cd player/transport to external DAC 500


I am looking to purchase a CD player or transport for a 2.1 audio system, preferably under 500, but I will stretch a little if I need to. I am planning to connect this player to an external DAC, probably via digital coaxial, though I'm open to other possibilities. Since this connection will be made digitally, does the DAC of the actual CD player even matter? I was planning to buy a Cambridge Audio 640C v2 for 349, which seems like a great deal, but in thinking about this, it seems that I am "wasting" the DACs in the 640C. Is there a player that would act as a better transport than the 640C at a similar price point, perhaps with inferior DACs? Ideally, I would like it to play at least CD-R and more audio formats would be a plus, but not necessary. Thanks very much for your advice.

Busoni
busoni
I have found that for a transport, the Pioneer Elite Series are very good and can be had for very, very little.

Pioneer overbuilt their Elite series to the extent that they actually rate lower high-end classification and with the wood panel sides, they are beautiful.

I compared several as transports into my external DAC and from the DV-09 (seriously overbuilt and absolutely great sounding transport), DV38A, DV-37 and McIntosh MS 300 music server acting as transport only, the DV-09 won hands down. This thing is built like a tank. You can find it for less than $200 and you would be hard pressed to find a better unit as a transport only for less than $2000. Seriously.

enjoy
Since this connection will be made digitally, does the DAC of the actual CD player even matter?
Nope, does not matter. Buy something reliable with a good warranty and the user interface that suits you.

The Cambridge Audio 340C will work just fine. The NAD C545BEE has a transformer coupled digital output so that might be better depending on your external DAC.