I hope that the Muse Erato II is vastly superior to an earlier CD player Muse built, the Signature 9. I purchased that junk for $2300 back in the 90s. It cut off the beginning and ending of a note, round, bloated sound. Yuk! My old Kyocera 310 and 410 from 1985 blew it away. For the past 13 years, I have greatly enjoyed CDs through my EAR Acute which uses Wolfson chips. It is very rich sounding and not at all a resolution fiend. I may purchase a COS Engineering H1 DAC after audition as it sounds incredibly more detailed/higher resolution than my EAR Acute.
As to cheap cassette players trouncing high end CD players, ha ha. I own a Nakamichi zx7 cassette deck, second only to the Dragon and no cassettes come close to 1000s of my well mastered CDs. Am I to assume that only a cheap cassette player can be used and not a top quality one? No, someone got a screw loose. I used to transfer CDs in the 1980s to cassettes (100s of them). Prerecorded cassettes were generally awful. Only a few I recorded live using a Tandberg 310 cassette deck rivaled a good CD or RR tape.