Former Cary 308T owners - what next?

I have owned my 308T for about two years and would like to "upgrade." The Cary is fitted with Telefunken. My system is the Cary into a Manley Shrimp into an Aleph 5 Clone or McCormack DNA-125 into Tyler 7u. Music tastes are all over the board. Don't want to commit big $ because I believe that servers are eventually the way to go. I would like a player with more detail and less congestion and seek more space between the instruments. Currently considering the Arcam FMJ CD36 or 37, Linn Ikemi, and Music Fidelity A5. Strictly redbook cd, no video or SACD capability needed.
How about an outboard DAC?
Have you rolled different 12Au7's? I found Telefunken's to do the job much better over the stockers as well as a variety of other brands.

I upgraded eventually to a Marantz SA11 S1 from the Cary. Nice difference in natural presentation and dynamics. No congestion at all compared to the 308T.
I went from the 308t to a GNSC modded Resolution Audio Opus 21 and, in my experience, the Opus has the qualities you seek. However, since you have hinted at going the server route down the road, the DAC suggestion is a good one. You can get a good DAC with a USB-in, such as the Benchmark or the Red Wine Audio DAC, and you'll be set if you go with a server later on. Also, the transport of my 308t was rock solid and and would serve well in that capacity.
Thanks, all - I like the idea of using the Cary as a transport into a DAC -
I have talked to several Audiophile friends who say that the Cary 308T is one of the best sounding CD players ever made. One of those players where the stars somehow lined up just right and a 'lucky' accident of incredable fidelity occured. You might have some real trouble finding a better CD player. Perhaps the place to look is elsewhere in your system or tube rolling. I am looking to buy one myself. Let me know if still available.
As a side note, the Jolida 601a kicks proverbial derriere also. It is slightly more lush sounding than the Cary, but doesn't have the same detail. The Jolida 601a betters all of Jolidas current offerings. If the tray doesn't work, usually you just have to change out a cheap rubber belt.
I own a Cary 308T for more than 8 years. The current tubes are Teles ECC82/12AU7. I tried many other players (Black Note CDP300, Blue Note Coala Tube, BAT, etc.) but still keep the Cary. It may lose in terms of clarity and soundstage, but it is very lively, detailed and natural.

You may find it strange but I alternate it with the MHZS CD88F CD player - with some amplifiers the MHZS is bettwe than Cary, with others - vice versa.