get anything different by replacing it. So if it's got something the matter with it, or you just dislike it's control scheme, I'd say replace it; there's plenty of other options, but if it works, no reason to waste money.
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post #3 of 30 Old 03-25-2012, 10:54 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by walbert View Post

What's "wrong" with it, if anything?

If it's "new" within say the last, 10 or 15 years, apart from non-CD playback features (like SACD, DVD-A, Blu-ray, net-streaming, etc) you really won't get anything different by replacing it. So if it's got something the matter with it, or you just dislike it's control scheme, I'd say replace it; there's plenty of other options, but if it works, no reason to waste money.

It certainly isn't a functionality issue. The unit works perfectly,I even recentlyhad it serviced to recalibrate and clean/ add new lubricant. SACD would be fun, but I don't own any at this point. Just CD's.

What do you own for CD playback?
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post #4 of 30 Old 03-25-2012, 11:19 PM
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Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

It certainly isn't a functionality issue. The unit works perfectly,I even recentlyhad it serviced to recalibrate and clean/ add new lubricant. SACD would be fun, but I don't own any at this point. Just CD's.

That's roughly my take on SACD as well - I've looked at a few players over the years, but always end up spending a few minutes on Amazon looking for SACDs to purchase, and I either never find anything that I think I'd like to buy, or anything at all. Kind of defeats the purpose of the player, don't you think?

If it's been serviced and is in good working order, I'd probably just go with it; life's good, yes?

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What do you own for CD playback?

I ripped my CDs to my computer about a decade ago and never looked back. I picked up a little Sony device a few years ago that can wirelessly send audio from my computer to wherever the receiver unit is (which is brilliant, because it doesn't tie me to any specific type of receiver, integrated amplifier, or anything; as long as the Sony receiver can plug in), it beats a very long lead running across the floor (and over the river and through the woods). As I know they don't make them anymore.

Every now and then I'll pull out an actual disc, and it usually ends up in my Blu-ray player (for no other reason than it's readily available and has a remote). Alternately, the Laserdisc player or DVD player are equally suitable. This happens maybe a handful of times a year.
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post #5 of 30 Old 03-25-2012, 11:31 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by walbert View Post

I ripped my CDs to my computer about a decade ago and never looked back.

Every now and then I'll pull out an actual disc, and it usually ends up in my Blu-ray player (for no other reason than it's readily available and has a remote). This happens maybe a handful of times a year.

Food for thought. I just find myself drawn to holding media in my hand...I am bound to the physical and feel it's beauty. Unlike the cold bank of terabyte hard drives.
My inexplicable draw to vinyl is just as strong. I feel bad for the kid that buys $500 worth of digital music. He has no collection to point to, and loses it all with a dropped phone or hard drive failure...course he feels just as bad for me with collection of songs that are not my top favourites. It would be nice t point out the artist generally thought out and planned my album as a whole. Key word artist, not one hit marketing wonder.

Oops, i just became my dad...hahaha
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post #6 of 30 Old 03-26-2012, 06:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

Food for thought. I just find myself drawn to holding media in my hand...I am bound to the physical and feel it's beauty. Unlike the cold bank of terabyte hard drives.
My inexplicable draw to vinyl is just as strong. I feel bad for the kid that buys $500 worth of digital music. He has no collection to point to, and loses it all with a dropped phone or hard drive failure...course he feels just as bad for me with collection of songs that are not my top favourites. It would be nice t point out the artist generally thought out and planned my album as a whole. Key word artist, not one hit marketing wonder.

Oops, i just became my dad...hahaha

I also ripped all of my media and continue to do so. The media has metadata embedded in it that stores the cover art and the information about the media that would normally be contained in the album notes. This facilitates searching and navigation. All of my data is then backed up to external drives for storage in a safe deposit box then also backed up online for universal access. The shiny disc can be damaged, mis-filed or lost easier. You also have the inherent issues with mechanical playback that are not present in a streamed system.
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post #7 of 30 Old 03-26-2012, 07:54 AM
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I bought an Ayre C5xe 6 years ago because it seemed to be the best-sounding SACD/CD player on the market then (even though spending $6K was like pulling a tooth for me...lol). It is a wonderful-sounding unit. It now also has the MP factory upgrade.

