How does Sony DVP-S9000ES compare to other Sony's?

How does the DVP-S9000ES compare to Sony's high end players such as CDP-C555ES, CDP-X7ES, and their SACD players, CD-1, and xa777es? Just curious if it would keep me happy if I bought.
i'm using a Audible Illusions Modulus 3A pre-amp, Bel Canto EVO2 amp, Celestion 11 (will be replacing with?) speakers, and NAD 5000 CD player (needs to be replaced, is having tracking and skipping problems)

I've had mine for 10 months and love it. At the time I was looking for a single disc SACD. It replaced a Pioneer PD 65 used as a transport feeding a CAL Alpha DAC.It was a good combo but a little dated. The Sony's built like a tank(almost 30 lbs) and performs flawlessly,however,keep in mind it's a dvd player and takes a few seconds to recognize formats and is a little slow changing tracks. I grabbed it when Tweeter was blowing them out for $799 ,so to me that seemed like the time to upgrade. I bought my father one also and he loves it too,using it 50/50 for movies and music. SACD's sound awesome,as do well mastered 16 bit recordings.Video performance is great too if you care about that also. The only thing i don't like is that the buttons are tiny and part of the display window ,but I use the remote all the time anyway so it's a small gripe.I can't compare it to Sony's other machines but if you can find a mint or perhaps new one I'd go for it.BTW i'm using it with a McIntosh C15 pre,sonic frontiers Power 1,B&W N805's and Velodyne HGS 10 sub, MIT cables. Also The Absolute sound reveiwed the new Sony dvp999es and said that the DVP 9000ES sounded better and was built better
Good luck
It really doesn't compare to an SCD-1 or a 777ES! Can't really comment on the other two having not used them. I will suggest that if you are planning to use it exclusively for CD replay, stick with a regular CD(SACD) player. If not and you need DVD playback also then the 9000 wouldn't be bad. Might also look at used Pioneer Elite players, specifically the 09 and 05 series. These were really good players for both. They show up on the used market every so often usually at a good price. Built like a tank!
Hi Rich,

It is not a bad sounding unit. It does not read burned discs though. Sony used good capacitors in the audio section, and though they can sound better if you replace most of them with Black Gates, it is not a bad sounding unit as is. The only 777 Sacd player I ever heard was poorly moded and sounded pretty bad, so I cannot help you there, as the DVP would sound better than that.

Best Regards,

I have an SCD-1, an (1996?) Xa7ES, a S9000Es and also an SACD-1000. (crazy, I know! I just sold the Phillips). The 9000 is a very nice piece, esp. for the money and formats that it does. The one down side was mentioned - it doesn't read CD-Rs. It's as good on Redbook as my XA7ES, which is saying a lot since that was the top of the line CD player at the time (actually best 1-box CD-only player made by Sony). Transport and build quality are not at SCD-1/XA7ES levels, but the aesthetic is there in spades - very nice looking/feeling piece. The SCD-1 is a bit better on SACD. the 9000 also does DVD's, I've yet to use it for that but will try soon. (not DVD-A, but just regular DVD-V). I had been trying to decide to part with the Phillips or the 9000.... despite being older, not playing CD-Rs or multichannel SACDs, I still kept the 9000. The Phillips is a great player, I liked it a lot but didnt' need 4 players.... and didn't have a lot of multichannel SACD needs. The other thing the 9000 won't do is onboard decoding of Dolby Digital/DTS.... need an outboard decoder or pre/pro for that. Not an issue if using just for music however - only with watching DVDs. The 9000 also is well regarded by the 'modding' crowd - quite a few options available including tubed output stages.

Enjoy (sorry for the rambling.)
Ed, that might be the most fair handed and unbiased assessment of Sony players I have ever read.

I had a Sony XA777es here to compare with my 9000 es and our test went pretty much like yours. I will say that the deep bass was better on the 777 and the midrange was more recessed (in a nice way) than the 9000.

So throw in the fact that video on the 9000 is excellent and you have a very good player for a fair price.

I had a fellow Audiogon member send me a CDR, and I assumed it would be limited to play in my car. For whatever reason, my 9000 accepts and plays it perfectly. The CDR blank was a common silver one typical of those sold at Comp USA. I need to find out what recording technique and software was used to burn this !
I also have owned the 9000 and enjoyed it.It is not a "laid back" player,in terms of presentation,however,if that is important to you.Denon also has a new "Universal" (sacd,dvd,dvd-a,and redbook cd)player ,the 2900, due out in less than 30 days.MSRP is $999.
hi Albert -

Thanks - glad you think so.

Agreed the 9000 is a good player - too bad they stopped making them. I think it betters the 999ES, at least as far as build quality and aesthetics. If they just added multichannel SACD and maybe a 2nd laser for CD/CDR, it would be the ideal player in many ways (esp. for the price).

Interesting about the CD-R that plays in yours! I have heard that report from others, but could never find the 'magic combo' of disc blanks and/or recording technique that worked in mine - all efforts proved fruitless. I use a Mac, and Toast, tried burning the various disc types; black, blue, silver, Sony brand, etc. - no luck. This @ 4x burn rate... maybe @ 1x or something it might work. These were all Data CDRs not the 'audio'-specific ones. That perhaps plays a role as well?

Anyway, a good player in pretty much all regards.

