Refurbs at the Music Room

Hi All,

Does anyone have any experience with the refurbed PWTs at the music room? Would you get one if you were in the market for a transport to pair with the new Stellar GCD? Is it a major bump in performance over using my current Marantz CD player/recorder via the bnc digital, given the GCD does have the digital lens tech.

It says they have 39 available and they are priced less than $1300.

Service History: All units have been tested and certified by PS Audio technicians. Repackaged with new factory packaging and accessories where needed and Ships with a 1 year warranty”



With that warranty, I’d do it. Well, I did do it, but got mine directly from PS Audio.

I replaced an old PS Audio Lambda. If you can’t afford the $6k for the DMP, I couldn’t, it is the best option with the GCD. You can use the I2S connection. Get a good HDMI cable, the Pangea from Audio Advisor is a nice cable, for the cost.

Any transport that can compete with the PWT is going to cost a whole lot more.

With the warranty, you can’t go wrong. It is built like a tank, just do it, at that price they won’t last very long.

It’s pretty tempting. I just need to shift a few boxes here to keep the box count reasonable, and I’ll pull the trigger.

I was just looking at these myself, but I’m having a hard time discerning the real difference between the PWT and the DSMP. Both transports DO include I2s outputs via an HDMI interface. So hopefully someone can chime in and explain the real difference. Paul, anyone?

Now that said I am very skeptical of audiophile grade HDMI and USB cables. In my opinion they either meet and pass the proper specifications for USB or HDMI or they don’t. Can someone explain to me how either of these types of cables can improve sound? With analog I get it, makes sense at least to some degree, but digital cables I’m not sure.

Please understand this is not meant to be confrontational, but am willing to have an open mind and listen to any science behind why a digital cable can make a difference.

Thanks in advance.

As to the difference between PWT and DMP they are huge - and the simplest way to understand is that one, the PWT is a DVD/CD transport and the DMP is a universal transport, capable of playing SACD and BluRay audio. Plus, if you were just interested in CD playback, DMP is significantly better sounding than PWT is - and there’s plenty of reasons why, many discussed on the website or you can ask me specific questions.

Why digital cables sound different is a whole can of worms concerning jitter, wave shape, rise time, etc. Probably not enough room on this page to explain it all but, at the end of the day, it’s all about jitter and the many things that affect it - cables being rather significant. Noise is another.

The differences are obvious, the PWT is a CD transport, it has been around for I think it was 7 years, but I could be off a year or two.

The DMP is a CD/SACD transport, that will output DSD to any of PS Audio’s DACs through the I2S link, in this case using a HDMI cable. There are very few transports that can do that. And over the last 7 years there have been improvements in the Digital Lens, amongst others.

As far as cables, there are numerous reasons that they can sound different. With USB it can have to do with electrical noise. Someone else with experience using HDMI cables will be able to share their experiences.

I don’t have a PS Audio DAC, so I can’t tell you how much difference I2S makes with the PSA gear. Years ago, I used an Audio Alchemy DTI a jitter box that output I2S to a Camelot DAC, and it was an improvement.

If I could afford a DMP and a Directstream DAC I would own them.

Edit: I had loaded the page earlier today, so I did not see Paul’s post, until I loaded mine.

I would hope the DMP is a significant step up from a PWT, considering the price differential. However, at it’s price point now ($1300) does the PWT provide good value? As mentioned above it is 7 year old technology, but you’d think for CD play back it might represent near the peak of performance for that format (coming decades after the introduction of the CD).

Still, has it been relegated to second best with the introduction of many streamers at or below that price point. Or is the digital lens technology inside the new GCD able to take a standard digital stream from a much cheaper transport (e.g., the stereophile recommended TASCAM player with a dedicated Teac CD-only mechanism available for $230-) and perform equally well.

Note, here I am only looking for a redbook CD player. I’m tempted also by the Rega Apollo-R, but think keeping to PS Audio might have benefits in terms of synergy (and use the available I2S input).

Any thoughts on the PWT refurb with warranty vs. the new Oppo UDP-205 strictly from a CD playback standpoint? The prices are similar.

From my perspective there’s no question DMP blows away PWT for just CD play. Easy to hear and demonstrate.

stax said

Any thoughts on the PWT refurb with warranty vs. the new Oppo UDP-205 strictly from a CD playback standpoint? The prices are similar.

