The Auralic Vega G2 Streaming DAC

Auralic Vega G2 Streaming DAC

Wow. Having read so much about Auralic and their stable of digital music solutions, it was an exciting moment when their highly regarded Vega G2 arrived for audition.

The quality of the build was immediately apparent, all beautifully packaged. Installation on to the network via ethernet (there is no wireless) was very straight forward with control via the Auralic Lightning app (IOS only) quick and wonderfully fast. Setting the streaming source of choice as Tidal was equally fast and hassle free (you are offered Tidal or Quboz). UPnP (via Asset) was also established.

Connection to my listening room reference system pre-amp via RCA connectors was only possible with a cable I had to hand, a relatively entry level Chord Clearway, also brand new. All connected I had a brief listen, small grin appearing, then keeping it playing and left the room as I had been warned by the distributor, HiFi Collective, to let it warm up for a few days.

Needless to say I was soon back in the room, playing with app settings, checking set-up options both on the app and via the DTC, all very straight forward. Even in this cold brand-new state I was hearing what the fuss is about. Silence. One of the most noticeable achievements of this Auralic streamer/DAC is the way it addresses system noise. A cliché I know but the silence around the sound was just wonderful.

I then did leave the Vega G2 for four days to warm up, okay with sneaky listens on the way. Returning for a serious listen I found the smile firmly in place, as I was hearing excellent separation and clarity of quite complex lines, while very noticeable was a sense of fun and cohesion being brought through. I played numerous tracks from both my collection, and from Tidal. Pop, jazz, classical, etc with random selections of both the very well-known and the exploratory.  One of the most remarkable listens was to a 1962 Debussy Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune (Monteux/LSO). I was amazed how the Vega G2 recognised this as a very good recording and put itself to work to transform the decades old technology into a luxurious, indulgent even, listen.

Where the Vega G2 really shone was when fed with good HiDef material, or very good recordings from whatever period. As happens when you move up the HiFi chain, lesser recordings are ruthlessly revealed as just that, though if the quality is there you will hear it and revel in it.

I have heard the Vega G2 on a couple of systems, thanks to a customer’s interest, and with different speaker options. This made it apparent to me that the Vega G2 will benefit from careful system and speaker matching. Nothing new there you say. And yes, I have said for decades how imperative system matching is.

Those that know me know that I subscribe fully to the source first principal of HiFi. The Auralic Vega G2 perfectly demonstrates that if you get the source right you can transform a system.

Notes: This is a preliminary report of a listen over just a few weeks. There are numerous other features the Vega G2 is capable of which I have either yet to explore or which are now well covered in the HiFi press. I can just add to the accolades that are being handed out and look forward to years of getting to know Auralic and the Vega G2. I also look forward to the arrival of different interconnects to counter the obvious weak link in my initial system listen. Having said that, if this is what I get at this cable level …

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With thanks to HiFi Collective for the Vega G2