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PhilipMarlowe
Texas A&M Fan
Member since Mar 2013
18628 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.


Songs: Ohia
Didn’t It Rain
Secretly Canadian (2002)


VABuckeye
Ohio State Fan
Oak Hill, VA
Member since Dec 2007
29753 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
Love Violent Femmes. American Music ftw.


PhilipMarlowe
Texas A&M Fan
Member since Mar 2013
18628 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
Yeah, great track. A bunch of bangers on that compilation.


PhilipMarlowe
Texas A&M Fan
Member since Mar 2013
18628 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.

RCA (1969) - MoFi (1981)



Analogue Productions (2010)


Music Matters SRX (2019)
This post was edited on 7/15 at 9:11 pm


HebertFest08
LSU Fan
The Coast
Member since Aug 2008
6229 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
Alright…. Finally ready to get a streamer. Is there anything in the 1,000-1500 range that’s worth moving up from the node? I wouldn’t mind something that will do mqa like the node. I recently realized I pay for the mqa stuff in Tidal. I’m a dumbass and I didn’t realize I was paying for that level. I usually just run things through my iPad in either Tidal or Spotify. I also realized that I’m wasting my money b/c I can’t get the high quality audio streamed through IOS.

I have a quad Vena integrated for my amp. So, I’d just run it through that.

I see the Cambridge stuff is supposed to be good at the price point, but they don’t do mqa. Would that be a deal breaker for you guys? Any other suggestions?
This post was edited on 7/21 at 2:53 pm


pheroy
LSU Fan
Raleigh, NC
Member since Oct 2006
200 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
I use a Mac Mini as my streamer / digital source. Run the Tidal app and now of course it has Apple Music built in, and I'm midway through a free trial there. I use JRiver to play my own ripped CD library. Of course, it has to feed to an external DAC. The base M1 Mac Mini is 699 or 589 refurb from Apple, so that'd leave you a decent chunk if you already have a DAC, or else you can get a solid one for 700-ish like a Topping D-70 or Schiit Bifrost.


BigOrangeBri
Tennessee Fan
Nashville- 4th & 19
Member since Jul 2012
10916 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.


20th Century Records- 1977


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HebertFest08
LSU Fan
The Coast
Member since Aug 2008
6229 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
The vena is integrated, so I don’t have to have something with a DAC. I’m looking at a dedicated streamer. Blue Node, Cambridge CXN v2 etc etc…. Lots of folks are making them, but looking at other options in that price range.

If nothing is better than the blue node (playing mqa) at $550, then I’ll just get that until I eventually upgrade my entire rig. The Cambridge has great reviews, but it doesn’t play MQAs. Do I just step up and get the Cambridge and carry the step below MQA in TIDAL? That being said, it may sound better than the node regardless. Thats what I’m getting at…. Is there something better in that $1000-$1500 price range or would I need to jump up to $2500+ to make it worth the while?


r3lay3r
LSU Fan
EBR
Member since Oct 2016
1044 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
So you have a Node? Version 1 or 2? The Node has a rep of being a decent streamer with a middle of the road dac. Next step up for a streamer is probably something like a Lumin D2 or the Cambridge you mentioned. The ProJect S2 also gets good reviews. Also, if you're up to DYI the Allo steamers are well regarded.



HebertFest08
LSU Fan
The Coast
Member since Aug 2008
6229 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
No…. I don’t have any. I just run tidal or Spotify through my iPad or phone into my amp. Which is integrated…. Quad vena

The problem is you lose quality when doing so b/c of IOS. I want to connect directly to my vena and run it like that, that way I bypass using IOS.


r3lay3r
LSU Fan
EBR
Member since Oct 2016
1044 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
I have Node 2 and I enjoy it. Good basic system that is pretty easy to use. The BluOS system is okay, as far a functionality. Works well with Tidal, Qobuz, Amazon HD, these I've tested. Spotify is the one service that comes up short because it doesn't have a built-in Node app, so you have to control it from your phone or a separate web app. There are plenty of other available supported streams, but it does lack Apple Music. Plus you can plug an SSD into the USB and steam files ripped from the drive or attach an ethernet cable and stream from a networked computer. I use both.

I've used it with its internal DAC and with the DAC of my integrated and don't notice a huge difference, but prefer the integrated DAC. Maybe because I'm used to the sound. You might find the same with the DAC in your Vena. The other option is to get a separate DAC and feed through that to your Vena.

I have the Node 2, a new version is available and I'm not certain what changes have been made.


Macintosh504
Hawaii Fan
Loving Spirits University
Member since Sep 2011
45614 posts
 Online 

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
That McIntosh is beautiful
This post was edited on 7/22 at 4:36 am


VABuckeye
Ohio State Fan
Oak Hill, VA
Member since Dec 2007
29753 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
I have a Node 2i. When it was in the system it was great.

I purchased the NAD Masters Series M33 and the Node 2i is currently not in use. I'll put it in to a secondary music listening location in the house. I just haven't gotten around to it yet. The M33 is a fantastic piece of gear. Other than a quibble or two with the software I have zero complaints.


HebertFest08
LSU Fan
The Coast
Member since Aug 2008
6229 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
That NAD M33 looks awesome, but that bad boy is about as much as I have into my whole rig.



PhilipMarlowe
Texas A&M Fan
Member since Mar 2013
18628 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.


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PhilipMarlowe
Texas A&M Fan
Member since Mar 2013
18628 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
I was exactly in your position with a Bluesound Node, and decided to take a step up to a Lumin D2. I’ve been really pleased. It does mqa, but I will say that the difference between 44.1 cd quality files & MQA hires files is less noticeable in my system than say the difference between 320kbps (Spotify current highest streaming quality) and 44.1 cd quality.

I was still really pleased with the bluesound Node, and really only upgraded because I had a bit of money burning a hole in my pocket, and wanted to move the node to another room. There’s a noticeable difference between the two streamers, but it wasn’t a night and day difference, it was more subtle than that, at least in my setup…which speaks to the quality, and value, of the node IMO.

I think I bought mine in the spring of ‘19, so just a little over two years ago now. I’m sure new products from companies have been released in that time that I’m not aware of that could fit your criteria as well.




VABuckeye
Ohio State Fan
Oak Hill, VA
Member since Dec 2007
29753 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
It takes the place of several devices. Preamp, amp, streamer and phono preamp are all gone from the system. I'm down to a turntable, a pair of speakers, a sub and the M33.

But yeah, it's not inexpensive by any stretch of the imagination.


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HebertFest08
LSU Fan
The Coast
Member since Aug 2008
6229 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
Yeh there is so much stuff out now.

Are the 44.1 cd quality files streamed at all? Or is that just from a CD that you’ve stored?

I have a little bit of knowledge from here, but I’m mostly a dumbass.



I like the lumin d2, I just don’t know if I want to drop that much. Which is why l looked at that Cambridge CXN v2 which has nothing but great reviews for the most part. The project stream box has as well, but there seems to be a few things that it may not be up to par on. The roon nucleus is supposed to be good as well, but I don’t really have a library of music other than my old stuff on iTunes. I don’t think that does me a whole lot of good either.


Brisketeer
Oklahoma Fan
Texas
Member since Aug 2013
1067 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
I have the NAD C658. It is basically a Node 2i with a better DAC and Dirac Live room connection. It sounds good to my ears.


HebertFest08
LSU Fan
The Coast
Member since Aug 2008
6229 posts

re: Audiophile/Vinyl Thread - Post Pics, Advice, Questions, Setups, etc.
That C658 doesn’t look bad…. Have some weird reviews on it though, about build quality and electronics being kind of squirrely.


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