You will need a separate DAC for the best sound but it will fall well short of CD quality. There is simply too much compression.
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I use the Polk xrt12 through an outboard DAC with superb sound. I listen to the classical stations (110,112, 113)and I don't hear the compression on these stations that people complain about. However, I do hear the compression on other XM stations. Also, I recently added Sirius through the same DAC. The classical stations on Sirius sound horrible. So, I wonder if XM uses different levels of compression on different stations. And I wonder if Sirius uses even more compression altogether. Does anyone know?