Moving up from a Node 2i

I want to keep it between 1K and 1500.00, closer to a grand if at all possible. I don't care about onboard DACs, since I have a keen liking for mine. What is out there for a streamer, new or used, that will sound better than the Node when outputting to an external DAC? I like the functionality of the Node, don't want something with a sketchy user interface. But honestly, I think my old Allo Digione (Raspberry Pi) might have sounded a little more organic and fleshed out than the Node.

What say ye, Audiogon?


This begs the question, why are you using the app on a Mac, or any computer for that matter? The Bluos app works great on a tablet. I was using a Samsung Tab A with great results.


I have the BluOS running on an Apple iPhone SE, a Dell Venue 7 tablet and an Amazon Fire HD8 with excellent results. No need for a computer?

I have also never had any "flakiness" with the Node 2 which I’ve had from almost the time they came out, (like 3 years now). Never had an issue with the updates either.

I run my Node 2 out via coax to a DAC. I’ve also have it hooked up though the RCA outputs so that I can A/B it’s internal DAC with the outboard DAC.

I have 4+ computers, a mobile phone and a tablet. It's nice to control the Node 2 from whichever device I happen to be using at the moment. Why limit yourself to control with just a single device? =D
I’ve been using a Bluesound Node 2i now for a few months and love it.  Zero issues with my $400 refurbed unit that I bought.  I stream Amazon HD, Tidal HiFi and Qobuz and they all sound fantastic!  
I’ve read that the Node 2i is superior to the Node 2.

I also read that the soundstage isn’t that deep and I totally agree with that, but beyond that, the 2i is fantastic.

I’ll eventually buy a better dac, and then a better stand alone streamer, but am completely satisfied with the 2i for now and will be for awhile!

@larry5729 ,you’ve only ever used 1 streamer, correct?  The 2i?  And only 2 dacs? ProJect, 2i?  Or do you have a BelCanto now?  Interesting that 6 months ago, you didn’t know what a dac was, now you seem to be an expert on the dac / streamer arena 👍
I ended up buying a Bluesound Node 2i and the dealer talked me into buying a ProJect S2 DAC and connecting it with an Audioquest Carbon coax cable.  In doing so you lose 9/10 of the MQA unfold.  So I unhooked the DAC and played MQA recordings by streaming TIDAL and I liked the sound of the Bluesound played by itself.  For some reason, I heard a difference playing MQA recordings.  However, most in this group do not believe in MQA.  However, I still thought MQA had a larger size sound stage.  When I hooked up the ProJect DAC the bass sounded thinner even though I have a pair REL S2 SHO subwoofers which I play at 40%.  I wonder if the more expensive DAC's make a difference.  However, if you add a DAC I lose MQA complete unfold.  I wonder why most in the group dislike MQA.  I wonder if they resent the guy who invented a proprietary technology to unfold the data.  I must be crazy because I really feel MQA sounds better.