Please be gentle with me! 🙏


I am a vinyl diehard and know very little of the streaming world.

My son has just bought his 1st amp and speakers a Leak 230 integrated and some JBL 4312G speakers and is currently streaming his music using an Android phone via the USB C on his phone into the USB B input on the amp, using the built in DAC on the amp. So the question is would something like a Bluesound Node N130 as a straight streamer be an audible improvement to his phone?

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You have flexibility to try either of the dacs. And you can add an external dac down the road. 

Couple things to toy with:

The LEAK has a ES9038Q2M DAC chip and from the reviews they payed close attention to the implementation. I would bet they they are upsampling the source stream. What is his service? Looks like the LEAK also has blue tooth support. Have him switch over to that and compare SQ. Theoretically that should be a step down. But if he can’t discern the blue tooth he may not be able notice the uptick with the  Node either. If he does not have a HiRez service such as Qobuz give that a trial and see if you get a benefit. This all to get a baseline if the system can resolve minor adjustments and its free.

Sounds better and frees up the phone for all other tasks.

The phone becomes a full function remote instead of a crappy source. Even mp3s (which is the best that most phones can play) sound better on a (dedicated) music device.

Streaming ain’t real streaming until you use a streamer. Before that it’s just a wired in computer. Keep it away.

It should sound better yes a streamer streams a phone does a thousand other things that all create digital noise.

He can try a Wiim Pro Plus streamer and DAC for $200 or upgrade a bit and try an Eversolo DMP-A6 streamer and DAC.