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Variable Output Level on my Marantz CD63SE

Wharfedale EVO 4.1 4.2 Speakers

psychotropic

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My marantz CD63SE permits the output level to be varied (some kind of digital thingamajig, no potentiometer). Therefore, for instance, with my Audioengine 2, it gives me 'volume control' on the remote, in spite of the AE2s not having a remote.

But I am guessing this is not the point of the CD player having variable output level. What is the use of this? can this be tweaked around to improve the performance from my amplifier? What principles would apply?

Also, it seems like, due to the variable output level, i can possibly consider hooking this up directly to the power amp section of the NAD C320BEE. Of course, this can be dangerous if the output level is set too high, but could I possibly explore setting the output level at minimum, hooking it up straight to the power amp section, and slowly increasing it?

Theoretically this should yield better sound since I am removing the pre-amp circuity from the signal path right? And also the NAD's pre is supposed to be its weak point, and eliminating this should, in theory, give me some gains right?

Would this be worth exploring. Unfortunately, I still can't test it out, since I haven't got my speakers as yet, but I thought I'd pick the community's brains about this before i try anything.
 

santhosh

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My marantz CD63SE permits the output level to be varied (some kind of digital thingamajig, no potentiometer). Therefore, for instance, with my Audioengine 2, it gives me 'volume control' on the remote, in spite of the AE2s not having a remote.

But I am guessing this is not the point of the CD player having variable output level. What is the use of this? can this be tweaked around to improve the performance from my amplifier? What principles would apply?

Also, it seems like, due to the variable output level, i can possibly consider hooking this up directly to the power amp section of the NAD C320BEE. Of course, this can be dangerous if the output level is set too high, but could I possibly explore setting the output level at minimum, hooking it up straight to the power amp section, and slowly increasing it?

Theoretically this should yield better sound since I am removing the pre-amp circuity from the signal path right? And also the NAD's pre is supposed to be its weak point, and eliminating this should, in theory, give me some gains right?

Would this be worth exploring. Unfortunately, I still can't test it out, since I haven't got my speakers as yet, but I thought I'd pick the community's brains about this before i try anything.

I have a CD63SE too but I have never tried this myself. But from what I have heard, you should be able to connect to a power amp with it. Will watch this thread to learn and understand from the experts.
 

Asit

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Hi Psychotropic,

I still have a very old (19 years) CDP (Denon DCD920) which has the same volume control or output level control feature. But I seldom used it, because it also has a fixed output and I used that mostly. Actually I used this CDP all these years with my older amp (HK6300) and it did not have a direct input for the power section (very much like what anm's HK amp has). At times I remember having used it to the CD input of the HK amp, so the signal went through the pre-amp section too where obviously the HK has the usual volume control.

I guess in principle there is no problem with this. Some stand-alone DAC's have this feature too and people connect them directly to the power amp. In your case, in principle you should get cleaner and better sound from your nad 320 amp, because pre-amp section, as people say, is weaker in those amps. Have you checked if that control still works in your CDP? If it does, you can try it out and let us know. But please be careful, start at the lowest volume possible.

Regards.
 

columbus

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I am also sailing in the same boat. My oppo 980H is connected to Norge 1000.
The oppo has a volume control. I have kept the Oppo at the maximum vol position and amp volume level at 9;30 position. I then use the oppo remote for vol control without touching the amp vol control. Norge 1000 does not has a remote for vol vontrol.
But question is ...is this the right approach...???
I hope i understood this thread correctly...!
 

psychotropic

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Yes, the control works perfectly. The only 'problem' is that it can only be controlled from the remote, so if I lose the remote, that's it. But the safeguard here is that every time you power off and power on the CDP, the output level resets to maximum.

I would love to hear anyone else's experiences with this, and whether there are any other risks involved in connecting it directly to the power amp section.

Hi Psychotropic,

I still have a very old (19 years) CDP (Denon DCD920) which has the same volume control or output level control feature. But I seldom used it, because it also has a fixed output and I used that mostly. Actually I used this CDP all these years with my older amp (HK6300) and it did not have a direct input for the power section (very much like what anm's HK amp has). At times I remember having used it to the CD input of the HK amp, so the signal went through the pre-amp section too where obviously the HK has the usual volume control.

I guess in principle there is no problem with this. Some stand-alone DAC's have this feature too and people connect them directly to the power amp. In your case, in principle you should get cleaner and better sound from your nad 320 amp, because pre-amp section, as people say, is weaker in those amps. Have you checked if that control still works in your CDP? If it does, you can try it out and let us know. But please be careful, start at the lowest volume possible.

Regards.
 

gobble

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I have connected my CD6002 which has no variable output directly to th e main-in of the NAD 325, bypassing the pre. The volume was way too loud to be used (almost beyond usable power where distortion creeps in) and I had no control over it.

Set it to minimum and try.

Regards
 

psychotropic

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thanks for that feedback, at least someone's tried it! hmmmm. The first time I heard the CD63SE, it was plugged in straight to a Carver power amp.

