Auralic Vega G2.1 vs Lumin T3


I'm in search of a DAC / streamer / preamp combo and I am looking for some help. I am considering the Auralic Vega G2.1 or a Lumin T3. Does anyone have any experience / recommendations on either of these I have mentioned. Thanks!

tntmcdade
Post removed 

Sorry it’s taken so long to respond.  

I have direct experience w/ the Vega G2.1 - I own it. So, take my experience with a grain of salt as we all tend to promote what we purchased as justification.  Please note, I had previously auditioned the Lumin U1 - not the T3 with the DAC. I auditioned the Lumin streamer when I was considering upgrading from my Aurender N100H. I ended up buying the Auralic Aries G2 streamer which was a nice upgrade over the Aurender and was better (to my ears) than the Lumin.

That said, the real value (and danger) of Auralic is going to their ecosystem.

When used together over lighting link (their proprietary operating system) (Vega/DAC and Aries/Streamer), they share resources and it’s clear that 1+1 >2.  And while using Lighting DS - their music library management system, the Vega as a DAC receiving a stream from the Aries sounds much better than using Roon over the same system. 

Used together (i have the Vega G2.1, Aries G2 and Sirius processor) connected this way and it has equalled or eclipsed the performance of all competitors up to about $40k. Of course, I have a lot in my front end with these three boxes, so it should be at least pretty good.  But, I’m willing to go upstream from there, and the only thing I’ve heard to date that might be better is the Ideon Absolute and Epsilon. I’ve auditioned DCS and the new Linn reference. They were good. But not better. I’ve also spent a fair amount of effort optimizing the signal  to the Aries and that has paid dividends.

The Vega G2.1 DAC/ streamer/preamp is competitive as a standalone unit at its nearly $8k price point. I’ve compared it directly to other DACs in that price range and I’m comfortable with its relative performance.  I haven’t heard the T3 so I can’t say which I believe to be better.

I will also note that the Vega has an analogue volume control which is nice. I don’t use it personally as I have an integrated amp, but I tried it and it works well - and is better than a digital volume control.

Lumin is a fine company. I’m sure you’ll do well either way you go. Hopefully you can audition both as that would be the best way to know how it would work in your system/room.

Best, 

Some questions as I'm evaluating a similar upgrade.

1. Is Vega only the DAC? Their confusing writeups on the website suggest Vega is a "streaming DAC". Doesn't Vega have an inbuilt streamer.. why get Aries on top? 

2. How have you "optimized the signal to the Aries"? With their power supplies? Sirius seems to be discontinued.. did you mean their Leo master clock?

3. Does Vega come with a remote? Important to me, as I want to connect both my TV and my Streamer with the DAC, and want easy ability. 

@julie_priest 

1) The Vega G2x (and now G3) are DACs with a streaming client built in. However, it is only a streaming client and can’t access network shares. The Aries can. That said, the two units also talk to one another over lightning link and share resources. The result is that the Vega G2.1+ Aries G2.1 sounds a bit better than the Vega alone. If you’re just streaming Qobuz, the Vega alone is very good. If you’re wanting the best performance, you get both.

2) From what I understand, the processing done by the Sirius is being incorporated into their new G3 platform. I’m not sure if the unit is being discontinued or not. In any case, I optimized things by incorporating the Network Acoustics Eno filter system and upgraded my network switch. Not all feel this is money well spent but I was comfortable with the result.  I’m considering the Leo clock but am also looking at going upstream to the Ideon system - though that’s a really large spend from here.

The Vega did not come with a remote, but you can use a programmable remote to speak to it (including an Apple Remote IIRC.) Given what you’re hoping to do, I’d suggest a programmable remote so you can control both with it easily.

Good luck and let us know how it progresses.

Best,