Another post about a streamer upgrade


I’ve read a lot of the threads here about streamers and moving up the chain.

However, it seems there’s not a ton of info for relatively modestly priced streamers … most threads focus on the Bluesound / Ifi Zen range or the Aurender N200 range.

I have an Ifi Zen Stream with an LPS fronted by an Ether Regen and would like to move on to something better… mainly from a usability and app standpoint but would like to spend significantly less than $2k.

I think the writing is on the wall with the Innuos Pulse Mini but curious if others have a suggestion that would be a sq improvement from the Ifi and a much better user experience for around $1500 give or take.

I currently use the JPLAY app to access Qobuz to stream DLNA to the Ifi but it’s frustrating and connectivity isn’t great. 

I don’t use Roon so the Sense app from Innuos is probably the best bet from what I gather.   I’d also be interested in the Aurender system but according to many the N200 is where to start there and that’s significant higher priced than where I want to go at this point.

Are there any other options with great usability and sound that I’m not thinking of.

I typically run Spdif coax out to my dacs but could also run usb.

thanks in advance 


@ j_andrews:  congrats you’ve taken a step in the direction important to you.  If you’re like me and many others on this forum it will be the first step of many.  Enjoy the ride.

Try to compare the Innous Pulse mini with Ifi zs to justify the statement below.  Please report back on what you found.  I would say, in general, more expensive streamers have better power supply, circuit design and parts / components and therefore would sound better.  However, it's essential to note that the improvements in sound quality might not always justify the price difference. There reaches a point where spending more money may yield only marginal or imperceptible improvements in audio quality, hence the concept of diminishing returns.

I also don’t believe the people on this board who’ve listened to a lot of digi gear are all convincing themselves that a more expensive piece sounds better than a cheap one … so seeking some collective wisdom is one part of my gathering information.

“the human psyche has an infinite capacity for self delusion”


one of my favorite aphorisms.  we convince ourselves of a narrative and twist everything around us to fit that narrative.  The op had already decided that he wanted  a pulse mini, and went ahead and purchased it while we were trying to help him decide how to proceed.  and then the op seemed surprised that there was an active discussion going on around the topic he raised a couple days ago.  i feel so used! (lol!)

Post removed 


Who did I insult and how exactly?

I acknowledged that this thread shifted into a predictable back and forth between those who perceive meaningful differences from certain equipment and those that think those perceptions are imagined. It’s simply an observation. All you have to do to is go through the Digital topic section of this forum to see it happen over and over.

@lanx0003 I will report back ..thanks for the suggestion.

I hope to hear some improvements in my system but won’t know until I spend some time with it. I definitely hope the user interface is an improvement. I think many on this thread who have invested in their hifi setups would still agree with your statement below.

"There reaches a point where spending more money may yield only marginal or imperceptible improvements in audio quality, hence the concept of diminishing returns."

It’s not exactly a radical stance.