Grundig CD360

A friend of mine who is a dedicated music lover (but exxclusively LP), told me that of all the CD players he tried - the best most natural sound (mailnly opera) came out of this Grundig CD 360. One of the cheapest CD players in the world.
Nothing could be more logical for me than buying one and trying.
So I did.

They go for 20 Euro on, usually even without a single counter offer.  Stupid people don't know what they have.

So it arrived to me - ugly, midi sized, plastic gremlin. buuwwhhaaaaa.

Grundig CD360

It is so ugly that it is pretty again. Man what a design !!!

Grundig CD 360

The Germans were so ashamed of this player that they contracted it in Malaysia. They could not possibly put made in Germany on it.

Grundig CD 360

At least the buttons are elegant and ergonomic. Nice.

Grundig CD 360

This cheap Sanyo mechanism reminds me of the Shigaraki. Simple but works flawlessly.

Grundig CD 360

I have never seen such mechanism outside of the boombox territory.

Grundig CD 360 schemat

Our musical outputs are legs 6 and 11 of course. Cut off the caps C202 and C203 and install your caps of choice (0,22 uF MKP for example) and wire them to RCAs or lampizator..

The DAC is a 16-bit SANYO, a design older than carbon C14 for sure. Maybe thats  the reason that my opera loving friend likes it ??? Old = good ? A Sanyo-TDA ?

Grundig CD 360 dac

Since the DAC sits underneath, I pictured the upper side. I took the signal from output pins (U out, not I out, sorry). The caps are yellow ROE tantalums.

Grundig CD 360

Red arrow indicates the raw voltage which supplies my new regulator - 7805.
The DAC is powered by 5V, oryginally used for ALL PLAYER ! What a horror ! The motors, drawer, mechanism, all servos, chips - everything on a common rail.
I used an oscilloscope and I noticed the most horrible trace of this 5V power I ever saw ! peaks and dips as big as 3 V PP. No way this DAC can work from this supply.
I invested 50 Euro cents in 7805 and installed it. I cut the line coming to the DAC - on the schematics - the long line leading to leg 4th.

Below you see new capacitors installed - marked with an arrow.  I saved money using regular good caps not the proper os-cons. The right-most black thing is a coil - ferrite RFI filter which sits between the 7805 regulator and the capacitor supplying the DAC chip. - legs 1, 4 7 and 8.

CD 360 from Grundig is getting an overhaul. What a transformation !

Grundig CD 360 snipit

Grundig CD 360

The 7805 regulator was soldered by center pin to the ground of the PCB. Input is from raw supply and output goes to the DAC via a ferrite coil.
The DAC has now clean, stable and noise-free supply. Just what the doctor ordered.

Grundig CD 360

The DAC outputs are wired to the RCA output sockets via tantalum 10 uF caps (plus towards DAC).

Grundig CD 360 pcb

The additional tantalum bypass on the DAC supply rails.

The result
Grundig CD 360 is a simple cheap Sanyo machine with good reliable transport and ancient albeit good DAC. With my half hour mod - it sounds super pure and super analog. A little lacking power and authority.
Meaning - it needs LAMPIZATOR badly. I suggest 6H6P tubes in SRPP config, maybe 100 ohm cathode resistors.
I havent tried Lampizator myself, but the DAC to RCA direct sounds VERY promising.
For the total of 100 Euro lampized, you can have a high end player that will shock the guests in your house !.