Future DACs with Fibre Optical

I am going to need a DAC in Sept - Dec 2023 timeframe. I sold 2 Musetec 005's and 2 Sonore OpticalRendu's this week to buy a used Lumin X1. I am happy with the move since it replaced a bunch of boxes and streaming LPS's.

I was planning to use the Lumin X1 with my Livingroom  speakers direct to amp. However, when I tried the X1 with my Benchmark LA4 preamp and AHB2 monos I did not want it to leave the office system. It is rather nice combo to my KEF LS50 Meta speakers.

The main reason I got the X1 was the fibre optic streaming input. It is an excellent streamer to the internal DAC and also my external Benchmark DAC3B (used for headphones). I think the OpticalRendu maybe a touch better streaming, but both are great.

I kept 1 extra Sonore OpticalRendu around for a future DAC. Though I would prefer to find a DAC with built-in streaming fibre like the Lumin X1. Are there any upcoming DACs or upgrades to existing DACs that will incorporated fibre input streaming, like the Lumin X1?

My thinking on this is to use the remaining OpticalRendu streamer with either another  Musetec 005 or Mola Mola Tambaqui or get another Lumin X1 to go fibre. The X1 will also go direct to amp and the Musetec 005 and Tambaqui would be paired with a 2nd LA4 preamp. So that is a lot of boxes if I do not go Lumin X1  fibre again. In the Livingroom, a lot of living goes on, so I want to have as few boxes (or small form factor so easy to hide).

It would be very convenient if new DACs came with fibre. It is generally agreed that fibre is an excellent way to stream. I personally only stream fibre.


I doubt there is a large market for this, most dac manufacturers assume one will do all the rendering via large variety of streamers. Already not that many ethernet streaming dacs around, optical users likely a small minority of that minority. Still, doesn't mean won't happen, I'd just not expect this to be widely adopted.


Since you are fiber, you should check out Finisar transceiver upgrade for FMC and OpticalRendu, I recently went to 1475 version and AfterDark Ref optical cable to my OpticalModule and OR, major, major upgrade!



I was going to ask you about that Finisar. I have 1 OpticalRendu with the expensive Sonore power supply and a short cable remaining. I need to get 2 more transceivers. I also need to get a fibre optical cable. Thanks for the feedback on that.

I am using the EtherRegen in place of your OpticalModule. 

I'm also an X1 owner; one of things that attracted me was the SFP (fiber) port. Seems like an obvious cheap and easy end-run around the electronic noise that may accompany ethernet connections.

I know there are lots of other avenues to pursue same objective, but I'm unconvinced that they are superior to the simplicity of a direct fiber path.

Knowing that nothing is forever, and that I'll eventually get an itch to upgrade what is my only source, I would very much like to stay fiber when I do.

Reading tea leaves, the X1 was introduced in 2018. That's nearing 5 years now. Lumin seems to be pretty aggressive about updating their hardware (if even just to solve their own component supply problems).

I don't think it too far a leap to speculate that it may be due for an upgrade (X2?) soon. Maybe? When they do, I'll certainly take notice.

Peter W from Lumin posted on the AudioShark forum that there will not be an upgrade to the X1 in the foreseeable future. He said they have nothing better than the X1. They will continue to do firmware updates to the unit.

I know there are lots of other avenues to pursue same objective, but I'm unconvinced that they are superior to the simplicity of a direct fiber path.

I learned this the hard way with my EtherRegen in front of the X1. The X1 streaming was stopping periodically for a while. Then it started stopping regularly. I called up Uptone Audio (makers of eR) and we discussed this problem.  The guy there said that eR and ROON and X1 sometimes have issues like I was having. 

Long story short, I realized going direct from switch was simpler (maybe not the ultimate best sound). After, I took out the eR for a few days I wanted to see if putting it back in would work. Well, it did without problems (yet). However, the first drop in streaming I get I am removing the eR from the X1 and ROON. I will move the eR to the OpticalRendu, which has no issue with the eR and ROON.

KISS is also what I am going to do with streaming.