Why does my old CD player sound so much better than my new streamer?

Earlier this year I upgraded my system. Briefly, new Prima Luna Dialogue Premium HP integrated, new Lumin D2 streamer/DAC, kept my Tekton speakers, bought a 10 year old Muse Erato CD player, new Nordost Red Dawn cables all around.  After plenty of break in, the Lumin D2 streaming Tidal, even 24/96, does not sound close to as good as the Muse Erato.  I understand the Muse was about $10k new years ago, I paid $650 for it on Audiogon, is that the difference? It replaced my Naim I had for 20+ years and I bought it on the chance I want to listen to something not on Tidal, but now I'm going to CDs when I want to sit and listen instead of streaming. I considered upgrading to the Lumin T2, but will that be more of the same Lumin sound, which is accurate but thin and a little cold compared to the Muse.  I like the Lumin when just letting Tidal shuffle music as I move around the house, but from the opening note in an A/B test the Muse just sounds so much warmer, live and simply more enjoyable. Any thoughts or suggestions?

Showing 15 responses by bo1972

Facts are always leading and tell the real truth. I work in audio now for over 20 years of time. And I have done thousands of tests. And since 2012 we have tested many new DACS, network players and other digital sources.

The question: Is it more than normal that still many people use a CD-player or turntable?

The answer is: Yes, but there is a clear reason why?

The human emotion works to a great extent almost the same way. Regarding music diversity (layering) in sound is by far the most influential aspect of sound. Of all aspects/properties of sound, it can influence your emotion during listening to music the most.

The facts prove over and over again that many network players and DACS are often limited in diversity (layering) in sound. It is even very simple and clear that most humans don’t like most network players and DACS these days.

When a network player or DAC is not able to reveal a high level in layering no human will use this source a lot. After a short time, they will start to use it less rather quickly. Your emotion overrules and tells you that it is not intense or emotional enough during listening.

The harmonics you will find on each recording. There are even over 100 different harmonics. When a source or DAC can reveal more layers of the harmonics the human emotion will become a lot more intense.

Most CD-players and also turntables can create a lot more easy diversity (layering) in sound. This is why people describe them as more emotional. Because they are a lot more emotional than most network players and the latest DACS.

What is the reason why so many network players and DACS are so limited in creating layers in sound?

Because the insight and knowledge of manufacturers are not getting better than in the past. I think even worse. When we ask manufacturers the following 3 questions almost none can answer them.

- Can you tell us all the different aspects/properties of sound?

- Can you tell us all the different aspects which negatively influence sound and stage?

- Can you tell us how human emotion works regarding music?

When you have no idea about these questions it becomes even clear why audio products differ so much from how music, voices, and instruments sound in real.

Besides diversity (layering) in sound, there are 7 more other aspects/properties of sound. From which each individual aspect can influence human emotion during listening to music. And this is why you need all those different aspects to hear and perceive the full emotion of each recording.

When an audio system can let you hear and perceive all the details and aspects of the music, the level of emotion will be the highest. This also means that each human will experience a high level of emotion during listening to their own music.

When we judge most network players and DACS on all aspects of sound, the facts (sound and stage) will prove that most can not reveal all the aspects of sound. With the result that people will miss the connection and emotion of the music.

We work by all the aspects of sound, this is how we reproduce sound. So we can reveal all the details and different aspects of the recording. This will always create a superior level of emotion and intensity.

Since we know that diversity (layering) in sound is the most important aspect of sound. We put the most focus on this aspect for all our different modifications. We always do this together with the best specialists in this area.

We are Lumin dealer for 4 years of time now. And are specialized in all their products. We created a level in analog sound and layering what goes beyond all CD-players. The Lumin products are great but they are not perfect. This is why we adapt each Lumin product for all the different aspects of sound. And diversity (layering) in sound gets the most attention

We will soon place different reviews of owners here at Audiogon. They will tell in detail how our modified products changed their thoughts about network players and digital audio. And what it did change to their experience with audio and their emotion.

