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  1. #1

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    Default Music Hall/Shanling/Onix CD player upgrade opa627 opamps

    This is a drop-in opamp upgrade for the Music Hall CD-25, Shanling SD-100 or Onix XCD-88 CD players that requires no soldering. Just pop out your stock socket mounted opamps and plug these in.
    I have three sets available. These opamps upgrade the stock Burr Brown opa604's (2604's) operational amplifiers in the above mentioned CD players with the much more expensive and much better performing opa627 opamps. To give you an idea if you go to [url]www.digikey.com,[/url] the stock opa604's cost about $4.00 apiece and your CD player utilizes two, one for each channel. These opa627's (OPA627AU) cost over $18.00 apiece and your CD player will utilize four of them, 2 for each channel. The opamps are mounted onto a BrownDog adapter PCB, 2 opamps per adapter, and plug right into your existing opamp sockets. You will need two of these 'modules' for the upgrade. You can expect to hear tighter bass, better soundstage and imaging and much greater clarity and detail. I have tested these in my CD player and each set has been burned in for at least 8 hrs. The upgrade shops like Parts Connexion, Underwood HiFi, Sound Odyssey charge between $59.95 - $74.00 [B][I]per module[/I][/B] meaning it would cost you between $120 - $148 to do the upgrade and that's if you install them yourself. If you have them install them you'd have to add an additional $50 or so. I have purchased the components in bulk at a very low price and assembled them myself. I have experience as an Electronics Technician and I have done alot of soldering. I used a high quality lead-free, silver content solder. These are tested and guaranteed to work perfectly. I just did it for fun and would be willing to sell these at a fraction of the retail cost. I will provide instructions and pictures to show you how to install. In fact, if you don't feel comfortable doing it yourself I'll install them for free. Just pay for shipping both ways. It is extremely easy however.
    I'll sell them for $45 [B][I]per pair[/I][/B] shipped. That's $22.50 apiece :eek: for you mathematically challenged.

    Here is a pic of the installed modules.
    Last edited by dragon1952; 05-30-2005 at 09:02 PM.

  2. #2

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    Link to review. This compares 2 Level One modded machines, but the only difference between the two is that one has the opa627's.
    [url]http://www.6moons.com/audioreviews/musichall/cd25.2.html[/url]

  3. #3

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    Hey dragon I have read about the 627 op amps. I have a nad c541i which uses bb 2604's. Could I install the 627's into my nad???

  4. #4

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    without soldering?

  5. #5

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    [QUOTE][i]Originally posted by unbridled_id [/i]
    [B]Hey dragon I have read about the 627 op amps. I have a nad c541i which uses bb 2604's. Could I install the 627's into my nad??? [/B][/QUOTE]

    I think on the NAD C541i, the 2604's are soldered in which means you'd have to unsolder the 2604's and then solder the adapter board in their place. Not sure how easy that is.
    Last edited by dragon1952; 05-30-2005 at 04:42 PM.

  6. #6

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    [QUOTE][i]Originally posted by unbridled_id [/i]
    [B]without soldering? [/B][/QUOTE]

    If you have any of the CD players I mentioned you would not have to solder. Those players have a socket that's soldered into the main board. The opamp just plugs into it. If you look at my picture you'll see the black sockets and my adapter boards just plugged into them.

  7. #7

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    Will these modules work in the Shanling CD-T100 without soldering?
    HT/2-channel Rig: Sony 50 LCD TV; Toshiba HD-A2 DVD player; Emotiva LMC-1 pre/pro; Rogue Audio M-120 monoblocks (modded); Placette RVC; Emotiva LPA-1 amp; Bada HD-22 tube CDP (modded); VMPS Tower II SE (fronts); DIY Clearwave Dynamic 4CC (center); Wharfedale Opus Tri-Surrounds (rear); and VMPS 215 sub

    "God grooves with tubes."

  8. #8

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    Early,
    Evidently so.....here's a link that says they just snap in. I'm not familiar with this player....sure is beautiful though!
    The others I mentioned...the Music Hall CD-25, Shanling SD-100 and Onix XCD-88 are all the exact same machines internally...that's the only reason I can vouch for them. There may be others too, but yeah, looks like the Shanling CD T-100 also. You'd think at that price they would include them :rolleyes:


    Oops.....link:
    [url]http://shop.store.yahoo.com/yhst-9053161298275/opa627opamp.html[/url]

    The link talks about soldering but it's talking about players w/out the sockets.
    Last edited by dragon1952; 05-30-2005 at 09:21 PM.

  9. #9

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    2 sets sold!

    I've got one set left. If anyone has the Music Hall CD-25, Shanling SD-100 or Onix XCD-88 CDP's this is a no-brainer for $45.

    These sell for between $120-$200 per set at retail prices.

    BTW, these will work in the Shanling CD-T100 also but it requires 2 sets (4 total)
    Last edited by dragon1952; 05-31-2005 at 09:08 PM.

  10. #10

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    In my nad c541i the op-amp is soldered to the board. That sucks as I wanted to implement the upgrade....

  11. #11

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    OK....one last call. If you've got one of these CDP's you're missing a huge (and very cheap) upgrade. After listening to these for about a week I tried the stock opamps again and didn't even want to listen to it. They will spoil you.
    One more day and this last pair are off to the 'Gon. I'd consider Ebay but they probably wouldn't know what the hell they are :rolleyes:

  12. #12

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    dragon, curious....what gear/speakers do you have that you can hear such difference in opamps?
    System 1: Onix Rockets 750 Sig. Ed., Rotel RC 1070, Rotel RB 1080, Music Hall MMF CD25 w/627opamps

    System 2: LSi15, Marantz SR8400, Rotel 1080, RM6800 (C&S), Yamaha: 2300 Univ. DVD, CDC-625RS.

