I've had mine for a couple of weeks...Yesterday I used it in my main system, in place of my Esoteric X03-SE. No, it doesn't equal the Esoteric, but for its price it is one amazing bargain...get it!
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I've had mine for about 6 months, and I'm thrilled with it. I haven't used the DAC or headphone amp, though. I'll use the DAC soon enough, once I get an Airport Xpress or similar.
I shot it out against my previous CD player (Cambridge Audio 840C) on Redbook format, and I felt it was just a shade better. A tiny bit warmer, maybe a slight loss of edge, but equally detailed, to the best of my ability to resolve those things. Throw in the extra features (SACD, DAC), and it was a no-brainer as far as which one to keep. I certainly haven't looked back.
Folks, as I've posted in previous threads, this unit actually doesn't have it all. It's missing a major feature within SACD. It will only play 2 channel SACDs and not multi-channel. If you listen to music strictly in 2 channel and upgrade to SACDs, then this unit is for you. However, if you've never heard SACDs played in multi-channel format (music coming at you from all sides), as the old saying goes, you don't know what you're missing. Don't limit yourself. Many SACDs are produced in multi-channel and there is no comparison. Trust me on that !!
I recently picked up the sa8004. It is a wonderful piece. I have used it in multiple ways: Sacd,cd, usb iPod, optical input (streaming flac and pandora from logitech touch). It sounds incredible; very engaging full of life. No glare, no digititis here, just pure sweet music. I've had lots of different players and dacs over the years; nothing has been so easy and musically 'there' as this player.