Frantz, I absolutely agree with everything you said. The bass control on my 301 is absolutely amazing!! It has tremendous control over the woofers. I too am shocked by how little play Plinius seems to get in the US.
depending on your budget you can use a Mac Mini as a server and stream via USB or Firewire. Also the new PS PerfectWave DAC will have the ability to do everything in a single box and will be capable of 24/192, looks like a very interesting piece.
Highly depends on what your budget is. Some from different price points are:
MSB Platinum DAC
Berkeley Alpha DAC (can also be used as a pre-amp)
Weiss Minerva (or Weiss DAC2 which is the Pro Audio version of the Minerva)
Jeff, this would be my suggestion.http://www.teac.com/esoteric/A-03.html
I can personally tell you that the new C-03 pre-amp is a revelation. It is the most musical piece of gear I have heard in quite some time and bested two tube pre's in my system. I would love to see the amp reviewed and possibly the pre as well for synergy.
The great DACs are far from being phased out. In fact, just the opposite. There are better DACs available now then there ever has been. Now with 24/192 becoming more and more available everyday DACs are pushing the limit of what is possible in this hobby.