Originally Posted by Jeepwalker
Was there a general era when CD players made a quantum leap where one might say "....all players from 'this era and older' are generally poor, and players from 'this era and newer' use newer technology which is audiably superior."?
The quantum leap (if you can call it that) was back at the dawn of CD players--back in 82/83. The first ones used 14 bit DACs so when they went to 16 bit--viola! There ya go! (strange but true)
Waaaay back in the day, during my mis-spent youth where I would blow a weekend testing stuch things
We wanted to know if a 16 vit VS 20 bit VS 1 bit made a difference. The real pissing contest was the uber 20 bit with a zillion times oversampling would "win" over the new 1 bit. The 16 bit was thrown in just to give 3 different things to keep track of. After all that was over, we learned there was no difference between 16, 20 or 1 bit DACs so nobody won the Crown Royal.
This did not mean people were not butt hurt--they were but the statistics text book pulled no punches.
After that, discussions about CD players had to do with features, remotes and aesthetics while we were splitting up the bottle of Crown. Granted, this concept was already known but we had to test as does early 20 somethings do on rainy weekends.
Oddly enough, those first generation 14 bit players are "worth" money--then again, cassettes are "back" so don't ask me to explain it.
My newest CD player harkens back to around 2008--it is a professional model used in clubs etc. and sounds like my other CD player from the 90's. These days if I throw a CD in, it goes into the BluRay player in the house and the pro CD player in the garage. Yep, CD players have been banished to the garage. The humanity!
So relax, the technology surpassed humans hearing abilities decades ago--concentrate on features, controls, flexibility, aesthetics and so on. I would get a BluRay personally--might as well gain the flexibility of playing mutliple formats. Good luck!