I bought the player about six weeks ago (and a new Musical Fidelity X-A80 Amp and Quad 12L Speakers).
I'm a musician, not a hi-fi expert (if that's the right expression) - I bought the kit after a good comparative demonstration at a specialist retailer.
The Marantz I like a great deal (as I do the Amp and the speakers). The CD reproduction is excellent - it gives a good deal more depth, acoustic information, than my old Marantz CD player. SACD (remember, the player is stereo not multi-channel; I don't have a big enough listening room to make multi-channel feasible) takes that much further. Rather than bring the music into my room it turns my room into an extension of the space where the recording was made.
A word of warning. I'm on my second player! The transport on the first was very noisy; gave off a sort of buzzing noise. Much worse on SACD. The new player (Marantz replaced the first without fuss) is much quieter. There is still some - but not continuous - playback noise. Very minimal, though. Mostly the player is silent.
Avoid the Marantz issues and buy a Denon. The DVD2910 and DVD3910 are extraordinary values. I owned the Marantz DV6400 and recently bought the Denon DVD2910 which out performs the Marantz in every way. I've compared the DVD3910 to the Marantz 8400, like I said avoid the hassle, buy the Denon.
I looked at the Marantz player and went with the Denon 2200; so far it's stellar reputation has been well earned. Their current models will be even better, and Denon gives better bang for the buck than Marantz in this arena (I do like Marantz--they made my receiver). SACD is definitely a different world than CD.
A bit puzzled by Arthur Kyle and Chris Laudermilk's responses - aren't the Denon players "universal" DVD etc. machines?
Universal's play SACD in stereo or multi channel and they also play CD's, so what's so puzzling. I would take a comparably priced Denon SACD player over a Marantz regardless of what other discs it plays. Like Chris I have nothing against Marantz, I use the SR5400 receiver as a multichannel processor.
Marantz (like Denon) make cd/sacd only players as well as true "universal' players. I have a Marantz SR-7300 receiver and a Denom DVD-2900 "universal" player. Both are excellent pieces of kit which I cannot recommend highly enough. However, the Marantz "universal" players dv-8400, the new dv-7400 and dv-9400 are also very good quality players for most formats - the DV-9400 especially. If considering quality and cost ratios in the mid range units I would consider the Denon offerings DVD-2910, DVD-3910.
I can definitely recommend the Denon 3910, I've had mine since February, and have not been let down once yet. It has a lot more adjustable features for sacd and dvd-a, which make it stand out as a flagship.
Yep, the Denon is a universal. It plays CD, DVD, DVD-A, SACD, just about every -R format out there. When I was shopping Marantz only had a SACD player--I wanted a universal.
The Denon seems to have become the benchmark player and from my experience so far I can see why.
A lot of comparissons here with Denon.I've had the DVD-2900 for 1,5 years, but it had trouble reading original DVD's. Had to return it 3 times before it was exchanged, but the new unit had the same problems after a while. Therefore I exchanged it for a SA-8400 player and a Pioneer DVD player. No problems with reading DVD's now and soundwise with CD and SACD it is definitely an improvement over the DVD-2900. Much more resolution, details and texture. The rest of my system consist of B&W 802 and bryston amplification
Pastaman - We've had our Denon DVD-2900 for just over a year now - it is used every day for either dvd's,cd's, dvd-a's and sacd's. It has had a problem reading discs only twice - (1) the cd side of a DualDisc and (2) the dvd of "National Treasure" but it played a different copy without problem. I would imagine a dedicated CD/SACD player should sound better - but if the SA-8400 is a "definate" improvement (and I don't doubt you) I should like to hear it as I think the hi-res playback throught our Marantz SR-7300 and B&W 602's is sublime.
Yes. When I asked about SACD only player most of answers is about denon universal. So I dont need dvd, mp3 .... I am only stereo fan so why pay for dvd? Finally I bought Maranzt SA 15S1 only SACD/CD player and I am very satisfied. It CD and SACD payback outperforms every universal players under 3000 dollars.
Interesting thread, and thanks especially to Simon Howard for comments on two-channel SACD.
There are Denon two-channel SACD/CD players, the DCD-1500AE and DCD-2000AE. The 1500AE received a very favourable review in a recent issue of HiFi News. In UK it is less than £500 if I recall correctly.