Alrighty, that's all from my derailment of this thread.
Since I became a head-fi'er the best thing I have done is to get my hands on modding these ipod video's and explore the wonder of the world myself. Never would I expect or know or believe how these caps could actually alter the sound quality so much with a direct out mod (big thanks to those head-fi'ers who know whom I am talking about). I am a heavy listener of classical music and I consider some symphonies and orchestral work are the most demanding for sound quality especially in terms of details and separations to avoid congestion and muddiness (which I hate even just a little bit in my music). And this mod of mine just put a smile on my face when I do the critical listening to these music pieces.
At one point I was thinking about selling the RX MK2 because it sounded a little too dark and laid back. It's the mods that have brought the amp back to my liking, and in fact I may have under estimated this little beauty initially.
With that said, I have not heard any audiophile's daps. The only non-ipod dap I tried was a J3, which was disappointing to my ears. To put my mind in peace, I am tempting to buy the AK120 from Amazon and give it a try. If it falls short of my expectations (not the UI), I can just return the sucker back to Amazon. One thing I know I won't go to the route of 24bits.
I would like to do that but those options don't seem to be available.