Other things to consider, since I'm in the same boat (2nd-hand base model DAC1 and computer audio):
First off, the DAC1 USB only does 24/96 via USB input. The DAC2 does 24/192 with asynchronous USB, but that's a hell of a lot more than just a $200 difference. I'm currently using an iBasso D7 as a transport, with a Blue Jeans Audio RCA to BNC cable, and this works relatively well. Upgrading the USB cable may or may not improve matters further, and I'm still wondering if an M2Tech HiFace 2 would improve things further or not. Upsampling audio in Windows avoids the annoying popping noises.
I believe that Toslink is also limited to 24/96, but sound quality with it is so noticeably inferior to electrical SPDIF that it's not worth the bother. As such, that Encore device is probably only good as a hold-over until you can get a better transport.
I've also discovered that it's VERY susceptible to vibration, and the stock feet make matters worse. Not an issue if you have the rack mount version and can actually mount it, but for the rest of us, vibration handling seems to be a must. Place your hand on top of the case while it's playing to hear the difference, or just pick it up and hold it. That alone takes care of a lot of the remaining high-frequency grain and bass bloat that remain after ditching the Toslink. If you can't hear the difference, your headphones are a bigger issue. With my markL-modded Denon AD-D2000, the difference is clear. I have some Herbie's Tenderfeet on the way to try with it. Hopefully it will help matters.
The Benchmark is a nice unit that seems a little misunderstood. It needs a little TLC, but otherwise it's pretty nice. I don't regret the purchase, especially not for what I paid (really good price from a friend). Do yourself and search for a better source, though, matti. It's worth it.
EDIT: Tenderfeet arrived last night, and stuck under the DAC1 today. TREMENDOUS improvement, particularly with something placed on top of the DAC1 as well (I have my iRiver in its iSkin sitting on top dead center, with the Toslink cable connected). The Tenderfeet are right at the edges of the case, next to the stock feet. The bass bloat and grainy, fatiguing highs that I'd been experiencing are gone, and the soundstage seems to have deepened and cleared up as a result. So very worth it! It's not exactly CHEAP at $15 per foot, but for a desktop-bound DAC1, I would consider it essential, particularly in light of the prices you can get for used DAC1's. http://herbiesaudiolab.net/compfeet.htm
Edited by Packgrog - 1/9/14 at 8:52am