Advice Please - Where to Spend $3-400

With tax refund season approaching :) Its time to consider an upgrade. As a university student I wish my refund was larger ;) But them's the breaks.

My system is:
Quad 21L + NAD C350 + Pioneer DV353
- Monster Interlink mkII 400 between Pioneer & Amp
- Black Rhodium AST 200 BiWire

My thinking is that my money should go towards a source upgrade - either a CD player or a DAC. My budget would be $300-400 USD
Any recommendations either way? I think my Pioneer should prove a decent transport for the time being.

If you think I should grab a new source some recomendations for used CD Players would be nice.

If a DAC my shortlist is
- California Audio Alpha/Delta
- Scott Nixon Tubdac/+
- Channel Islands Audio VDA
- MSB Link DAC

I have an eclectic music taste: Jazz, Electronica, Rock, R&B, and everything in between.

All suggestions are welcome :)

Thanks for your time!

That is a nice system that you have already, with $400 upgrade, I think it is going to be minor. I would save it up to wait for a major upgrade.
But I like the California Audio on your list. Good luck!
Agree with Ykk, or another alternative is to spend the money on tunes and enjoy what you already have!
Buy a plane ticket & go see a show somewhere that otherwise you would never do.

Or at least go locally to check out some shows then spend the rest on music.
Why should only those of immodest means get to play around with gear? After all, that's part of the fun. I can think of a number of interesting and enjoyable uses for your cash:
1) as you mentioned, a new dac
2) I beleive you can seperate the pre from the amp in your NAD, correct? if so, maybe an older tubed pre like a conrad johnson or audible illusions
3) you could get a rega planar 3 turntable (don't know if the NAD has a phone stage or not, but you could get one of them cheapy battary powered ones)--talk about upgrading your sources!
4) if you're even somewhat handy with a soldering iron, you could make your own cables or, if you wanted, the bottlehead tube pre
Lots of choices. Have lots of fun.
Ya - I think the most reasonable option is probably a DAC - and Shersta you are correct about me being able to add a pre-amp to my system which I have been giving some thought to as well.

So its either:
- Pre-amp
- Coupling/Isolation devices for my CD Player / AMP
- New Audio Stand..

lol oh well sigh

Pick up a used Music Hall CD-25 for that amount, when you have additional funds you can mod it.
Go for the MSB they are musical, you wont be
I agree with Jiroth. IMHO a dac in your price range makes no sense. The MH CD-25 for around $350 used is a great musical bargain.

MSB Link 3 is good, but a EVS Millennium DAC 1 will blow it away for the same price. But the EVS show up used over very rarely. Good luck.
Channel Islands Audio VDA money well spent