When we invite new clients. We let them hear with their own music the differences between:

- streaming by Qobuz
- streaming by a Synology NAS
- streaming by a modified Lumin L1 music server.

We always use the same music at the same bit rate.

Question: are the differences big?

The answer is; yes they are even huge. And most new clients had no idea that the differences could be so big. Almost all our Lumin clients use a Lumin L1 music server. The distributor of Lumin in my country will visit a few of our clients with the people of Lumin.

We want to show them how much more you can get out of each Lumin product.

The modified Lumin L1 is over 70% better compared to streaming by Qobuz. It also outperforms the Synology Nas on all aspects of sound.

What does a modified Lumin L1 add to all aspects of sound?

When we use the same song with the modified L1 for the first time we directly see the big smile on people their faces. And often they say; this is not even comparable. It is a different world.

The level in layering is so much bigger, that all people directly experience a lot more emotion and intensity. The stage becomes, wider and bigger. Even the level in diversity in height (differences in height of voices and instruments) becomes a lot more apparent. The dynamics are bigger and you hear so much more details, Small recordings become a lot more intimate and palpable.

What are the differences between all Lumin network players?

We sold all different Lumin network players. So we know them all very well. And most we also modified. We even modify the Lumin L1.

The Lumin D1, D2, T1 and A1 all use the same DAC. We created the AudioFacts Pro modification for all different Lumin products. We even created a new modification for the T2. The T2 uses a different DAC and also a different power supply.

All D1’s and D2’s we sold with a modified Sbooster. For the D2 we have a special build external input for the use of a Sbooster. Sbooster has built this, especially for some Lumin network players.

It brings the D1 and D2 to a superior level when you connect a modified Sbooster to it. The D1 and D2 with a Pro modification outperformed the Lumin A1 even on all 8 aspects of sound. The parts we use are even superior compared to those which are used in the A1.

The Lumin T2 uses a new double Sabre DAC 9028 Pro. It is a lot less analog and involving than the D1 and D1 are. So we had to adapt it a lot to create a more analog sound. And also an improved level in diversity in sound. We also use a modified Sbooster with the T2. This makes a huge difference. In 3 weeks a client of ours will put a review of it here on Audiogon.

We were the first company in Europe who received the Lumin X1. Even no company in the US owned an X1 at that time. We modified the power supply. What brings the X1 to an even higher level in realism and coherent sound. Before we used the Lumin S1. What is still a great player. But the modified X1 comes from a different planet.

When I started in 2012 to test many network players and DACS I was very disappointed. I had sold my 25000 dollar Meridian DACv4 and thought it would become easy to surpass the Meridian. But it took us a long time to find and create a new level in the analog sound that surpasses CD-players. But now in 2019 after 4 years of being an official Lumin dealer, we are so blessed. Together with the best specialists in modifications, we reached a level we could only dream of.

Research and innovation are needed to bring network players to a much higher level in realism and emotion. It is always our goal to help people to bring them as close as possible to the emotion of their beloved music.


You always connect the L1 into a network. Lumin works totally different than all other brands that sell network players. We are a company that shares a lot of insight and knowledge directly to manufacturers when this is possible.

We even have a network specialist who knows a lot about everything that relates to networks. First I used an IFI power supply on our network switch. But one day I tried to connect a modified SBooster (what is over 200% better than a standard Sbooster) to the Network switch. It was one of the biggest discoveries I ever did in audio.

These days most of our clients use a modified Sbooster on their switch. What I did I send a Sbooster to clients. Just to take a listen. I never got one back. It is difficult to understand. What it does is so impressive. We had discussions about this with different manufacturers. Sbooster said that the extreme benefit of a modified Sbooster put on a network switch only works for Lumin network players.

I am a music addict since I was 6. Now I have for over 25000 dollars of music on my Lumin L1. I spend about 200 dollars each month on new music. Music which is put on a modified Lumin L1 is far superior to any kind of streaming or Roon. I understand the convenience of Roon. But it is inferior to the same music played by a modified Lumin L1.