The new OPPO BDP-95, which I recently bought for only $1000 blows it away. Its sound quality with CD and SACD is off the chart; absolutely unprecedented!

As far as I can tell, every player from $800 to $25,000 has now been made obsolete. IMO anyone who cares a fig about CD playback should own one of these.





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Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

Food for thought. I just find myself drawn to holding media in my hand...I am bound to the physical and feel it's beauty. Unlike the cold bank of terabyte hard drives.
My inexplicable draw to vinyl is just as strong. I feel bad for the kid that buys $500 worth of digital music. He has no collection to point to, and loses it all with a dropped phone or hard drive failure...course he feels just as bad for me with collection of songs that are not my top favourites. It would be nice t point out the artist generally thought out and planned my album as a whole. Key word artist, not one hit marketing wonder.

Oops, i just became my dad...hahaha

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post #8 of 30 Old 03-26-2012, 07:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

Food for thought. I just find myself drawn to holding media in my hand...I am bound to the physical and feel it's beauty. Unlike the cold bank of terabyte hard drives.

Sounds like the opening lines of a book

I'm about the convenience factor. I rip all my stuff 1411Kbps WAV and then store the CD. If you like handling the physical media and there is nothing wrong with your current CDP then stay with it. If you ever change your mind and want a 10 foot tall interface, meta-tagging, play-lists, streaming etc... let us know.

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post #9 of 30 Old 03-26-2012, 08:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

Food for thought. I just find myself drawn to holding media in my hand...I am bound to the physical and feel it's beauty. Unlike the cold bank of terabyte hard drives.
My inexplicable draw to vinyl is just as strong. I feel bad for the kid that buys $500 worth of digital music. He has no collection to point to, and loses it all with a dropped phone or hard drive failure...course he feels just as bad for me with collection of songs that are not my top favourites. It would be nice t point out the artist generally thought out and planned my album as a whole. Key word artist, not one hit marketing wonder.

Oops, i just became my dad...hahaha

I think you've nailed both sides of it down quite well. I think your current equipment is suitable for the non-computer side; you can always rip the albums and keep them for the Levinson to play with as well. Just to try it out.
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post #10 of 30 Old 03-26-2012, 12:03 PM - Thread Starter
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Experimenting with hard drives and new levels of fidelity is now just part of the package. Based on these comments I have gathered, it seems reasonable to keep my collection and gear for the many reasons I outlined, yet still I will develop a new approach. It seems I may be missing out, and I am excited to at least venture to the digital for a perspective of my own. Ripping my collection could take some time, I think I will employ the youngest relative I have to do the work for me! Haha

Any suggestions on a thread for starters, beginning to archive their library?
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post #11 of 30 Old 03-26-2012, 12:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post

The new OPPO BDP-95 ... sound quality with CD and SACD is off the chart; absolutely unprecedented!

As far as I can tell, every player from $800 to $25,000 has now been made obsolete.

Too funny!

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post #12 of 30 Old 03-26-2012, 12:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

Experimenting with hard drives and new levels of fidelity is now just part of the package. Based on these comments I have gathered, it seems reasonable to keep my collection and gear for the many reasons I outlined, yet still I will develop a new approach. It seems I may be missing out, and I am excited to at least venture to the digital for a perspective of my own. Ripping my collection could take some time, I think I will employ the youngest relative I have to do the work for me! Haha

Any suggestions on a thread for starters, beginning to archive their library?

What do you want out of the archival process? What do you think your computer or other playback/source device should behave like?

How many CD's are you looking at archiving?

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post #13 of 30 Old 03-26-2012, 12:42 PM - Thread Starter
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What do you want out of the archival process? What do you think your computer or other playback/source device should behave like?

How many CD's are you looking at archiving?

I think at least 400 - 500 CD's.

I expect to rip at no less than CD quality, and that playback should remain smooth with no additional jitter. I am concerned about too many digital clocks getting involved and screwing with the timing. I expect that I will have to choose how to transfer the data from hard drive to processor via some interconnect, so I am open to discussion either SPDIF (TOSLINK or Coax), or via HDMI, or USB? I have no clue which is the perfered choice? I have an idea which I would choose, but I remain open. I would prefer the new HAL9000 of my life to be friendly and not try to reboot me. So, I will also be looking for an efficent way to back up my godless digital gold. LOL
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post #14 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 03:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

I think at least 400 - 500 CD's.

