CD vs CD/SACD Player – Tube-based or Not

Some of you might have read my previous threads asking for recommendations on CD/SACD player. That was roughly 6 months ago when I first started building my hi-fi system.
Now that I’ve settled on the back end of my system, I’ll finally select my digital source. My system consists of the following:

Harbeth C7-es3 on Sound Anchor (3-posts) speaker stands

Pass Labs XA30.5 – Power amp

Ayre K-1xe - Pre-amp

CD player – a modest 15-year old Philips CD player(the weakest link which I need to upgrade)

I want to get a CD or CD/SACD player that matches my system in terms of synergies, quality and performance. While I’ve done a lot of readings/research, it’s hard to narrow down on my selections before some fundamental questions are answered.

1. CD player vs CD/SACD player: my preference for music are vocal, some pop, classical (symphony, chamber), some rock, blue. I know the selection of musice in SACD is somehow limited.

2. Tube-based vs Solid State CD player: would my system benefit from tube-based CD player since both my pre- and power-amps are solid state? What’s the advantage and disadvantage of tube-based player? What’s the difference in sound?

3. So many choice in my price range (mostly used):

Ayon CD-5, CD-2s

Ayre C-7eMP, Ayre C-5eMP

Audio Research CD-7

BAK 51

Esoteric SA-50, X-05, X 03se, K-07

Luxman D06
SONY 5400ES, Sony 5400ES modified by Modwright (with tube output),

Oppo 95/105 modified by Modwright (with tube output)

4. I want to get a player with solid transport, digital output, balanced output(preferred); dynamic/solid bass, extended treble and most importantly fuller mid-range with great, accurate, lush presentation for vocal recordings.

What’re your recommendations and why? Thanks.
You have too many variables!
From what I know, SACD technology has not changed a lot. It is still at 100hz, while cd players are easily at 24/192.
So, a high end older SACD would be fine, you have to use analog outputs on it any way. On the other hand, a new tube based cd could be tremendous.

What would I do in your shoes? Buy a really nice several year old SACD player for a really good price. Then, get a much newer tube based DAC to run the digital cd outputs to. You now have two completely different players with only 1 transport.

This is where you can save a small fortune on buying a modded SACD player...
Elevik - no matter how you slice and dice the byte stream in the player the CD only contains 2 channels of 16 bit audio sampled at 44.1 khz each.
I would suggest adding the Prima Luna CD player to your list.
I loved mine and regret selling it for a VSE modified SONY 5400ES.
I cannot hear the difference between redbook and SACD.
A good friend(gon member Jwm) had the Playback Design MPS-5 in his system a couple of years ago. I heard it many times with a variety of music. It was good sounding.Jwm`s Modwright-Oppo 105 is better souding across the board! more nautural,better tone,texture and timbre with excellent dynamics and resolution.The MPS-5 by comparison is not bad at all but is more analytical,lean and less organic.Acoustic instruments sound fuller,fleshed out and realistic via the Modwright. Jwm has a very high quality system(believe me)and differences are easy to discern.Higher cost is not 'always' a predictor of superior sound, it wasn`t in this particular case.
Can't help you specifically but a few thoughts on your quest. You mention a digital out but no mention of digital in?? Even if you have no plans for digital streaming/computer audio, a digital in is a must for resale or even better, you change your mind and decide to connect your stereo to the whole world of music (I mean that literally).

A few other thoughts: Oppo's resale values are right up there with McIntosh. I haven't heard em in my system but sure would like to give the Esoteric's k series a test drive (of the one's you listed).