Bluesound Node 2i vs Upscale streamers

For those of you that have compared the Node 2/2i to some of the more expensive streamers like Lumin, Aurender, etc., what do the big boys bring to the table. Forget the internal DACs, I'm sure theirs beats the Node. I'm talking about using these devices as stand alone streamers into an outboard DAC. What are the differences you've heard?



I am working with a sales person at The Cable Company.  So far, we have upgraded my speaker wires and power cord.  I do hear a difference.  I am hearing greater detail and space.  I stream now 100% of the time.  My sales person said the next step is to improve the signal of the source.  He also says the DAC inside the BlueSound Node 2i is not as good as my ARCAM AVR550.  This makes sense because how can a DAC inside a $550 BlueSound be as good as a DAC inside a $3,200 ARCAM compare in quality.


What do you think?  I will spend about $800 which is more than the BlueSound.

What do you think? 


I think if you are using an AVR to power your system, that's the first thing you should replace.



I wonder if I added a Luxman 905 Amp to my ARCAM AVR550 and used my ARCAM as a surround processor for TV and movies if I would hear a noticeable difference?  I have always heard you get more for your money by upgrading speakers first then amp.

I am not sure what I truly believe to be reasonable with this entire issue.  I am a network engineer and deal with signal path constantly.  If data is truly digital it is a stream of zeros and ones.  Noise should not be an issue as once you are in the digital domain it would not be a part of the binary stream.  

I do agree that a clocking issue could introduce some significant difficulties for the DAC, although this too could be overcome with enough buffer to allow for time correction.

I have a Node 2i being used only as a steamer and the decoding be actioned by a DA2 in a McIntosh C2700 preamp.  I compared this to a well recorded vinyl selection and found the digital stream sounded somewhat mechanical…or had a lack of “warmth”.  I realize these are subjective descriptions, but I’m not sure how else to describe it.

While I believe the above all to be correct, I am always skeptical of my own need to justify the next purchase I want to make.  Add that to a salesman who might be willing to spout a never ending steam of technical nonsense to reinforce my decision to purchase and (I think) you wind up where we all are.  Searching for facts in a subjective world.

I do however seek anyones advice on how to achieve the warmth and sonic quality of vinyl thru a digital stream…I’m lazy, vinyl is hard to find and gets very expensive…


I bought the Node 2 because it was on sale for $100 under than the normal price and wanted to compare it with my Cambridge streamer. I coupled them both with a Benchmark DAC. The Node sounded almost two dimensional compared to the Cambridge to my ears.

Very old thread come back to life but still a question that remains unanawered in my mind after reading through the thread again.  Other than larger sound stage and less jitter, not too much has really been offered.  Sure you can spend a couple or three grand and find out for yourselves, but can some who have gone this route offer a little more to people (like me and the OP) who would hope to know more before experimenting?  I'm particularly interested to know how or if the new Node has closed the gap.

I have had the modification of the Terry Pardo MiniTeddy upgrade power supply implemented with the Bluesound N130. The supply was $300.00, but the shipping cost to the US was $125.00. Recieived in one week.

The are also power supply modifications for the Node 2i.

I play ripped CDs, digitized vinyl LPs, and Qobuz thru the Roon software application.

I do not and have not every used the DAC function of the Node N130, so I cannot comment on that aspect of the devices.

The Node N130 feeds a Naim DAC V1, which feeds vintage Naim electronics, and a vintage pair of passive Linn Isobarik speakers.

The change has resulted in pronounced clarity on low level details of the recordings. Very Good improvement on micro dynamics, and the over all scale of the recordings.

Excellent improvement on percussion on well recorded releases.

Pleased with the purchased. I have used TP devices before and I trust the organization’s commitment to a quality product.

3 weeks ago, I bought an Auralic Aries G1.1 streamer. It replaced a Bluesound Node 130 with Teddy Pardo LPS. 

The Auralic sounds much, much better. Cleaner, clearer, deeper, wider, fuller.

I have a pretty resolving system. Linear Tube Audio Z40 int am driv8ng Dynaudio heritage specials with a denafrips Pontus 2 in between.

I prefer the BLUOS app, but the Aries is a huge improvement.