I expect to rip at no less than CD quality, and that playback should remain smooth with no additional jitter. I am concerned about too many digital clocks getting involved and screwing with the timing. I expect that I will have to choose how to transfer the data from hard drive to processor via some interconnect, so I am open to discussion either SPDIF (TOSLINK or Coax), or via HDMI, or USB? I have no clue which is the perfered choice? I have an idea which I would choose, but I remain open. I would prefer the new HAL9000 of my life to be friendly and not try to reboot me. So, I will also be looking for an efficent way to back up my godless digital gold. LOL

You're over-thinking and worrying about minutiae which do not matter ("how to transfer from the disk to processor" - none of those interfaces serve that purpose).

Grab your CDs, a six-pack of your favorite beverage, put a movie on, and just start ripping them in the lossless codec of your choice (WMA, flac, ALAC, etc); if you don't have sufficient space, upgrade the computer's hard disk. Simple as pie, and nothing else you need to worry about (of course figure out what playback software you'd like, and if you need new output hardware, what it needs to accomplish).
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post #15 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 07:27 AM
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Originally Posted by walbert View Post

You're over-thinking and worrying about minutiae which do not matter ("how to transfer from the disk to processor" - none of those interfaces serve that purpose).

++ That. This was my 1st thought.

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post #16 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 07:28 AM
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List your current complete setup.

An audiophile likes to talk about how much they spent and how good it sounds.

A DIY'er likes to talk about how little they spent and how good it sounds.

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post #17 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 09:52 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Jinjuku View Post

List your current complete setup.

Turntable: Pro-ject Xpression Classic Mahogany
Cartridge: Ortofon 2M Red MM
Phono Stage: Pro-ject Phono Box II
Transport: Mark Levinson No.37
DAC: Pro-ject DAC Box FL
Pre-Amp: Classe SSP-25 (I use the Analog processing, not Digital)
Power Distribution: Panamax m5100-pm
Amp: Anthem MCA-2 mkII
Speakers: Paradigm Studio 10
Cables: 12 guage terminated with bananna (12ft)
Interconnects: Cardas Crosslink both XLR & RCA
Equipment Rack: Salamander Synergy Single 40
Speaker Stands: Unknown dual pillar design BLK
Isolation: Sympossium Roller Block Jr. (Pack of four)

*NOTE - I also have a Euphya Alliance 270 I can use.

Most of the gear comes from my first hobby of HT, so it transferred over from that room as I replaced it.
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post #18 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 10:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walbert View Post

You're over-thinking and worrying about minutiae which do not matter ("how to transfer from the disk to processor" - none of those interfaces serve that purpose).

Grab your CDs, a six-pack of your favorite beverage, put a movie on, and just start ripping them in the lossless codec of your choice (WMA, flac, ALAC, etc); if you don't have sufficient space, upgrade the computer's hard disk. Simple as pie, and nothing else you need to worry about (of course figure out what playback software you'd like, and if you need new output hardware, what it needs to accomplish).

This much I can do. I will invite my favourite drink, A Greyhound, and get to work. I will also buy an external hard drive.
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post #19 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

Turntable: Pro-ject Xpression Classic Mahogany
Cartridge: Ortofon 2M Red MM
Phono Stage: Pro-ject Phono Box II
Transport: Mark Levinson No.37
DAC: Pro-ject DAC Box FL
Pre-Amp: Classe SSP-25 (I use the Analog processing, not Digital)
Power Distribution: Panamax m5100-pm
Amp: Anthem MCA-2 mkII
Speakers: Paradigm Studio 10
Cables: 12 guage terminated with bananna (12ft)
Interconnects: Cardas Crosslink both XLR & RCA
Equipment Rack: Salamander Synergy Single 40
Speaker Stands: Unknown dual pillar design BLK
Isolation: Sympossium Roller Block Jr. (Pack of four)

*NOTE - I also have a Euphya Alliance 270 I can use.

