My own experience with Luxman D10X

exupgh12

Well-Known Member
Jul 30, 2019
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I would like to apologize English isn’t my native language
The following is a review of my Luxman D10X CD//SACD/DAC player

It's been almost two weeks since i received my Luxman D10X after almost a year of waiting.
the D10X replace Luxman's D08 as the flagship player.

Player Structure & Features

The D10X size is quite big – it's taller than the C900U preamp, the player comes in a huge package that weighs about 38 kg, the player itself weighs about 23 kg.

As usual with Luxman flagship series, you get a loop-less chassis structure, the exterior structure is made of brushed aluminum at the top and the front of rough aluminum using a fine sandblast.

Unlike the previous generation of the company, Series 10 front with angles replaces the rounded corners of previous series, the device front panel design brings some fresh look.
The finish as in all the Luxman flagship products is exceptional, the metal thickness and processing quality will definitely bring the owner proud, no bare screws can be found on the front or the side panels. the construction successfully combines massiveness and refinement - Something the Japanese are good at.

According to Luxman D10X contains improved transport, which according to the manufacturer's statements has been built more massively than the previous generation transport.

According to Luxman the loading and reading speed of optical media has been improved from the previous generation. Luxman also state about improved power supplies.

One of the most intriguing things about a new player is without a doubt the D/A converter chips, the BD34301EKV from the Japanese company ROHM. The player has 2 such chips installed for Dual Mono configuration.
As a company that analog is no stranger to, Luxman claim that the new chip combines top-flight specs with impressive refinement.

The player reads CD \ SACD discs as well as MQA encoded discs (quite rare).
DSD playing has 2 analog FIR filter (D1, D2).
As with other devices made by the company, here too you can change phases in case your pre-amp is European / American.
In addition to analog outputs (XLR and RCA) digital inputs and outputs (coaxial and optical) can be found through the USB inputs. The player will handle PCM from 44.1 kHz to 786 kHz and DSD from 2.8 MHz to 22.4 MHz (1-bit ). The coaxial and optical inputs are limited to PCM 44.1–192kHz.

Sound

The D10X replaced me with another player that also included a converter (Unison Research DUO) and integrates with another converter/streamer I have (Cary DMS-600) that allows me to stream PCM to the D10X
Optical Media Play - CD \ SACD.

Anyone who believes that there is no difference between music played from streaming services such as Tidal and Qobuz and music originating from optical media can stop reading here, the difference exists and the D10X reinforces the attitude that the days of optical media as audiophilic media are far from over –for audiophiles at least.

The D10X has made a noticeable improvement in digital sound quality of my system (my reference is always my analog system – Brinkmann Edison MK2 phono, Brinkmann Balance TT+ Brinkmann 10.5 Arm, Miyajima Kansui cartridge), making instruments and human sounds sound very realistic.

In recent years we witnessed the decline of optical media sales, the D10X proves that optical media is far from exhausting itself in everything related to sound quality, piano, strings, drums, trumpet, or natural human voice sounds incredible through the D10X.
Playing music from a CD or MQA CD on the D10X allows you to get a holograph and a large stage while retaining detail resolution and delicacy (excellent micro and macro dynamics) that I didn't hear before from optical players I had so far.

Even bad recorded albums from 80's New Wave groups such as Yazzo and The Mission) sound incredible on the D10X, without the edgy bright harshness that accompany some of those albums.
Regarding playing music in SACD format (I have about 70 albums in this format), if the album is recorded well you will get a nirvana experience that is already close to the music that can be obtained from a nice analog setup, the sound ability of this player in SACD is impressive.

If the SACD recording is mediocre, the D10X manages to extract to "iron" the wrinkles, this will make you concentrate more on the music instead of recording issues (Santana's Abraxas, some of Hendrix's recordings or some of Stevie Ray's albums that are in SACD).

As a Converter

The streaming at my home is done through my Cary Audio DMS600 converter/streamer, using the DMS coax port to output signal to the D10X coax input.
Music comes from streaming services - Tidal, Qobuz or from files stored on NAS server in the home network, due to the use of a coaxial input the signal is limited to PCM 44.1–192kHz (processing for MQA is performed on the Roon Core computer I use )
In order not to prolong, I can tell you that the D10X retains the same sound characteristics I wrote above - excellent tonality, stage dimensions, resolution, and delicate details.

The D10X was able to preserve the above even when streaming music from music services, one hand you get the impressive ability of the D10X to dig and extract even the finest details from the files, on the other hand, the D10X knows how to produce exceptional tonality and musicality reminiscent of an analog source.

