The P-05/D-05 should be superior but obviously the more costly option particularly considering the necessary cabling.
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Thanks to everyone, but the question remains the same - Has anyone heard P5/D5 and X-01 Limited during A/B comparison? And what were the results?
Mkilpi, I'm actually interested in playing red book CD mostly, so X-01 Limited and X-01 D2 are completely the same in that regard (RBCD), correct me if I'm wrong. The differences are all about SACD playback (X-01 D2 doesn't convert DSD to PCM before D/A conversion). So please can you describe the differences between the two players that you've heard? And have you heard the P5/D5 combo?
The consensus that I've seen is that the P5/D5 sounds better than the X-01 Limited in RBCD although obviously given the price difference (including dual AES/EBU, BNC/BNC and extra PC and these matter so if you can't afford excellent cables stick with the X-01 Limited) nobody can tell you if you would find the improvement to be worth the cost.
Let me correct my previous post. When I posted the previous post, I had a lingering feeling that the iLink had the edge in resolution, although the AES/EBU had more body, so I did some further listening. I think if you get the right iLink cable, ie one capable of supporting the transmission rates, it would definitely outperform the AES/EBU dual cable connection. In both cases, I had an additional BNC cable connected to lock the clock signal between the P5/D5.
What are the AES/EBU cables that you've compared to the IEEE 1394 connection?
I have D5 being connected to my CEC 51XR (acting as a transport) via Audioquest Raven AES/EBU. The sound quality is just outstanding. Will P5 outperform CEC, I wonder? If so, I would consider P5, but there's a question of connection options.
It's hard to imagine that stock iLink cable can outperform an expensive Dual-AES solution.
I've tried AudioMagic Excalibur and Slinkylinks balanced cables. Get this: the iLink cable I'm using is a $25 one from an electronics store - its made in Japan and spec'd to IEEE 1394 standard.
IMO the P5 has the advantage with the addition of the BNC connection for the clock. It will outperform transports since the P5/D5 were designed together. The BNC cable for the clock gets the music's timing more "right".
BTW the iLink cable does not come standard. I tried a few, and the one made in Japan was the best I've heard. Sometimes its better to just adopt the KISS principle. Anyway, if you read the manual, the way to hook up multiple D5s for multichannel audio is the iLink cable.