Most of the gear comes from my first hobby of HT, so it transferred over from that room as I replaced it.

Do you have the optical input on your Classe available?

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post #20 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 10:23 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
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Do you have the optical input on your Classe available?

Unfortunately no. The reason for it's phase out, has been the digital side has been "buggy", yet the analog is marvelous.
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post #21 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 10:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Unfortunately no. The reason for it's phase out, has been the digital side has been "buggy", yet the analog is marvelous.


Side note: My Mark Levinson No36 DAC also has been buggy, so I have accepted that my digital is cursed.


Analog is prevailing...and I know the new digital stuff will be fun, I just believe I should go at it correctly.
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post #22 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 11:50 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jinjuku View Post

Do you have the optical input on your Classe available?

Good News!

After two years of not working, the optical input on the Classe is now working.

I just checked.

What do you suggest now?

*** Also I have one SPDIF Digital Coax in addition to the TOSLink...no idea how this happened!?! Was I drinking when I gave up on it years ago???
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post #23 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 12:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

Good News!

After two years of not working, the optical input on the Classe is now working.

I just checked.

What do you suggest now?

*** Also I have one SPDIF Digital Coax in addition to the TOSLink...no idea how this happened!?! Was I drinking when I gave up on it years ago???

If it magically fixed itself it can magically unfix itself. Do you have a computer already or one in mind?

Do you want to be able to sit back a ways and on a large screen cue music up?

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post #24 of 30 Old 03-28-2012, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
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If it magically fixed itself it can magically unfix itself. Do you have a computer already or one in mind?

Do you want to be able to sit back a ways and on a large screen cue music up?

Good point.

I have a PC I do not use anymore, I will post it's specs tonight. I also own a Samsung Galaxy 10.1 Tablet, it has a large screen. We have a wireless router and I am told that my house does 48.5 mega bits per second.
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post #25 of 30 Old 03-29-2012, 07:54 AM - Thread Starter
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Do you have a computer already or one in mind?

My older unused PC specs are (I required help from someone who knew what they were, and how to find them):

Pentium D 820 2.86Ghz,
1gig DDR2 666 RAM,
with an ATI Xpress 1250 built-in video card.
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post #26 of 30 Old 03-29-2012, 01:23 PM
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How much disk space does your computer have, and what version of Windows (I'm assuming it runs Windows)?
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post #27 of 30 Old 03-30-2012, 11:30 AM - Thread Starter
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How much disk space does your computer have, and what version of Windows (I'm assuming it runs Windows)?

Disk space is 250gigabytes
OS: Windows 7
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post #28 of 30 Old 03-30-2012, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by zuluwalker View Post

Disk space is 250gigabytes
OS: Windows 7

You could stand to add a larger hard drive (and an internal one is perfectly fine if the computer has the space; do not get sucked into audiophilacs suggesting overpriced external drives with "the right kind of chipset for fidelity" or any of that nonsense); you said 400-500 CDs if I'm not mistaken. If you were ripping them lossless, based on the most recent albums I ripped, figure around 300-500MB (.3GB-.5GB) per disc. So a new 500GB (or larger) drive should hold everything you've got; if you went with 320k mp3 (Which will sound just as good but take up less space) you could fit more in the same space. I would not suggest 128k mp3 or anything like that; some material can very well survive 192k or 256k or V0 lossy (which usually averages around 300-something), but it's hit and miss.

If you figure your collection will grow substantially, or you just like over-building (nothing wrong with that), grab a 1TB (1000GB) and be through with it.
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post #29 of 30 Old 03-31-2012, 08:27 AM
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I am torn between analog and digital in my 2 channel system. For digital playback I alternate between My MacBook Pro via optical and my Sony SCD-C555es 5 disc changer via coaxial, both fed into my Peachtree iDac. The iDac is one amazing piece of equipment, to my ears, it is a big upgrade to those sources via their own DACs.
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post #30 of 30 Old 04-01-2012, 09:08 PM - Thread Starter
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I am planning to talk with my I T guy, and see what is possible. No doubt now, I will implement some type of hard drive system. I am also considering repairing my Mark Levinson No.36 to use for DAC again.
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