Speaking as someone who has just purchased a CD player (admittedly at £21 I didn't pay very much) - I do know.I don't know why anyone would want a CD player these days but if you do, I guess the Cayin is not half bad. Suggest using an outboard DAC with it if you want the best performance.
Assuming the digital out is not malfunctioning it is providing all the info on the disc. So transport to DAC should get you as good as the DAC is or the CD medium. Going to CD drive to PC then DAC could allow DSP if you are using that.thank-you I wondered what is the best way to play back a cd nowadays ? transport to topping dac or cd drive to pc then dac ?
is there a way to test what comes out of that drive ? do we know what level of noise and distortion that gives us .my cd players sound pretty good to me I wonder at what point the sound becomes acceptable or decent or really good . what level of distortion and noise is thatRip from a cheapo portable USB DVD drive into FLAC, than play it on a budget Topping/SMSL DAC?
In other words you said 16-bit is too much as we can't hear the difference when the resolution is lower?I'm not sure I agree with these ideas of 16 bit or 96 db CD standard. Many players were 86-92 db on THD, and better on SNR. Does that mean they cannot do 16 bit? No it does not. You cannot hear the difference in -100 db and -80 db distortion. At lower levels the distortion is lower too. It does not mean these devices lack 16 bit dynamic range (some do) or that they cannot play a very low level signal if the noise if low enough (which it often is). Plus no speakers offer -96 db distortion levels.
If you can play a full scale signal at inaudible distortion and noise levels are at or below 96 db, then it can convey all you can possibly hear in 16 bit source material. In this particular review both devices have too little SNR or Dynamic Range. The distortion is a non-issue to listeners. The noise levels are not beyond reproach. There is no good reason for this to be the case.
witching to S/PDIF on Cayin we still can't get the ideal 16 bit dithered response (about 93 dB):
Very true.In other words you said 16-bit is too much as we can't hear the difference when the resolution is lower?
Amirm - can you measure the digital output from the mimik player ?This is a review and detailed measurements of the Cayin Mini-CD MKII CD transport and stereo player. It is on kind loan from a member and costs US $279.
View attachment 303504
The unit comes with a good looking and feeling metal case. I like the large display but controls didn't seem very responsive. Below it is my circa 1998 LINN MIMIK cd player. It cost US $1,595 then which would be almost $3,000 today! I thought it would be nice to compare the performance of one against the other.
Back side shows the usual connections:
View attachment 303505
The external adapter is a bit of a buzzkill. They should have charged $299 and put the darn power supply inside.
Here are its specs:
Output Level: 2.0V Frequency Response: 20Hz~20kHz (+0.5dB) Distortion and Noise: 0.007% (1kHz) S/N Ratio: 90dB (20-20KHz, A-weighted) Dynamic Range: 90dB (20-20KHz, A-weighted) Crosstalk: 77 dB Digital output: S/PDIF (RCA) & I2S (HDMI) Output Impedance SPDIF: 75ohm Dimensions: 240mmx213mmx58mm (WxDxH) Net Weight: ~2.0kg Maximum Power Consumption: 12W Disc Support: 12cm CD-Audio Disc
Cayin MINI-CD MKII Player vs LINN MIMIK Measurements
By definition, I can only run static files burned onto a CD and not sweeps. So we can't run many tests but what is there, should give us a good idea. Let's start with the dashboard using analog out from the Cayin:
View attachment 303506
Nice to see the full 2 volt output but sad to see that we can't come close to resolving 16 bits with a SINAD of just 82 dB. Third harmonic dominates SINAD. Fortunately it meets spec.
The LINN does better but still fails the reach 16 bit fidelity:
View attachment 303507
Switching to S/PDIF on Cayin we still can't get the ideal 16 bit dithered response (about 93 dB):
View attachment 303508
Dynamic range using Cayin analog out still misses the mark:
View attachment 303509
It actually bests the LINN by a bit:
View attachment 303510
The last test I have for you is 16-bit jitter (so you are going to see a lot of valid spikes):
View attachment 303511
Blue at the bottom is the DAC in the Audio Precision analyzer. As you can see, it has much lower noise than both. The LINN has flattish noise floor whereas the Cayin has more noise around the 1 kHz ("skirt"), but less at higher frequencies. Difference is slight though.
The Cayin could certainly do better both in noise and distortion departments. Sadly, while LINN MIMIK has lower distortion, it still has too much noise and distortion to get us full fidelity out of 16 bit format. Little did we know then that we were not getting all that we were putting on the tray.
I do like the honest specs from Cayin. It is a rare thing these days.
I don't know why anyone would want a CD player these days but if you do, I guess the Cayin is not half bad. Suggest using an outboard DAC with it if you want the best performance.
As always, questions, comments, recommendations, etc. are welcome. Click here if you have some audio gear you want me to test.
Any donations are much appreciated using: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/how-to-support-audio-science-review.8150/
IMV a CD player has to output the data on the CD at its digital output exactly as they are stored. It must not dither them - this is the task of the DAC.”Switching to S/PDIF on Cayin we still can't get the ideal 16 bit dithered response (about 93 dB)”
To find out whether a CD player outputs correct data just record a CD digitally and compare the data with the rip of said CD. They should be identical. Have you (or anyone else) done this?This is evidence that all CD transports dont put out a correct signal from spdif out .
I'll try to do that.To find out whether a CD player outputs correct data just record a CD digitally and compare the data with the rip of said CD. They should be identical. Have you (or anyone else) done this?