Wadias tend to sound mechanical with good clarity and an okay soundstage.
Accuphase nicely built but with okay sound.
Audio Aero can sound thin but tweek up nice and have a great soundstage.
MBL I haven't heard their less expensive stuff, but I have heard all MBL systems and the sound has been very good.
The Audio Aero is tubed but not tooby sounding.
We are awaiting a sample of the new AMR CD 77. This thing may be the greatest breakthrough in CD sound and it is affordable at $8,500.00 the word on the grape vine is this player was directly compared to the $43,000 Zanden combo and the AMR sounds exceedingly similar. I have heard a story that this player has laid waste to a $30k DCS stack and $20k EMM Labs stack as well.
I don't know I am still waiting to hear one, but if the grape vine is correct this is a very musical and afforodable reference player with a very musical analog like sound.
I will post my findings as soon as the importer sends one to my shop, check out the preliminary findings on sixmoons and tell me what you think.