Picked it up on Sunday, installed it last night, and let it burn in overnight. Very initial impressions are very favorable. Keep in mind that I have yet to have time to do some side by side comparisons with the Sony 555ES, and probably will not have a chance for a while, but my impression is that the Marantz is very similar in sound on SACD. I did not find any trace of harshness as someone wrote in another thread. Again, these are admittedly after a limited listening session to one disc (Telarc's Symphonie Fantastique--one of the best sounding SACDs I've heard (I have about 40)--and something that I had also just listened to on the 555ES the day before I hooked up the Marantz). I did, however, listen to the disc twice, at a pretty decent level, and details I remember from before (I'm pretty familiar with this disc), seem at least as vivid, if not more so. I'm talking about fine details, such as the texture of the timpani and string sound, and the amazing dynamics in the finale (What brass!). Based on this single SACD listening, I don't feel I am missing anything by not using the 555ES (so far), and if I am, then it is at such a subtle level that the convenience of a single player outweighs the loss. I did listen to a couple of tracks from one of the few DVD-A's I own--John Williams' AI. Again, very nice, but this was harder to judge, since I listened to the surround tracks, and I am only familiar with the stereo CD. Also, this was my first DVD-Audio experience. Loading discs happened pretty quickly, about 8-10 seconds to close the tray, figure out what kind of disc is playing and start the sound. I watched a bit of a DVD with my 18 mo. old son (Baby Bach)--not exactly demonstration quality video (the disc, I mean), but even on a brief run, it was obvious that the video performance is definitely superior to my Sony carousel. Surface textures on the toys and balloons in the video were more detailed and three-dimensional. There did seem to be some red push and blooming on extremely bright colors (Red and Blue especially) that was not there before, but it may be the disc or it may be that I should probably recalibrate the TV with the new player. About the only drawback I can find so far is that there seems to be no way to display the text information on SACD like the Sony players do. The display control only cycles through elapsed and remaining time. I will let it burn in some more and listen more closely in a couple of days. So far I am one happy camper.