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Audiotop Digital Cleaner
12/1/2009

Review By Wayne Donnelly
Enjoy the Music.com 
SuperiorAudio

This CD/DVD cleaner/polisher ($99) comes in a small pump-spray bottle, and is simple as can be to use. Two or three pumps to cover the data side of the disc, and a quick wipe-down with a soft tissue or napkin, center to periphery around the disc, and the disc is ready to play. (The instructions suggest a double application for best results, but I find that a careful single application produces great sonic benefits that do not seem materially improved by a second round. I'm reminded of those old shampoo ads that called for two wash and rinse cycles. Once is enough, I think.)

What are the results? Well, all of the usual audio checklist virtues: significantly better overall transparency, reductions in "digital glare," even on the oldest not-too-good-sounding CDs. Small but valuable gains in soundstaging, with a greater sense of the sound being detached from the speakers. (That is a virtue with my Analysis speakers anyway, but the Digital further enhances that quality.) Low-level detail is enhanced, in a natural, non-spotlighted way. Most importantly, the music simply sounds less "canned" — livelier, more immediate, more involving — the kind of instinctive gut-level response that I have experienced more typically with analog than with digital playback.

It works great with DVDs as well. Even with my poor eyesight, it is easy to see the better color saturation, improved contrast and deeper blacks coming through my Oppo blu-ray player to my 60-inch Sony flat screen.

$99 for this little bottle seems a bit steep. But a bottle goes a long way, especially if you treat your discs one application at a time. I've already been through a couple of bottles, but each one lasted months, and I play a lot of discs. Given the sonic improvements — clearly better than any other spray-on CD treatment I have ever used — AUDIOTOP Digital is worth the money. In tandem with my Auto Desk CD lathe, this nifty spray is now an essential part of my preparation to play any little silver disc.

 
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