A friend of my told me a couple months back that CEC introduced a new version of their top of the line transport. It was kind of strange as CEC was abandoning to manufacture TL0 for years, or it was at least what they were claiming. Then I thought that apparently the “success” of SACD and DVD-A is so huge that to continuing manufacturing the TL0 made sense for CEC. The original version of TL0 was replaced by TL0-II in 2001 I believe and it was a very positive step up. Now they introduced the TL0-X, that fact that reasonably picked my queasily.
This morning a visitor of my site sent me a link to 6moons’ article that was published in November of 2005 by a gentleman named Linnman. I do not know who he is but I printed the review (do not like read form the screen, unless it is code) and was very enthusiastic to LEARN about the CEC TL0-X.
After reading the Linnman’s article I realized that I not only did not satisfy my curiosity but instead I have more question then I had initially. Linnman said: “This is by no means an in-depth review”. He was correct but it was not a review at all but just a public announcement that he bought the transport and that he had no events in his brain before or after he did it. At least he failed to indicate those brain events in his writing. I wonder how much the Linnman’s review would be changed in he would use a global replace function and substitute CEC TL0-X with any other CD transport? I do not this that it will be changed at all as in his “review” there was NOTHIONG said about the actual CEC TL0 but rather about a generic “other transport”. Furthermore, what was said in this “review” was inconsistent and self-contradicting.
Linnman complain that TL0-X has problems to present ambience information. For an individual who decided to write reviews it should be known that ambience suppression primary comes along with upper bass deficiency, would it be ether amplitude or harmonic. I wonder how a person who uses those thin and suffocated Kharma loudspeakers along with their insulting performance in mid-bass region decided to evaluate a performance of CD transport in upperbass? Did his Kharma sound with TL0-X in fact how it SHOULD SOUND: thin, slim, digital and non-ambienic? Then Mr, Linnman bring up that he prefers Zanden, but Zanden is well known as juts a “lower mid-range pusher” with no lower bass, no articulation, no HF, no transient no any other efforts in the areas where the TL0-II has absolutely no competition. In fact I personally feel that Linnman was wrong even try to use TL0 with his playback as I have seen many time before, even more capable then Linnman’s playback installations, as the TL0 literally took those installations apart.
There is one more point. For a proper reproduction of upper bass it is necessary to couple it with room via the lower bass. In the lower bass TL0 has no competition but was Linnman able to use it? The Kharma speakers (with their idiotic hyper-excursion when their bass voice coils jump out of the magnetic linearity) should not be used for bass and should be high-passed. For the morons who do not understand and do not hear the Kharma’s upper-bass problems Kharma introduced a remedy: the Kharma active subwoofer. The purpose of this subwoofer is to mask out the distortions that Kharma main speakers produce, convincing listeners that a LF noise that they hear is in fact is Bass. (The idiots from Kharma meant to use their active subwoofer line-parallel with main amplifiers and they to “simplify” the task made the input impedance on their subwoofer… 5kOhm(!!!!). What could be better!) As far as I concern Linnman should not be use TL0 with his playback and CEC TL1 or TL51X would be way better fit for his insulation. CEC TL1 has no lower bass and nicely overly-prominent upper bass, it is slow and fluent (would be a nice balance for the moronic ceramique drivers), and TL1 never go into any dangers territories where extra capacity from the rest playback would be required.
In the end, it was unfortunate that neither I nor anyone else learned about the TL0-X from this review. We have no idea why CEC introduced the new version. We have no idea why they return the optical out stage (as I am sure that anyone who uses this level would not go TOSLINK). We have no idea “how” and “if” the TL0-II’s problems were addressed in the TL0-X. I personally do not care bout the TL0-X and would not take it even if it was given to me as a gift: is not back and therefore for me all bids are off. However, purely educational, I would like to learn what was in the CEC’s mind when they did their new version, if they have anything in their minds beside that fact that it was “a time for a new model”. What I have unfortunately learned form the 6moon review that Mr., Linnman did not have a lot in his mind when he wrote his “by no means an in-depth review” about the CEC TL0-X.
If anyone could figure the details about the TL0-X form their Japanese site then please let me us/me know.Rgs,
Romy the Cat
"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche