I went from a Rega Planet 200 to the Sony 9000ES and preferred the Rega which was warmer but captured the musical tones better. The Sony was more extended and detailed but sounded more like typical HI FI to me.
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I agree with Philjolet.
I too have a Sony 9000ES, and its' redbook was pretty standard stuff. (I am the second owner and have had it for a couple of years, so it is well broken in). Detailed and extended is a good way to put it. Emotionless is another. The SACD is pretty good though.
I ended up going with a Resolution Audio Opus 21 cdp for my Redbook, and could not be happier with the sound. (Well, except for my vinyl setup of course, which is better than any cdp I have ever heard, but that is to be expected, IMHO.)
I agree with Philo and Kurt above. I've had to live with the 9000 I snatched from my theater system for the last couple weeks while my primary 2 channel machine is being upgraded (BAT D5.) IMO, the Sony is sterile, lifeless and cold. Detailed? Yes. Great on video and SACD? Yes. Nothing much beyond that...
Redbook CD on the SONY is brittle and uninvolving. The newer, cheaper models--like the NS775V sound better (and have better video) than the 9000es, I think, but SONYs still sound dry and thin.
My Panasonic DVD-S47 ($89), stock, sounds better than the SONY S9000es that I had modified by EVS some years ago ($1300).
With the new chips and technology, what was "highend" 5 or 6 years ago is bettered by today's "mass market" players. Go to www.tweakaudio.com. Ric Schultz does mods to the $99 Toshiba 4960 ($300 for the mods) that most likely buries the 9000es in the dust.
With today's budget players and some decent mods, you can get miles ahead of the SONY 9000es and save alittle money, too.
I have this unit, in my system the past two years. Agree with comments above, although my experience with SACD is limited. Redbook is detailed, extended, but very hifi sounding and a flat, two-dimensional sound stage. Zero depth.
But I like my 9000es as a transport. It is heavy and stable, solidly manufactured. I feed the digital output into a modified Museatex DAC, and the results are pleasing - round liquid musical notes with layers of depth and extension. Really nice!