Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

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Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Fri Sep 05, 2014 2:30 pm

The output has suddenly dropped on the right channel of my Cambridge Audio 840C Azur CD Player which I bought from 5th Avenue. I took it to Avesco, authorized repair shop, per 5th A. I was told the DAC module board has to be replaced, and the costs is P31K including labor - the DAC alone being 29K! My options are:
1. authorize Avesco with the repair, but that is spending half the cost of the player, which is only 4 years old
2. find a skilled repairman and see if the DAC board can be salvaged, assuming replacement DAC can be found - preferably within QC
3. use an external DAC,the unit has Digital Outputs (S/PDIF or Toslink), assuming the damaged DAC board is bypassed and no effect on the output - which DAC to buy and for how much? A good one preferably within the P31K, if I have for repair
4. junk the 840C and buy new player - same as above, good one preferably within the P31K
5. forget digital, junk the CD player, sell my CDs about 900 of them, and stick to vinyls.

I was wondering if the group can help me with #2, 3, & 4 - referrals / recommendation. I am not keen on spending P31K just for repair. Thanks
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby Jon Agner » Fri Sep 05, 2014 2:46 pm

If it were me, I'll go for No. 3 :) Get an external DAC and use the CD player as transport :)
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby jonas » Fri Sep 05, 2014 5:58 pm

although I still have 3 CD players two of which are also dvd players, I have ripped all my CDs into my notebook computer and listen to my CDs from there. I have a DAC in between the notebook and preamp to improve the sound and I must say I don't miss vinyl at all. for me its all about the convenience of setting a playlist and being able to do various things around the house while the music is playing, things I cant do with vinyl. I still have my turntables and vinyl collection but its more for "props" na lang.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Fri Sep 05, 2014 7:28 pm

jonas wrote:although I still have 3 CD players two of which are also dvd players, I have ripped all my CDs into my notebook computer and listen to my CDs from there. I have a DAC in between the notebook and preamp to improve the sound and I must say I don't miss vinyl at all. for me its all about the convenience of setting a playlist and being able to do various things around the house while the music is playing, things I cant do with vinyl. I still have my turntables and vinyl collection but its more for "props" na lang.


About 5% of the CDs have been ripped to my notebook. I use a Halide Bridge to connect to the 840C via its digital input. Yes, this is an option, but I still need a DAC (?) to hook up the notebook to, isn't it?
Perhaps its time to continue ripping the CDs now. Thanks, Jonas.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Fri Sep 05, 2014 7:38 pm

Jon Agner wrote:If it were me, I'll go for No. 3 :) Get an external DAC and use the CD player as transport :)


Thanks, Jon.
Been checking. I'm not keen on getting another Cambridge unit but it seems it's the only brand readily available here (within the price range) - they have DacMagic and the 851D (even this is too expensive for me).
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby Jon Agner » Fri Sep 05, 2014 9:31 pm

Dan,

I bought a portable DAC for under 2K via galleon.ph, for pairing with an LG bluray player. it's quite good for conventional listening. Bought it so I can check if my flooded CDs are still playable :)

Have you tried checking with other local distributors? I'm no longer familiar with digital stuff nowadays since I play vinyls, but surely there are cheaper DACs out there.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Fri Sep 05, 2014 10:52 pm

Jon Agner wrote:Dan,

I bought a portable DAC for under 2K via galleon.ph, for pairing with an LG bluray player. it's quite good for conventional listening. Bought it so I can check if my flooded CDs are still playable :)

Have you tried checking with other local distributors? I'm no longer familiar with digital stuff nowadays since I play vinyls, but surely there are cheaper DACs out there.


Hi Jon,
I did check with Architectural Audio. Other than the M2Tech Evo (no XLR output), the rest of their brands/models are beyond the budget. Musical fidelity's M1 is borderline but I have yet to find the local distributor. Also looking for local distributor of Music Hall Dac 25.3. The Cambridge MagicDAC Plus is reasonably priced with XLR out - but I have reservation with the quality of components with my experience with their 840c CD player.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby Jon Agner » Sat Sep 06, 2014 9:27 am

Stealth posted a DAC for sale at the marketplace, you may want to check it out. Btw, saw your LF, what's wrong with the TT motor? If it's whining it can be easily repaired. For the SME, check with TAS, he may have a few on stock.

Going back to the DAC, Another alternative would be to get a pre-owned unit from SG or HK. :)
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Sat Sep 06, 2014 10:00 am

Jon Agner wrote:Stealth posted a DAC for sale at the marketplace, you may want to check it out. Btw, saw your LF, what's wrong with the TT motor? If it's whining it can be easily repaired. For the SME, check with TAS, he may have a few on stock.

