Review on Up2Stream HD DAC

I already have some experience with the Products from Arylic, the S10 and the Mini V3 pcb.

They all accept Hi Res Files (not DSD) up to 192 but then down-sample to 44.1KHz/16bits.

I was mightily impressed by the flexibility of these pocket money streamers (pocket money in terms of Audiophile spends of being less than £100),

S10 Connectivity USB, Wifi, Network, Bluetooth, aux input, aux output

Mini V3 has the same but no network port but what it does have is the ability to add SPDIF and an external DAC. I added an ESS9023 and SPDIF and improved the sound quality (already pretty good).

The Arylic products can be controlled by a phone app, a Web Link or IR remote. They can be linked as a multiroom setup and have extensive software sound manipulation possibilities via the purchase of a $20 software app see ACPWorkbench Stereo Equalizer Software-Arylic.com For more details.

For Music connectivity;

Spotify connect ,Airplay, Qplay, DLNA, UPnP, Spotify, Deezer, Tidal, Qobuz, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, Napster and Amazon music amongst others in their ability to connect to Music Services.

In Terms of a Bang for Bucks Streamer you have to spent a hell of a lot more to start to outperform them.

What Makes the Up2Stream HD DAC different is that this time around it doesn’t down sample but outputs up to 24/192 and also has APTX HD and Airplay 2. Still no DSD capability or MQA (although there is talk about this being included in a future software update). This is a relatively new product Jan 2022 launch and its pretty good but a lot dearer at $249 (watch out for offers, I picked mine up with a substantial discount). Up2Stream HD DAC - High-Res Multiroom Wireless Aptx HD Audio Streaming – Arylic

It’s a bare board setup probably around Raspberry Pi size but totally designed around audio with the Dac being an ESS 9038Q2m.

It has SPDIF optical and Coaxial, RCA outputs, IIS output among access to MCU GPIO pins for add on devices.

Straight off the Bat it sounds really good whither I feed the analogue output to my Cayin Valve amp or feed the RME ADI-2 DAC FS by SPDIF.

Currently its only controllable via the Phone app, there is no Web app yet, a separate purchase IR controller is available. The Software tool that is used on the other Arylic products isn’t available yet.

So why buy it? If all it is offering Full HD (24/192) for some streaming apps Qobuz HD and Tidal HiFi and DNLA, UPNP.

Well, I’m putting my faith in Arylics promises of future updates including an External Display, they are promising Amazon HD (Yes Please) and MQA (not fussed).

They have a great User Forum and some folks out there are using some of the DIY boards for great builds and multiroom systems. I’ve printed a 3d case for mine (see pics)

I’m currently listening to this using a set of HEDD Headphones through my RME and loving it even at 16bit Amazon feed. So do yourself a favour check out the Arylic products both your ears and pockets will be pleasantly surprised.




4 Likes

@C3pored Craig,

Thanks for sharing your experiences :+1:

I have one on order so looking forward to listening to it. The Tidal Connect Angle will be important for some friends of mine :slight_smile:

Happy Listening, Kevin

Hi, can you share the case specification for shearch sites where can do in Spain, Thanks.

I’ve loaded the design for the case into Thingiverse.

You can download it from there for printing

Best Wishes

1 Like

Hi, very thanks.

Regards.

Hi all, i has been received my new UP2Stream HD, i have one question:

Is this module compatible with new board?

Up2Stream S/PDIF In Board : Lacking a digital input for your DIY board but want an easy solution? The S/PDIF input board lets you easily add S/PDIF input to your device. It contains both an Optical input and Coaxial input jack. With this board, you can connect any device with S/PDIF output as a digital audio input source.

ETA for case?

Thanks.

Hi, the SPDIF IN board should be used, but has some issues:
1, the PINs are not related, make sure connect the correspondly based on silkprint.
2, the accessory has OPT and COAX, these two shares the SPDIF pin, so if you need to seperate OPT and COAX, you need to try to modify the board manually.

Hi, what this connector is for: (+/-12V balance output for external device). Are there pins on the board for activating an external amplifier, like they were on previous GPIO1 and GPIO2 boards?

This +/- 12V is used drive external OP chip for pre amplify

Hi @zpl1025 ,

Could you just clarify:

  • The HD has COA-IN and GND on its silk screen, presumably these are direct connections for coax SPDIF input and no other circuitry is needed?
  • There is no option on the 4Stream app to select Coax input. Is it shared when Optical is selected?

Many thanks.

Hi Simon,

  • The Optical is OK. The COAX would have some issue, and need an extra circuit to regular the signal for consumer devices.

