Blue sound Node 2 vs Lumin D1


I am looking for a streamer with a built in DAC.  I have backed off my original plan to purchase the Aurender A10 and am looking for a less expensive option.  The Bluesound and Lumin players do essentially the same thing  BTW, my immediate interest is streaming Tidal, so MQA is a possible plus for both players.  The obvious difference between $500 for the Node 2 and $2000 for the Lumin distinguishes the two players.  Does that price difference translate to a significant difference in performance/sound quality? Both are within my budget but I would rather not spend the additional $1500 unless the improvement is fairly dramatic.  I would really like to hear from anyone who has had both players in their system and have had an opportunity to compare them.
randyhat
I haven't heard either, but I have to think the DAC in the Lumin D1 is better.   you could try the Node 2 for it's features and functionality spend the other 1500.00 on a DAC that may be better than the Lumin. 
+1 for Kclone advice.
Lots of choices in DAC’s for that money.
I love my Bluesound node2 beats using a computer for ease of use and its app, tough not perfect woks very well.

Up against my Bifrost multibit the Bluesound holds its own fairly well. If you don’t hear them side by side it would be hard to fault the Bluesound.


Do you have a DAC now? if so which one?
What is the rest of your system?


No DAC now.  The rest of the system is a Bryston 4bsst2 power amp. Audio Research LS-15 Pre, Bryston BCD-3 CD Player, VPI Aries turntable with Dynavector xx2 cart and Vandersteen Quatro CT speakers.
Get the Bluesound someplace where they give you a good amount of time to see if you like it. Musicdirect comes to mind.
That way you can see if you like digital streaming. You can always get a DAC later if you want. 
I own the Bluesound Node (1), and output to my Schiit Gungnir or Ayre Codex.
I am essentially using the Bluesound for its' wireless connectivity and I have to say it works like a charm.
The Node 2 is a better unit-DACwise. 
I would recommend you try the Bluesound. You can find them on Ebay pretty cheap if you can wait. And, like I mentioned, you can buy a really good DAC and get unimpeachable sound as well as great wireless connectivity.
I have moved to digital streaming almost completely. It is unbelievable to have an almost unlimited library of music at high quality for a $10-20 per month. Though many love Tidal, I think the Spotify premium subscription is good enough.
B

 Have you thought of one of the micro computers with a digital out and a good DAC. most can be set up to display on a tablet or phone or you could output the video to a small tv or monitor(touch screen is ultimate). I use an Asus Vivo mini pc it outputs optical as well as USB and HDMI. I run the Tidal ap and display it on my TV that is in the same room but I have tried it with a tablet and it works great. I output the digital to my MSB DAC to great effect. This also gives me the flexibility to use any other streaming service that's available on the internet also YouTube etc. Not to mention all the benefits of a small form computer. I payed around $300 for the Vivo and it also had 500gb hard drive built in and can also run a NAS so lots of options. I run mine wirelessly but you can hard wire it to the internet as well.

I use one like this one


https://www.asus.com/us/Mini-PCs/VivoPC_VM42/


I use a device that's comparable to the Bluesound Node, an Auralic Aries Mini and like it very much paired with an AN Dac. Someone strongly recommended Lumin to me and I was intrigued by the Lumin D1 myself. However it was a non-starter for me when researching that it's not totally wireless. The Bluesound Node and Auralic products all are but the Lumin requires a hardwired ethernet connection to your modem. Not sure if that makes a difference to you or not, also whatever you end up doing I highly recommend getting a good outboard Dac.
If you plan on having access to your own digital database of music you should know that the Bluesound Node 2 has it’s own tagging system for playback and album art. For instance, I own a Bluesound Node 2 and I wanted to be able to play a very large collection (around 14K) of songs that were ripped from CDs and bought from Itunes. This was a library created by Itunes. Although the Bluesound Node two found the music, I had to redo many, many folders and tags for the BluOS (software) to find and play those files.

On the positive side, the customer support I had received from Bluesound was awesome. They helped me with the folders and retagging. You can see more details here http://forum.audiogon.com/discussions/bluesound-node-2-and-great-customer-service

Overall, I am very pleased with the Node 2, it is an outstanding product that is very flexible.
I know the Lumin A-1 is a little higher in price but I can say that I absolutely love the music that comes out of it.  
I have the bluesound node 2 and the vault 2.  I compared the bluesound using its own dac and compared wit my musical fidelity tri-vista 21  tube  dac  upgraded for another $1000 by sonic frontiers  and also used the DAC of my audio aero sacd prestige  and the DAC of my AMR CD 77 and the bluesound nose dac holds its own well. Very slight difference.  I love the blue sound app and tidal and MQA  good enough sound  I have the Geshman Black Swan, Harbeth SLH 5 plus, Spendor BC1, Focus 888 and Quad 63 monitors  and for  preamp  CJ ACT 2.2   and Amps  VTL 450 monoblocks, and CJ 350 SS  So a pretty good system and the BLUE NODE holds its own  comparing with  my  audio aero prestige sacd,  AMR cd 77 and clear- Audio solution turntable  with koetsu  Black and EAR 834 phono-preamp.  You will love the blue sound. I thought I was going to not like it . Try it  from diff sites that have 60 day trial then try an outboard dac  JBCrespomn
I have had a Node 2 for a while and regret purchasing it. Because I bought it from a dealer who had a few demo items he had discounted and I could have got the Bluesound Vault for a great price as well.

