Meridian, Ayre, Musical Fidelity, Ayon, Lector $2k

The current leaders in the $2-3k range for used. What do you guys think?

Meridian seems to be back on track after the cheap CD loader on the G08, though I'm not sure about the sliding CD loader on the G08.2. Are they still KOTM?

Is the MP filter offered by Ayre going to surpass Meridian? The white paper on the Ayre website gets analyzed by the Meridian forum. Cool stuff!

Why do people bash Musical Fidelity? Isn't the A1008 a good single box CDP? Where's the love or is the bashing justified?

What's the deal with Ayon Audio? NKOTB or the real deal?

What will happen with Lector's pricing when the cdp-7t MkIV version comes out?

Will this be THE thread for all those with $2-3k to spend? I'm thinking yes! Regardless, I'd like to know because I need to replace my CDP and posting which is best is like asking someone if their kid is cute.

My system:
Yamamoto A-08S
Zu Definition Pro w/Rane PEQ55 EQ
Canary CA-903 Line stage
Canary CA-400 Phono stage
Roksan Radius V w/Zyx Airy cart.
I am also looking to purchase a CDP in the 2-3k range

I have narrowed it down to the following:

Lector 7T MK3
Cary 306
Maranzt SA11 S2
Esoteric SA60 or X-03
I can tell you that the MP upgrade is a marked inprovement of the standard C5xe. I looked at Meridian when buying nthe Ayre and I can't remember the model, well I guess the rest is obvious.
The next product I am going to take on as a dealer is the Exposure Classic CD player. Priced around $2300 last time I looked but may be less now. Has gotten very good reviews and is mentioned in the Stereophile show report recently on line. I only sell things I think are both good and good value and I don't sell new products on line so not a sales talk.
The Ayre c5xe w/o the upgrade is the best CDP I've ever found under $10K and I've tried many. It is much better than any Meridian I've ever heard as well as a lot of others. The upgrade is cheap and well worth it. However C-5xe's go for $4k+ used is it's not exactly in your range but is as good as it gets IMHO.
Everything I've heard and read tells me that the Ayre, Esoteric, ARC, and Marantz are all truly excellent units.

But is there a reason the Bryston BCD-1 isn't on anyone's lists? In my experience, it's one of the most accurate and neutral players around, and--as a real bonus--with one of the best bass extensions out there. Is it because some of the other players mentioned incline, just slightly, to the "forgiving" side of neutral?
I'm listening to a demo CX-7eMP as I write this. The only limitations are my monitor speakers which are no fault of the speakers. Monitors are monitors and although they get down to 32hz, the limitation on the bottom end is palpable. I can not wait to have my Zu Definition Pro's set up b/c they go down to 16hz.

If the Ayre 5 is better than the 7 I may need to save until I can afford it b/c the 7 is almost everything I want in a single box CDP. Ignorance is bliss and like every other soul, once I have better I don't want to go back. That means until I hear better I won't know better, but now that I know it, whew, it is an eye opening experience.

I still have to give a nod to my analog rig, but this is really close and in some ways better. My analog rig is an excellent starter (Roksan Radius V with a Zyx Airy S cart), but it doesn't have the same range of dynamic headroom as the CDP. I happen to like the soundstage of my analog system more though.

Pros: Expansive soundstage, great note separation, dynamic, non-fatiguing, neutral and transparent.
Cons: Ever so slightly forward (aka detailed), reveals ANY deficiency in your chain or the recording, and a sure cause for upgraditis.

What in the world does a Reimyo CDP-777 sound like? Jeez!
I don't know if your system is up to the task of displaying how much better the C5xe is but take my word for it, it is. I've gone to a modified Transporter and a Music Vault and I think it is better and more functional than even the C-5xe. Not sure if you're up for the change but if not the C-5xe is as good as it gets. With the new upgrade (mp) it went from being the best CDP under $10k (before the upgrade) to one of the best at any price. I think the upgrade is like $200. Very inexpensive.
Just purchased, received and connected the new Ayon CD-2 into my system. My initial reaction to the first few discs spun on this unit is nothing but pure joy. I never thought that a digital piece of equipment could sound so much like vinyl!! It seems to combine the naturalness of vinyl with the detail and transparency of solid state. Can't wait to break it in and enjoy the sonic evolution. Two channel system set-up (for now) is:

McIntosh MA-7000 - BEAST!
Ayon CD-2 with Granite Audio RCA interconnects
Focal Diablo Utopias with Synergistic Research Accelerator cables
REL B-2 Sub (soon to be connected via Syneristic Research cable)
Shunyata Research Hydra Model 4 power conditioner
Analysis Power chords