Pioneer PD-50 CD-player

This being a Japanese-made player, it is no surprise to discover it is Super Audio CD compatible. SACD keeps a strong following in Japan, therefore it's wise to contain it there continues to be quite a few outstanding, little labels although it is in the twilight as a format.

The player is Japanese in other manners, being constructed as if hewn from solid granite using a swish finish and a lot of characteristics.

Audio Retriever is maintained to boost compressed audio files.

Inside, dual electricity transformers and the unit sports a stiff base individually protected in the sound circuitry. The built in DAC sports a front-mounted USB input signal, which plays with MPEG4, MP3, AAC, WMA and DSD files off iDevice or a memory stick, and there is a back-mounted coaxial digital input signal, also. The plasticky cd tray lets the side down only a touch, but the provided remote Ls better than a lot of the plastic issues discovered elsewhere here, while the casework is outstanding.

Sound quality

Really Japanese were seemed by the Pioneer' - a poor method plus in a great. There was a feeling of solidity here which was missing from Cyrus, Denon and the Yamaha; from where we simply did not understand the Peter Gabriel track appeared to get another octave of bass guitar in contrast to the Cyrus CD6SE2, but. It served up what was around the cd in a methodical, unmediated manner, instead of editorialising things.

This great awareness of command made it simple to listen to subtle detail on the Peter Gabriel track. But even though its lows were solid and powerful, the Pioneer were not the most supple. This made for a somewhat mechanical rhythmic feel. It was not just plodding but it lacked Roksan Kandy K2 the Cyrus and Audiolab's 8200CD exuberant - euphoric - feel.

The Pioneer was constantly going through the motions; true it had been quite methodical, but nonetheless, it never actually let down its hair and partied.

In addition, it seemed a tad clinical throughout the group; soundstaging was not narrow and well said okay, however there was little awareness of the music being organic and natural. Really, one listener noted to Lennox's vocals on a somewhat edgy feel, suggesting a touch of brightness.

With routine CD SACD did not shine quite so well, although with it it moved up a gear. It did not do badly, but the panel believed it was not liquid rather across a broad range of music.

Pioneer PD-50 CD-player photo