USB VS AES/EBU VS Digital Coax


Good day, I just purchased the Aries G2, it will be connected to a Mytek Brooklyn DAC with the MQA passthrough enable. Currently I own a high quality digital coax cable from Audioquest, the model is Eagle Eye, this is a 100% pure silver cable which retails for about $1,000 CAD. Obviously I would like to keep the cable and use it between my DAC and the Aries G2. The Aries G2 will be almost exclusively used to stream Tidal and whenever possible take advantage of MQA. Right now from a Bluesound Node 2 connected by digital coax to the DAC, from Tidal I can stream 24/352.8, will I get the same performance with the Aries G2? The instruction manual indicate this could only be achieved through the Lightning or USB cable. Am I reading/understanding correctly? This would be odd that on a $500 Bluesound Node 2, I could get this throughput whereas I could not from a $4000 Aires G2 unless I USE USB.

Also, what, sonically is the preferred connection between the Aries G2 and the Mytek Brooklyn? USB, AES/EBU or digital coax?


With coaxial you can not output at 24/352. Tidal expose you the stream processed but the output of the node will be at max 24/96 or 192 for PCM.

If your are using MQA, the first unfold can be sent at 24/92 and the DAC will do the rest to 24/352. Or your node can send the untouched MQA stream (24/48) and all the rest will be done by the DAC.

Try with a DSD128 file, it will not work for sure !


If you want MQA to be handled by your DAC, you should go to ARIES G2’s setting and enable ‘MQA Passthrough’ option, which will send unprocessed signal to your DAC. Please also make sure you do not use volume control function of ARIES G2 as well (disable volume control) as any process will break MQA’s encryption. The USB or Coax output does not really matter, you can use any that you want and pick up one that you believe sounds best with your DAC.


Thanks - I also have a similar question. I finally triggered the Aries G1 and can’t for it to arrive. I will be connecting the G1 to Mytek Brooklyn DAC+. I have a audio quest USB Cable. My DAC supports AES/EBU. I would mostly play music from an external drive connected to the G1, WD NAS and Tidal.
I am contemplating getting a AES/EBU cable.
Which is the better option USB or AES/EBU.


I was using a high quality solid silver digital coax and switch it to a high quality solid silver USB and saw a decent improvement. Mytek handles my Aries G2 beautifully. Now I can’t help thinking if the Vega G2 will be a huge step up or the Brooklyn is that good?


Thanks Saby.

Finally the Aries G1 arrived yesterday. The installation was breeze and Tidal streaming seamless. For the best SQ input and output would appreciate some suggestions:
Input Options

  1. HDD connected to USB port of Aries G1 in the rear
  2. WD EX2 Ultra NAS streaming
  3. Tidal Streaming
    If i am correct the quality of the SQ we in the reverse order - tidal being the best and so on.
    Output Options:
  4. AES/EBU Digital output option in Aries G1 and connected to Mytek Brooklyn
  5. USB Connected from Aries to G1.
    Will the SQ better in USB rather than AES/EBU?
    Will is there a requirement to select the output as Digital or DAC in Lighting DS?
    Maybe Auralic experts can provide some light on the above.



Minor Correction:
5. USB connected from Aries G1 to Mytek Brooklyn.


Originally I connected the Aries to the Mytek Brooklyn through a high quality all silver Audioquest digital coax. Then, in order to benefit for all the power of DSD, I decided to connect the Aires with a high quality Audioquest all Silver USB. Otherwise you are limiting the throughput of DSD without USB. If you do not have any DSD and are not planning to have any than it does not matter. I did find it was more resolving with USB than digital coax but I would not make any bet on A/B testing. As for AES/EBU, this is the equivalent of using XLR and is used in the pro industry. I have never used it so I would not know. But I know that USB is the only which will not limit the throughput of DSD. Hope this help. If someone wants to add anything or correct me, please do so.


It depends of the DAC and how the manufacturer handle each connection type too. Sometimes the USB input is better than the AES and for other some it’s the opposite. It’s not only related to the streamer only but the DAC too.

The best option is to test. In my case with an Aries G2 and a Totaldac the AES is better. Same thing with a dCS DAC.




I`m using the Aries G1 with McIntosh C52 (USB fixed) and prefer the coax - also I play little high res and coax can handle up to 192 kHz anyways I believe - so all is good.

Read an interview with Schiit recently - they also seem to prefer the coax connection.


can anyone please help me
i have been racking my brains for the past few weeks about something that should be so simple.
i purchased the aries g1 which was an ex display model and they was using it conected via usb which was fine i got it home and was also using the usb input .
i have tried using the coax and the optical but both will not work , i have tried everything in the settings and still the aries is not recognizing these inputs only the usb .
i tried the user interface but cant find anything there all the settings are the same as the on screen menu on the player
how the hell do i get these inputs to work its driving me crazy .
thank you hope you can help .


please help how to i assign the coax and optical inputs
on the g1.


Have a look at the manual?

Go to your Lightning Settings page, look on the screen of your Aries after boot up for the IP Adress.
Select Hardware Setup in the left side menu, and then under Streamer Output, select Aries G1 Digital Outputs

You have purchased a device which uses separate clocks for USB and Digital output. That means they cannot be in use at the same time.


Hello there

All this time I was looking for the option that says coax or optical did not think the auralic digital outputs was the right one how stupid do I feel looking at it now what the he’ll was I thinking .

Thanks for your help .


In my setup all files below 24/96 are sent via AES to an AudioAero Dac and all files above 24/192 are sent via USB to a Burson Audio Dac. It is a bit painful to have to switch manually the digital outputs of the Aries G1 with the insight menu. A simpler remote control function would help. :confounded:


I agree, I wouldn’t mind running both my DACs at the same time but it’s almost easier swapping cables than reprogramming my G2.


Or, you guys could settle on one main output? :wink: Just select a DAC that can handle all of your media, they do exist you know? :slight_smile:
That said, i agree it’s a bit fiddly to switch output.
(I sometimes use the digital out to my Moon 430HAD for headphone listening)