Wadia S7i vs Esoteric K-01/K-03 vs MSB

As I want to upgrade from Sony XA5400ES has someone compared the following:

-Wadia S7i
-Esoteric K-01 or K-03
-MSB with Platinum Dac IV plus, Signature Platinum Power Base, Upsampler 384 kHz and Platinum dac IV transport or any other MSB device.

I got already a great deal on a used Wadia S7i, which however is discontinued now.
I have no possibilities to compare any of these and apparently there is no specific information available on the net.

Thanks for making any efforts.

Not sure about your budget but if you don't need SACD playback, have a look at the Playback MPS-3. MPS-5 plays SACD but may stretch your budget a bit. Well worth it IMHO.
Doggiehowser, I take PD for sure into consideration. Thanks.

No disrespect but for that kind of money you owe it to yourself to listen to each player for yourself. I have a MSB DAC and I am very happy with it but the others on your list are top notch as well.
Thanks Chuck.

At this moment I am leaning towards the MSB, which although is the most expensive, has the ability to upgrade. Wadia does not play SACD; with the right upgrade-options, I was told that MSB should surpas Wadia.
I have no information on the Esoteric vs MSB so far.
I have not listened to the MSB, but I have owned the Esoteric K01 since its release, and it is fantastic both with CD and SACD.. My previous player was an Esoteric X01D2, the K01 blows it away, it's not even close.
Esoteric is the only one that plays SACD, unless u go with
MSB universal player based on the Oppo 95.

MSB has a great reputation and you rarely see them come up used, but they are a pricey multi box solution once u add up the power base for each piece, the DAC and the cost of the transport and cables.

Easy to get into the $40k range with MSB, which makes the Esoteric look reasonable at $20k list with discounted street pricing.

I went with the K01 for simplicity and the fact i could not justify the cost difference for either Esoteric or MSB top of the line digital separates.
One thing I did not mention on MSB that you might want to consider is their new Analogue DAC starting at $8K and going up with additional inputs and the upgraded power base.

I heard it at Newport show and it is very good sounding piece that is a good value if you use it to replace a pre amp.

It goes to 384 khz and I believe will also do DSD files.

With their Universal transport for SACD, you would be in the $15K range with a couple extra digital inputs. Add $3K if you want the upgraded power base.
Mallen123 and Matjet@ Thanks.
I got a great deal on the MSB, so the price is more or less the same as the K-01.
I think I could live easily with one of them as I think both are excellent, but comparing them directly proved difficult however.
The more versatile package of MSB, eg. adding the superior clock they offer later or upgrading to the better dac-options, seems the more interesting solution.
@ Sequence56, Hi, which one sounded better? the k-01 or the msb?, cheers!

The ablility for an upgrade path is what swayed me to the MSB DAC IV Signature. I paired mine with the Universal Media Transport and it sounds fantastic.

That is what I want to know also, which is the best or what are the differences! Not possible to compare here.
Both brands are ebullient recommended by its customers.
I have heard all 3, the Esoteric K 01 and Wadia S7i in my system as well as Cary and DCS (all) the MSB (top configuration and analogue DAC in a few other systems. I've also heard Bricasti (but not long enough and in enough systems to evaluate--but sounded v impressive and I think in the top tier on redbook), Playback Designs, Zanden and Reimyo. My favorites over all are Wadia, Esoteric and MSB. Do not think I could do Wadia as that model is no longer in production and it does not play sacd. Also it was the only one that suffered from transport glitches which are unacceptable in a $10,000+ cdp. But the sound was powerful, rich, deep---wonderful. That leaves Esoteric and MSB both of which sound great in every aspect. The proverbial window to the source. So it depends on your goals. Want the last player you will ever buy? I'd go Esoteric. Want future adaptability at greater cost? Go MSB. This is of course my highly personalized opinion.
Do you have any comments on the general sq of Esoteric vs MSB.
I already ruled out the Wadia for the reasons you mentioned.
Thanks for posting.
I'm sorry Sequence, don't know sq.
Hi Gpgr4blu,
Said by other members that the best MSB stack is way ahead of the Esoteric and even surpas the P02/D-02 combo.
So at this moment I would stick with MSB with also having the advantages as mentioned before.
@ Sequence56, Have you considered Luxman?, I have heard great things about their sound, compaired to what is under discussion here!, I have seen some audiogoners pick the luxman over the best available here!, what is everyones opinion here on the Luxman versus whats mentioned on this thread?, cheers!
Fellas,I also feel we should add Accuphase to the mix here as well!, then let the fun begin on our opinions!cheers!
@ Audiolabyrinth
I heard Accuphase a few times and was not overly impressed, did not remember which models however.
Not much known about Luxman, is indeed quite recommended by some.
I choose to go the separate dac-transport route, for which MSB is a very strong contender with versatile options to upgrade.
Also, consider Esoteric P02/D02 that does 352k/384k 8x upsampling (like DXD), DSD and a new algorithm 35 bit D/A conversion for regular CDs.
I did not compare it with MSB. It is better than Accuphase top of the line DP900/DC901.