How to Choose a CD Player: 5 Steps - MakeSureHow
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Compact Disc players have not gone the way of the 8-Track with the rise in digital music, but their place in the music world has shifted considerably. Current CD technology offers higher quality sound than can be easily found in compressed digital music, which makes CDs and CD players desirable for audiophiles wanting to have the best music playback possible.

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    Quality:The first thing you should consider when looking for a CD player is the quality of the rest of the audio components in your system. It doesn't make much sense to shell out thousands of dollars for the highest quality player so you can connect it to your garage-sale speakers. Essentially you want the highest quality that you'll be able to enjoy, if your stereo system has 5.1 channel surround sound, you may enjoy DVD-Audio or Blu-ray audio support. If you just have two channels though, the sound quality of a regular CD player will be sufficient.
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    Connections: Related to the idea of quality are the number of connections and the type of connections the CD player can make to the rest of the system. If you are happy with stereo audio, then a standard RCA connection will suffice. But if you want to hear your music in surround sound, then you will need to use a digital coaxial connection or optical connection to get the sound information to your music system.
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    Formats:The Compact Disc format came out in 1982, but has been upgraded since then with Super Audio CDs, DVD-Audio and Blu-Ray audio. Each format promises to offer the ideal sound; though studies have shown that most people can't tell the difference. What's more important is the discs you have and the ones you want to buy. If you want to relish every note of an album, then getting support for SACD, DVD-Audio and Blu-Ray audio would be a good move to make. But if you want to start a mix for your party and not have to think about it for several hours, then you want a CD player that will play MP3 CDs -- which can hold several times the number of songs that a regular CD can contain.
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    Location: Obviously when looking at where to listen to your discs is an important factor in the buying process. If you want to listen to tunes in your car, you'll want to look at head units that provide all the inputs and outputs to connect with your existing stereo, you may even want to look at a CD changer so you don't have to fiddle with discs while you're driving. If you're putting on the music at home, you can look for a unit that won't add too much ambient noise to your system from the motor that spins the disc -- and one that looks nice with the rest of your home audio components.
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    Recording: If you want to make your own mix CDs, or if you want to make your garage band famous with your first album, you'll want a CD player that can also record discs. The recording formats are typically the same as the playback formats so you'll want to match up what you're recording to, with what you can play it on. If you only have one device that can play SACDs for example, recording them will limit you to playing them on that one system.

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