Owned both and to be honest (IMO) the two don't really deserve to be compared. The Wadia outclassed the Meridian in every conceivable area in my system.
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Outclassed by how much?
The G08 is available for $3100.
The 581se is about $9000.
I must admit I heard the 581 and was impressed at the musicality, pinpoint imaging and depth of soundstage and natural dynamics.
What do you now use and how does it compare to the Wadia.
What else have you heard that compares to the Wadia? But hopefully cheaper.
I have not heard the new Wadias but I did have the G08 in my system for almost two weeks, and heard it in two other systems. IMO, it is over rated. It is a boring, lifeless, and just not engaging at all.
I have also heard the Classe on two occasions and if I was looking for a redbook CDP under $10K (new price) I would get the 202 or the Audio research CD7.
At the used prices I cant think of another player i would get over the 202. It is not the most detailed player out there. if super detail is your thing it might not be for you. But it has a big musical sound that is smooth and capable of producing a wide and deep soundstage. Vocals are fleshed out, treble is sweet, and good bass.
Its also built like a tank.
Thank you Tom,
In fact detail is very important to me for large orchestral as well as Chamber music. I enjoy the finest details of interplay between strings as well as the subtle, oft obscured (or lost)details in large orchestral works. I would like the most detailed player available. I find myself wanting more string resolution as my Spectral/MIT well AC conditioned system is very revealing. Any suggestions?
Seeking alternatives to the Wadia due to price.
Have heard the 581 & found it excellent; however would have to go the the improved(in reliabilty as much as sound) 581SE at $10,000.
Too much for a dying format.
For that money should get all 4 dying formats
SACD--with comparable sound--Esoteric or RT20?