Most of our clients use both the L1 and steaming by Qobuz, Roon or Tidal. But they all agree that streaming with a modified Lumin L1 is from a different level. Our clients use the word addictive a lot when they talk about the modified Lumin L1. They often stream a lot less after they bought a modified Lumin L1.

The reason for this is the much higher level of emotion. This is why I often say: "Emotion is the only key to success and happiness in audio" . The USB of the Lumin L1 is only used for storage. USB is one of the main reasons why people experience music without emotion.

We talked to people who develop and create DACS and network players. They said that USB never should have been chosen for audio. All tests we did with the use of USB we hear that the level in diversity (layering) is limited. So it becomes clear why people prefer their CD-player or even turntable.

The reason why we modify network players with an inbuilt DAC is based on the fact that the level in layering is superior to even the most expensive DACS. We don’t sell any DAC at this moment. Because the tests prove that we easily can outperform network players with expensive DACS.

In our world, all choices are being made at the highest level in the end result we can achieve. It is always about effectiveness. In our word will never be room for second best or even less. It is our goal that each client will always get the best end result and quality for the money they spent.

You need to see the Lumin L1 as extra storage of your music beside streaming or Roon. We see also a lot of mistakes made with the settings of all Lumin network players. The unknown is still rather big in the world of audio.
We did spend a lot of time in the diversity (layering) of sound in digital audio. We compared and listened to many DACS and network players. I started with it in 2012. I can say now in 2019 that by far most DACS and network players are all not able to create a satisfying level in emotion.

The level of diversity (layering) is often so limited. For no human being, this will ever create an emotional feeling. Sound has 100% nothing to with any silly kind of personal preference of it. The music which is recorded owns the emotion. So it makes sense that an audio system needs to reveal the details and different aspects of the music on the recording.

Besides the fact that most DACS and network players are poor in the harmonics of the music. They even miss more aspects/properties of sound. This will bring down the level of emotion even more. When manufacturers know very little about sound and music. And even know little about the different aspects which influence both sound and stage negatively.

You all understand now (I hope) why most products can never make you become happy. Because only emotion can lead to happiness in audio. I used and owned the most expensive CD-players in the world. When I started to look in 2012 to find a substitution for my CD-player, I found out that even regardless of money there was nothing I could live with.

An extreme perfectionist is always looking for things that need to be superior. So I made a lot of contacts with people who develope them. After different conversations, I knew that regardless of money I could never become happy. When we became Lumin dealer for the first time I had a feeling that it could be better than CD-players.

But I wanted more, so I wanted to outperform all CD-players and even turntables. So I started to find the best people in modifications in digital sources. I had a lot of ideas to improve digital audio to a new level in sound quality and emotion. Our modifications are not only focused on superior parts. But also focused on the influence of electro-smog, high-frequency noise, and magnetism on sound and stage. People have no idea how extreme the negative influence is of all these aspects on your digital source at home.

Now in 2019, our world has become a very promising and happy one. We made a lot of progress. I could never expect that we could even outperform turntables in layering in sound. When we compare a 180 grams Patricia Barber LP played on an expensive turntable I can outperform it on layering in sound with our DSD recording of it on each modified Lumin. We don’t even need to use our modified Lumin X1.

Dedication and innovation are needed to create new levels in digital audio. I think most manufacturers have been sleeping for many years now. When I compare 2012 against now, the facts still prove that most DACS and network players are very limited in layering in sound even today.

Money will never help you in audio. Regardless of money, most audio products can still not reveal all aspects of sound. Without all aspects of sound no audio system can ever make any human being satisfied for a longer period of time.


Yes, the level of the jitter is a lot higher when you use a CD-player. The other problem almost all people make is the fact that they (wanna) believe that a separate DAC is always the best solution. This is only based on an assumption people want to believe. Only because it has been said. DACS still loses too much diversity (layering) in sound. Even the most expensive ones show the same limitations.


