Cambridge CXU Universal Disc player - The Best Yet.
Cambridge Audio's new BlueRay and universal disc player is the very best iteration of this line and stands as the best sounding machine of its type from any manufacturer. In both picture and sound quality, surround sound for movies and stereo for music, the CXU is the class leader and our first recommendation.
The Cambridge CXU is much more than just a disc player - it is a fully functioning digital preamplifier with multiple inputs and outputs including wifi for streaming. The CXU is your best choice for many types of system.
For the home Cinema enthusiast it offers an unmatched clarity of picture from all formats of disc and input - HDMI and USB. The CXU incorporates the latest release of DARBEE Visual Presence and 4k upsampling from all video inoputs - not just disc. This combined with brilliantly executed 7.1 surround sound delivers you and immersive movie experience.
"On Blu-ray, we're treated to a gorgeous picture that looks natural, crystal clear, and full of subtlety and dynamism. Colours are faithfully portrayed, with skin tones and daylight scenes having a realistic touch, while also brimming with vibrancy and crisp detail. The interplay of light and shadow is expertly done. The sunlight coming through the windows is clean and intense (but never glaring), while the gradient of shadows in gloomy hallways is deftly conveyed. Dark scenes are pleasingly deep, without swallowing up finer details or robbing the scene of depth or drama.Motion is handled smoothly, whether you’re watching a fast action scene or a slow panning shot.
The CXU's immediate rival, the excellent and class-leading Oppo BDP-105D (£1100), is similarly adept at delivering a natural and lively picture. However, the Cambridge is noticeably crisper and subtler with detail, which keeps us further glued to what we're watching."
For playing music, the CXU is exceptional in every sense - there is no compromise involved in its abilities to play both visual and music mediums - in fact the higher tolerances involved benefit CD replay and with 5 Wolfson DACs in action the Cambridge goes far beyond the CD standard. Cambridge's proprietary ATF (Adaptive Time Filtering) audio up-sampling takes all inputs and whatever the file quality brings the audio up to 24-bit/192KHz for stunning high resolution sound. There is a dedicated 2 channel output for music, separate from the cinema section and the Pure Audio mode allows shut down of all video processing for the very best sound.
"As enjoyable as its picture performance is, the Cambridge CXU really lets its true colours fly with sound. With a natural proclivity for taut, well-timed rhythms and a fluid, musical presentation, it makes film soundtracks arresting, immersive and full of impact.The CXU doesn’t make a fuss about the file type or recording quality, with Marcy Playground’s grungy tones on Comin’ Up From Behind given the same amount of enthusiasm and insight as with high-resolution tracks. However, play a pristine recording like Popular Problems and the CXU shines.
Once again, the comparison with the Oppo player proves telling. While rich and full-bodied, the Oppo player’s low-end performance isn’t as grippy or precise as the Cambridges. The CXU is also a livelier, more enthused and insightful player." What HiFi Best Universal Disc Player 2015
Here's the key to the CXU - it's not just a disc player - it is a complete digital hub with two HDMI inputs, digital optical and coaxial audio inputs and 3 USB slots. There are wired or wireless network connections. And multiple outputs - HDMI, Digital & Analogue Audio and surround sound - all of which can be controlled via remote. The full range volume control allows not just connection to conventional amplifiers - you can connect the CXU to any quality power amplifier in multiple configurations for the ultimate performance.
Our range of both NuForce and NuPrime amplifiers are the perfect match for the Cambridge. If you are building a new system, you don't need a conventional home theatre receiver - just run it directly into a high quality multichannel power amplifier and you’ll be both saving money and greatly increasing performance. In surround systems you can choose between the new NuPrime MCH-K38 for a searingly powerful, no compromise solution. Or the more affordable NuForce MCA-18 and 20 models which are exceptional in their own right. In all cases, with 8 available channels you may well be able to bi-amplify the front speaker array to further enhance performance. All these options are exceptional for music too, being directly derived from NuForce/NuPrime stereo amplifiers.
Oppo vs Cambridge Audio.
For several years, one of the reasons we didn't do Oppo was simply that we felt the Cambridge Audio players were better options. When the Darbee editions of the Oppo 103 and 105 pushed past the Cambridge in terms of video quality last year and gave a choice of 3 models to the single Cambridge, there was a good case for the Oppo machines. On paper the Sabre DAC within the Oppo has some advantages, but the Cambridge design with multiple Wolfson DACs is considered to give a warmer more musical sound, better in fact than their CD players.
Now with both better picture and further upgrade in sound the with the CXU the balance is firmly in favor of the Cambridge - especially with the current price equivalence between the 105D and CXU. While both brands and all models share a significant amount of common components and design as they both originate from the same OEM factory - the Cambridge is NOT a modified Oppo or visa versa. And over the 4 generations we have dealt with there has been increasing divergence between them as each designer plays to their strengths.
If you go to any serious audio show in the States, it very quickly becomes obvious that Oppo is the transport of choice for almost all demonstrations of DACs and Digital amplifiers from many specialist designers. Because these are universal players, every disc type is catered for and the USB and network connections provide compatibility with even more formats - all of which can be routed through an external DAC or Digital amplifier. The combination of an Oppo or Cambridge and either NuPrime or Nuforce DAC will far outperform any similarly priced CD player and a great many beyond. If you have a CD, DVD or Bluray player that is starting to falter, don't just replace it with another until you have investigated this option as a more future proof and higher performing alternative.
But right now the best option for a transport is in fact the Cambridge 752BD as these are presently on a run-out special at the same price as the Oppo 103D - the crucial advantage the Cambridge gives you over the Oppo is multiple digital inputs. Or for systems where there is only the requirement to play CDs - the new Cambridge CXC transport.
Which player is best for you will come down to three factors - Picture quality, the audio performance of the system into which into which it is going. And while price is most definitely the third factor, you should carefully consider things in a system context.
Cambridge Audio CXU universal disc player NZ$2195 including GST
Once you’ve made your decision and are ready to order, we’ll make it easy for you. Either phone us on 0800 909–101 or e-mail and we can get your address and all details confirmed. For payment more and more people prefer to use internet banking – email us to get account details. Visa and Mastercard are also payment options.
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