I like arsenals but my VEPR build set me up with very similar options for less money. Its a gorgeous rifle and probably shoots better than an arsenal. I keep telling the AR fanboys that I know that you can't judge the AK until you've tried one that was built right. After firing my VEPR they all want one now. Plus it just seems right buying an AK made in Russia by the people who know it best.
So I say go with a VEPR and convert it. If you don't want to do it yourself, Krebs makes some nice VEPRs but I think they start at $1500+.
Also Atlantic has a nice red wood style converted VEPR. I don't know who does the work but it's priced right.