You can read whatever you want and think whatever you want. But these words and thoughts have no meaning when they are not the truth. Trial&error is the main reason why audio in 2019 has created a decreasing market. When I talk with manufacturers about the decreasing market in audio, they even agree with me that trial&error is ineffective and the reason why the market is decreasing.

But in the past, they all could get away with it because everyone believed in it. Now they all see that they can not change it anymore. The other important limitation can be found in the fact that humans can only perceive 1 to 3 aspects of sound at the same moment. You need to be able like I am to perceive all 8 aspects of sound within 1/10 of a second.

This is why money will never save and help you. When your brains are not fit to reveal all 8 aspects of sound you can never make the right decision in your choices in audio. I talked with hundreds of people. They all had similar experiences that trial&error makes them never find the sound and stage they hope for.

Trial&error is just like an illusion. Based on the 100% fact that it is not possible to understand what each individual part you change for another part does to the end result. It has no real foundation. In all the discussions I had with manufactures they all agreed that trial&error has no foundation.


You need to explain in detail what the full DNA (aspects/properties of sound) are of each individual part within your system.

After this, you need to explain in full detail what the influence is of electro-smog, the acoustic, magnetism and high-frequency noise on your sound and stage independently. When you are not able to do this, it is 100% impossible to understand what you are doing regarding your choices in audio.

Trial&error is nothing more than pure gambling in choices. This is why you keep on buying until you die. And still, your system is incomplete in aspects/properties of sound. So the level of emotion will always be limited. The money will never solve or help you to create an ultimate level in audio.

Because almost all produced audio products can still not reveal all aspects of sound. Everything you place into your system that is incomplete (lacks different aspects/properties of sound) will always create a negative influence on the end result. So the level in emotion and realism will stay low.


!! Please don’t react to the lies of people. Some people are so pathetic that it is not even worth to mention it. This person has never been a client of ours. This is why our clients will post over here their own stories of their modified Lumin network players.
The biggest benefit of a turntable is the fact that you can play old records that come from the real master. Because there are many old recordings from which there are no real masters anymore. So they use a back-up copy from which they made a CD. But all these CDs are very poor.

This means that no CD-player or even network player can ever come close to a good turntable with old recordings. I heard it at different times and I sold also many turntables in the past. It is maybe not my personal choice, but I understand very well the benefit of a turntable.

When a network player has an inbuilt DAC the level in layering becomes bigger. This is why it is a lot more effective to modify a network player with an inbuilt DAC. Now in 2019 we are still waiting and hoping to find a separate DAC that has a much higher level in diversity in sound.

We always make those choices that create the best results. We auditioned many expensive DACS with network players and they were not able to reveal the same level in layering we have. Besides the layering in sound, a modified Lumin is a lot more dynamic compared to separate DACS with network players. I need to mention that we also use modified power supplies.

So the combination of a modified Lumin network player and a separate modified power supply together makes the big difference in the end result. The Lumin owns the perfect DNA to be upgraded with a modification. This means that their technique is essential for us to create and achieve this ultimate level.

This is why we are always are looking for the best DNA to create together with our modifications to the best results. Without this DNA it is impossible to create any ultimate level in quality and end result. This means that even before a modification the source needs to be able to reveal all aspects of sound.
Soon different clients will tell in a review their own experiences. The distributor of Lumin is so impressed that they will invite Lumin to visit us. Soon we will publish it as well. The facts always will tell the truth.

All our products have 2 years full warranty. Even the modified ones. We made perfect agreements with the distributor of Lumin.


Thread: Wilson Audio Haters

01-18-2017 8:12pmWith your permission, if I may, please kindly allow me to elucidate these matters regarding Bo, who is a visionary and trailblazer in the world of hi-fi.

