What alternatives to Wadia i170??

The Wadia seems to be a VERY sucessful product ... why so few alternatives available in the same or LOWER price range?? There is an Onkyo model but as far as I know it is only distributed in Japan and the EU. I have NEVER seen a used Onkyo for sale on AudiogoN so either no one buys them or no one parts with them :)
I think the alternative (for me anyway) is to skip the wadia. I go right from my computer with files ripped in apple lossless to airport express. I'm not using a DAC at this time, but the airport express has optical out, so I could if I chose to.

If you have to rip files using your computer anyway, I guess I don't see much of a point for the wadia, except that it makes it convenient for someone else to drop their ipod in and listen to music they want to listen to.
Along S7horton's lines, an alternative would be the Apple TV. I have the previous version with internal hard drive. It's basically a 120gb iPod with an optical output and a few other features.

The iTransport is not user friendly at all in my experience. Soem iPods need constant un-docking and re-docking, some don't have click wheel control, and on and on. If you're set on an iTransport, I think an extension docking cable would be a good investment. You could hold the iPod in your hand and control it, if the click wheel works.

Other than the iTransport and Onkyo, there's a product coming out called the Cyhper Labs AlgoRythm (not a misspelling). It's designed for the HeadFi crowd. It's a portable iPod digital transport that does asynchronous iPod digital through a USB input. It has an internal Wolfson (I believe) DAC and a digital coax output. The USB won't work with computers, just iPods, iPads, and iPhones. Cypher Labs is a joint venture between Red Wine Audio, ALO Audio, and one other group. It seems like a pretty interesting product by a few guys who are pretty good at what they do. It's going to be $579 as far as I know. There was a 6 Moons write up on it, and a HeadFi thread or two. A Google search would provide more info.
thanks for the responses ... kids and their friends bring iPods to the house and want to listen to their music on my system so the direct streaming is not my best option

seems Wadia has sold a million of these things (alright maybe an exaggeration), hard to believe there is not money to be made for other companies to due the same even when factoring in the licensing fees from Apple

I'm pretty sure more and more will come out soon. I think the concept got ignored until the iTransport came out and made designers realize they're missing out on a market that isn't going away any time soon.

Naim, Peachtree, and a few others have incorporated iPod digital streams into their latest products. Many will follow suit IMO.