I have the CD23 and am extremely pleased with it.I haven't had a chance to compare various Wadia models but the price difference says alot unless that is not an issue. Regards Kevin
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I own a Wadia 21 and the sound is fantastic. It repalced a meridian 508.24 and I picked up $800. As for comparison there is no question it is a better sounding player than the 830 as the 830 just didn't have it compared to the 21. Lacked the weight and dynamics especially directly driving an amp. I also had for a short time an 850 on loan simply for comparison to the 21 as Wadia offers a rather pricey upgrade. In my system the 850 was slightly more extended at the extremes, but also a tad forward in comparison.I found the 21 to be more balanced overall which pleased me greatly. I have since talked with several people who agree about this general difference between the 850-860 and the 21-16. My suggestion would be to get your hands on a 21 or a 16 if you want a little more flexibility, sell you preamp even if its gold plated and and has been deemed the world's best, and directly drive any amplifier with a nice set of balanced IC's and you will have arrived.