Meridian 500 or Squeezebox 3

I have the chance to purchase a used Meridian 500 transport but am also considering the SB3. I plan to use only digital output to the Paradisea NOS DAC. Any suggestions to help me decide? Thanks a lot.
As long as the SB3 is modded (add $s), it will sound sweet with the convenience factor of having your music collection at your finger tips :-)
Disclaimer: I have a Bolder's digital mod SB3 with PS MKII
What cdp did the SB3 replace? Is the modded SB3 really that good, i.e. close to the "best of best" cdp out there as reviewed by Scott Faller of
For those of us who seek the ultimate involvement and significant strides in resolution we will need to turn to guys like Wayne at Bolder Cables to perform modifications to the Squeezebox. The modifications performed by Wayne move the ultra-affordable Squeezebox clearly into realm of the best of the best CD players.
Here is the link:
+1 on the Bolder modifications.. I run full digital mod's plus the Bolder Ultimate Powersupply.
Hi Cytocycle
Did the modded SB3 better the Theta Digital Compli? Or you are keeping the SB3 for the convenience?
Ethifi: I can't compare it to my Theta Compli as I run it as a transport only since I don't have a typical preamp. Plus my SB3 is running through a crappy digital cable until I can come up with the money for another Transparent Digital. I have ~2k in my SB3 and it's pretty close but I need a powercable on the Bolder powersupply and I need my 2 dedicated outlets back (which haven't been installed in under my projector screen yet until I figure out whether this is the resting place for my system). I am still amazed by the SB3 when playing Flac files ripped using plextor tools. I also need a wired ethernet to this location as right now I'm using my unmodded SB2 wirelessly which degrades the quality quite a bit.

Even so it's probably 80-85% so I'm pretty happy... Room acoustics are my main problem..... If I had to do it again I would just buy the SB2/3 and have them modified... it's that good and even more accessible to my music!!!
Having both running into a Meridian 563 dac I can tell you that as good as the sb3 is, the 500 is much much better.
Ethifi: The Bolder modded SB3 plus PS Ultimate MK II replaces a modded Rotel RCD-1070 with Superclock II, DBE digital output, Rubycon's caps, deadening damping sheets & diodes upgrades.

I have not side by side compare the SB3 to the "best of best" cdps but IMO, its right up there with them sound quality wise ie: the tweaked SB3 plus the PS. The tweaked SB3 plus PS is not cheap but it will cost much less than an equivalent high end CDP.

FYI, before I settled on the SB3 route, I auditioned flagship CDPs from Krell, Meridian & Cary.

I did mention the convenience factor is a SB3 added bonus, right:-)?
I'm not knocking the Meridian 500 transport, but another thing to keep in mind is that I don't believe you can get replacement parts for that transport so it could be a paperweight. There is good synergy between Meridian components but if you look at all the big meridian forums they us Squeezeboxes feeding their DSP8000, DSP7000 speakers for the most part. I own a Meridian 568.2 and personally don't find it very musical compared to my old EAD Signature for music. My friends 508.24 CD player is a very nice unit, but even my Compli sounds more natural and refined. If you don't have a modified powersupply on the SB3's then you are missing a lot! This is a manditory upgrade in my opinion if you have full range speakers.

You might even consider getting the analog section of the SB3 modified by Bolder Audio and run it as a preamp/DAC if that is your only source.. that is suppose to be amazing plus you save $$$ on interconnects, power cords, etc..

Any way you cut it you will listen to more music with the Squeezebox than with anything else.....
I agree with Cytocycle on the modified ps for the SB3. It's almost mandatory to make the SB3 sound great.

Nightcountry: Were you listening to a stock or modded SB3 when you did the comparison vs 500?
Thought I chime in again to refer you to an active thread in AC on the whys (& why nots) of the SB/server route