Sutts, do you take cost into account. For $1000 total outlay you still prefer two-box, over one box. (BTW I have a 3 box setup inc monarchy DIP that cost $500 total, which I think outperforms any $500 one box player I have heard, but these are all ancient pieces, from early 90s ... and it took a lot of messing around to get it right, plus homebrewed cables).
The one big advantage for a two box approach is you can buy a very old but very good DAC without having to worry about the reliability of an old CD transport. I don't believe the hype on modern DACs ... oldies can be goodies because of great output stages, power supplies and general over-design.
Darryl ... I think the optimum performance for the money, if you don't mind rolling up your sleeves, is to get a 10yr old top end DAC (e.g. Theta) and a cheap new player (e.g. Marantz CD5000) and then add a dedicated after market reclocking, buffered digital out, like the one from trichord (There are other cheaper available). $500 DAC, $250 Marantz, $200 upgrades.
Or you can save a lot of time and get a one-box player. If I had to do it all over again that's what I'd do.