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This article was published on March 24, 2021


Marantz CD6007 review: The CD player that rekindled my love for the format

Dribble sesame oil into my chest hair and launch us into the Sun together

Marantz CD6007 review: The CD player that rekindled my love for the format
Callum Booth
Story by

Callum Booth

Editor of Plugged by TNW

Callum lies somewhere between an abrasive gadget nerd and thinky art boy. He's the Editor of Plugged, TNW's consumer tech vertical. He wr Callum lies somewhere between an abrasive gadget nerd and thinky art boy. He's the Editor of Plugged, TNW's consumer tech vertical. He writes about gear, gadgets, and apps — and also makes the occasional odd video.

This year something magical happened: I got back into CDs. With a vengeance. And that’s all because of a very specific CD player: the Marantz CD6007.

“Okay Callum, that sounds interesting and all, but… magical? Really? You believe your weird little obsession with CDs deserves to be spoken about as though it’s a Tolkien novel?”

Well yeah, actually. While the old pipe-smoking, elf botherer probably did a jig to the occasional poem, I can guarantee he never vibed as hard as I have to the glorious compact disc. And, friends, what’s more magical than a ~ v i b e ~ ?

Anyway, we’ll get to the review of the Marantz CD6007, but let’s give some context to what the hell I’m nattering about.

Getting back into CDs

I recently wrote an entire article about getting back into CDs. Without retreading too much ground, I came to realization that the format is hugely underappreciated.

Not only do compact discs deliver quality exceeding that of the human ear, you can also pick them up damn cheap these days. In many ways, they’re still the ideal physical format — despite being almost 40 years old.

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One of the reasons I was able to come to this conclusion was because of the Marantz CD player. Back in the day, most of my CD listening took place using equipment that wasn’t really audiophile level. It did a job — a solid one at that — but the hardware simply wasn’t good enough to bring out the best of the format, a problem the Marantz CD6007 doesn’t have.

Anyway, I created an entire video about this topic, which you can watch right here:

But, today, we’re here to talk more specifically about the Marantz CD6007.

Introducing the Marantz CD6007… a CD player

marantz cd player CD6007
THIS IS THE MARANTZ CD6007 CD PLAYER, PEOPLE.

One of the things I’m not a fan of in reviews is listing out a huge array of facts and figures. Basically, if you want a vomit of specs, you can go and check out the product’s page.

Despite that, there are some features of the Marantz CD player we have to mention. Obviously, it plays CDs. On top of that, it has a USB port on the front and the ability to play a range of files, including WAV, MP3, AAC, FLAC, ALAC, AIFF, and DSD files.

This is very useful on paper (“it’s not just a CD player, it’s a hi-res music file player too!”), but it’s less so in reality. This is for two reasons.

The first is that if you’re buying a CD player, hopefully you already have a way to play high quality music files on your hi-fi (Bluesound makes amazing equipment for this). And if not, why not?

The second reason is that the Marantz CD6007’s display simply isn’t designed for browsing through folders on external discs. Is it easy to play an album or two from a USB drive? Very much so. But browsing your whole digital collection? I wouldn’t suggest it.

This isn’t to say it’s not good Marantz included this, just that it may not be quite as useful as you first think.

Any other features of the CD player I should know about?

Well, there is one I really liked: the in-built headphone amplifier. This might sound uninspiring, but it quickly became a favorite feature of mine.

Effectively, the Marantz CD6007 has a headphone amplifier with HDAM-SA2 and gain control. I’ve found it incredibly useful to be able to sit down with a nice pair of headphones plugged into the CD player and lose myself, while my partner uses the amplifier and speakers for other things, like maybe playing a record or watching TV.

There’s also an auto-off feature for the headphone amp, so when you unplug your cans, the amp is disconnected, which helps avoid any interference. Honestly, I didn’t think I’d like it as much as I do, but here we are. Crazy world, lot of smells.

Marantz CD6007 CD player headphone amplifier
Here’s the part of the machine you plug your headphones in. Next to it is the gain dial, which is strong enough to power a whole array of headphones.

One thing to note, the CD player doesn’t support SACD. This isn’t something that bothered me too much, but it is a deal breaker for some people.

What about the design and build of the Marantz CD6007?

Typical Marantz through-and-through. I’m a big fan of the build quality of the company’s equipment, and everything I’ve used from it has lasted for eons. Thankfully, all signs point towards the the CD6007 being the same. In other words, thumbs up.

At this point, I’ve accepted Marantz’s design language. I wouldn’t say it’s my favorite (I still have a soft spot for brutalist and purely functional rectangles), but it does a job. Effectively, I think its curves are alluring enough to stand out, but overall it’s restrained enough to slot into most hi-fi setups without a scene.

cd6007 front view copy
A striking, yet beautiful, machine.

Basically, the Marantz CD6007 looks and feels like a piece of premium technology. Which is good. Because it is. The machine might not be to everyone’s tastes, but it’s timeless enough that it won’t look passé in a few years, but still retains a bit of personality.

The sound of this CD player

Lord, I am a fan of the noise the Marantz CD6007 pumps out. I mentioned at the beginning of the piece that this machine got me bang back into CDs — and for good reason: it sounds magnificent.

Marantz CD player with Brahms CD6007
Mmm.

I’ve used the Marantz machine with a range of different music, from classical to emo, and was taken aback by the presentation, clarity, and detail. It always delivers music with a rounded bite, producing spacious and rich sounds. Its output is energetic, the bass punchy and the high-range clear.

Whether it was harmonies in Brahms’ violin concerto, the throbbing bass of Tame Impala, or Fiona Apple’s voice breaking with emotion, the Marantz CD6007 CD player handles it all with aplomb.

Honestly? There’s little else I could want or expect from a CD player in this price range. I adore the damn thing and can’t find any glaring weaknesses on the audio side. It’s brought me renewed admiration for compact discs and Marantz may have to come and break my door down to get this thing back.

How much does the Marantz CD6007 cost? And who is this CD player for?

$500. That, friends, isn’t cheap. Of course, with that comes a huge amount of quality and years of use, but it’s a tough pill to swallow for someone just getting into CDs.

If you are dipping your toes into compact discs (weird, but I’m into it), then maybe the best approach is picking up a more reasonably priced second-hand machine, and grabbing the CD6007 later.

But… if you already have a big CD collection and are looking for a quality bit of kit? Then the Marantz CD6007 could be for you. REMEMBER THOUGH: go and try something like this out before you spend the money. The way everyone interprets and hears audio is different, and you have to make your own mind up.

Anyway, this CD player has brought a showering of joy in my life, and I hope — and expect — it to do so in the future. Marantz, you’ve sprinkled magic dust over my ears and given me the precious gift of vibes. Thank you.

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