Are you hearing this brightness and sibilance on SACDs also?
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I am hearing this with SACD too but to a much lesser degree. I only have about 10 hours on SACD. I have the Sony and Telarc sampler CD that came with the 777ES and the Miles Davis Kind of Blue and Sketches of Spain. All of the instrumentals sound great, but the one sampler on the Telarc disk that has a vocal on it, the vocals are sibilant.
Thanks to all who have responded. I will sit out the break in period of 40 hours. On red book CD I am doing this for the most part by playing the 777ES into the Audible Illusions while the AI is in mute with the volume controls set to nothing, and the tubes are either in stand-by mode or just left one. I am putting on about 20 hours a day this way. I am now at 260.
Thanks again and I will report back with my observations at 400 hours.