New Bluesound's Node 2i


https://www.crutchfield.com/p_813NODE2IB/Bluesound-Node-2i-Black.html?tp=63339&awkw=586297302367...

Here's why the Node 2 was on sale and so many are available on the used market.


lowrider57
Where do you see many of them in the used market!!?
What are the upgrades over the Node 2? It’s hard to tell from the Crutchfield link. Mostly AirPlay and BT changes? What about the DACs? I have a Node 2 I’d consider upgrading from.
If you use an outboard DAC, what difference does it make? That is why I use the original Node.
B
Here's a link the the WhatHiFi review that discusses the differences:

https://www.whathifi.com/reviews/bluesound-node-2i

Without researching I notice the node2i has the newer AC wifi standard no idea about anything else. 
There were many Node 2’s for sale in the US over the last couple of weeks. Here's sales worldwide...

https://www.hifishark.com/model/bluesound-node-2


Interesting, I was ready to order a Node 2 via my Amex awards program.  When I checked yesterday the Node 2 was not listed even though it was available in October.  So I’m guessing the new model introduction is why.  Hopefully the new 2i model will be added soon.
The linked review is an all out rave!  
Would it be safe to say that most, if not all the sonic improvements of the Node 2i are coming from it's internal DAC?
"Would it be safe to say that most, if not all the sonic improvements of the Node 2i are coming from it's internal DAC?"

Not according to the specs. Looks like they added/enhanced the support for the Apple products. 
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Looks to me like the changes are BT and Airplay
According to the review, same DAC but improved WiFi implementation and circuit layout results in better sound.  Price is the same with added features.  Result, an even better value than before.
absolutely ignited brother in laws node2 NAD DAC combo with a Nordost Silver Shadow......best $200 SPDIF i have ever heard....

dont overlook getting the signal to that better outboard DAC

buff here on Audiogon has the cable nos for sale...no affiliation other than i bought 2 as gifts.....
@lowrider57 Those prices are no bargain, and they do not represent dumping.

 Looking forward to hearing the opinions of others on this website. Particularly with an Xternal DAC. Is the what hi-fi review real or Hype?
Better WiFi would be nice.  I wasn’t able to make the WiFi work when I had a problem with the Powerline Adapters that I use to rout the Ethernet around the home.  The App kept me running in circles.
Better Adapters helped but I’m having Ethernet cabling throughout the house anyway and would have for other reasons than Bluesound.
As fast far as better sound-without hearing it, can’t say, but essentially it’s a digital transport and the external DAC should be the biggest factor there.  I’m willing to believe that the DAC included sounds better, because there have been so many changes in DAC technology in the last 3 years.  Too ad current owners can’t upgrade with a firmware update—or can we?
Now I remember...
The original Node and Node 2 didn't support 5 ghz wireless.
Did that change with the 2i?
Bob
Yes, from their website...

Dual-band Wi-Fi

Bluesound has also upgraded the Wi-Fi chipset technology in its Bluesound Players to the latest and greatest Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac) dual-band offering. Best-in-class products deserve best-in-class connection; with the new Wi-Fi chip onboard, Gen 2i owners can take advantage of the less noisy 5 GHz band if needed. This results in faster connection times and fewer interruptions from other network traffic.


I am using Ethernet and an external DAC.  Wonder if there would be any further difference?  Apple AirPlay is new and would be nice.  
Ordered one today through Amex Awards and ships from Crutchfield.  I’m really excited to find out how this sounds on my big system.  I’ve really enjoyed using the Vault 2 in my modest mountain home system.  Hopefully my expectations will be fulfilled.
I have the Node 2 and use ethernet so the only improvement for me would be the Airplay 2 which I can't think of a use for off hand.
It's funny how a few board mods can change a Whathifi review from 3 to 5 stars. 
The reason you see the same companies winning whathifi awards is probably the same reason for never seeing a Hegel review in Whathifi 
What Hi-Fi has always been regarded as a comic in the UK by audiophiles,. And that has not changed.
Tomic.

Totally agree on the spdif cable.

I upgraded to the Nordost Silver Shadow from Buff and found a good sq increase.

However I then stepped up to the Heimdall 2 and wow. Good stuff indeed.

