There's no way that upsampling 44.1 kHz to 48 kHz which is a 1.088435374 time multiplication (not a nice even factor), and then using lossy Dolby Digial encoding will make a CD sound better.

Try this with the PS3. Set the CD output to the 44.1/88.2/176.4 mode, and the Bitmapping to Type 3 (or C, or what ever the last one is). On your receiver pick Dolby Prologic II(x if you have it). That'll be a lossless processing, with an even factor upsample.

Pioneer PDP-5020FD, Marantz SR6011
Axiom M5HP, VP160HP, QS8
Sony PS4, surround backs