I am new to the forum. I have a question, but first let me say that what is impressive about the contributors here is the same thing that impresses me about Stereophile -- intelligence, technical knowledge, and articulateness. It is really enjoyable reading the posts here.
I have a decent 5.1 home theater system and want to add a dedicated stereo CD player. Here is my current equipment:
Marantz SR8500 receiver
Marantz DV6600 universal player (DVD, CD, SACD)
PSB VS 400 left-right tower speakers plus center channel and 2 CW 180R ceiling surrounds --- (The VS 400 is a low profile speaker designed to complement on-wall HD displays.)
PSB 6i subwoofer
NEC 50XR5 50" plasma
And -- forgive me for this low-fi item -- an Audiotechnica AT-PL120 turntable
(I am using the turntable mainly to digitize some of my LPs. I play the LPs infrequently, so I could not justify the cost of a high-end turntable.)
This equipment is in a family room that was built specifically to accommodate a home theater system. The PSB VS 400s are there because of my wife's desire to have speakers that would not visually overwhelm the room. This room must double as a stereo listening room.
Here are the stereo CD players I am considering:
Marantz SA8001 ($1000)
Marantz SA15S1 ($2000)
McIntosh MCD201 ($3300)
I have two questions:
1. What are your opinions on buying one of these players and using the DAC in that versus adding a Benchmark or other DAC to the DV6600 universal player that I now have?
2. Would my PSB speakers do justice to these three units, or does it only make sense to upgrade the CD player if I buy fuller range left and right speakers? Because of WAF, that would be a challenging project.
Thanks very much for your advice.