Never underestimate that digital out cable quality!
Id love to see this offered w/o a dac at a lower price...
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I added an RME ADI2-DAC to my Bluesound node. Got a big jump in SQ. The DAC chips in the Bluesound are very good. But they are voiced to sound a certain way. W/an outboard DAC you can fine tune the sound w/various filters and in the case of my DAC can use the parametric EQ to shape the sound I want.
I find it annoying that theWhathifi review does not provide ANY detail as to how Node 2i was used in the system with Gamut preamp/amp.  Was it used via its analogue outputs? Coax, toslink outputs into an outboard DAC?  What was the source of data to Node 2i?  
Id love to see this offered w/o a dac at a lower price...

kbuzz: my thought exactly.
You might just be surprised by the built in dac.  Update will be coming.  Approaching 80 hours on the 2i.
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I just picked up a Vault 2i.   I assume is uses the same DAC as the Node 2i , does anyone know what chipset it uses?
Chip set is a pair of Burr Brown PCM 5122.

Thanks, sounds great ... better than I expected.
I bought a node 2i so that I can get sound into my main rig while I don't have internet here for a few months.  I live in the camp fire area and we are without internet so I thought that I could stream from my phone to the node 2i and into my big rig via toslink into my DAC.  I am really bummed with how bad this thing sounds at least via bluetooth.  I am starting to think bluetooth is just plain bad.  I can't use airplay since my phone can't be on the network and get LTE service at the same time so I have to use bluetooth.  Seems like airplay is always better sounding than bluetooth.  
Older models now on big discount straight from the Bluesound site direct. Claim on the 2i is that they garnered increased performance from working on some pricier NAD offerings like the new C-658.
Interested to see what people think of the sound quality 
I just installed a node 2i in my system. The sound is much more holographic than my previous source (laptop > eitr > metrum amethyst). I’m happy overall with the sound quality, however I made a direct comparison between the internal DAC and my amethyst and the metrum beat out the bluesound - although I’m not that surprised. I think it really depends where you are coming from for your previous source.

One thing to note: the node 2i sounds massively better when wired in my system as opposed to using the wifi. And again the wifi sounded better than airplay or bluetooth. I think the big compromise with streamers like the bluesound is that you have to use their app/streaming software. I don’t mind the interface, just something else to deal with. Also, there was a severe burn in within the first 3 hours, it was actually terrible out of the box and slowly opened up as I sat there.

I also just ordered an aftermarket shunyata power cable for the node 2i so I can report back on that after I listen to it.
I’ve been using a Node 2 as a Roon endpoint in a minimalist second system. The Node 2 benefits from a better power cord. I built a silver PC with Furutech and Oyaide ends. Also, it can definitely sound better through an external DAC. I took from storage an old Marigo Apparition RCA digital cable and a Theta Gen Va DAC with balanced outputs. These feed a pair of Pass ACA 1.6 Class A kit monoblocks. The Node 2 downsampled by Roon from 24/192 to 16/44.1 for the old Theta sounds better that the Node 2’s integrated DAC at 24/192. Nice to know that the Theta still stands up! But the Node 2’s integrated DAC isn’t bad.
Node 2i's bread and butter is the operating system and the multi-room function. There are other options out there that sound better. The internal DAC is average at best. The Rotel 1572's DAC sounded better than the Node 2i with MQA even. It's a good starter kit that is for sure. I have since moved onto a separate streamer (metrum ambre) and DAC (Metrum Onyx).. you always think it sounds great until you hear better and thats what makes this hobby so fun...and expensive! cheers on your journey 
The Node benefits greatly from an upgraded PC, for me it's like night and day. Also, add a good DAC with a high quality digital coax and streaming is taken to a higher level.

I have a Node2 connected to a Schiit Gungnir Multibit. 90% of the time it works great streaming from my Synology NAS using Roon. My problem is my main listening room is upstairs and the furthest from my router. All my other Bluesound products are closer and really never have issues. But my Node2 struggles at times with dropouts. Especially with higher-res files (like 24/192.) I wonder if just the improved wifi alone in the 2i would solve this? Obviously I don't care about the DAC inside, just the connectivity issue. I could probably hire an electrician to run CAT6 cable up here and install a jack to plug my Node2 into for about the same price as buying a 2i. But maybe the dual-band 802.11ac (which my router provides) would do the trick. What do you think?
In my case with the 2i, the wired connection sounded incredibly better than the wireless connection. If you have ethernet cable long enough to reach upstairs, it might be worth it to just run the cable on the floor to test the sound. 
@bmac78665  @ajackmanuse
an ethernet extender that uses you household electrical wiring
plug ethernet into ethernet receptacle into unused electrical outlet
then for termination take the same setup and plug into 2i ethernet input from electrical wall outlet