  • The 2 inputs are seperated.

Hi Man,
I’m entirely in accord with you …:100: % …!!!
I’m an happy user of an Arylic S50 Pro that I used to play Hi-Res contents from Amazon Music Unlimited with Android smartphones.

Used in BT mode 'cause I’ld use original Amazon App and above all , Poweramp Equalizer that allowed me a perfect frequencies setup.

Attracted by the new Up2Steam HD DAC , which promised better sound performance with a new ESS DAC and moreover “No Downsampling”… 1: 1 reproduction.

After some time I broke the delay and took it, completed with its beautiful case and replaced the S50 Pro .

Wooahhww … !!! never purchase has proved more appropriate …!

Used in Wi-Fi mode (here the difference with BT is noticeable), the effect does not resemble a Streamer replacement. Much more … as if I had changed the whole HI-FI composition from good but basic brands to HI-END McKintosh compositions or similar … !!!

My old Pioneer 6500 Mk.II Amp connected to a basic EQ Beringher FQB 800 and to KEF Q55 Mk.II standfloor speakers, with new Up2Stream HD DAC are able to give “Best of Themselves” with a Quality never heard before, turning into a New Life.

With Volume knob at 1 1/2 my Old Hi-Fi reproduces a real “Wall of Sound”. Impressive power and clarity of sound, perfect channel separation, accurate balancing of output for different Instruments and Voices, details and clarity never heard before.

Creation of a Powerful and Detailed Soundstage with Voices & Instruments emissions perfectly distinguishable & integrated with each others … !!!

Well … listen Freddy Mercury singing “Love of my Life” closing my eyes… gives the impression of having “now” Queen in Concert directly in my living room … !!!

Wouwhh … Really Awesome … !!!

My sincere congratulations to Fran who studied and implemented the creation of this “Jewel” and to Joy who, as always, took care of the order & delivery phases in an impeccable way.

If someone want to play his Old Hi-Fi with an unsuspected quality, never heard before…purchase of Up2Stream HD DAC Card is a real blessing, the most well-spent money with truly effective and detectable effects at first listening of any Know Song.

Only a prayer to Fran…add the direct access to Amazon Music App, as is for Spotify and Tidal yet.

Up2Stream HD DAC … try it and … you won’t be able to do without it anymore . A True (Good) Addiction … !!!

Are the tone and loudness on, and I can clearly see that the bass and treble are not in zero position? it’s anything but uncolored, natural sound… that Behringer EQ just makes the whole sound worse.

Never say that…read my review with attention…!!!
Beringher EQ isn’t the Top, ok., alls know this…
But is a very small stuff and in my setup space I cannot put nothing of more big…!
Moreover is very cheap and with my Hi-Fi,
possibilities to equalize for me are better that little distortions create by EQ (btw as you 've “x-rayed” my photo, is setted at Gain =0…no Amp.!)
In Wi-Fi mode there isn’t other way, 'cause 4stream EQ is …“Unusable”…
In BT mode I can use original Amazon Music App and PowerAmp EQ that is a good Digital EQ and I can “exclude” Beringher EQ. (but also Digitals EQ put some distorsion), but Sound Quality is low if compared to Wi-Fi.
I"m a boomer …and 've a Precise Sound Taste that I want ear in my listening sessions.
Nothing is “Perfect” in this world, not even music, but…that doesn’t mean it can’t be… “Beautiful” …!
Ciao Zitev…'ve a Nice Life .:rainbow:

I understand, but then what is the right to exist of the HD device in such a system, since the weak link here is not the source device, but everything else.

The Right to exist it that I 've improve a a lot the Sonic Perfomance Vs. S50 Pro without spent a fortune…
This is my 18th Hi-Fi that my Father buyed as a gift for my School Exams…!
Now…my Father passed away and …I’m 63th…
Thus …I don’t want change nothing ,'cause it has an “Emotional” value (except the HD Board) and I’m Very Happy with this solution .(with turntable, receiver and CD player too).
Little distorsion made sound more warm and realistic… this is Vinyl Sound…!!! and I’ve no problems with my Hi-Fi … I love It…!!!
Sorry if you don’t like but…it has to satisfy me, no others.

Ciao Zitev and …by the way what is your setup.?

