Is NAD C542 better than a Link DAC?

Hello everybody,
With all the advances in digital playback, I'm afraid my MSB Link DAC is becoming obsolete so I am interested in an upgrade.
My budget is around $500 and in my country there's only NAD, Denon or Arcam available. But, the local dealer wants >$800 for an Arcam CD73 so that leaves NAD and Denon as my only options. My questions are:
-Is the NAD C542 better than the Link DAC? Dealer does not stock it so I can't compare them.
-Any opinions on the DENON universal players for redbook playback vs the NAD? I could get a 2200 or a 2910 for slightly more than the C542.
I would rather buy locally for the warranty in case of any transport issues, and if I had a larger budget I would get a Benchmark DAC-1 instead.
Current system is: Sony CDP-XE500 > MSB Link DAC (stock) > McCormack TLC-1 > DNA-0.5 > B&W DM305 (next upgrade)

Thanks in advance for your opinions,
I don't usually answer these types of questions but I was recently using a Sony CDP-XE500 as a transport and an Adcom GDA-700 DAC. I wanted to simplify things and purchased a NAD C-541i to replace the Sony. I much prefer the NAD. With standard cds the sound is smoother. And with HDCD cds the sound is much improved; more depth and realism. I do however miss some of the Sony's functions and the sony had a quieter mechanical operation.
I have not heard the C-542 but if it is an improvement over the 541i it is probably a safe bet. Good luck.