Marantz CD6006 UK Edi­tion £339

What Hi-Fi (UK) - - Awards 2018 -

Con­tin­ual, clever tweaks from Marantz have not only kept this re­mark­able CD player rel­e­vant, they’ve kept it top of the class too. And, although this UK Edi­tion re­mains tech­ni­cally un­changed from the ver­sion that bagged our Prod­uct of the Year Award last year, a price drop of £110 as­sures it re­tains its crown.

Those fa­mil­iar with the stan­dard CD6006 – also an Award-win­ner in its time – may well look at this player and won­der if any­thing at all has changed. But that’s no bad thing, as we’ve long praised the player’s solid build and smart fin­ish. The con­trols work with pre­ci­sion and the trans­port is im­pres­sively quiet. There are ma­chines that cost hun­dreds more that don’t feel this good to use.

The dif­fer­ences be­tween the stan­dard ver­sion and the UK Edi­tion are on the in­side. There are im­prove­ments to the dig­i­tal-to-ana­logue cir­cuitry’s power sup­ply and up­grades to the ana­logue out­put stage. That may not sound dra­matic, but Marantz has lots of ex­pe­ri­ence when it comes to mak­ing a good prod­uct bet­ter through tweak­ing.

It doesn’t take hours of com­par­isons to dis­cover that Marantz’s en­gi­neers have done a ter­rific job. The newer player de­liv­ers a crisper, clearer and more ro­bust sound than the highly-rated orig­i­nal. As with the stan­dard ver­sion, it’s worth turn­ing off the dig­i­tal out­put and dis­play for se­ri­ous lis­ten­ing. The pre­sen­ta­tion just sounds cleaner and more pre­cise once these things are done. We load Bruce Spring­steen’s Work­ing

On A Dream into the UK Edi­tion’s slick drawer and en­joy a full-blooded ren­di­tion of My Lucky Day. The Marantz punches harder than ever with this track, de­liv­er­ing the song’s mo­men­tum with con­sid­er­able skill. The wail­ing gui­tars come through with power while the Boss’s vo­cals are ren­dered with all his famed en­ergy and pas­sion. There’s plenty of de­tail and, more im­por­tantly, an abil­ity to or­gan­ise it into a mu­si­cal and co­he­sive whole.

The Plan­ets by Holst is a tougher test, but one that doesn’t faze this player. It takes the wild dy­nam­ics of Mars in its stride, de­liv­er­ing a full dose of power, scale and drive in the process. The stereo imag­ing is sta­ble and pre­cise while the player’s tonal­ity doesn’t stray far from the slightly rounded bal­ance Marantz’s prod­ucts have long had. This one does have a touch more bril­liance at the top end, which adds more bite, but not so much that poor or ag­gres­sive record­ings be­come wear­ing.

In our ex­pe­ri­ence you would need to move up to the con­sid­er­ably more­ex­pen­sive Cyrus CDI to get a proper jump in sonic per­for­mance. Is the CD6006 UK Edi­tion a bar­gain? We thought so last year when it was £450, but at this price there can be no doubt.

At its new lower price, last year’s Award-win­ner is more of a bar­gain

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