J.P., I didn’t say that clearly enough, must have stayed up too late listening to music! The P5 allows the system to do it all more capably, all those faint little details are there to enjoy, complex passages have more going on and simple ones do have that isolated instrument feeling. Example, vocal passages (The Persuasions) have that tactile feeling you get when acoustic music is presented well.
I can’t deny I heard background noise while listening, it was raining outside and I was breathing, there’s no other noise I can hear.
On the Sonos, the “don’t ask” is more a comment on “what is he doing with two players”, or even 3! I like and use Sonos a lot.I have no problem with the digital output from the Sonos Connect. The various players all do versions of the same job. When Sonos is feeding the DS or a Benchmark DAC2HGC I cannot find any fault. Sonos has a good set of control interfaces and handles many music services. The Bluesound (+DS DAC) does add the ability to handle higher resolution files, but then the MacMini and a Bridge will do more, though the control interface and service options are less user friendly.
Perhaps the Sonos is a bit like a Nespresso machine, convenient, a good level of quality, very reliable, consistent. Bluesound and the Mac and the Bridge are heading out on the path to perfection, but nobody has gotten there yet. Bluesound has a few modest blips on interface and the way it handles networking and music service connections.
In a conversation with someone at my local hi-fi shop we were talking about how digital music is getting like vinyl; an almost unlimited number of tweaks and little extras that move us toward some nirvana. Example, there are software packages that will rip your CDs at slower than listening speed to make sure that the ripped file is as clean as it can be. Or we download DSDx4 files that are bigger than a Blu-Ray movie. They do sound,… great, but it is like a visit to that coffee shop in town to get that superlative espresso.
Incidentally Aeropress does taste great, but it isn’t espresso.