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Esoteric P-05X/D-05X

By Jack Lawson 3rd April 2017



In a nutshell.

On their 20th anniversary Esoteric, world leaders in CD and digital players, released a Super Audio CD Transport and DAC at a relatively accessible price point. What it lacked in overkill components it had in immersive natural sound. In 2007, the P-05 and D-05 became the ultimate under £10,000.

Ten years later, in celebration of Tokyo’s elite laboratory within a larger group of companies, we have a celebratory SACD, piano music of Beethoven and Chopin, and a fully revised P-05X and D-05X featuring substantial techniques from the company’s ground-breaking Grandioso series. Shipping dates and prices to be announced but expect a new definition of value and performance if the recent models are any guide.

In Detail.

In my opinion CD and super audio CD are the media waiting to be rediscovered by the Press. Their performance, value and proliferation arguably make today’s CD ahead of streaming and, dare I say it, challenging even vinyl. If you don’t believe this, remember (1) I am a vinyl lover and (2) just listen to a modern CD player.


No one makes higher precision CD transports and DACs than Esoteric, the specialist branch of TEAC and now well supported both financially and sympathetically by a large corporate group. Such takeovers have spelled disaster, or badge engineering, for other blue-chip names. Happily, not this time.

The new Master Clock G-02X at £5,500 and the new integrated amplifiers from £7,500 - £11,500 assert the company’s unrivalled skills and resources, and throw down a gauntlet to competitors that asks the rhetorical question: can you match this?


Esoteric celebrates its anniversaries with break-through products.

On their twentieth anniversary (July 2007 to be precise) Esoteric launched a significant product: an extremely musically immersing / emotionally engaging 2-chassis player that was relatively affordable at just under £9,000 for the pair.

I own and love a P/D-05x. Changing to many other options just reminds me that its level of precision and natural sound have few if any substitutes. It is the reason that people keep them. To be honest, in my case, as a Dealer, I was ready for a change for the sake of change until some months ago Esoteric launched a new Class A integrated amplifier. This made me stay with the brand!


Many of you will know my belief in synergy and the system of the Esoteric Master Clock and the new amplifier exploited the potential of may old P/D-05 to an exhilarating level.


On 1st April (no joke) the company announced an all new P-05x and D-05x to celebrate its 30th anniversary, along with a new SACD issue of Beethoven and Chopin piano music. The recording is ravishing. The performance is equally innovative and stirring …. The artist slowly builds to a dramatic climax.


The new ‘5 series follows a very successful tradition where the music is not just accurate but involving. But almost all components and techniques are new. Some aspects of the P/D-05X read like science fiction but Esoteric is at the heart and forefront of advances. The DAC is the epitomy of elegance and simplicity but below its bonnet roars the lion of 34-bit dual mono signal processing from a variety of inputs. The new clock accuracy is supplemented by previously timing parameters which audibly enhance the musical output. The option of an external clock and proprietary ES-LINK-4 to connect P/D-05X taking the combination to new levels of information transfer and resolution.


Rumors I have heard indicate that we have something to look forward to.

"See us at the NorthWest Audio Show, 22-23 June 2024" 
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