That being said, I love my Node2 but wish I threw in the extra for the Vault. The quality of the streaming (I use an updated Bidat dac) is on par with my cd through my ead transport. I hardly listen to CD’s anymore

The sound quality through the Node2 analog outputs was very close to the sq from the stream through the Bidat. If I knew this thing was as good as it is, I would have had no hesitation going for the Vault.

Assc gear: Classe CP700, Pass X150, Dynaudio Confidence C2.  Streaming with Tidal.


I have the Bluesound Node 2 as well. I’ll try to give quick bullet conclusions.

Pros
  • Size
  • Connectivity options
  • Wireless stability (rarely a problem, and I mean rarely)
  • Customer support. You can a live human on the phone--first call--in Canada. They solve any issue. Amazing in 2017.
  • Sound: Superb. Note: I do, however, run a separate DAC NAD M51 from the Node. But the Node DAC is really something with Tidal. I can hear the difference though between nearly anything on Tidal and Spotify premium. Tidal is just better to my ear.
  • Software: The software is pretty nifty and I generally like it. It gives you direct access to internet radio/streaming radio. The GUI is pretty solid--yet some small reservations on the software...see below. 
  • Bluesound allows you to add in nearly unlimited players on your network. I have another unit in the kitchen (one of their sound boxes). The sound is solid and it fits my needs in the kitchen. All players can play the same thing or separately via the app. You can also press a button in the new app to have your current play selection "follow you" to another room/player.
Cons

  • Wife thinks Spotify app is easier to use. She may be right, but native apps (Spotify and Tidal) have less features.
  • There are a few wonky things with the software. None prevent playing of albums or playlists in any way or with any delay at all.   I have some issues in adding songs to playlists as I explore the vast universe of music. I can’t seem to add a song to a playlist that I’ve just dumped into my play queue. Instead, I have have to have the album open for that song to add it to an already saved playlist. Kind of odd.
I have not tried other hardware streamers, so I cannot comment on them. WHAT HiFi? gave the Node2 a strong review so for 500 clams, I popped for it and haven't looked back.  It's increased my digital playback from about 30% of my total listening to about 50%--the remainder has always been vinyl.

Finally, please note that I’m a vinyl lover and I have far more money invested in vinyl playback than digital (about a 3:1 ratio--vinyl : digital. And, I love my Bluesound Node 2.
Thank you guys, this is very useful information.  I ordered the Bluesound Node 2 today.
Which color? ;)

These devices are not all the same. I’ve had many: Dell netbook, Apple airport, sotm tx-USBexp with its own psu and others. You should have heard how bad the Dell netbook sounded. It’s garbage in, garbage out. I say, start with clean bits. I now have a Micro Rendu and have an Aries Mini on the way. It really amounts to the vendors USB/Motherboard implementation. These things pick up EMI/RFI and need good jitter performance or you will play the add on game.

My guess is that a Lumen/Aurender/MR/SOtM sMS-200 will beat a Aries Mini or a Blue Sound because of their motherboard/USB implementation. It’s also system dependent and what you might be hearing is colorization.
Streamers do have a very noticible impact on sound quality. Upgrading from the old Pioneer N-30 streamer to Aries Mini with SBooster power supply did make a big difference. Since I can pinpoint instruments much better.

I’ve upgraded again to Sonore microRendu. With iFi powersupply it matches the Aries in SQ. With LPS-1 power supply the microRendu is again a big upgrade in sound quality. (Tested the PSU upgrade by using 6x1,5V rechargeble batteries before making the jump to LPS-1).

