Luxman D-08u CD/SACD player & DAC at AXPONA

May 27, 2013
426
9
18
Chicago suburbs
#1
I just spent a couple of days at AXPONA and had a chance to wander into many different rooms there. One of the best sounding setups I heard was using CAT electronics (the SL-1 Renaissance Black Path Edition pre and JL5 amp) driving Vivid Audio Giya 3 speakers. The sound was very realistic, extremely musical and engaging. I saw the platter spinning on the Townshend Rock 7 turntable and thought that it sounded superb. What then shocked me was when I realized the tonearm was raised off of the record and the source they were running at the time was a standard CD! I’m much more of an analog guy and find well mastered high res material much more enjoyable and natural sounding than (most) CD quality digital. I saw what they were running for the digital source and it was a Luxman D-08u CD/SACD player and DAC. While it lists for $18K US I have never in my life heard CDs sound so completely engaging, with natural decays and beautiful textures being revealed. I really never thought that digital could ever sound so good, especially of redbook CD quality. Of course the entire system was contributing to the excellence of what I experienced, but it was a real ear opening experience for me. I'm already the proud owner of the superb Luxman C-900u preamp, and this experience just reinforced in my mind what absolutely superb products Luxman makes!
 

LL21

Well-Known Member
Dec 26, 2010
10,803
80
48
#2
Nice thread (for a redbook-only guy like me) to read...thanks for posting. I have read good things about Luxman and will have to listen to it someday when i come across an opportunity. I have also heard good things about Vivid...particularly the most recent showing where it seems to have received near-universal acclaim on this forum. Unusual and promising. Those i CAN hear nearby and will endeavor to do so...hopefully the setup will do them as much justice as appears to have been done at the show.
 
#3
I just spent a couple of days at AXPONA and had a chance to wander into many different rooms there. One of the best sounding setups I heard was using CAT electronics (the SL-1 Renaissance Black Path Edition pre and JL5 amp) driving Vivid Audio Giya 3 speakers. The sound was very realistic, extremely musical and engaging. I saw the platter spinning on the Townshend Rock 7 turntable and thought that it sounded superb. What then shocked me was when I realized the tonearm was raised off of the record and the source they were running at the time was a standard CD! I’m much more of an analog guy and find well mastered high res material much more enjoyable and natural sounding than (most) CD quality digital. I saw what they were running for the digital source and it was a Luxman D-08u CD/SACD player and DAC. While it lists for $18K US I have never in my life heard CDs sound so completely engaging, with natural decays and beautiful textures being revealed. I really never thought that digital could ever sound so good, especially of redbook CD quality. Of course the entire system was contributing to the excellence of what I experienced, but it was a real ear opening experience for me. I'm already the proud owner of the superb Luxman C-900u preamp, and this experience just reinforced in my mind what absolutely superb products Luxman makes!
Bill

The particular CD player we used at Axpona had been lent to a reviewer for a few months from new. It seems the reviewer was using the DAC portion principally. Because when we played the D-08u on Saturday, we could clearly hear that this unit was not fully broken-in yet, at times it was a little scratchy sounding.. I spoke to George yesterday, who took it home after the Axpona and he stuck the Isotek break-in CD and let it play. After a hundred hours he said that it sounded a lot more natural but still not as organic as the normal Luxman gear. I don't doubt that it will sound as good as the matching C-900u control amp & M-900u amp; high praise given the feed-back we're receiving from listeners & reviewers. Though I have been told that the 900 series is taking a looong time to break-in. Thanks for your feedback,

Philip
 
Nov 30, 2012
99
0
6
#4
I really wonder how good Is the DAC inside when used as a USB DAC.

I am indeed looking right now for a CD/SACD player with an inboard DAC that will be good enough to also act as my main USB DAC for my filer server.

And the DAC inside need to be a little on the warm side: Indeed, I have a BHSE amp + Stax SR009 headphone that is VERY relealling but also some time too analytical to the point that it can be fatiguing. Therefore I am looking for a DAC that will be very precise & detailled BUT also on the warm side to warm-up a little the Sound signature of the Stax009.
time too analytical to the point that it can be fatiguing.
 
#5
I really wonder how good Is the DAC inside when used as a USB DAC.

I am indeed looking right now for a CD/SACD player with an inboard DAC that will be good enough to also act as my main USB DAC for my filer server.

And the DAC inside need to be a little on the warm side: Indeed, I have a BHSE amp + Stax SR009 headphone that is VERY relealling but also some time too analytical to the point that it can be fatiguing. Therefore I am looking for a DAC that will be very precise & detailled BUT also on the warm side to warm-up a little the Sound signature of the Stax009.
time too analytical to the point that it can be fatiguing.
D-08_mechanism_big.jpg
LxDTM mechanism and analogue output stage with ODNF on the RHS

Luxman's products are all voiced to the musical side of neutral. The only caveat is that you need to hear a fully broken-in player before you can make a final judgement call. The D-08u ($18k) is truly analogue sounding, its siblings the D-05u ($5k) and D-06u ($10k) are both superb, while not reaching quite the same sonic height; though more moderately priced.

BTW, the D-06u is noticeably improved over the DA-06 DAC, which was designed around the D-06 SACD player. Not only more extension across the board, but a lot more air. Both the D-05u and the D-06u reviews will appear in the two major print mags in the coming few months.

Personally, I am still a fan of the SACD format and am still buying discs regularly. With these players you can play the discs & files and compare for yourself which sounds the best to you. It doesn't matter which format the reviewers prefer, they may have a different agenda. Hope this is of help.
 

Uk Paul

Member Sponsor
Sep 27, 2012
356
24
18
UK
#7
Very interested to hear any additional first hand experience with the 08-U vs 06-U if any has any?
 

Joe Cohen

New Member
Jun 10, 2012
19
11
3
#9
I had a brief audition of the D-08 today and was mightily impressed with its ambient retrieval and depth of stage. Can only wonder for now how good the D-08u is.
 

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