Choosing a SACD player...please help


I am going to give SACD a second try. Two players I am considering are the Sony XA777ES and the Philips SACD 1000. I have also heard good things about the Marantz SA-14, and I've seen a new generation of Marantz SACD players out for below $1200. My budget is 2K, and I am wondering whether to spend 2K on a stock machine or get a less expensive machine and get a bunch of mods done (I don't need multichannel).

In the end, I would like this machine to be killer on SACD and eminently enjoyable on redbook. Can you help me?
pardales
Please also recommend where I can buy new units. I am not against used ones, but I'd like to know where I can get new ones at good prices. Thank you,
All of the players you mention are good. Can you tell us more about your system, room, MC requirement, and musical tastes so we can help you steer?
I would reconmmend the Sony XA777ES. You can purchase one from Oade brothers at www.oade.com.

Chuck
The Sony sounds very good on Redbook and excellent on SACD...however if you buy it, you will be paying for multichannel. If you want no-compromise 2 channel SACD, consider the Sony SCD-1, bought used right on this site.
xa777es. J&R has it in New York, $1799.00 and they`ll ship for free if you bargain a little. SCD-1 $3000.00. I chose the xa777
jus because i think is newer technology and to my ears it sounds better. Beware, in the stores they usually have the xa777 hooked using the 5 channels and when they play stereo discs they osuput from Front left and right instead of hooking the thing from the dedicated two channel stereo, i think that`s why the scd-1 sounds better in some stores. that`s the case at J&R and four more shops that i visited.
xa777es. J&R has it in New York, $1799.00 and they`ll ship for free if you bargain a little. SCD-1 $3000.00. I chose the xa777
jus because i think is newer technology and to my ears it sounds better. Beware, in the stores they usually have the xa777 hooked using the 5 channels and when they play stereo discs they osuput from Front left and right instead of hooking the thing from the dedicated two channel stereo, i think that`s why the scd-1 sounds better in some stores. that`s the case at J&R and four more shops that i visited.
xa777es. J&R has it in New York, $1799.00 and they`ll ship for free if you bargain a little. SCD-1 $3000.00. I chose the xa777
jus because i think is newer technology and to my ears it sounds better. Beware, in the stores they usually have the xa777 hooked using the 5 channels and when they play stereo discs they osuput from Front left and right instead of hooking the thing from the dedicated two channel stereo, i think that`s why the scd-1 sounds better in some stores. that`s the case at J&R and four more shops that i visited.
xa777es. J&R has it in New York, $1799.00 and they`ll ship for free if you bargain a little. SCD-1 $3000.00. I chose the xa777
jus because i think is newer technology and to my ears it sounds better. Beware, in the stores they usually have the xa777 hooked using the 5 channels and when they play stereo discs they osuput from Front left and right instead of hooking the thing from the dedicated two channel stereo, i think that`s why the scd-1 sounds better in some stores. that`s the case at J&R and four more shops that i visited.
sorry about that, my computer froze when i submited.
"Killer" sacd & reasonable redbook -- 2channel -- at a budget imply two conditions:
a) buy used (preferably fm large manufacturers, that can be had @ a reasonable price -- Marantz, Sony, Philips are good choices)
b) buy a modded piece or one that has available mods

Subject of course, to your present standards of "killer sacd" & "enjoyable" redbook.
My system is in a bit of transition. I have all MAC gear (6900 integrated, 205 cahnger, tuner) and Thiel CS2.3 speakers (which I will be selling soon to get a pair of monitors to accomodate a small room and limitd space). I listen to everything (international, jazz, rock, alternative, classical, etc.)

Many strong recommendations I see for the XA, also some for buying something that is already modded. Thanks, I'd love to hear more.
The SCD-1 is the beter player over the XA. But you mentioned you only had $2000 if you are considering used or can afford the extra money then by all means the SCD-1 is the way to go. It's build quality is outstanding and is/was Sony's statement piece.
If I were you I would talk to one of the people that do the mods and ask them what they think. Someone like Ric Schultz (at EVS) will certainly have an opinion of the various players. He can tell you which ones are better in stock form, which have the most potential if modded, and which would be the most expensive to mod properly. I do think you'll end up with a very nice player if you decide to go the mod route...you get so much more for your money that way. Good luck!
If you are strictly into 2 channel, I would go with the SCD-1. If you are even remotely considering multi-channel go with the XA777es. Gary.
Under $2k new the SA14 wins hands down for your requirements. It really doesn't need mods, just clean spike-free power (important), sufficient time to break in and good cables. If you can wait, there is a mark 2 version coming out soon which is a slight tweak. I would advise against buying a used SACD player because the repairs can be expensive and the manufacturers unaccomodating without a good dealer in the middle.

pardales i tried to e-mail you but it was returned. The address is jandr.com i think i got the last xa777 last thursday but they expecting more probably monday. they have the scd-1 in stock :3,000.00 and they selling the display model (not the demo) for 2700.00 or 2800.00. you can call (212) 238-9000. If you call in sunday ask for ext. 2123 and speak to Michael Ruski he is good, tell him that Angel send you. e-mail me when you are done.
I really appreciate all the opinions, experience, and details. If I could make one more statment that sums up what I am looking for (which hearing from all of you has helped me to clarify) its this: I want superb redbook playback, with SACD as a bonus.

I'm getting closer, and i'll let you all know what happens. I hope this discussion has been useful to more 'goners' that just me. Thanks again,
I have narrowed it down to two players. I am either going to go with the Phillips 1000 and get some mods done, or, the Sony XA777ES (and maybe do some mods in the future).
This is a slam dunk! Get the Sony! Then save another couple of grand in the next two years and send it off to Modwright, and you might just have the best CD player in the world (read: MIGHT!) All I know is that I directly compared the 777 to the 9000 to the 1000, and the 777 was the clear winner in ALL aspects.
I was in your position and contemplated all SACD players that have been mentioned. I choose the Marantz SA14. From all the posts on Audiogon and Threads on AA, I believe all information suggests that for Redbook CD playback, the Marantz SA14 wins handsdown in stock form against anything else out there in your price range. Playing SACD, it's a toss up as to which sound one prefers. I've got about 150 hours of breakin on Redbook and 50 hours with SACD. My most recent CD player was a Cal Audio Delta/Alpha comb with NOS Mullard tubes. The Marantz blows the Cal comb away. I like you also have Thiel speakers. I'm running 22's. At 150 hours, I still need another 250 hours to go until complete break-in. If you can compare machines against one another, do so. Because of my geographic location I could not make comparisions. Thanks to all who post on these on-line forms.