Posted this to the SD DVD area, and thought I'd ask here, too.
I've been shopping the local online listings, thinking toward buying a Blu-Ray player that is also a good Redbook CD player, but, well, the little bit of research I've done doesn't really point to a clear choice in the $150-ish used market.
I'm not even sure where I stand on the, 'wire is wire and bits are bits' versus 'tweak everything' religious divide, further hampering my decision making. I have no idea if I could hear the difference between a CD being played through a less expensive DVD player, then played through a costly audiophile CD player. But just in case there is an audible difference between the two, I'm now leaning toward getting an older, semi-audiophile, non-HD/Blu-Ray DVD player with a reputation for good audio. Enter OPPO 981 vs. Rotel RDV 1040. I'm thinking I could add an AppleTV or somesuch for streaming HD, and (possibly) be happier with my audio CDs.
I like that the Oppo up-converts video. I like the Rotel audio reputation. Price of the two are roughly the same. Assuming their SD video output is very similar, is one the clear winner in CD audio playback? Or, 'bits are bits', and get a used Sony Blu-ray player, because audio CDs will sound the same in all three, but the Blu-Ray picture is so much better than SD?