Marantz CD5400 CD-player

"Maranz" company doesn't hasten to leave the sector of stereophonic Hi-Fi apparatus as many Japanese producers already did. Moreover it is one of few companies which tries to strengthen its positions not only in the field of High End but also in the segment of inexpensive, component audio technique. To find out how well it manages to it we will take as an example just another Marantz novelty - the player CD5400.

This device has almost the same look as more expensive CD7300 being tested by us recently. Reading mechanism is situated not in the center like in players of other companies but to the left. A big display takes all central part. It displays not only playback time and track number but also names of albums and compositions, if a disk is loaded from CD-Text. Although the faceplate looks a bit simpler due to lacking of direct access buttons and rotary elector of tracks, anyway CD5400 looks quite solid and weighty for its price.

You can connect CD5400 in three ways: by standard lineal output, by digital coaxial or optical TOS-Link. Beside this, there is a channel for stereo earphones and corresponding volume control on the front panel.

A necessary to list functional possibilities of CD players ended long time ago - producers went to some standard set. However Marantz increased these possibilities by availability of pitch-control.

The stuffing of the player consists of VAM1201 mechanism (lite variant of VAM1202 which is used in more expensive models), digital filter SAA7378 and one-bit DAC TDA1549. Two last-mentioned elements of digital channel are realized not in the form of separate parts but in one hybrid scheme as it customary today - in this case on chip CS4392 by the company "Cirrus Logic".

One more difference can be found in analogue output. Output cascades are realized on microcircuits with qualitative operational amplifiers.

This player is from such category which doesn't bring afflictions and delights. It sounds comfortably and fully, forms clearly localized and planned sound stage and doesn't give to doubt in its dynamic qualities. All of these make playing music of any style sound naturally. With the same insight CD5400 opens shine of jazz compositions, harmony of classic music and iron logic of progressive rock. There are no genres' limits for it - the device will play both "Kalinka-Malinka" and hardcore perfectly.

However, if fall into particulars you can notice lots of little defects in the sounding of this player, which gives out the model of entry-level in CD5400. For example, the sources in sound stage not always have true space width and height. Bass seems to be spring loaded for a little - sometimes poor, droning post soundings reach the ear. Also we can't say that middle and high frequency ranges are played with neutral tone balance. Finally, detailing of sounding is on the middle level too. But sometimes sound details, sizeable from the point of playback reality (not melodiousness), may escape from your attention.

It is easy to make conclusions. CD5400 undoubtedly will be good in the system with components equal by quality. But this player mot likely won't get next to acoustics and amplifiers, which provide high resolution to whole chain. Such apparatus will show separate disadvantages of CD5400 like under a loupe.

Marantz CD5400 CD-player photo