Some of the discussion on another thread, concerning the Roksan K2 amplifier and then, by extension the K2 CD player got me thinking. PP reminded me that I haven't always been completely happy with the K2 CD player and some of the comments by davedotco and others about the aggressive nature of the K2 amp's sound chimed with some of the reservations I've had over time about the CD player. I've had to work hard to get a pleasing sound from the CD player, and although I have largely been very happy with it since I started using the Exposure amp and Dynaudio speakers, this afternoon's discussion did make some of the reservations re-surface in my mind.
So, by way of comparison, I decided it might be informative to pull out my old Marantz CD63SE, just to see how it fared. In some ways I'm shocked but in others I'm not. The CD63SE is more musical than the Roksan. It still has plenty of dynamic capability but somehow it sounds more coherent and works really well with the rest of the system.
I did use it (and the Rotel RCD965BX) for a while when the Roksan was away having a new display module and thoroughly enjoyed it then. Right now I'm playing 'The Lark Ascending' as recorded by the wonderful Nicola Benedetti and it sounds superbly natural with plenty of atmosphere and a very inviting quality.
I'll see how it goes over the next few days.