My opinion, for what it is worth: - I’d buy a factory refurbished PWT at the asking price because it is very good value for money and it sounds better than my standalone Cd-players…

You asked about the PWT stacked up against CD players… “Rega Apollo-R”. Here is my take on it from personal experience… I tend to hang on to equipment when I buy a new product. A few months ago I bought the DMP to replace the PWT and/or Oppo 103 Vanity that I used as my main sources for disc playback… I also have a few standalone CD players - that I really should sell - as I seldom play them. Top Cd-players I own are Linn CD-12 and Rega Isis Valve Cd-player…

1st.The DMP is a giant killer…it is incredible…Redbook Cds are ridiculously musical: SACDs kill all other sources of music I use : 2nd Oppo - 103 Vanity because it plays SACDs and it is decent on Redbook discs: 3rd. PWT - the performance is very good with RBCDs and outperforms all my standalone Cd-players: 4th Rega Isis Valve Cd-player: 5th Linn CD-12:

The Rega Isis and Linn CD-12 are both excellent sounding Cd-players and, they are still highly regarded, and they are built like battleships - especially the Rega player…

But pitching either of these incredible Cd-players up against the PWT through the DS takes all of a Nano-second to hear the limitations of both those excellent Cd-players… But then I connect up the DMP and it is like the Cd players are steam powered… The DMP is the daddy…! Yes - in my opinion, and going from experience the asking price for the PWT is a very good deal, you couldn’t do better with a Cd-player…

Thank you Dirk. I have a DSD that I would run the PWT through so I appreciate your comparisons to the standalone cdp’s. I understand the DMP is a big step up and I’d really like to have one but I just don’t spin discs nearly enough to justify it…yet.

Wow, Dirk, I have heard the Isis player with the big matching rega integrated into Wilson Sophias and was very impressed. If the PWT beats the Isis as a front end, it must be something special. I appreciate you posting your impressions.

I also have the matching Osiris integrated amplifier - which in my opinion is one of the best amplifiers made, regardless of cost, and I still use it regularly … When I first bought the DSD I used the Rega Isis as the main transport in my system: - but shortly thereafter I bought the PWT and performance wise it walked all over the Isis player… ‘The digital lens and I2S connection, etc, etc’ !! The Rega Isis Valve is a wonderful standalone player and when combined with the Osiris amplifier they are both so musically engaging but, the DSD is just so much better musically, it is on another level to the Isis’s Wolfson dac chips… Pre - DMP: I would use the PWT & DS for RBCDs and the Oppo - 103 Vanity & DS for SACDs… ( I was never fully happy with the Oppo -103 as a Cd player ! ) But saying that I was very happy with this combination - then I heard the DMP and it was/is a true revelation…! From my own experience streaming music isn’t as musically engaging / enjoyable as SACDs through the DMP & DS…‘even standard RBCDs sound incredibly musical in the DMP’… Just my opinion, from my own experiences, the DMP along with the DS are game changers - on so many levels…

PWT ordered! They took a preamp as a partial trade, so I kept the box count constant. Looking forward to hooking it up for the long weekend. I’ll post my impressions soon.

I am currently using a 6-year old Cambridge 840C as the transporter, also saw the refurb PWT and wondering the following, since I have a couple of hundreds of redbook CDs, how PWT-DSD compares to Melco N1A-DSD if I rip all my CDs to Melco N1A which I already have.


Personally - I couldn’t answer not having heard the Cambridge 840C and/or the Melco… Maybe other Forum members have some knowledge on said equipment… But you really need to make that judgement for yourself by listening to all the options available to you !

I spent a very pleasant evening unpacking and listening to the PWT last night. The condition of this refurb unit is, as far as I can see, like new. Not a scratch/rub on it. No white gloves in the box, but all else there. Bonus is that the remote can control the Stellar GCD and is a much nicer build quality and also backlit.

The sound is superb via I2S (haven’t tried other inputs) - digging all kinds of new detail out of well worn CDs. I am pleasantly surprised at both the build quality and finish of the PWT. The tray looks very solid, not some floppy plastic thing. The player reads discs very quickly, much faster than I thought it would to get the tracks into memory.

One question - it came with a 8GB SSD - does the size of the card determine the length of time it stores. I hit eject and just a few seconds later the song quits. Would a larger card play longer?

No, because the SD card only stores the cover art and has nothing to do with the memory player part.

Glad you’re enjoying it. It’s a lovely device.

danm said

I spent a very pleasant evening unpacking and listening to the PWT last night. The condition of this refurb unit is, as far as I can see, like new. Not a scratch/rub on it. No white gloves in the box, but all else there. Bonus is that the remote can control the Stellar GCD and is a much nicer build quality and also backlit.

Great to hear .. Next it will a DS to match the PWT boxlaugh

Ha! A slippery slope, indeed.