Elaborating about the difference between my current converter/streamers and the D10X, it is mainly reflected in the latter's ability to turn music from a digital source into an experience that even analog enthusiasts can enjoy without moving uncomfortably in the seat.

Complains – Sort of

Is everything perfect? the answer is of course no.

  • I think it's a shame that Luxman did not go one step further like Playback Designs and equip the player / converter with a streaming component - this would have saved another device, probably you cannot ask for everything.
  • The remote, make no mistake, the remote is great, properly constructed of aluminum, the reception is excellent, but the remote isn’t incorporate buttons for company amplification – meaning you'll have to work your way with 2 remotes.
  • Switching between resolutions – when switching between sample resolutions from 44.1 to 88.2 or vice versa for example, you will hear sounds like a relay click (also exists on other Luxman devices), for me this is the first time I hear such a thing, a bit strange in the digital world but I got used to it quickly.

Summary

The music that the D10X can produce is seductive, one that draws the listener into the music. for me the D10X may prove dangerous, as it will make me want to keep listening to music far beyond my free time i have.

In the last two years, I have listened to quite a few converters in a wide range of prices sometimes at an outrageous price (some costing more the double the price of the D10X), the D10X is a very capable and high-performance audio component that successfully combines old (optical media) with new (D/A converter) while providing an addictive listening experience for those who can afford it.

 

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lightmentat

New Member
Dec 6, 2021
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I have the D10x as well. Here are a couple of additional cons:

- It does not play DVD audio
- No DSD over coaxial (only through USB); I do not like using the USB input on the Luxman at all; coaxial is much better
- No I2S connection
- Switching between PCM and DSD layers on hybrid SACDs takes a surprisingly long amount of time
 

exupgh12

Well-Known Member
Jul 30, 2019
139
155
115
52
I have the D10x as well. Here are a couple of additional cons:

- It does not play DVD audio
- No DSD over coaxial (only through USB); I do not like using the USB input on the Luxman at all; coaxial is much better
- No I2S connection
- Switching between PCM and DSD layers on hybrid SACDs takes a surprisingly long amount of time
Thanks for the added comments, appreciate it.
 

mauidj

Member
Mar 29, 2022
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Great review.
I also have a D-10X.
Agree pretty much with all the points above.
I would add a couple of minor things to the cons....
The lights and info in the display are so small its impossible to see what's going on.
Really wish I could connect my streamer via Coax or better still AES/EBU and get full res.

But for all of that, it is a gem!
Best sounding digital I have ever experienced.
And the build quality and Luxman backing are top notch.
Now I need to get a C-900u and I'm all set :)
 

mauidj

Member
Mar 29, 2022
33
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Yes there is and it makes the time larger which is good, but the indicators for SACD etc are so tiny! Far from a deal breaker however!
 

exupgh12

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Jul 30, 2019
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So far i have been using my Cary DMS 600 DAC/Streamer as a source for the D10X - using a DH Labs digital RCA interconnect.
Last weekend I receive my Melco HA-N1Z/2EX-H50 steamer. for the time being, it connects to the D10X with Cardas Clear USB.

The musicality just got even better, I am now seriously thinking of selling my Cary DAC/Streamer.
 

mauidj

Member
Mar 29, 2022
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I look forward to reading your impressions.
I originally bought my D10x to use as a DAC for a streamer. The plan was to use a Lumin U2. But I got a deal on a Lumin X1 and could not turn it down. I love it but I am very excited to try running the streaming side into my Luxman. It will be very interesting to compare the two very different DACs.
 

exupgh12

Well-Known Member
Jul 30, 2019
139
155
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I look forward to reading your impressions.
I originally bought my D10x to use as a DAC for a streamer. The plan was to use a Lumin U2. But I got a deal on a Lumin X1 and could not turn it down. I love it but I am very excited to try running the streaming side into my Luxman. It will be very interesting to compare the two very different DACs.
all ought the Cary DMS 600 is no sloth and is also a great streamer (when streaming music to the Luxman D10X via RCA coaxial) I can vouch for the Melco + Luxman D10X combination (USB connected), it is more musical & analog sound than i have ever had in my setup from any digital source that played in my system (inclouding the Brinkmann Nyquist DAC).
I'm quite shocked at the performance level of the Melco\D10x (especially when considering my analog reference is my Brinkmann Balance TT + Brinkmann Edison II phono).
 
