After much contemplation and research, I have come down to two alternatives for my next hifi upgrade.
It's between the Yamaha A-S500 and the NAD C356BEE. The Yamaha got excellent reviews on this website, as the NAD (only) got 4 out of 5 stars. I realize that they're at different price points - and consequently perhaps rated accordingly - but I've scanned the web for deals and found offers that make them pretty much level in price.
I would pair the Yamaha with the CD-S300 or CD-S700, and the NAD with a C515BEE. Price difference between these two alternatives is negligible.
Now, the conundrum is this: from what I've read, the Yamaha alternative is much better for iPod integration with USB inputs on both the amp and the CD players. The NAD amp only has a jack input on the front (not even sure it is digital). The Yamaha CD players are said to have excellent inbuilt DACs, which the NAD CD player lacks.
Bear in mind, my main priority is sound quality and bang for the buck. The iPod issue can of course be solved with an external DAC, although satisfying DACs are rather pricey.
I'm eventually going to run a pair of B&W DM683s with the system.
Your thoughts, advice and input from experience are greatly appreciated.