I applaud your erudition.That's fine - you're perfectly entitled to your semantic interpretations; that doesn't necessarily mean that others must, or care to, share them.I doubt, for instance, that Theta would feel obligated to re-name their Superior DAC product because it lacks a reference or comparison to specific other DACs.
cbono said "the superior qualities of the 09FD"Superior doesn't necessarily refer to a direct comparison to something else; it often means "Of great value or excellence; extraordinary." (American Heritage Dictionary)
It definitely depends on one's system. It would most likely be impossible to hear any difference if the system is a Walmart HTIB.... The higher the quality the rest of the system, the more you hear, and the more pronounced the difference will be in the sound quality of various sources. I have Krell gear and their big monoblocks; the differences are really obvious.
IIRC, the drive on the 09 is actually a read/write drive, designed for higher mechanical precision and operational specs than read-only drives. This may be the reason for the frustratingly high failure rate.
I auditioned a 95 to A/B with my 09. The 95's load speed was obviously faster. I don't recall any difference in DVD playback (there was definitely none with Blu-ray) with my Sharp 20K projector on a 110" screen.The analog audio was a different story - there was simply no comparison; the Pioneer was in another class in terms of sound quality.The Oppo was a very nice unit, but I returned it - audio is far too important to me.
I was sure the player was going to look just like the box: trashed.
I was amazed that there wasn't a single scratch - and after a couple days of testing I verified that it was working perfectly. The 09 really is built like a tank.....
This is what I saw when I opened my front door when my 09 was returned from the factory. It's hard to imagine what UPS must have done to destroy the box like that.....Amazingly, the unit was in perfect condition - not a scratch and worked perfectly.
Here's the 2212 model (top view, grilles off), the largest Sonab. These speakers were quite large in person.
(2212 = 2 woofers + 2 bass/midrange + 12 tweeters)
They were waaaaay beyond my budget (even used), and they also needed a much bigger room than I had.