If you like the sound of Rotel, why not stay with Rotel? Their newer RCD-1520 ($999) is quite good and if you want to save some cash you could look for a used RCD-1072.
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SACD is very good usually and the redbook layers are usually the best version too. I myself only buy hybrid sacd because you can burn the cd layer. The OPPO's are really good sacd players, even the cheap ones ($150 - $500). But, not as good cd players, even though they aren't bad at that either. I bought the marantz SA 2004 cd/sacd player which is also a DAC that you can plug other digital players, including computers, in to improve the digital conversion. I like the Marantz a lot but it is $1K, and there are others out there that are good for the same price. But few like the Marantz play both cd and sacd AND have digital inputs also, if that's important to you.
I'm kind of interested in an audio-only player for around $500.00. There are lots of video blue ray players that also play SACD, but I'm not interested in those. I guess my question is wether I should go for a really nice CD player, or try to find a CD player that also plays SACDs? I've been looking at Cambridge Audio players, but none of them play SACDs. Is it worth holding out for a technology that might not last?
I was in a similar situation as yours when looking for a good cd player. The Rotel RCD-1072 is a marvelous player that does HDCD and Redbook of course very well for the price. To me it has a more forward tone to it compared to the Ayre CX-7e which I also added to the main system where I wanted to hook up with balanced runs. I kinda looked at the EMM Labs sacd but the price is in another league all together.
Good luck in your search