With all three of the streamers I’ve used the same dac (not the inbuild dac).
Well, I received my Bluesound Node 2 yesterday.  Listening to it now.  I am very pleased with it.  Listening to MQA and regular digital files.  Can't say that I can tell a difference though I haven't done an AB comparison of the same song in both formats.  In any case, the sound quality is great.  I am sure there are refinements that come with more expensive players but I cannot imagine a better bang for your buck addition to my system than the Bluesound Node 2.
I use Tidal Hi-FI out through my Dell Studio 1747 Laptop (Windows 7) USB 2.0 using the provided download from my Marantz SA8005 (64 Bit) USB Audio Driver (3.26MB). Next I connect using a USB "B" cable directly to the Marantz’s SA8005 internal D/A or DAC. From there I go out via RCA/Phono Cables to a McIntosh MX-110 AUX input out to McIntosh MC225 and onward to speakers/sub . Once I did that I went to the "settings" tab on the Tidal page, located the "Streaming" tab, and clicked the 3 tabs 1-Use Exclusive Mode, 2-Force Volume, and 3-Passthrough MQA. Voila.... MQA on a budget. It is my understanding we only get MQA through the "Tidal Masters" ONLY!? MQA added significantly to the tightness of the lows and more precise imaging of the instruments. I "think" MQA sounds better but as an audio nut I was able to access it for the full use of Tidal MQA streaming and wait out the next development in hardware to upgrade the DAC I am currently using in my Marantz SA8005. Any further thoughts? Thanks Guys.
I have not compared my Node 2 to any other digital player, but I can tell you that CD transfers and especially hi res FLAC downloads from hdtracks.com are excellent. My hi res purchases are so good that I have had to beef up my vinyl play pack system to stay competitive. I think you need a very expensive setup in comparison in order to beat the Node 2. For instance, I have the FLAC download of the legendary Strauss Also Sprach Zarathustra, and I have the reissue on LP. Now that I have a truly excellent LP playback setup - VPI Classic 4, SME 312s, Benz Ruby 3, Hagerman Trumpet, Stevens and Billington TX 103 step up, Walker motor controller, yes its beats the Node 2, but not by much! Realism, dynamics, soundstage depth are a bit better, transparency a little better, but the Node 2 is also quite satisfying if ultimately losing to my analog chain. I'm telling you for $500 and hi res downloads, you are doing very well.
earthtones, have you thought about getting an external DAC to make your digital better?
Yes, I'm thinking of something like the highly rated Bryston BDA-3 which sells for about $3500, which would be the absolute most I would want to spend, but I've seen demo units on sale for under $3000. I'm almost afraid to hear it, but PROBABLY my analog rig would edge it out. I've also been thinking of a cartridge upgrade, which who knows may become more necessary if I do the digital upgrade. I should also mention that I'm powering my digital and analog front ends with a PS audio P-5, which I believe improves the sound even more. One review I read claims it's especially beneficial for digital.
Earthtones- Hey just enjoy the Node 2 as it sounds now. Most analog fans would be astounding if digital sounded as good as their higher priced turntable, cartridge and tonearm. Like you said, for $500 (I have the Node 2 as well) and high quality hirez downloads ...this is just great musical experiences to be enjoyed today.

The node 2 is one product that proves hifi does not have inflict financial pain to achieve a very good result. I use the digital output into my Mcintosh C50 processor and am beyond pleased. Reliable, convenient as all heck for streaming Tidal and cheap. What more could you ask?They have really updated the app and it is much more usable. It would be interesting to hear a comparison between it and a much more expensive piece. Has anyone done this?
Thanks, 996cupracer.  What more could I ask?  Maybe an RCA S/PDIF input for the Node's DAC.  But otherwise, it does look like a deal.  What did Bluesound do to the app that makes you like it so much more than before?
If I recall, Bluesound and NAD are close partners. I would not be surprised if NAD had their hand in designing the BS Dac. I am getting a Node 2 soon. I would guess the Dac is on par with peachtree Audio level of components
@randyhat - I also have the Node 2 and I have "treated" it to some excellent Power and Interconnect cables - for that I have been rewarded with some stellar improvements in fidelity.

I have found over the years that using excellent power cables with components like the Node 2 pays dividends. 

e.g. My Bifrost DAC and Dacmagic both got the same treatment and also upped their game significantly.

In my case, I have spent more on cables than the component itself, but components such as these are actually excellent performers, it's just that they are are designed to a price point - which generally means the power supply is not as good as it should be for the internal circuitry.

Attaching a good power cables allows the internal circuits to perform to the best of their ability, which elevates the performance level, so attaching a good IC allows that performance to be transferred to the amp.

I am simply stating what I have observed with the components identified, so perhaps fellow members, we could refrain from turning this thread into a debate on the effectiveness (or not) of cables - please.

Regards...

You actually make a good point. Many of these "price point" products are great performers. The cables included are cheapos, however, audiophiles will probably bring their own anyway. For general listeners who are not audiophiles who are hooking the Node to their A/V receiver and listening thru construction grade ceiling speakers, the supplied cables are fine. 

Good cables (and good cables do not have to be super pricey) are like giving your car higher octane gas. 87 octane will be sufficient for most people, 93, however, will help optimize the performance that is already built in to the car. 
@aberyclark - agreed !

If you are not attaching the Node 2 to a system with great speakers & speaker cables - then attaching a great power cord is not going to make a huge difference

My Powernode 2 in my AV system is hooked up to some pretty decent tower speakers - so it made a significant improvement adding great power and speaker cables

Cheers.