Help me choose my first Streamer

Currently- Mac Mini/JRiver —Flac music files on an external Thunderbolt drive—Schiit Yiggy

I’m sold on getting a streamer, but my needs are limited to playing my ever growing flac file collection.
I’m not interested in all the other formats.

I would prefer internal storage, but its not a deal breaker. I don’t need a ripper, and I love my DAC.

With that said I’m currently considering the AURALiC ARIES G1 and the Aurender N100.

The Aries doesn’t have internal storage, but I like the look slightly more than the Aurender N 100.

Both are in the upper 2K range. I’m open to thoughts and opinions. I would prefer to be under 3K new.

Sound quality and being as user friendly possible are the priorities.

Would love some direction.

Thanks in advance.

I narrowed it down to the AuraliC G1 and the Lumin U1 Mini. I went with the Mini but I’m using it solely for streaming Tidal to my DirectStream DAC. VERY happy with it.

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Thanks Tech,

Would a streamer that has internal storage as opposed to not having it---- have a sonic advantage ?

Coincidentally, I am also looking for my first streamer, and the Auralic Aries G1 and the Lumin U1 Mini are on the short list of recommendations that I received from another well-known & respected forum member here. Like krelldog, I have a Mac Mini right now, flac files on an external hard drive and stream 100% through Qobuz. (Mac Mini>Matrix>DS DAC)

I am hoping that by adding one of these units that I can achieve better sound quality overall as opposed to the Mac Mini. What type of improvement did you hear after adding the Lumin U1 Mini? Thanks in advance!

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FWIW I definitely heard an improvement in sq moving from my laptop to a dedicated streamer. I also use the Matrix in the mix, but utilize Audirvana and SOTM-SMS-200 as the steamer.

This setup could be a more affordable option for you (under $500) so long as you don’t mind using your computer merely for the software like I do with Audirvana.

Interesting, I had not heard of the SOTM-SMS-200, I’ll have to do some research on that one, thanks!

Internal storage would have a negative effect on SQ.

I think Antipodes, Aurender, Innuos, etc would disagree.

That is the word directly from the owner of Auralic. I have an Aries G2.

Sure, that applies to Auralic, not all devices.

I’m not sure the others go to the same extreme to isolate power supplies and HD. I beg to differ. Physical separation is the easiest way to isolate.

Aurender N100-h owner here- happy as a mole in soft dirt. Also have an Opticalrendu- that sounds amazing too- but no internal storage

Thanks, the Aurender N100-H appears to be a very nice unit as well, any idea how it compares to the Lumin U1 Mini?

I recently purchased the Auralic G1 and am well pleased. Solid build and great accompanying app. I use it to play FLAC files on networked NAS drive (it found and indexed all in no time flat) and streaming Qobuz and other services. I wanted WiFi enabled, and it is rock solid connection. And most importantly, sounds great!

I upgraded from a purpose built music server using a NUC computer and Audiophile Optimizer. I could tell the difference between the stored music that I ripped and the streamed music from Tidal with the stored music being better. I found myself streaming Tidal most of the time so I went to the Lumin U1 mini. I compared the AO server to the mini and preferred the Tidal streams to the stored music on the server. Your results may vary.


Thanks, tech-hifi. The Lumin U1 Mini definitely looks like a nice unit, and due to the fact that I mainly stream through Qobuz, I think that it would probably meet my needs. I’m just trying to make sure that there is a noticeable improvement in SQ over my Mac-Mini. (Decisions, decisions!)

I think the Roon Nucleus is a great choice. Reasonable price, very high performance. Does require some network storage. I have have the Nucleus powered by a Teddy Pardo power supply. USB out via Curious Cable to the Matrix SPDIF-2 and I2S via WW Silver Starlight 7 HDMI to the DSD. I’m ver happy with the sound.

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Thanks, I agree that the price is pretty reasonable. My only concern with the Nucleus is that, while I love Roon, I’m not sure that I want to get locked into a yearly (or lifetime) subscription. With most of the others, I can either use Roon or their own software and control it with my iPad.

I own the Aries G1 but have also owned Lumin. They are both well built and supported devices with solid software packages that don’t require Roon. The G series and the Lumin U series are also the only two sets of streamers that offer all four of the standard outputs. The G series just offers the advantage of wireless operation if that is important to you. The other major brands of streamers while well built and operating devices limit you to one or two output choices.


Take a look at the wyred 4 sound ms1 server/streamer. The I2s output on it is phenomenal and helps you avoid the cost of a matrix and all the extra costs associated with that. Underrated/little known product.

The wifi function on the aries g1/g2 is great though. If you can get all your network gear away from the rig with it…it really shines(I have a g2 currently, and I’m still using the ms1 purely as a server atm)