Last edited:

Phillyb

Well-Known Member
May 31, 2012
148
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My dealer keeps pushing streamers and DAC and I keep showing him my CDs sound better and in every case, he says well in this recording I would agree. I have 1,500 CDs, I grew up on vinyl and collected 1,000's, and I no longer use vinyl, so my question to this salesperson tell me why I should buy 1,500 recordings all over again, he just smiles, no answer, in fact my vinyl friend says I agree that be a waste of money and with vinyl selling at 3-4 times the cost of the CD version your talking huge amounts of money to replace what you own again and many will never be on vinyl. My system moves me, makes me tap my foot and if recorded well is like hearing the recording in your room, does it get better than this? never in my 40 years, did some of my vinyl give me that yes, but nowhere near as many recordings as my CDs can do. I know the fads and trends but I am past that bandwagon. But for those who hung on to their vinyl it is a great thing to be able to buy vinyl gear again, though the stores I visit I will be dammed if they could set up a TT like they could in the '60s and '70s where they used scopes to aline an arm, and cartridge, VTA, etc. They got zip there, just basic stuff like we could buy at the audio store to do it yourself to the best of your abilities. Audio Craft was great and it took Frank 2 hours to set up a new cartridge, oh the good old days, when one #1 LP could sell in a month what every LP sold today for a year. Even then Reel-to Reel sounded better and for a single track, the 45 disc version sounded better than a 33-1/3 vinyl did, dynamics were not even close. Then late 70's bad vinyl pressings, lots of compression on new releases, and it got so bad that if you purchased a reissue (RE) LP you had a price of junk, a disc that sounded nowhere near what the 1st pressing did. The myth of vinyl is just that. 50's-60's it was good sounding then slowly it went down hill with over production and sound wise.
 

mauidj

Member
Mar 29, 2022
33
20
8
72
You dont need to buy them all over again. i just finished ripping my 5000+ CD collection. Now I will get rid of many, just keeping special ones, Box sets, SACD's and a few close to my heart. There is room for both in my life. I have over 10000 albums and they are the ones that could get the boot now that my digital rig is sounding so amazing. I am sad about the many albums that i cant get streamed however. Oh well...still lots to listen to. Just waiting on my Purist Audio Design 30th Anniversary USB cable to check out streaming from the X1 to the D-10X DAC.
 

exupgh12

Well-Known Member
Jul 30, 2019
139
155
115
52
My dealer keeps pushing streamers and DAC and I keep showing him my CDs sound better and in every case, he says well in this recording I would agree. I have 1,500 CDs, I grew up on vinyl and collected 1,000's, and I no longer use vinyl, so my question to this salesperson tell me why I should buy 1,500 recordings all over again, he just smiles, no answer, in fact my vinyl friend says I agree that be a waste of money and with vinyl selling at 3-4 times the cost of the CD version your talking huge amounts of money to replace what you own again and many will never be on vinyl. My system moves me, makes me tap my foot and if recorded well is like hearing the recording in your room, does it get better than this? never in my 40 years, did some of my vinyl give me that yes, but nowhere near as many recordings as my CDs can do. I know the fads and trends but I am past that bandwagon. But for those who hung on to their vinyl it is a great thing to be able to buy vinyl gear again, though the stores I visit I will be dammed if they could set up a TT like they could in the '60s and '70s where they used scopes to aline an arm, and cartridge, VTA, etc. They got zip there, just basic stuff like we could buy at the audio store to do it yourself to the best of your abilities. Audio Craft was great and it took Frank 2 hours to set up a new cartridge, oh the good old days, when one #1 LP could sell in a month what every LP sold today for a year. Even then Reel-to Reel sounded better and for a single track, the 45 disc version sounded better than a 33-1/3 vinyl did, dynamics were not even close. Then late 70's bad vinyl pressings, lots of compression on new releases, and it got so bad that if you purchased a reissue (RE) LP you had a price of junk, a disc that sounded nowhere near what the 1st pressing did. The myth of vinyl is just that. 50's-60's it was good sounding then slowly it went down hill with over production and sound wise.
Everyone has their own experience on the issue.
Honestly, my experience with Vinyl during 70's and 80's was so awful i never looked back on them since i got my first CD transport back in 86 or 87.

That said, i never folly got in love with the sound of CDs, friends of mine have a great Audio system that includes a Da Vinci Gabriel reference turntable as a source. no digital source i've heard come close to this sound.
Therefore during the years, i added a turntable to my audio system (Brinkmann Balance), and i can also say no digital source (CD or Streaming) i have heard so far (including my own) come close to this source.
of course, all my vinyl are audiophile reissues and cost much more than CD or SACD (that I still buy from time to time).

