Best sounding universal player (CD, DVD-A, SACD)


Hi all,
I choose the best universal player for CD, DVD-A, SACD. May be read SACD-R on DVD-R.
My list is:
Esoteric SA-60
Esoteric UX-1
Marantz UD9004
Accustic Arts SP1
Bladelius Freja
Ayre C-5xeMP
Meridian 800 DAX (only DVD-Audio)
Meridian 808.1 and 808.2 (CD, DVD-A)

Maybe someone compared? Another players?
knyazhm
Very nice list- knyazhm

I would be interested in reading more about the Marantz UD9004.
OPPO/Modwright Truth. Someone I know sold their DCS stack and replaced it with this after hearing it.
Worth looking into.
The Esoteric UX-1 uses the Burr Brown Pcm1704 R to R Ladder Dac which IMHO is one of the best sounding dac chips out there. I personally have an Esoteric UX-3 with the same dac and it is definitely a keeper.
Owned the Meridian 808.2 and now the the 808.3. Also owned the Ayre C 5.  The Ayre is good but I prefer either Meridian.  
Meridian 808 reading DVD-Audio? sacd?
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Now I use Marantz UD9004 in one system and Bladelius Freja in the second. Marantz UD9004 very musical player, but very slow and noisy, as this Blu-ray. I want to try the Ayre C-5xeMP and the Meridian 808.1 or 2. Starting with the 808.3 was removed support DVD-Audio. I burn DVD-Audio in stereo 24\192, and a 32\192 from HDtracks.

It is also interesting OPPO Modwright without video.

May be Audionet VIP or

Another interesting inexpensive players:

Jolida JD700A

Krell SACD Standard mkIII

Classe CDP-202


Redbook only with the 808, didn't know they no longer supported DVD-A.  I don't think they ever did SACD.  
A fine list indeed....there is another version of the Esoteric UX-1, the 'Limited' upgrade version (I had the UX-1 then paid Eso for this upgrade) that sounded even better than the stock UX-1.  If you only needed CD and SACD, I would suggest the X-01/Limited as it had 2x the number of DACs per channel (4 versus 2) over the UX-1 and sounded even better....the UX-1 Limited excelled at SACD and DVD-V and DVD-A though its RBCD/XRCD playback were excellent.
It's hard to pick the "best" universal player. You don't specify your price range so I guess that the sky's the limit. Dollar for dollar, you would be hard pressed to beat the Oppo 105D (it plays everything). If that's too mundane for you, then I guess that dcs stack will look pretty attractive to you. It does to me, too. Your list isn't bad either!
The Ayre is going to be discontinued in 2017.
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What does it mean? The company will be closed?
Which Ayre model ?
I'm waiting Ayre C-5xeMP. This is on the way.
The c-5xeMP is going to be discontinued, according to an Ayre dealer in Chicago that I spoke with yesterday.  It will be replaced with a 2 chassis unit, which sounds like a separate transport and dac, and will sell for around $10K
Just bought a modified Oppo from John Tucker at Exemplar Audio. Compared it to a Esoteric SA player. It slammed the Esoteric player.  At $3500.00, it's a no brainner.

pekelola

Hmm pekelola, I just added an Esoteric SA-60 for 5.1 to go with the Ayre C5xeMP I use for stereo.  The SA-60 sounds pretty good to me.  The SA-60 goes through the 7.1 analog bypass of a Bryston SP3; C-5xeMP goes through an analog Parasound JC 2 BP.

No Oppo is worth $3500-
I've always stayed away from modified players/gear in general for 2 reasons; (1) the original manufacturer's warranty is voided when you open the unit and start changing/adding things and (2) most of the mod'ers I've talked to seem to have 'their latest revision/flavor' of the modification in mind with a history of having the next great mod just right around the corner. I could be wrong here given today's market and offerings but I've looked into this extensively a couple years back (2-5) and the story seemed to always be the same with respect to the two points above.

Depending up which Oppo player is being referenced above, comparing it to an Esoteric SA-60 is definitely not a fair comparison as the SA player is quite a few years old in design (2006-2007 I think) and was not the high point of the line by any means though it did sound very good at the time...

Also,...to the best of my knowledge, none of the DCS players or the stack is a 'universal player' platform; at most, they support any RBCD format and SACD.
While I chose 3 leaders - Marantz UD9004, Ayre C-5xeMP, Bladelius Freja. UD9004 - very warm nice sound (AK4399). Ayre and Bladelius similar in sound (both DSD1792)
Good info here guys.