I recently wanted to move my DNS from my web hosts cPanel managed system because I really dislike cPanel (they are soon moving to Plesk, but this provided the perfect option to seperate my services). I looked around for DNS hosting services and looked at Zonomi a New Zealand based paid service with DNS servers located around the world. However I was worried about the cost as one of my domains alone would take up the allocated records.
I asked around and was told about Hurricane Electrics DNS service. It’s free and feature packed. It can handle a load of record types (including SSHFP) and can even do reverse zones if you need them. One of it’s neat features is built in dynamic DNS. I previously had a CNAME in my DNS pointing to a dyndns address from no-ip.com. Now it’s just a A record. Awesome!
They are a service I would highly recommend.
If you domain registrar allows you to specify the IP addresses of the DNS servers then you can use this to configure vanity NS records, by changing the NS records at your registrar to something like ns1.your-domain.com and the IP address of ns1.he.net etc up to ns5. ns2-ns5 provide a Dual Stacked IPv6 service, which is a neat benefit.
Finally if you are worried about query times for users outside the states, it’s not that bigger deal as most visitors will be using recursive DNS servers provided by their ISPs or employers and will cache your records, so subsequent users will receive the responses fast until they expire and need to be re-requested.
Thanks to Brad Cowie for pointing me to them