How, you may ask, do I have anything to contribute to this detailed discussion? I am a client of Bo. By client I mean that I am not a customer. It is much the same as when you visit a physician or a lawyer. The wise man does not instruct the professional how to treat his ills! He entrusts the outcome with the professional of his choosing. Otherwise a man could treat or represent himself.

Music is all about emotion. When I felt that my music reproduction system and associated components and installation was failing to deliver proper emotion to me I decided to seek Bo for consultation. Bo was very generous with his time! He showed me how Tru-Fi works. It can be demonstrated to every listener that Tru-Fi works by applying properties to the reproduction of music. By proper application of these properties, which sometimes requires adjustments to within .5 mm, Tru-Fi can be achieved and all will agree that this is how hi-fi should be sold. Not all components are capable of Tru-Fi. Because Bo has a photographic memory as applied to sound reproduction, Bo can identify those components that deliver 3D sound! Most components deliver only 1D or 2D sound! This Bo can demonstrate.

Bo can evaluate your 1D or 2D music reproduction system and prescribe a solution using components that are 3D and can deliver Tru-Fi. These are improvements all can hear because music is about emotion and all can feel the emotion in reproduced music once Bo has demonstrated Tru-Fi to you. He can do this in a shootout as he has done many times and proven to all who listen.

Throughout the course of Human History visionaries and trailblazers have been laughed at, minimalized, derided, ridiculed and chided. Bo knows this! He is being generous by contributing here to share his knowledge about Tru-Fi and the way it can be applied using properties to music reproduction systems and installations. He has demonstrated to many manufacturers, distributors and designers of components used in music reproduction systems the ways of Tru-Fi and properties and I suspect that you will see some major manufacturers adopt Tru-Fi methods, techniques, standards and practices as time moves forward. This is because all who hear Tru-Fi exclaim for the first time they are hearing the emotion in music, which is what music is all about.

Those of you here who are dubious about Bo have never heard Tru-Fi and have not heard 3D sound in their music reproduction systems. Once you have heard Tru-Fi, you will realize that all other approaches to the design, assembly, fabrication, installation and specifying of music reproduction systems is flawed. Only Tru-Fi can deliver the emotion in music, which is what music is all about. There is no point to music reproduction systems if there is no emotion.

I hope Bo will forgive me speaking on his behalf here.
879 posts

When we did not want to help him anymore, he became very aggressive and start telling lies. These kinds of people are mentally sick. It is really sad that they can not control themselves. And put a lot of lies and nonsense on this website.
It stands for True Fidelity. What is based on how sound and music sounds in reality. I have been addicted to music since I was 6. This is why I started to do this for a profession. I want people to experience their beloved music at the highest level possible.

Sound and also music is built on different aspects/properties. What I wrote many times you need them all to hear and experience the emotion of the music you play. The reason why we started to modify is based on the fact that audio products are not good enough to create an ultimate level in emotion and realism.

This is why I want to use conservatorium students during audio presentations to show that we reproduce music as it sounds in real. Intimate sound is one of the aspects of sound. Both voices and instruments are very small in dimension. Besides the size, we can also give both voices and instruments what we call a 3D shape.

Most people who work in audio even know very little about music and sound. And the same counts for those who spend serious money on audio products. So you can not blame consumers to buy the wrong products. At this moment there is a serious problem regarding digital sources.

Because of the fact that most digital sources and DACS miss so much quality that the level of emotion is very limited. Most people over here experience the same limitations when you read this thread. We auditioned many network player and DACS in over 7 years of time now. Then you know that there is a serious problem.

When consumers only can buy network players and DACS who all create a low level in diversity (layering) in sound. It is impossible to stay happy with this. Because of human emotion will make you aware that it lacks emotion. 

The problem we found regarding switches, is exactly the same you hear and see regarding all audio products. The fact that they are incomplete. This means that they can not reveal all aspects of sound.

When we compare different switches with each other it becomes clear that the differences are huge. Lumin works differently regarding the transport of data. For this, the impact and result of using a better network switch are bigger compared to most other network players.

