What CDP or DAC would you buy with $1,000?


I'm interested to see what some of the favorite sub $1K (on the used market) one box CDP and DACs are. I am more interested in external DACs but if anyone has found a CDP superior to the best DACs (used with a good transport) in this range I would be interested in that as well, and would also really appreciate a short review on your favorite regarding its sound, along with associated equiptment. Thanks much and happy new year!
I may be biased since I have one for sale here on Audiogon, but I don't think you can beat the Classe CDP 1 for under $1K. It uses the same Ultaranalog d/a chip that was used in the highly touted Classe DAC 1. It's kinda like a CDT1 and DAC 1 in one chassis. It weighs over 20 pounds and would also make a solid transport. I used to be into seperates, but since I have gotten back into analog, I realize that seperates didn't make that much of a difference. I've owned Proceed, Krell, Monarchy and Sonic Frontiers seperates, and I can't say they were more musical than the CDP 1. The Classe isn't the most detailed player I've heard, you may find other players more revealing, but for under a grand I don't think you'll find more musical, and the bass reaches ALL the way down. As low as your speakers can go, that's how deep the bass will go.

My current system:

VPI HW-19 MK III w/SAMA, Audioquest PT-6 arm, Dynavector 10X4 mk II and Benz Micro Glider cartridges.

BAT VK-D5SE CD player

Sony DVP-S9000ES DVD/SACD player

Classe CP-60 w/phono preamp

Threshold T400 amp

Vienna Acoustics Strauss speakers

Tara Labs Decade cables

Shunyata Black Mamba, BMI Shark & Whale Elite mk II's, Tara Labs The One power cords

Tara Labs AD/6 and Monster HTS-5000mk II PLC's

(2) 20A dedicated, isolated power lines using PS Audio Power Ports.
If you want music I would suggest a Muse Model Two Plus DAC. If you want a "Hi-Fi" sound look elsewhere.
Krell Studio.

You can often times find this $3900 processor on the used market for around $1000. Even Krell states that there was only a SLIGHT difference between it and their $14,000 Ref. 64.

I compared it to the original maga buck Levinson and could hear no difference, and that was in a $200,000 system.

Thank you for the feedback, fellas. I just picked up a Musical Fidelity A3 24 Dac that I'm going to give a weeks run-in before review, and also have a MSB Nelson Dac and will have a Bel Canto Dac2 soon to shootout. I'll be on the lookout for the Krell Studio, the Muse and Classe to compare the winner of this round with.
Socrates - how was the shootout, and what did you end up with?
Socrates, so what were your results?
The Musical Fidelity was the clear victor in my system, to my tastes, with my music. With a Theta dedicated transport it had more air, more topend extension and was more open then anything I've ever heard, it was stunning in those regards. The midrange was superb, comparable to tube-based CDP's I've heard, very smooth, engaging and musical. Only real complaint was the bottom end, although very detailed it was light (much like the A3 amp) and ever so slightly rolled, other complaint being that it needed (an absolute need) a good transport. Hook the A3 24 to a cheap cdp (jolida), DVD player or changer and it sounded from pretty horrible to no different then the player feeding it. I ultimately sold the A3 24 for a Marantz SA-14, which is more different then better/worse on cd, though I ultimately traded a a stunning topend and air for more warmth, uncanny musicality and naturalness. I've become a huge SACD fan so the Marantz was an easy choice on that front as well.

I've gone through a Philips 963sa, SACD1000, Jolida JD-100 and one other player that escapes me at the moment recently, the A3 24 and SA-14 are beyond any of them, so much so a deaf person could almost tell the difference. I'll write a longer, more thorough review from my notes on all of these dacs and players relative to the other when I have more time, if anyone is interested.