I did away with my CD player a year or so ago (being told my expensive player could 'no longer be repaired' had a lot to do with this), and now play FLAC from the Lacie Lacinema through Yahama RX-A1020, either by Lacinema playing to Yam over HDMI or by YAM playing off the Lacie media server via Ethernet. I have to say I can't hear the different between these two play modes, I guess because buffering, D/A etc is done in both cases by the YAM. Having said that, the YAM sometimes cannot see the Lacie server and the YAM GUI is pretty rubbish so normally the Lacie plays. Either way the Lacie doesn't do much, all the heavy lifting is done by the YAM.
My Question is this: Would a 'premium' Network Audio Player make a noticable difference to the music quality with my existing amp and speakers ? If so how much would I have to spend before I noticed a difference ? I know I should go to the shops and listen but I hate HIFI shops as much as I dislike hairdressers, and they wont have my pre-historic speakers anyways.