Cambridge Audio Azur 340C CD-player

A high-quality mechanism and a laser head (manufactured by Sony), supplemented by a servo drive and the self-engineered control circuit, are used in Azur 340C player. A similar solution was used in the more expensive 540C and 640C, which gained popularity among music lovers. There are no external differences. The body is made of steel sheets of increased thickness. On the aluminum front panel there is an LCD display, which does not give electromagnetic interferences on the sensitive sound path. In addition to the analog output there are an optical and coaxial ones.

Cambridge Audio Azur 340C is one of the first players of the initial price category with high characteristics and a developed power supply system. But, developers a little saved exactly on power - this unit is simpler than in the older models. And the DAC is simpler too - a single-bit Crystal CS4338, providing 16-bit conversion accuracy, which, however, is sufficient for CD format.

Cambridge Audio Azur 340C has a smoothed dynamics and gives a light veil. The bass is transmitted convexly, with a good attack, but the micro-dynamics in the lower register leaves something to be desired: bass instruments are reproduced in a simplified way, without rigid coherent structuralism. Support from the lowest frequencies seemed to be weak too. There are no claims to the middle range - the music is played quite lively, neutral. As for the upper band, everything is good here as well. Discants are not colored and not aggressive. The sound stage slightly suffers only from insufficient separation of the first and second plans. They merge and, in addition, are slightly pushed to the listener. But the remote plans are reproduced as necessary - the sources are localized well and are at a decent distance from the loudspeakers.

Hard-hitting music lovers will certainly note another feature of Azur 340C: the player has some problems with detailing. The level of sound resolution is low, the musical nuances seem to be masked. I know a lot of examples when a device tries to reproduce a bunch of details, but it does it inaccurately and clumsily. The sound at first glance will seem rich, but the whole musical picture is not formed. It is littered with something extraneous, not harmonious and tires you quickly. But Cambridge Audio Azur 340C has no such effect.

Cambridge Audio Azur 340C CD-player photo