most musical DAC under 1k?

Amp rega brio- R thinking in using my ipod with a wadia dock to a dac to improve quality!
Open to hear experiences!
**dealer disclaimer**

The Rega dac would make perfect sense and is certainly in the running for most musical dac under 1K
Is the iPod your only source? Peachtree Audio iDac looks like a good candidate. Of course, there are many musical candidates under $1k, but most lack the iPod docking capability.
No ipod is not my only source!
I have comp files and vinyls as well!
I am using the brio bulting phono and the rega Rp1
I just got the idac and am very impressed so far. I pulls the digital signal direct from the ipod and processes the signal via dac. The output thru USB was as good as other input sources which eliminates the need for a S/pdif converter. There is a good review in Stereophile this month and previously in Absolute Sound. What swayed me over the Rega was the better USB performance, less coloration (according to the reviewers) and the ability to doc the ipod and use a remote.
If you can stretch your budget a little, the new Ultra Fi DAC-41 should definately be on your list, it's one of the most musical DAC period (selling for $1250 introductory price). This is the successor to the Tranquility SE DAC that's received so much praised.
Rega's DAC is the best $1k and under DAC that I've heard. I haven't heard every single one, but I've easily heard my fair share. Everyone's ears and idea of "musical" are different.

If you've got a Rega integrated and turntable, I'm pretty sure you like what Rega's idea of musical is. The DAC should be your starting point, and compare that one with others IMO. I haven't heard the Brio R, but my ears have told me many times in the past that Rega's strength is it's sources. Their other stuff is quite good, but their sources have always been far more of overachievers than their amplification and speakers.

I own the Rega DAC and love it. There are DACs out there that do hifi stuff a little bit better, but I haven't heard one near the price range do musical emotion and involvement like this one does. It's not the most detailed, biggest soundstaging, razor-sharpest imaging, etc. DAC on the market. It does all that stuff very well, but it's not the last word in any of it for the price. Rather than trying to do one or all of this stuff extremely well, it just focuses on getting the music right.

To my ears, it sounds like a great turntable. Not a slow, smoothed-over and warmed up turntable, but a very good turntable that let's the music flow.

I may sound a bit biased, but I didn't have to buy the Rega DAC. Could have bought anything in the price range. I bought it because it was easily the best I've heard in that range, and truth be known, it was a lot better than stuff I heard that was a good bit more expensive.

My Rega DAC is fed by an Apple TV gen 1. Think of it as a 160 gb iPod with optical output. If you have an iPod Touch, iPhone or iPad, you don't need a TV to control 99% of it's functions. It'll save you some money on the Wadia dock and is far more convenient and functional. They can still be found on Amazon, last I checked.
I have to agree with Scar972 the iRoc DAC-41 is both incredibly detailed and at the same time astonishingly musical. I own a Tranquility SE, and it is very, very good. The DAC-41 takes things to a whole new and very pleasing level. It's a little more than $1K right now, but that premium is very much worth it. Please do not read me as disrespecting the remarkable qualities of the Tranquility or the Tranquility SE; it's just that the DAC-41 is something else, particularly in its ability to layer the inward qualities of the music. I've discovered things, such as harmonies and patterns in the relationships of instruments and performers in compositions I have lived with for decades and have just discovered them through the DAC-41.

Just my experience,

:) listening,

The DA-160 sounds pretty good on my setup. Soundstage and bass extension are awesome. Its like having a live concert on your room. :)

My 2 cents.