Anybody hints on where it might still available new, used?=
I had it for two weeks and it shut down three time. SACD playback is good, but CD is just ok perhaps a little bright and forward sounding.I would like a little more "body" to the midrange.You have to connect it to a tv first to access the menu to set parameters for 2 channel. However in regard to price at $699 from Magnolia Hifi its a good value for a multiformat player.Good luck
Not to get off the subject, but...
Tracer, do you know how the Denon is supposed to compare to the Pioneer Elite Dv-47ai? Read anything that might hint as to whether its better/worse?
I have never been able to get cdr's to work but cdrw's always play just fine. I picked up one at Tweeter when they were blown out. I am running it through EVS attenuators,anthem amp2 with Totem Forest speakers. Some of the SACD's sound just awsume. The next time I have some extra cash my plans are to send it in to EVS and get mods.done to it.

Audire: I have not been able to find any info other than some specs,as the player is not out for 2-3 more weeks.I did see it reported that list is $999.Given the number of Denon dealers,I am certain discounted units will be available within months.
I have one for more than one year now. It is sensitive to power cable, therefore, make sure you have good power conditioning and cable for it(I use Ernie's Beldon 83802).
Shunyata sidewinder is very good to my setup also. It is a pretty good SACD player and CD transport. Yes, I wish it could be warmer especially for redbook, therefore a outboad DAC is recommended. Also recommend using warmer IC/amp/speaker. I prefer Cu IC (AQ python, TMC, MIT..) for redbook, but no problem with silver ones(Nordost) for SACD. XA777 and SCD-1 are better but more expensive too. I would put my extra $$ on room treatment and speaker first. If those two are OK already, then polish the sound at source end.
I think that Albert's CDR may be one that I made. Sent him an email to confirm this before posting any details.
The CD that played in Albert's deck was one that I made.

I used a Pioneer PDR-W839 stand alone CD burner and "Digital Audio" blanks.

The Pioneer only accepts "Digital Audio" blanks, which are more expensive, but as an aside it makes great copies.
I do not know how it compares to another Sony's but I know how it compares to old Arcam CD player (it unfortunately does not, after few months I can see how unmusical it is).
Detailed review:

After two more months with it we are not using it any more except for DVD's. And I'm not going to buy SACD player at least from SONY in the future.

Mine conclusion technology does not matter as much as maker.
My friend works in the design section (VP) of Sony Electronics in Japan and he told me this:

1. The SONY 9000ES was initially conceived as a SACD/CD machine- and was supposed to be marketed as a more affordable version of the SCD-1.

2. The design was a scaled down version of the SCD-1 but principally based on the SCD-1 architecture.

3. It was supposed to be launched at that time as a pure CD/SACD player but Sony saw a gap in the high-end market for DVD players (especially in progressive) and therefore wanted a piece of the action. Its older model the S7700 was in the minds of Sony a marketing failure- and units sold were far below expectations. They then made adjustments and turned the 9000ES into a DVD player unit. However....this was an afterthought...

4. Despite technical difficulties DVD capability was introduced with the so-called "progressive" scan- again another marketing tool. In fact my friend said DVD playback was actually extremely poor...despite favourable reviews. There were a lot of problems (chroma bug etc). This has been confirmed in Secrets of Home Theater where the 9000ES scores very low on video and fails a lots of tests...

5. Despite the weakness in vidoe the 9000ES was then marketed as a DVD player first since the marketing guys knew that DVD playback was a priority in the eyes of the consumer especially with the number of DVD titles was ready to explode. The SACD portion was thrown in as free to get the consumer to obviously try it. out.

6. Roughly at the same time the 777ES was released to target still the high-end/early adopters of the multi-channel SACD market. In fact the 777ES design was very similiar to 9000ES. His quote was actually " like sister and brother". Apart from some different components the 9000ES is up there with the 777ES.

7. Explosive sales of 9000ES vindicated Sony's marketing guys...but my friend said the sonic capabilites of 9000ES are 80% of the 777ES (except the 777ES has multi-channel SACD playback- therefore catering to the early adopters).
The Redbook is identical.

8. In conclusion my friend said if you can...get your hands on a 9000ES- it is best value for money. A lot of people in Japan are using as a CD/SACD player and NOT a DVD player. Unless you need multi-channel support do not buy the 777ES- the cost doesnt justify it. In fact he went on to say that the pricing of the 777ES was marked up heavily to justify its existence to the high end market. How else can you get a millionaire to part with his cash....the 777ES is "reassuringly expensive"- but is it better than the 9000ES- not really he said.

9. Since production of the 9000ES has stopped- 2nd hand demand is still very Japan with units selling at close to the original price.

10. Summary- if you looking for a SACD/CD player- get yourself a SONY9000es- wait for the dust to settle then get an all-in-one next year or the new flagship SONY SACD with ilink released soon. If you have a 9000ES - keep hold of it- this is one of life's bargains.....
Also funny enough SONY's new flagship SACD player will also be called the 9000ES...the SCD-XA9000ES...maybe the guys at SONY do have a sense of humour or deja vu!!!!!!
This is the first time I own a high end SONY player. I got it second handed from eBay and immediately sent it to ModWright for Level III, Bybee, Cardas RCA jacks, and tube stage mods. When it got back to me, I was flabbergasted. From a competent stock unit, Dan has transformed it into a fantastic CD/SACD/DVD player. I keep re-discovering my old CD collection, having too much fun doing it to worry about getting more SACDs.