New streamer

I recently opened a discussion on upgrading my DAC. I started at the beginning of that discussion, that I was a vinyl guy, but with my purchase of the Chord Qutest, I realized that digital music can be outstanding and want to now upgrade my Node.

That will provide 2 benefits: Maximizing my current systems digital, and allow me to move the Node & Schiit Modi Multibit 2 to the family room, a small HT setup with a Yamaha AVR driving a Goldenear soundbar. Streaming there is currently MusicCast using the AVR DAC.  The improvement there should be very nice. 

My 2 channel equipment is as follows: 

Rogue RP-1 w/ NOS Brimar’s, LSA Warp 1, KEF R11’s, Rhythmic F12SE, Pro-ject 1Xpression w/Hana ML, Rega Aria, Bluesound Node w/Qubuz, Marantz CD6007, Chord Qutest. Good to very good power, speaker, interconnect cables.  
My weakest link (I believe) is now my Node. 
I don’t want or need amplification or volume control, ripping storage, nor an internal DAC. Sound signature should be neutral. 
My budget is $2,500, but willing to spend less. My current favorites are:

Lumin U2 mini. Very well reviewed, beautiful, perfect form factor, good app & controllable via my Harmony One remote. It is currently my #1 choice.

Auralic Aris. If new, the G1.1, if used G2.0 or 2.1. Very well reviewed, good app, OK form factor, but not controllable via harmony.  
Naim ND5 XS2. Considered the best high end streamer by What Hi Fi  Would need to buy used to stay close to budget.

EverSolo DMP-A6. Included based upon reviews, but may not be a serious contender. 
HiFi Rose RS250A. The streamer EverSolo seemed to copy  

Aurender. Don’t think they have anything within my budget, but included for discussion.

 LPS upgrade for Node. Included because I know it will come up. Plan to reuse my node downstairs, so out. Would prefer LPS upgrade for one of the above.  

Please let me know your thoughts and/or recommendations. Thanks!




Since you’re keeping your Node, why not install a LPS and see what you think before spending thousands?  Cost is minimal. I added a Teddy Pardo LPS to mine and am quite impressed. 

Bel Canto Stream 2 might be worth a look.  Small form factor, sounds superb, completely reliable, and never misses a beat.  The Seek app is rock solid.  I run one via AES into a Bel Canto DAC 2.8 and use Roon most of the time.  

I’ve seen Aurender N100H’s used for $1100 at prominent dealers over the past few months.

I have a Hifi Rose RS130, Lumin U2 and a Silent Angel Munich M1T. 

the hifi rose RS130 is considered one of the best in the market currently but it doesn’t do DSD if that’s important to you. Also out of your budget. 5K. 

Lumin U2 is almost just as good and does DSD but also out of your budget. But you may be able to get it used for 3K which is just a tad more than your budget. 

The Silent Angel which is I got for about 1.5K cannot compete with either of the two above but is excellent value for the money. I got it with a linear power supply which improved the sound. I would say the performance of the Silent Angel is about 85% of what the other two can do. I’ll probably sell mine now that the Hifi Rose RS130 has replaced it, feel free to message me if you’re interested. 

If you are looking for a no frills streamer, no fancy screen, internal DAC or preamp, the Lumin U2 mini is a solid performer within your budget. The mini is built and designed to accept available updates pushed out by Lumin. The Bricasti M5 may also be worth consideration.