    System 3: LSi7, Yamaha SW215, HK 230, Elite DV-45A; Sony C445.

    System 4: RTi100, Onkyo TXSV717Pro, Monarchy/Sonic Impact Hybrid, Yamaha CD.

  13. #13

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    That sounds like a loaded question so I'm assuming you don't think there should be a difference. FWIW, we're talking about the difference between a $4 dual opamp and 2 $18 single opamps per socket. Those are, of course, retail prices. I don't know **** about opamps other than this is a very popular upgrade with Sound Odyssey, Underwood Hi-fi and Parts Connexion, to name a few, and they charge big bucks for it. These places specialize in modding audio equipment. This is also a very popular mod with many DIY'ers. If you do a search on 'opa627' you'll find lots of reviews and threads. To my own ears it is very obvious as I've already stated. However, to answer your loaded question, I have a Conrad Johnson Sonographe SA-250 amp, a Dodd Audio ELP pre and Paradigm Studio 40 speakers. I'm currently using an Onix XCD-88 CD player which, as I've mentioned, is exactly the same as the Music Hall CD-25 and Shanling CD-S100.

  14. #14

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    dragon, it was not a "loaded question" at all....take a look at my posts...no BSing. I asked b/c while interested, I dont know what opamps are...everyone seems to say DAC this and DAC that as far as sound quality. I dont doubt there will be an improvement...its a matter of how much and how significant will it be in my system as I am pretty happy with the sound of hte Music Hall...so I am wondering what type of improvement opamps can give...and in trying to speculate on that made me wonder about your other equipment which may bear on the changes to the sound quality that can be heard....
    System 1: Onix Rockets 750 Sig. Ed., Rotel RC 1070, Rotel RB 1080, Music Hall MMF CD25 w/627opamps

    System 2: LSi15, Marantz SR8400, Rotel 1080, RM6800 (C&S), Yamaha: 2300 Univ. DVD, CDC-625RS.

    System 3: LSi7, Yamaha SW215, HK 230, Elite DV-45A; Sony C445.

    System 4: RTi100, Onkyo TXSV717Pro, Monarchy/Sonic Impact Hybrid, Yamaha CD.

  15. #15

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    Fair enough.....I've just run into too many smartasses when it comes to things that may be considered 'subjective'.
    What I heard the most, and I'm not real good at this, was 'clarity'. A crystal clear ambience to the sound which is not there with the stock opamps. I don't know what causes this phenomena but it was there. It creates a sense of 'airiness' around the sound, for lack of a better term. Also a little tighter bass and a little better detail....not huge but noticable. I'd say a more open sounding soundstage but that could be the result of the 'clarity' sensation. A little better imaging.
    After putting these in my first impression was 'brightness' but that goes away, maybe with the burn-in or maybe it's just so different it takes awhile to get used to it. After that it just sounds good. A week goes by and you get used to the 'good' and wonder if it didn't sound just as good before. So you put the old ones back in and listen real close and then you go 'Nah!'

    I understand your reluctance, but I actually feel so good about these that I'd be willing to offer you a money back guarantee. Seriuosly, you have a good CDP that can sound alot better.

  16. #16

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    More carity and airiness?!...I thought stock it is really clear and airy! I am always up for tighter bass.......I will take you up on your guarentee and take a set. That's all I need right? PM your addy and I will send a check. You can wait till check clears before shipping...no hurry...
    System 1: Onix Rockets 750 Sig. Ed., Rotel RC 1070, Rotel RB 1080, Music Hall MMF CD25 w/627opamps

    System 2: LSi15, Marantz SR8400, Rotel 1080, RM6800 (C&S), Yamaha: 2300 Univ. DVD, CDC-625RS.

    System 3: LSi7, Yamaha SW215, HK 230, Elite DV-45A; Sony C445.

    System 4: RTi100, Onkyo TXSV717Pro, Monarchy/Sonic Impact Hybrid, Yamaha CD.

  17. #17

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    OK......thanks bud ;) I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
    BTW, these 3 pairs are gone but I have got an order for 2 more sets. If anyone else is interested let me know so I'll know how much supplies to order.

  18. #18
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    Default Follow-up

    I bought two pair of dragon1952's opamp boards for my nephew's CD T-100 (which he bought after hearing mine.) They are identical to the dual opamp boards in my CDP which was modded by Parts Connexion before I bought it used.

    The upgrade is 20 minutes labor and the only consideration is the two capacitors mounted between the top opamp sockets (see picture below.) They require a gentle twist of slightly less than 45 degrees to allow unimpeded reinsertion of the new boards.

    Rob's description of the SQ differences is dead on. It is instantly noticable and a positive improvement. My ears are a few years older than Rob's and I must say if you can't hear this improvement, your next stop should be the Miracle Ear dealer. ;)

    Reed, the owner, is picking it up this afternoon. I'm not going to say a thing. I'll bet he has plenty to say!
    Last edited by BlueMDPicker; 11-11-2006 at 07:14 PM.
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  19. #19

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    Glad to hear the good news, Mike! You always get a little worried that others won't share your opinion on something like this. I thought it was pretty darn obvious though. Hope Reed feels the same way. If not, slap him around a little and then have him give it another listen :D

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