Mini Firmware 6.2 is superb. Do it

After several years enjoying my Aries Mini I upgraded to beta Firmware 6.2 and have experienced dynamic sound I didn’t believe possible.
The upgrade makes the earlier version sound compressed, it sounds like the floodgates have opened. Soundstage is much larger especially from front to back but there is micro detail in instruments and voices that had never been audible before and more excitement.
I am using a StereoCoffee LDR passive preamp, biamped Hypex modules and DIY hybrid electrostatic speakers. Total cost around AUD$3000
Spotify, yes Spotify now sounds better than my digital files!
Congratulations and thank you.
Cheers, Rob

How does firmware do this? How does software improve sound quality in such a significant way??

I thought the performance was down to the hardware?

And how are you streaming - are you using the Mini as a Roon endpoint?

A few have reported such a “sound improvement” after a firmware update and like you I’ve scratched my head trying to understand the reason why.

If was simply down to the firmware making changes to filtering or decoding it would be straightforward, but most are just functional debugs.

All I can surmise is the reboot process that follows an update may “clear” some audible congestion, after all are devices are just “computers” and it quite often helps to reboot those once in a while and there’s no denying they do run smoother afterwards, wonder if “sound improvement” is the audio equivalent!

When was 6.2 released? I am on it but not sure when the changeover happened. I will say the system is sounding great these days not sure if that made a difference or not.

According to this, 6.2.1 was released 3rd September 2019, it was primarily to resolve certain Radio links not playing.

https://support.auralic.com/hc/en-us/articles/206579677-Current-Device-Firmware

Ah ok thanks and that long ago I doubt its why my system sounds good now but I am sure it doesn’t hurt. I will say LDS has been flawless in operation lately.

Must admit since getting the WiFi sorted my Altair is now back up to speed and sounding very good as well, it just doesn’t seem to put a foot wrong.

In fact I’ve yet to add an album that doesn’t sound good and I even like the job it does with high bit rate Internet Radio.

Hi, RobMid…

It’s great that you discovered the 6.xx firmware. The improvement in sound quality is immediately noticeable over FW 5.8 I don’t know why the 6 series firmware has not been made the release fw for the Aries Hardware. Even the earliest beta 6’s were stable.

If you are still using the wall wart that came with your Mini, do replace it with something better. You will hear additional improvements in sound quality. Likewise, an outboard DAC will almost certainly best the Mini’s internal DAC.

The other components of your system are quite interesting. Kudos on the DIY electrostatics. Somewhere on this forum there is a place to share system pics and descriptions.

Anyway, I totally agree 6.2.1 is superb. All the best…

Thanks for your encouragement.

The Mini was a worthwhile investment apart for them being made redundant, so I feel privileged to have it. But if 6.2.1 was available with the first release they would have sold millions of them.

I moved to the iFi iPower plug pack from the supplied wall wart and the difference in quality really surprised me.

Cheers, Rob

How can I update the Mini‘s firmware to the most recent release version? Still running on v5.8. Cheers, Oliver

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Hi. As I recall I updated to the beta version which is tricky to find because you need to give permission for anything to happen.
You can sign up to beta updates by going into your profile which has a silhouette of a head in the Mini control panel.
Just follow the instructions. Once you have signed up you can wait for the upgrade to load or you can just unplug the Mini and plug it again.
If you need more information you can find it on this forum by doing a search for beta testing.
Hope this helps put you on the right track.
Cheers, Rob

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Is 6.2 ever “officially” going to be available to the Mini?

You are wetting my appetite with the thought of 6.2 upping the sound quality significantly (still can’t believe that’s possible).

But for now I needed to leave the Mini on 5.8 while optimising my Wi-Fi - because otherwise I wouldn’t know if the improvement in sound etc was due to the Wi-Fi or firmware!

I’m happy that I have a slick wireless solution now after much fiddling and testing- so, if 6.2 really does “sound” better - I need to be on that bandwagon.

I’m happy to have the infrastructure sorted our first though for the supporting foundation of all this.

Hi, Audiostreamer…

6.2 does sound that much better that I would encourage upgrading to 6.2 sooner rather than later.

In my own system I have experimented with wireless and wired Ethernet, and could not detect any audible difference. I settled on using a wired connection because of wired’s superior speed and connection reliability. I use WiFi for LDS control, of course.

In the vast majority of implementations I would guess that network and network hardware changes will have a subtle effect on sound quality, if any at all. The changes in 6.2.1 vs 5.8 are quite noticeable and enjoyable. That’s my experience, anyway.

Hi,

For those of you hearing an improvement, are you using the mini’s internal DAC or an external DAC?

Thanks,
Chris.

I’m using internal the DAC with volume disabled, filter mode Precise and input Airplay. Source Spotify music quality Very High. Level controlled via Spotify app and/or StereoCoffee2020 LDR Passive Preamp.
Cheers, Rob

Passive preamp - interesting me too (not LDR though).

My Mini is powered by Auralic’s linear PSU and connects to a vintage Arcam Black Box 1 TDA1541 DAC - onto an NVA P50SA (passive stepped attenuator) - then Croft 7 valve/mosfet power amp.

Please keep an eye on firmware 6.2 - others are complaining that it’s unstable on old kit (Aries) as a way to ‘make’ you upgrade to newer kit - so report back please in a Month if the Mini is still performing as it should be (or not).

I will add that I would like to now try out the Internal DAC after spending ages trying to optimise the wireless and support infrastructure. I believe in getting the infrastructure ‘solid’ before chopping and changing DACs - because the back-end architecture has a significant influence on SQ.

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Just upgraded to FW 6.2.1. Listening through my favorite music for two hours now and I would describe the improvement in SQ like „another curtain withdrawn between me and the musicians“. Perhaps someone from the firmware authors can explain „how“?
Anyway, I use the internal DAC of the Mini. The improvement is noticeable with the internal SSD drive as it is with streaming (Tidal).
The SQ upgrade is comparable to the improvement after addition of the linear power supply.
All in all: great job Auralic!

So that’s TWO of you reporting a significant upgraded to the sound of the Mini after installing 6.2.1.

Why is this not a general release?

Can anyone explain why this is something not officially and generally available to the Mini?

Why is this not a general release?

I suppose there are some problems still. One is the library scan issue, which I ran into today. New album a copied to internal SSD didn’t show up after rescan. Solution: delete the path of the music library and build it up anew. Downgrade to firmware 5.8 didn’t help in first place, so one could stay with 6.2.1.

While temporarily back with FW 5.8 I could verify the better SQ of 6.2.1.

Enjoy re-discovering the music! :smiley:

OK I have requested to support to have the Mini upgraded (I think that’s what you do) - so when approved I will see (hear) for myself.

Anyone here just use the Mini as a transport to a hi-end DAC?