I understand. It is important that one is satisfied with the sound of one’s own equipment, because in the end the point is just the enjoyment of listening to music, not the constant and unnecessary hi-fi tuning. In my opinion, an audio device is a good starting point if it is capable of linear sound reproduction without any eq correction, the sound has enough treble and low even without eq, there are no holes and highlights in the sound, etc. The use of the equalizer and the tone correction of the DSPs only cover up the errors rather than improving them. the “hot” sound caused by eq quickly becomes tiring, and in the case of music with acoustic instruments, it results in an unnatural sound. Correct hearing can be learned, you have to get used to the correct sound image, the perhaps dry, less rich sound image at first will probably be closer to the originally planned, mixed sound. The own sound, background noise, and distortion of the devices inserted in the signal path can only worsen the result, not improve it. But that’s just my opinion, if someone has different listening habits, enjoys music differently, that’s their business… :slight_smile:

100% correct. To me, less is more, reduce the signal path as much as you can.
Buy the best that you can afford and don’t be drawn into “snake oil” theories including overpriced interconnects and cables.

1 Like

Audio philosophy: Listening Approach

Any passion has a beginning and although the spark that sparked my interest in high fidelity at the time was a splendid ensemble of SONY-branded components - the classic trio of amplifier, cassette deck and tuner to add speakers and turntables - for some time I had already been listening (or in possession) of a small and compact all-in-one system typical of those times: a whole under the PERSER brand, an Italian brand that was present together with EMERSON on the market, certainly someone will remember them.
It was a very simple system whose cabinet - little more than an upside-down fruit box so light it was - contained a fully automatic turntable and a cassette recorder; the equipment relative to the speakers included two elements of definable medium size covered in embossed black vinyl and equipped with an absolutely fixed grille, which is why it was not known the number of channels (in any case two) or the quality of the speakers.There were no paturnies of an audiophile shotgun, there were no cables, continuous alienations and waltz turns related to the system components, obsessive attention to the millimeter positioning of the speakers or to the perfect leveling of the turntable, you just listened…
Regardless of these technical connotations, however, something that at the time was not considered that much, this simple and economical system was able to provide thrills every time I turned it on.
This is easily explained: listening to music was the basis of everything. I remember with vivid clarity the afternoons spent listening to records both alone and in the company of friends, the continuous alternation of black and round “pieces of plastic” that cyclically landed on the plate, the thrill of inserting the cassette of the group’s latest success or favorite singer and then off, we listened.
Good times, but regardless of the nostalgia linked to age - on the other hand this is not the reason that led to the writing of this article - it was evidently the approach to listening to be quite different from what, prey to a ’ evolution not necessarily opportune, it would come later.
In other words, an increasingly limited interaction with one’s own system .
The components of the past were rich in controls - some believe too much - but they allowed the user to interact with their system in an attempt to obtain a sound profile that was consistent with their tastes and in part, knowing the importance of environment in the general economy of an audio system, also allowed the possibility of compensating for what were the less positive characteristics of the Listening room.
Putting on a disc was a real liturgy: the propaedeutic lighting of the system preceded the choice of the disc, an operation that took place carefully scrolling the shelf where it was stored; it was carefully extracted from the case and carefully placed on the plate, a small cleaning with the inevitable carbon fiber brush and the listening started.
In addition to these operations, which can be defined as basic, the tone controls have been activated or - in the case of listening at a particularly low level - the physiological compensation circuit has been inserted (better known as LOUDNESS and unfortunately often feared) or still , in case of availability, filters have been inserted to further improve the timbre, all aimed at the pleasure of listening. Over time, a whole series of considerations would have emerged that would have led to a slow elimination of everything that contributed to the enjoyment of listening, and of that playful aspect inherent in every passion - a characteristic that makes us entertain, makes us happy in living the hobby we have chosen - slowly but surely it will diminish until the approach to listening becomes sterile, cold, detached and mechanical. Something that has led many to move away from this passion, which can be assimilated by superimposing certain relationships where one subject is totally dominated by the other, something that soon leads to disaffection - inevitably - precisely due to the lack of interaction. You will surely remember the time when an amplifier consisted of power button, input selector and volume control, nothing else was allowed in the name of purity. This, again on the basis of often obscure or worse fictitious considerations, was followed by an approach to cold listening, a continuous sound autopsy aimed at identifying the inevitable defect - obviously present also in very expensive systems - accessory of this passion that has done so much damage to be able to get rid of the pleasure of listening to good music without asking too many (and often useless) questions. Over time - despite many companies never giving up - see ACCUPHASE, LUXMAN or McINTOSH who have always maintained a wealth of controls in their products - these beloved / hated controls reappeared on the front panels and it was finally possible to interact with new ones with your own. audio system rediscovering the emotion of participatory listening, certainly more engaging and active.
In conclusion, the suggestion is to always act in order to obtain the best possible result when listening, and if to do this it is necessary to retouch through the tone controls there is no problem, it is important that the emotion arrives in clear way … … always better than going crazy with cables and accessories that are unlikely in search of the Holy (and nowhere to be found) Grail. As usual, great plays !!!

