Auralic Aries G2.1 Upgrade Over Bridge

I think my system sound pretty good right now and I’m happy but I’ve just had these thoughts in the back of my head wondering what I could do to make it better. I currently have BHK 300s, BHK Pre, DSD with Bridge, P15 and Iconoclasts cables. I only stream music from Tidal / Qobuz via Roon.

I’ve been doing some research looking at past posts and it seems like there is a mixed bag of reviews regarding a sonic upgrade by moving from the Bridge to a dedicated streamer. I was just curious if anyone else had some thoughts on the subject. The Auralic Aries G2.1 looks interesting but since they have no local dealers near me it’s difficult to demo it. Have any of you used the G2.1, if so what were your thoughts? I’ve also thought about some of the Sonore gear and I like this concept of using Fiber network cables but I really don’t want to deal with the multiple external power supplies.

In my system the G1 was a significant upgrade so the 2.1 certainly would be and not really necessary unless you plan on buying other Auralic G2 series gear.

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I also have a G1 and do not use the bridge anymore. Also the WiFi from the server to the G1 acts as a way of avoiding Ethernet noise and a variety of cables

I have exactly the same equipment as you except for the speakers/cables. I also have the Aries G2 (not the 2.1) Its been long enough since I used the bridge (now completely removed from the DSD) that I cant give you a very detailed description of the difference in sound but I will tell you there is an immediately noticeable improvement. Additionally, in my opinion, the user experience is better. The Auralic app is not perfect but its better than the options for the bridge.

Since that G2 upgrade I have also done the EtherRegen + Matrix + LPS + Innuos Phoenix combo. I think this setup us sublime. Of everything in my setup I would say the Phoenix (the last thing I have added so far) made the smallest improvement and is potentially not an equitable addition (although I am keeping it so far). The other pieces were significant and worthy additions.

Let us know what you decide and if you do it, how it turns out.

Cheers,

By the 2.1 not being necessary, were you referring to the lightning link? I do not plan on moving away from the DSD as a dac, I was just assuming that sonically the 2.1 might be better than the g1. I’ve never heard either so I don’t have firsthand experience, just looking at the specs and construction? Have you ever heard the g2 and if so, what were your thoughts compared to your g1? I definitely don’t want to waste my money on a g2 or 2.1 vs a G1 unless there is some sonic benefit.

The WiFi is actually what made start thinking of this. I just built a new house and the builder offers zero low volt options, so I have no Ethernet drops but they did install enterprise wifi access points. To get around this for my DSD I bought some MOCA adapters, which basically sends Ethernet over coaxial cables. The moca adapter has some cheap switch mode power supply, so I assume it could add noise down the Ethernet cable to the DSD.

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If you are looking at the streaming component only check out Orosie’s posts. Better yet, send him a PM and I’m sure he’ll respond. He had an Aries G2, Vega G2 and Leo GX in his system for a good while.
He now has an Aries G1.

Thanks everyone for responding. Seems like everyone heard a sonic difference by upgrading from the bridge. What were some of the differences you heard? Also where did you buy your devices from? Looking for a good reputable dealer with good prices, return polices and support.

Thanks. I’ll search for his posts and check it out.

As far as Sonore goes, I have a Signature Optical Rendu arriving tomorrow that has the best of the best power supplies built right in it. (So they say) so one power cable, one fiber optic cable, one USB cable. I’ll report my findings. I have had experience with an Aries G1 and it stands up to anything else I have heard. Was thinking G2 myself. Could still go that way…

Never hear a G2 or a G2.1 as the G1 fit my needs and was my third Auralic streamer. There is a review from one of the online publications and I think it may be PFO where the reviewer has had both in his home for multiple months and thought the G1 was over 90% of the original G2 and the sweet spot in the lineup. Just couldn’t justify the double the price for the same guts minus the Lightning Link in a fancier case but thats me. Even the original Aries Femto sounds better than the Bridge II to my ears.

I bought mine used on US Audiomart. The sound just seemed more open and clean.

I’ll just toss in my 2 cents about the Aries G2(haven’t heard the G1 or G2.1): in my setup, the thing that made me keep it was the performance of the WiFi. Switching from a Wyred 4 Sound MS-1 server/streamer(great product BTW) to using the the server function of the MS-1 out to the Aries G2 was not an obvious upgrade(ms1 streamer has I2S output)…but moving everything streaming related to another room(the MS-1, modem, router) and using the WiFi on the G2 was an across the board performance improvement. They did a great job on the WiFi implementation.

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Another 2 cents …

I changed from using the PS Bridge to a dCS Network Bridge. Result was a large improvement in sound quality. There was a further improvement when I removed the PS Bridge board from the DAC which also increased the sound quality from all other DAC inputs.

Another G1 owner here. I came to the same conclusion as dawkinsj in making my decision. Never used the Bridge II, so no SQ comparison to offer. Am using G1 via WiFi and USB to DSD. No complaints and rock solid connection. I also think their Lightning app is the best streaming app. Never stutters or buffers and plays everything, nice Qobuz integration.

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I have the Totaldac streamer, the Auralic G2.0 and the Lumin U1. I prefer the U1 for only one reason: I decide whether I update it. In contrast to the Auralic where THEY decide if and when they update. Other than this cultural issue they are all very nice…

I just purchased an Auralic Aries G2.1. WILL running Wireworld Starlight 8 Ethernet 9 meters from my modem to my GigaFoil with sBooster power supply with Wireworld Platinum Starlight 8 Ethernet to my Auralic Aries G2.1 be a good setup?I was thinking that of using my Audio Art Statement pure crystal silver RCA coax to my DSD. Should this be a good set up? Should I remove the Bridge II? Would a Digital XLR better format from streamer to dac or should my good quality coax be fine?

When I owned a DSD I found the best sounding connection from my Aries G2 was USB. I removed the Bridge II and found that sound improved further.

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Oh my, I am enjoying my first listen to the Sonore Signature Optical Rendu that arrived today. It is a much more enjoyable step up from the UltraRendu it replaced then I imagined possible. The speakers just sit there looking useless as the sound does not seem to come from them at all. It’s just wherever it is supposed to be and as clear and distinct as I have ever heard in my system, I wish I could plug my turntable into it! :wink:

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Thanks everyone for all of the replies. I’ve been doing some research on the Auralic Aries and found some confusion regarding MQA support and Roon. Not sure if the confusion comes from reading posts from different time periods. Can anyone confirm if the Auralic can decode MQA when playing from Roon? Since the DSD doesn’t support MQA via USB my thoughts were that the Aries would do the unfold and just pass high res FLAC to the DSD. MQA isn’t the biggest deal to me I’m just trying to understand what will work when using the Aries G2 with the DSD and Roon. I might try Lightning DS but I really like the Roon interface, meta-data and hyperlinking so I’ll more than likely stick with that.