The multi-channel version of SACD has a certain cachet among home theatre enthusiasts, but the 2-channel version also generated a buzz once among audiophiles with no interest in multi-channel. SACD never caught the popular fancy, however, and is thought by many to be nearly extinct.
Nevertheless, I have a number of SACDs, mainly classical, which I've played as CDs and I love great sound, so a year or two ago I investigated 2-channel SACD players. I dropped that plan after reading about the following study on Wikipedia:The Mobile Fidelity release on SACD of three by Frank has me wavering again. What do listeners here with SACD players, or who have at least heard them, think?In the audiophile community, the sound from the SACD format is thought to be significantly better than older format Red Book CD recordings. However, in September 2007 the Audio Engineering Society published the results of a year-long trial in which a range of subjects including professional recording engineers were asked to discern the difference between SACD and compact disc audio (44.1 kHz/16 bit) under double blind test conditions. Out of 554 trials, there were 276 correct answers, a 49.8% success rate corresponding almost exactly to the 50% that would have been expected by chance guessing alone.