(AF DIGITALE Diego Scardocci 14 Agosto 2022)
(Translate from Italian > Google Translate, Sorry )

Audio philosophy: Listening Approach

Any passion has a beginning and although the spark that sparked my interest in high fidelity at the time was a splendid ensemble of SONY-branded components - the classic trio of amplifier, cassette deck and tuner to add speakers and turntables - for some time I had already been listening (or in possession) of a small and compact all-in-one system typical of those times: a whole under the PERSER brand, an Italian brand that was present together with EMERSON on the market, certainly someone will remember them.
It was a very simple system whose cabinet - little more than an upside-down fruit box so light it was - contained a fully automatic turntable and a cassette recorder; the equipment relative to the speakers included two elements of definable medium size covered in embossed black vinyl and equipped with an absolutely fixed grille, which is why it was not known the number of channels (in any case two) or the quality of the speakers.There were no paturnies of an audiophile shotgun, there were no cables, continuous alienations and waltz turns related to the system components, obsessive attention to the millimeter positioning of the speakers or to the perfect leveling of the turntable, you just listened…
Regardless of these technical connotations, however, something that at the time was not considered that much, this simple and economical system was able to provide thrills every time I turned it on.
This is easily explained: listening to music was the basis of everything. I remember with vivid clarity the afternoons spent listening to records both alone and in the company of friends, the continuous alternation of black and round “pieces of plastic” that cyclically landed on the plate, the thrill of inserting the cassette of the group’s latest success or favorite singer and then off, we listened.
Good times, but regardless of the nostalgia linked to age - on the other hand this is not the reason that led to the writing of this article - it was evidently the approach to listening to be quite different from what, prey to a ’ evolution not necessarily opportune, it would come later.
In other words, an increasingly limited interaction with one’s own system .
The components of the past were rich in controls - some believe too much - but they allowed the user to interact with their system in an attempt to obtain a sound profile that was consistent with their tastes and in part, knowing the importance of environment in the general economy of an audio system, also allowed the possibility of compensating for what were the less positive characteristics of the Listening room.
Putting on a disc was a real liturgy: the propaedeutic lighting of the system preceded the choice of the disc, an operation that took place carefully scrolling the shelf where it was stored; it was carefully extracted from the case and carefully placed on the plate, a small cleaning with the inevitable carbon fiber brush and the listening started.
In addition to these operations, which can be defined as basic, the tone controls have been activated or - in the case of listening at a particularly low level - the physiological compensation circuit has been inserted (better known as LOUDNESS and unfortunately often feared) or still , in case of availability, filters have been inserted to further improve the timbre, all aimed at the pleasure of listening. Over time, a whole series of considerations would have emerged that would have led to a slow elimination of everything that contributed to the enjoyment of listening, and of that playful aspect inherent in every passion - a characteristic that makes us entertain, makes us happy in living the hobby we have chosen - slowly but surely it will diminish until the approach to listening becomes sterile, cold, detached and mechanical. Something that has led many to move away from this passion, which can be assimilated by superimposing certain relationships where one subject is totally dominated by the other, something that soon leads to disaffection - inevitably - precisely due to the lack of interaction. You will surely remember the time when an amplifier consisted of power button, input selector and volume control, nothing else was allowed in the name of purity. This, again on the basis of often obscure or worse fictitious considerations, was followed by an approach to cold listening, a continuous sound autopsy aimed at identifying the inevitable defect - obviously present also in very expensive systems - accessory of this passion that has done so much damage to be able to get rid of the pleasure of listening to good music without asking too many (and often useless) questions. Over time - despite many companies never giving up - see ACCUPHASE, LUXMAN or McINTOSH who have always maintained a wealth of controls in their products - these beloved / hated controls reappeared on the front panels and it was finally possible to interact with new ones with your own. audio system rediscovering the emotion of participatory listening, certainly more engaging and active.
In conclusion, the suggestion is to always act in order to obtain the best possible result when listening, and if to do this it is necessary to retouch through the tone controls there is no problem, it is important that the emotion arrives in clear way … … always better than going crazy with cables and accessories that are unlikely in search of the Holy (and nowhere to be found) Grail. As usual, great plays !!!

(AF DIGITALE Diego Scardocci 14 Agosto 2022)
(Translate from Italian > Google Translate, Sorry )…