Upgrade from BS Node 2i?

Wanted to get some honest opinions - in the past, I owned a Gold Note streamer, and an STR pre amp...all of which sounded wonderful. But, music was really a tertiary usage of mine. Since then my system, and preferences have gone through big changes. I am now running Revel 228bes w/ dual Rythmik G25HPs. Anthem avm90 processor and ATI amp.

I am really enjoying 2 channel much more now, so thinking about a bump in sound quality. I run coax, so I'm using the dac of the AVM90. I know that w/ high quality streamers, there are other things (clocks, power supply, etc) that make a difference as well, not just the dac. So, where do I go? I was thinking a Lumin D2 but not sure. I don't want to spend a ton, as I still don't do music enough to justify spending $2-4K again (done that twice). 

I know eventually the anthem will become a Roon endpoint so I was thinking about waiting for that as well. But...I also like streamers haha. I'm looking for something w/ a decent app too, as I don't really like BluOS.

Thanks for any input, I'm just starting my search so open to all sorts of ideas. 


I like the idea of separating streamer and DAC - more opportunity to adjust sound via the DAC without having to sell the whole thing. I moved from a Node to the Lumin U2 Mini and a Topping DAC (tried a few and ended up with the old D70s with the AKM chipset). I found the DAC in the Node just ok and I had the Lumin D2 for a bit and really didn't like the sound - found it dull and lifeless. I like the Lumin app better than BluOS - lot of functionality although it's kind of ugly.

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I have the STR Stack (see virtual system) and went from the BS Node 2i to a Lumin U1Mini to the Aurualic Aries G1. The Lumin was awful on all aspects including the App. 

Once I got the G1 I went into my preamp via coax, optical and USB with the latter winning to my ears. I have since upgraded the internal power supply, added a Network Acoustics Muon Pro and I feel I have a really good sounding streaming system. 

Since you don’t like the BluOS app the point maybe mute but why don’t you upgrade the power supply in your node?  The improvement is not subtle and a good LPS can be had for a few hundred bucks.

An Innuos Pulse Mini is around $1200 I think, and it comes with their Sense app that gets high marks for both usability and sound quality.  They also offer very good customer support should you ever need it.  Best of luck. 

If you are tech savvy and are searching purely for a music streamer and not a local file server, you can consider the Sonore OpticalRendu with a quality linear power supply. It will surpass many other “standalone” units that look a lot prettier for about half the price. Otherwise, as an Aurender dealer, I can attest that Aurender’s sound quality is worth the price of entry. You can find preowned entry level units that will likely fit your budget and sound excellent. 

My Dad has the Eversolo A6 and it is a good unit for the money.   I have a Vault 2i in my second system and an Aurender N200 in my main system.    

The A6 does just about everything those do,  and more.   He has it connected via USB  to his McIntosh MA8950 and it sounds really good.

He has had it since end of June with zero hiccups.   There is a lot of tech in that little box and it sounds  good

OK, you may want to watch this review of the Eversolo DMP-A6 where the reviewer compares it to the Lumin and the Bluesound Node. It’s made by a Chinese company called Zidoo, I own one of their media players and they deliver good quality.


It would be interesting to see if you can compare a new streamer with your Bluesound 2i. I have the 2i and also a newer streamer (a DIY built to very high standards), but in all my comparisons, the DAC is the component that made a noticeable difference. I honestly don’t see that a very large upgrade in sound can come from a streamer-only change compared with other weak points in the system. But if you think the rest of your system is as strong as it can be (including room acoustics), I suppose a streamer upgrade is the next logical step.

P.S. Perhaps the greatest improvement I have made in my system by a factor of 10x was to put my speakers on podiums. Not subtle.

If you plan on using the dac in your Anthem, then you may want to consider the Lumin U2 Mini versus the D2.  

@kota1 i plan on using the 90s dacs still. I was looking for something  better than bluesound but not in the stratosphere. I’ve spoken to so many that say other parts of the streamer contribute to the sound quality as much or more than just the dacs. I honestly don’t know how much stock I put in that, but I’m typically a HT guy. Thats why I’m curious what, if any, sonic improvements I’ll gain when still running coax 


Congrats on your current system. Before you pay for upgrades there are some freebees that are very important. I have an Anthem preamp with ARC, when you run it you get a nice graph (which you can see in my profile). If you could post your ARC results that is a good place to begin. As far as streamers I use both a Paradigm Link and a Martin Logan Unison, both Anthem companies. You paid about $3K more than the AVM70 because the 90 has better DAC’s in it. I don’t know that buying a new DAC will be as much as an upgrade than just being different. I would get the acoustics in your room super dialed in before spending more $. If you could post your system it will help, when I checked your profile the link is empty.

The ARC graph will look like this, yours will probably include charts for your subs and other speakers as well. If you need help posting it just reply:


Maybe consider the Innuos Zen series; with the launch of the new Pulse range of streamers, it's possible to find pre-loved Innuos Zen units on auction sites at good prices, such as the Innuos Zen Mini Mkiii, as users upgrade to the Pulse models

Good luck 👍