The Reference CD9SE incorporates four digital inputs: USB 2.0HS, AES/EBU, RCA, and Toslink. All inputs handle 24 bit / 192k resolution. The Reference CD9SE retains the Philips PRO2R transport, still the best dedicated CD mechanism that is simply unsurpassed for compact disc playback. Benefitting from what we have learned in the development of the Reference DAC, the REF CD9 utilizes quad 24-bit DACs running in mono mode, with dual master oscillators; one for 44.1/88.2/176.4 sample rates, the other for 48/96/192kHz sample rates. Sample rate conversion is selectable for all inputs, allowing playback in native resolution or via upsampling, including compact disc and all inputs, including USB. Additionally, there is a selectable digital filter, with either fast or slow rolloff.
Like other Reference products, the analog section is vacuum-tube, with four 6H30 dual-triodes, and there is vacuum-tube power-supply regulation featuring a 6550WE with a 6H30. The front panel has the familiar, dimmable CD display on the left side. On the right side there are LEDs to indicate sampling rate, input selection, filter and power. In addition to the digital inputs, the back panel includes Digital Outputs (AES/EBU and BNC), single-ended RCA and balanced XLR outputs, and a 15A IEC power connector.