I had a DAC3 MK II for a few years that mated well with my Pioneer PD65. This was at a time when my system was all ARC: PH2, LS5III, DAC3II, VT130. Cardas Golden Cross cables worked well here. But overtime, the forward ARC sound was just too much for me so I gradually changed each piece for something else. But I'd say the PH2 was the real sleeper of the bunch....talk about an incredible phono stage for the dollar!
Of all the ARC pieces in my system, the DAC3 was the most forward. It was quite nice but it did not have the 3-dimensionality of other DACs that I have since tried out. I wanted more body in vocals and harmonic richness like I have since discovered in the awesome Manley DAC from the late 90s. The VTL Ref tube DAC from the same time is also absolutely incredible in bringing on a full musical presentation without any fatigue. The DAC3 could cause fatigue over time.....thank heavens for LPs at such times!
For sheer value, I like the Electrocompaniet ECD1. This product has incredible musicality as well as an even tonal balance. For such a solid state unit, at it's under $2k price new, to have such qualities is simply amazing. I suggest you listen to the Electro Dac before you jump on a DAC3. Hope I have helped a little bit here.