You can find good sound either in streaming or CD\SACD and excellent sound when it comes to vinyl - so much more lively than digital sources.
Regarding convenience - streaming takes the first place, CD\SACD comes second and vinyl last.

There is no wrong in any source, different experiences and different abilities to bring you closer to happiness.
 

Phillyb

Well-Known Member
May 31, 2012
148
104
348
You dont need to buy them all over again. i just finished ripping my 5000+ CD collection. Now I will get rid of many, just keeping special ones, Box sets, SACD's and a few close to my heart. There is room for both in my life. I have over 10000 albums and they are the ones that could get the boot now that my digital rig is sounding so amazing. I am sad about the many albums that i cant get streamed however. Oh well...still lots to listen to. Just waiting on my Purist Audio Design 30th Anniversary USB cable to check out streaming from the X1 to the D-10X DAC.
God bless you that you had the time to burn/rip 5,000 CDs so you could play them through a storage streaming device. I have no time to even start that task. I burned 1,400 to my USB flash drive for use in my car, and that was more than enough time to let me know there is no way in heaven I could burn in 1,500 or so CD sets and many double and triple CDs in a boxset and again in my listening experience they still sounded better right from the disc through my SACD players be it the Esoteric K-01X or the Marantz SA-10.
 

mauidj

Member
Mar 29, 2022
33
20
8
72
My streaming device is pretty wonderful which is why I did that. Its not like i stood around waiting for this. It took a while but was hardly a task. I sit at a desk for hours working so why not slip in a few discs while I'm there. No blessing needed ;-) And while I know that discs sound really wonderful through my D-10X, the convenience of having it also available via Roon is why I invested the time. Now i have the best of both worlds. Super sound when i want it or "just" great sound when I want to hear some random stuff. It's my time after all. Oh and BTW....in so doing I discovered that the perfect sound forever medium is anything but. Hundred's of damaged discs that were corroded or whatever. So that was another reason to archive these.
 

mauidj

Member
Mar 29, 2022
33
20
8
72
Everyone has their own experience on the issue.
Honestly, my experience with Vinyl during 70's and 80's was so awful i never looked back on them since i got my first CD transport back in 86 or 87.

That said, i never folly got in love with the sound of CDs, friends of mine have a great Audio system that includes a Da Vinci Gabriel reference turntable as a source. no digital source i've heard come close to this sound.
Therefore during the years, i added a turntable to my audio system (Brinkmann Balance), and i can also say no digital source (CD or Streaming) i have heard so far (including my own) come close to this source.
of course, all my vinyl are audiophile reissues and cost much more than CD or SACD (that I still buy from time to time).

You can find good sound either in streaming or CD\SACD and excellent sound when it comes to vinyl - so much more lively than digital sources.
Regarding convenience - streaming takes the first place, CD\SACD comes second and vinyl last.

There is no wrong in any source, different experiences and different abilities to bring you closer to happiness.
My experience is different. I was an analogy nut up till about 1-2 years ago. Hated digital for anything other than casual listening. Then the D-10X and X1 came into my system. Everything changed from that point. Vinyl is still wonderful if done right but so is digital. We are blessed with so many wonderful choices to suite our personal tastes.
 
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Phillyb

Well-Known Member
May 31, 2012
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My streaming device is pretty wonderful which is why I did that. Its not like i stood around waiting for this. It took a while but was hardly a task. I sit at a desk for hours working so why not slip in a few discs while I'm there. No blessing needed ;-) And while I know that discs sound really wonderful through my D-10X, the convenience of having it also available via Roon is why I invested the time. Now i have the best of both worlds. Super sound when i want it or "just" great sound when I want to hear some random stuff. It's my time after all. Oh and BTW....in so doing I discovered that the perfect sound forever medium is anything but. Hundred's of damaged discs that were corroded or whatever. So that was another reason to archive these.
Knock on wood I never had a damaged CD in 30 years and I've owned most likely 2,000 or more. Listening to a Telarc disc from 1991 as I write this. Corrision? what in the air there...smile!
 

mauidj

Member
Mar 29, 2022
33
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Well you must be blessed. Out of the 5000 + I have owned I think about 250 or so are dead. Including SACD and other high end offerings.
 

Phillyb

Well-Known Member
May 31, 2012
148
104
348
Blessed I am I guess. Never had any issues with any I purchased and some early ones sound great, no compression used as it is today on all recordings for the most part, streaming, CD or vinyl.
 

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