So was my inner audiophile. Rather than setbacks versus bigger pricier Soundaware A-280, I had more resolution, contrast and microdynamic flickers. Of course for me 5V AES/EBU routinely bests 0.5V coax. Perhaps that unfair advantage factored? If so, unfair my heel. Whatever works best wins. You could wonder why I bother with fringe SD card playback at all. The simple answer is better sound for the pound. It avoids cheap/costly computers and their multi-tasking noise. It sidesteps the Internet, its ungrounded pollution and Big Brother's surveillance. It eliminates WiFi and its radiation. It needs no USB decrapifiers, reclockers or regenerators whereby ordinary computers get some sort of audiophile religion.

There are many ways to good sound. Some are simply more complex than others. Want to get rid of box sound? Don't use a box. Want to avoid the PCfi blues? Don't use a PC. If you like simple and budgetarian, for me nothing beats SD card playback. It simply wants more than a USB port and €5 card adapter. It wants a custom OS that makes ancient folder-tree navigation palatable. In the end, that's the price you pay for going SD: basic navigation far removed from Roon. My solution is to drag entire playlists into single folders like the above 186-track affair, then hit shuffle mode to get surprised. Just 10 folders may contain 1'000 tracks with minimum need to scan a card's TOC by reams of petite screen heights.

At least that's my take on superior digital transportation. And I'm stubbornly sticking by it in now four rigs at once. You might think that I'm a fossil. Or you could suspect that I've discovered something worth repeating. Either way, it's your black 'n' white pick. Today we have no time for grey zones.

As far as I'm concerned then, this s.m.s.l SD-9 transport just made a decision on your behalf. Welcome to the SD club?