Anyway, I need speakers before I can do anything. I would still welcome the views of the other experts, venkat, cranky, where are you guys?

I have connected my CD6002 which has no variable output directly to th e main-in of the NAD 325, bypassing the pre. The volume was way too loud to be used (almost beyond usable power where distortion creeps in) and I had no control over it.

Set it to minimum and try.

Regards
 

arj

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My marantz CD63SE permits the output level to be varied (some kind of digital thingamajig, no potentiometer). Therefore, for instance, with my Audioengine 2, it gives me 'volume control' on the remote, in spite of the AE2s not having a remote.

But I am guessing this is not the point of the CD player having variable output level. What is the use of this? can this be tweaked around to improve the performance from my amplifier? What principles would apply?

Also, it seems like, due to the variable output level, i can possibly consider hooking this up directly to the power amp section of the NAD C320BEE. Of course, this can be dangerous if the output level is set too high, but could I possibly explore setting the output level at minimum, hooking it up straight to the power amp section, and slowly increasing it?

Theoretically this should yield better sound since I am removing the pre-amp circuity from the signal path right? And also the NAD's pre is supposed to be its weak point, and eliminating this should, in theory, give me some gains right?

Would this be worth exploring. Unfortunately, I still can't test it out, since I haven't got my speakers as yet, but I thought I'd pick the community's brains about this before i try anything.

i will not recommend this... fairly hgh-end cdps like wadia, audio aero,dCS etc do have a volume controls..but unless done well they will lose resolution in either the digitial Or the analogue domain depending on the mode they chose. the primary purpose in the CD63 might be only for temporary reduction in volume and not as a volume control.

I think the Wadia site used to have an article on how they are able to give a volume control in the digital domain without compromising on resolution which is not the case with many others..if the article is still there, you may find it interesting.

Could you check if there is a memory of the volume level ? i think the marantz has a problem that when the cdp is switched on it starts at Max memory by dafault...may be dangerous :)
 
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psychotropic

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yup, it switches to maximum by default. Haan, this was anyway going to be only a one time or temporary experiment, not a permanent arrangement. Unless someone points out some harm that can come of it, i'll probably try it out and see if what is lost is in 'volume' control can be gained or exceeded by bypassing the pre.

i will not recommend this... fairly hgh-end cdps like wadia, audio aero,dCS etc do have a volume controls..but unless done well they will lose resolution in either the digitial Or the analogue domain depending on the mode they chose. the primary purpose in the CD63 might be only for temporary reduction in volume and not as a volume control.

I think the Wadia site used to have an article on how they are able to give a volume control in the digital domain without compromising on resolution which is not the case with many others..if the article is still there, you may find it interesting.

Could you check if there is a memory of the volume level ? i think the marantz has a problem that when the cdp is switched on it starts at Max memory by dafault...may be dangerous :)
 

coaltrain

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i will not recommend this... fairly hgh-end cdps like wadia, audio aero,dCS etc do have a volume controls..but unless done well they will lose resolution in either the digitial Or the analogue domain depending on the mode they chose.

bang on. use the fixed outputs, if available., or set the variable output to max. the variable output decreases resolution at any setting less than max. it's merely a gimmick to aid in recording (smooth fades on tape).
 

gobble

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I read that CDP standard specs 2.0 volts output as standard and hence may not interoperate well with portable hi-f- setups. Hence the option of a variable output is provided. So the max setting should provide 2volts per CDP standard which can be lowered.

Regards
 

anm

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my hk amp does NOT have a direct input to the power amp section, unfortunately.
It does have processor out/ processor in - but even when I connect my CDP (or pre-amp) to this HK amp through processor in, the tone controls and volume control of HK amp is NOT defeated. That is why I am looking at a mod of this HK6550 to get direct access to power section. I had planned to go to Viren and do this minor mod along with him. I was not able to get this done as my daughter was not well and was in hospital for a couple of days. Currently my schedule is revolving around spending more time with her and also as doc has ordered us not to expose her, or ourselves too much to outside world, I am avoiding going out much. Hope this mod will be done this weekend - along with stuffing the chinese DAC inside the lyrita pre.
Will keep you guys updated.

regards

Hi Psychotropic,

I still have a very old (19 years) CDP (Denon DCD920) which has the same volume control or output level control feature. But I seldom used it, because it also has a fixed output and I used that mostly. Actually I used this CDP all these years with my older amp (HK6300) and it did not have a direct input for the power section (very much like what anm's HK amp has). At times I remember having used it to the CD input of the HK amp, so the signal went through the pre-amp section too where obviously the HK has the usual volume control.

I guess in principle there is no problem with this. Some stand-alone DAC's have this feature too and people connect them directly to the power amp. In your case, in principle you should get cleaner and better sound from your nad 320 amp, because pre-amp section, as people say, is weaker in those amps. Have you checked if that control still works in your CDP? If it does, you can try it out and let us know. But please be careful, start at the lowest volume possible.

Regards.
 
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