We have sold many modified Sboosters on the switch we use. Most of our clients experienced it as one of the most impressive upgrades they ever made. At first, you think and even believe that it can not make a big difference. But......audio is all about facts and what it does to the end result.
We don’t share the details of the modifications. We also modified Sbooster in the US. The costs are 189 euro excluding shipping to the Netherlands. When I have time we will place an advertisement on Audiogon. With photos and more details.

I own for over 25000 dollars on music on my Lumin L1. And I also bought a lof of DSD music all over the world. But hi-res recordings are not always better than just 16-44.1khz recordings. I have a lot of 16-bit 44.1khz recordings which are even better than good DSD recordings.

It really depends on how it has been recorded. Most recent hi-res and also MQA recordings are very limited. This is due to the way it has been recorded. I listen to new music for about 5-7 hours each week. The average sound quality is getting worse, to be honest.

Artists earn most money these days by live concerts. This has a negative outcome on the level of both music and sound quality. The way of recording; hi-res PCM, DSD or MQA never guarantees you any better quality.

But the best DSD recordings are by far the best available in the world. But DSD is not used a lot. There are also enough rather poor DSD recordings. But playing the same music by a modified music server and modified power supply together makes all kinds of streaming of this music by Tidal and Qobuz one big laugh.  

Last week we sold another modified Lumin L1 with a modified SBooster. He said on the phone; " I stopped streaming music this weekend" . I did it a lot, but now I understand your words: "This is so addictive and not even comparable" And tonight we had contact again and he said: " " Each evening I listened for hours in a row. This is so nice. "

We will soon let our clients speak. We started with different people in the US as well. When these systems are full adapted they want to share it with you. You can even visit them when you want to. In our country, we do it all the time. We send new clients to our clients all the time. Audio is all about shootout and comparison.
I did compare even downloads to each other of the different websites where you buy them from. And also CD rips. The quality you get from the music you buy at Qobuz is often better than others. And also better than CD rips. I always compare and choose the best.

The AudioFacts Pro modification brings the D1/D2 to a superior level compared to the A1 and also T2. For a lot less money. We use superior parts even compared which ones are used on the A1. The A1 and D1/D2 share the same DAC. It was our goal to outperform the A1.

But we got even further. We have a client from Austria (who soon will write a review) and I will ask him if he wants to put it over here as well.

He had bought a Lumin D2 with a Pro modification and a modified Sbooster. This combo did cost him 3850 euro. He is a member of an audio club. He compared his combo with a 13500 euro network player from another member. And also he compared it with a 14000 euro Linn network player. He both outperformed them. The owners were very honest and admitted that his combo was convincingly better.
We sell new products, it is always our responsibility. When something happens it needs to be sent back to us. But so far we never had anything back what was modified. We only had 2 D2’s which got a new mainboard. What was paid and repaired by Audio Service.

We give all clients a 24-month guarantee on all modifications. In the US it is the same deal. When something happens it needs to be sent back.

When a Lumin has no guarantee anymore, we still give a 24-month guarantee on the modification.

Again it is a lie by a mentally sick person. On Monday we will phone the distributor for a statement. They still repair (Audio Service) all our modified Lumin products. Because we made agreements for this.

Everyone over here knows it except he does not know. I never have seen such a loser human on this website.

Hi Tammy,

AudioFacts is an official & respected dealer of Lumïn network players. As official & exclusive Lumïn distributor for the Dutch territory we support them with 24 months warrantee on all Lumïn products. The modified products however, we only support warrantee on the original parts. AudioFacts is responsible for all the parts which they have changed. On their part they give a 24-month warrantee on these modified parts, as this is their responsibility.

Best regards,

Penhold b.v.
Jan Legel - Sales & marketing director
Poppenbouwing 33
NL-4191 NZ Geldermalsen
Phone: +31 (0) 345 588060
Mobile: +31 (0) 6 51511868

Visit our website: www.lookenlisten.nl