Going back to the DAC, Another alternative would be to get a pre-owned unit from SG or HK. :)

Hi Jon,

I saw the post by Stealth on Aug 9 for an Onix Dac25A, I'll do a research on the brand and model. While searching for Stealth I found the dealer for Musical Fidelity - it's DCM in Cubao area. Will check that too. I know there is a member selling units from SGP, will find out if he has something to offer.

Re the Pro-ject TT, the motor shaft was bent probably from relocations we did in the past. Tried to fix it but still the spin is wobbly. The TT and SME tonearm (from my old Thorens TT) were in storage for sometime. Took them out to see if they are still useable. Both are still in good condition except for the motor and the missing shell.

Thanks again for the inputs.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby brady » Fri Sep 26, 2014 3:05 pm

just IMHO, of course

average price for DAC chip is around US $25-30. mozilla inhabits this forum, and he knows a lot about DACs and merits and demerits of various chips.

if the volume is the problem, you probably have a defective output IC. and these cost even less.

buying an outboard DAC is a good idea. sky's the limit here... heheheh
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:22 pm

brady wrote:just IMHO, of course

average price for DAC chip is around US $25-30. mozilla inhabits this forum, and he knows a lot about DACs and merits and demerits of various chips.

if the volume is the problem, you probably have a defective output IC. and these cost even less.

buying an outboard DAC is a good idea. sky's the limit here... heheheh


Brady, do you know anyone who can possible repair the DAC module? To replace the whole module will cost me P31K. Thanks.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby brady » Sat Sep 27, 2014 4:29 pm

Hi

there's lots of guys here in wiredstate who can "take a look" ... to trouble-shoot, repair/replace is another matter.

But i would rather they pipe in themselves :)

just my opinion, a defective DAC chip would not cause a lower volume in one channel. it would result in much worse than that.

btw, have you tried exchanging inputs into your amp? this might be in the amp...
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Sat Sep 27, 2014 9:27 pm

brady wrote:Hi

there's lots of guys here in wiredstate who can "take a look" ... to trouble-shoot, repair/replace is another matter.

But i would rather they pipe in themselves :)

just my opinion, a defective DAC chip would not cause a lower volume in one channel. it would result in much worse than that.

btw, have you tried exchanging inputs into your amp? this might be in the amp...


Yes, I have done cable swapping. Avesco confirmed the problem.
Anyway, I'm resigned to getting an external DAC now. I found my choice and it would be cheaper than the repair cost.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby Gau_Ban » Tue Sep 30, 2014 8:37 am

Did you write to Cambridge Audio to express your disappointment? Sometimes manufacturers will give you a break on the cost of replacement parts.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Mon Oct 20, 2014 7:35 am

Gau_Ban wrote:Did you write to Cambridge Audio to express your disappointment? Sometimes manufacturers will give you a break on the cost of replacement parts.


Yes, I have. CA replied immediately to say they have no influence on the repair pricing of Avesco, and suggested I make a request to Avesco to consider lowering the price or give deeper discount on the their DacMagic+ (selling at P20,000 and 11K cheaper than the repair being charged, while a new 840C now sells for only 38K or 7K difference from the repair cost). I have yet to receive a reply from Avesco. Three weeks since I sent the note to Avesco.

Meantime, I stated ripping my CDs to my old Mac and looking for an external DAC.

Thanks, Gau_Ban
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby dv187736 » Tue Oct 28, 2014 9:12 pm

Just to update the readers.

After weeks waiting for Avesco's reply I've decided to let go of this Cambridge/Avesco thing. No more CA DacMagic Plus, too.

I'm almost done ripping all my CDs (95%) to a WD 1TB external drive. I hooked it up to my old MacBook3,1 (late 2007) with PureMusic software which I got more than a year ago, and a GoVibe USB Audio DAC (Burr-Brown PCM2702) I bought from Jaben in SGP in 2010(?). And Voila! I'm back in business and the set up is fantastic. At first, I wasn't optimistic about the GoVibe it being a headphone DAC. But many hours of listening revealed how good this diminutive device is - at least to my ears.
Better, it doesn't seem to require exotic/expensive cables.

Thanks to all those who provided valuable inputs.
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Re: Need help with Cambridge Audio 840C CD Player

Postby hshrader » Fri May 15, 2015 7:16 am

Excellent result! And the digital library will endure - so long as it is backed up!
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