The Bluesound NODE N130 streamer is housed in a compact case with a matte finish and a touch control panel built into its top part. There is a 3.5 mm headphone output on the facade, and all the main switching is located at the rear of the case. There is an analog RCA output with the ability to operate in two modes – fixed or adjustable. The adjustable mode allows you to connect the streamer with active speakers or a power amplifier. There are coaxial and optical outputs, a subwoofer jack and a 3.5 mm Aux, combined with an optical input. A gigabit Ethernet port is used to connect to the local network, and a USB port is used to connect external drives. There is also an HDMI connector on board with support for the extended eARC return channel, which is important if you have a TV with HDMI switching.
Bluesound NODE N130 can also be used as a hub as part of the company’s wireless multi-room ecosystem, controlled using the BluOS Controller application, which works with virtually any OS (iOS, Android, macOS or Windows). The application provides access to hundreds of Internet radio stations and music streaming services, including TIDAL, Qobuz, Deezer, Spotify, etc., as well as audio files stored on local network servers. It uses the proprietary BluOS platform, which allows you to connect up to 64 streaming devices and transmit an audio stream with a resolution of 24 bits/192 kHz.
The Bluesound NODE N130 streamer is equipped with a powerful 4-core Quad-Core ARM Cortex A53 processor and a modern 32-bit DAC that supports PCM at resolutions up to 24 bit/192 kHz and allows you to work with the MQA format.
The interface in Bluesound NODE N130 is organized in an optimal way; you can understand all the wide range of functions on an intuitive level. You can play music both from your home collection on servers and from the global network from a dozen available services and hundreds of Internet radio channels. The resolution of the material is supported in the standard volume – up to 24 bit / 192 KHz inclusive. The lack of native support for the DSD format is compensated to some extent by compatibility with the latest high-resolution audio standard, Meridian MQA.
We cannot ignore such an important component of any good thing as design. The device looks very stylish and neat; you don’t want to hide it out of sight at all. The analog part of the audio path, which incorporates many years of NAD experience, distinguishes Bluesound from budget media players that are similar in functionality and even in digital content. You don’t need to be an audiophile to feel the difference literally from the first notes. The quality of workmanship allows us to recommend the Bluesound NODE N130 without reservation to owners of expensive High End installations. The sound is comparable to a high-end upsampling CD player, while advanced ergonomics and rich networking capabilities will transform your CD cabinet into a monument to a bygone era.
To control the Bluesound NODE N130 there is also a Bluesound RC1 remote control (optional). However, control using the BluOS Controller app is much more convenient, and support for Siri, Alexa and Google Voice allows you to give voice commands to the player. The model can be easily integrated into a smart home system and controlled using platforms such as Lutron, Elan, RTI and Crestron.
Characteristics of BlueSound Node 2i
Processor 4-core Quad-Core ARM Cortex A53, 1.8 GHz per core
DAC PCM5242 (32 bit/384 kHz)
Signal-to-noise ratio 113 dB
Harmonic distortion 0.002%
Operating system BluOS
Wi-Fi 802.11ac, 2.4/5 GHz
Bluetooth 5.0, reception/transmission, with support for the aptX HD codec
Apple AirPlay 2 supported
Roon Ready yes
Control using the BluOS Controller application yes
Supports Internet radio and online services TIDAL, Qobuz, Spotify, Deezer, etc. yes
Supports voice assistants Siri, Alexa and Google Voice yes
Supported file formats MP3, AAC, WMA, WMA-L, OGG, ALAC, OPUS, as well as Hi-Res audio formats (up to 24 bit/192 kHz): FLAC, WAV, AIFF, MPEG-4 SLS and MQA
Inputs 3.5 mm analog Aux (shared with digital optical Mini TOSLINK input), Gigabit Ethernet (LAN port), HDMI with extended eARC return channel, USB port for external drives Outputs
3 .5 mm headphone jack, linear RCA (fixed or adjustable to choose from), coaxial, optical, RCA connector for subwoofer
Other switching 3.5 mm trigger output, IR input Built-in
power supply Remote control
Dimensions (WxHxD) 220x46x146 mm
Weight 1.1 kg