Thinking about a CDP - but is it worth it these days?

I’m streaming FLAC via Auralic too and invariably prefer the SQ using the Auraic Lightning app verses using Roon.

I’ve listened to the same track on my meridan 506 cdp to bel canto dac3 vs tidal on node2/ifi zen stream to bel canto dac3 and I can hear the diffrence instantly,the cd has alot more bass,definitely hits harder in tracks I know by heart,more detail aswell and jst more enjoyable than streaming,I do luv streaming tidal but sq wise the cd wins,so I use tidal to discover and then buy the cd

It sounds like what you’re saying is that the CD is louder. That’s all.

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No David,in my system the cd is definitely alot better,more bass,more detail,vocals sound better,anyone listening to my system would hear what I’m hearing,I still enjoy streaming alot and I use it most of the time,but for serious listening the cd is on,I use tidal for discovery,if I like a album il buy the cd

Does a ripped CD sound the same as TIDAL or your transport or somewhere in the middle?

… well, as said, I ended up getting a good deal on an Esoteric CD-X 05 and playing CDs clearly sounds superior to my streamed files, local rips or Qobuz etc. It can‘t be the use of different masterings, because I also have my CDs ripped as FLAC & WAV. You can still hear a rather clear difference. Also can‘t be because the DACs are different because at first I used the Esoteric as transport only - I now use the players integrated DAC though - just an amazing machine and it shows how great CDs still sound today. By the way - CD Redbook via CDP even sounds better than most hi-res to me. I love Roon - but when it comes to serious listening & I own a physical version, I play Vinyl or CD.

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Thats my experience aswell

It heavily depends on what kind of streamer you use!

Since my last report I did build an Ian Canada FiFo Q3 streamer with top notch OCXO clocks and good dedicated psu’s etc.
My modified Sony CDP-X7ESD also has an OCXO clock build-in, the clocks in the streamer are a notch better though. Modified psu’s in my Sony probably are a little bit better than the ones I used in the streamer.
X7 as transport still sounds a little bit better, but the margin is very very small.

I could improve the clock in my X7 to the same level as my streamer, and bring the quality level of psu’s used in the streamer at the same level as the ones used in X7. Since it is rather costly to accomplish this, I probably won’t, because both sound rather the same now.

The outcome, at least for me is, that a good transport can sound a lot better than a mediocre streamer, or even a good streamer. But to be honest, if you want to stream at a very high level, it is rather costly.
And, maybe a good transport like a modified X7 still COULD be better…

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As soon as the MK2 hits Stateside in 2023, my next purchase.