are all sacd players the same?

A little technical help for the unenlightened please. I f i want to add another sacd player(i have quite a few discs) does the actual quality of the player matter as much as the ability to play the format? I know that a cd dac at 1000$ is going to be pretty different than a Berkeley or similar at 5k. the question is whether those types of rules hold true on the format change. (Is an oppo sacd going to sound significantly worse than an ayre, for example, at 6k.) thanks mike
Well, at some point in the chain, those digital signals *must* be converted to analog. So the DAC and output stages do make a difference. Is that difference worth $5,000 to you? And do you have the ears, speakers, and a room that would justify spending an extra 5 Large?

I'd hazard a guess that for 98% of us, the answer is to save your money and spend it on better source material and/or better speakers and room treatments...

The same rules that apply to any other component apply here, as well. Rlwainwright brings up in his post, the thing that is most overlooked with digital products; the analog section. The digital section matters, as well. I just say, consider the whole player and not just parts of it.

You mention the Ayre. My opinion is that its worth the money. Its a big step up from the Oppo. (I'm not suggesting that there is anything wrong with the Oppo. Its a great product for the money.) The one thing I really like about the Ayre is that it sounds great with ALL formats. That's very rare. You don't have to give up having a great Redbook player just to get SACD. (Or buy a 2nd unit).

My only concern would be, do your other components justify the purchase? If your other components are not in the same league as the Ayre, you probably be able to hear everything it can do.
are all sacd players the same?

In a word, no.
" I know that a cd dac at 1000$ is going to be pretty different than a Berkeley or similar at 5k"

Really? How do you KNOW this? They all the sound the same, UNLESS, one has had it's frequency response or noise level 'tweaked' to sound a certain way. As we do KNOW, from the turntable crowd, increased noise, limited freq response / dynamic range and high noise / distortion levels, can be appealing to some people.
thanks for all your help. i own a berkeley, and an esoteric player. i have misc dacs including rega so i am familiar with redbook on expensive and less expensive dacs. i simply did not know whether the format of sacd would be similar regardless of price point, or whether a player from ayre for example would be significantly better than a less expensive player like oppo. the surrounding system in this case will be mcintosh and revel studio 2. in other words, when do you get to the point of diminishing returns on sacd players, as i know that spending more up to apoint gets better results up to a lot of dollars (weiss, bel canto , berkeley etc.)
Yes the Oppo sounds like crap compared to the Ayre. I've owned both.

yes, there will be a difference between a $1K vs. $5K disc spinner, additionally, there will be another difference between a $5K vs. $10K disc spinner.

Get out there and visit as many dealers/retailers as possible to log audition time w/ the players that interest you!
Happy Listening.
Without doubt there are big differences.

The Oppo comparison to my Playback Designs is a joke. The Playback Designs MURDERS it. In fact via DSD the PD is the best source I know - not via PCM - with PCM there are better DAC's such as my PDX - but via DSD it is supreme.

I would switch to it entirely except for the limited material available.

If you own a very good DAC and want to get very good 2 channel SACD playback without spending >5K on a very good SACD player, the smartest thing to do is to get the Vanity93 digi out board for the Oppo 93. This will convert DSD to 176/24 LPCM, reclock, and output it over coax. You play this into your Berkeley DAC and presto.