Anybody Have Experience with the Lumin A1 Network Music Player?

Moose68BashMoose68Bash Posts: 3,249
I'm looking at getting a more reliable DAC and equal-or-better SQ to use in my network.

My PS Audio DirectStream DAC is at the factory for repair, and its network bridge has not been as reliable as I would like. I'm looking at alternatives that I can use with my NAS to serve music to my main system.

The Lumin A1 looks attractive.

Any comments will be greatly appreciated! :)


  • mrbironmrbiron Posts: 4,126
    @BlueFox has the S1...maybe he can help you out?
  • BlueFoxBlueFox Posts: 8,942
    edited May 12
    I love my S1, which is a bit better (Lumin specs) than the A1. Others love the A1 sound.

    I had the PS Audio Direct Stream DAC and it broke the second day I had it. I liked the idea of FPGA upgrades, but reliability is most important to me. The Lumin S1 has been rock solid, and sounds great on any file format; PCM, DSD, PCM->DSD, upsampled, etc. I sometimes switch around just for variety, but always come back to the native rate on any file.

    One point is I do not use a NAS. I use a direct attached USB drive to avoid the hassles with networking. As with anything, there are those who say NAS sounds better that direct attached USB, but I am more than happy with the sound.

    If you decide to get one let me know and I will point you to a dealer so you can save a few dollars.

    One point I forgot, is that the Lumin is a file player/DAC, and this saved me $4K, at least, on not having to buy a DAC power cable, and digital interconnect.
  • Moose68BashMoose68Bash Posts: 3,249

    Thank you.

    I'll check out the S1, and if I decide to buy, I'll let you know.

  • erniejadeerniejade Posts: 3,631
    I have the d1 and sbooster power supply. If using a nas, make sure you can load minimserver on it. It's free and lumin recommends it for a good reason.

    Also what kind of sound do you prefer? If you like a warmer bloom sound, the Lumin is right up your alley after it's broken in. If analytical is your taste, you might look into aurender. Either one though is not wifi capable. For that you need to look at Aurilic and talk to skip.
  • Moose68BashMoose68Bash Posts: 3,249
    @erniejade ,

    Thank you.

    I prefer a hard wired system because I have found it to be far more reliable when you've got a lot going on with wifi elsewhere in the house.

    My wife prefers warm, I prefer accurate, clear, precise.

    Skip sent me a PM about the Auralic. I'll check it out, but as I said, I prefer wired, and don't want to pay for wifi, if I don't intend to use it.

    It looks like the Lumin S1 is considerably better in SQ than the A1, but it also comes with a steeper price and does not appear to come up for sale as used or demo often.

    I'll be patient and probably give the DirectStream a good run after it comes back from the factory. I would prefer to stick with it, if it works. I like the sound, and my wife likes it as well. I guess it's a good "medium" between "warm" and "technical."

    Thanks again.
  • DSkipDSkip Posts: 12,901
    Wifi is built in and not a necessary connection. Pretty much any of those products will be hard wired as well.

    Given the notes above, if you do go with a new streamer the Altair does sound like a nice fit in sound for you. Like I said via pm, I don't want to sell you on it but merely introduce the product to you as a viable option in your search.

    I've been looking at Aurender and Lumin as well but their entry prices aren't very friendly to many. I've heard great things about them.
  • erniejadeerniejade Posts: 3,631
    While I haven't heard the Altair, I have heard the Aries ( not mini) and vega dac combo and thought it sounded wonderful. From my understanding, the Altair is darn close to tgat combo at a fraction of the price. I think with Arilic you have to have some type of ios device but supposedly thats changing soon.

    I know a lot of people think a streamer dac combo shouldn't add flavor to things but it does. Like a preamp, you change it for your liking ( tube vs ss ) In my experience, the lumin kept its warm bloom even going to a analytical sounding dac! As music as l like my lumin d1 and the lumin sound, , it definitely is not everyone's taste.

    Skip, your right the Aurender is a wonderful sounding unit but $$$###$$$# vs what you can get from Auralic
  • DSkipDSkip Posts: 12,901
    This will be my last post on it but yes, the Altair is close to the Aries/Vega combo. Too close for comfort for some given the price differences.
  • Moose68BashMoose68Bash Posts: 3,249
    @DSkip & @erniejade,

    Thanks again for your thoughtful comments and advice.

    I have to be in NYC for a few weeks for some medical treatment. When I return to New Hampshire, I'll clearly have to do a lot more work on this issue before deciding how to proceed.

    Like all our audio decisions, there are many alternatives and what is best depends on both the nature of the equipment and the preferences of the listener -- in my case my preferences and my wife's! :)
  • erniejadeerniejade Posts: 3,631
    I hope everything goes good for you and have a safe trip!!
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