I've gone up the Naim path from 5i to 5x to CDX2. The 5x is the sweet spot. For once a reviewer (Stereophile) got it right. If you go for a 5i, get the new version, which is now 5i (i in italics). Different DAC. The original 5i was all drive but low on subtlety. It's still more "listenable" than many players, though, and doesn't induce fatigue. I've since left Naim for tubes and have yet to find a new cd player. Naim players (up through the CDX2) all share these traits: darker sound, a bit too much bite on strings for my taste but organic sounding. Not bad overall. A bit low in resolution (particularly the original 5i) though. Go for a 5x if you can swing the cash, even for a used one (Naim's service support is very good, as is the build quality and durability). I don't recommend the CDX2, though. I've never heard the new 5i (italics), though, but definitely at least call Promusica in Chicago and get the straight dope on it. Promusica is the best, most knowledgeable Naim dealer IMO so if anyone would know, it'd be them.