Oddly enough I recently posted a similar entry asking about the differences between the Cambridge 840C Azur (which I own) and the BAT VK D5SE. While I have not auditioned the NAD M5, I can say that the upsampling 840C is to my ears a great value in your price range. Many of my older redbook CD's came to life with the upsampling feature, and the musicality of the player. Some say the 840C is a bit forward sounding, which I have not noticed in my system. The reviews the 840C received prompted me to take the leap of faith and buy it without auditioning it, and remain quite happy with it after 9 months. In hindsight, while I would likely have purchased it anyway, it's always recommended to do some sort of direct A / B comparisons with a few favorite CD's and on amps and speakers that are close to what you use. Good luck!
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