222/NPX300 vs 332/ND5XS2/Qutest

What would give the best SQ. NSC 222+NPX300 or a bare NAC 332/ND5XS2/Qutest into active speakers.

ND5XS2 + Qutest into 222 beats the 222’s streaming easily after doing an extensive home demo.

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Did you mean ’ into 332’?

Since the 332 is a better pre than the 222, even with 300 I think you have answered your own question😉

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No, I meant 222.
I attached my ND5XS2/Qutest to the analogue in of the 222. Played the same song from Roon and switched between the analogue in and the streaming part of the 222.
I didn’t have a NPX on hand so couldn’t hear how the 222 would sound with that. Also never heard the 332.

I just wanted to be clear on what was being compared. A 222/300 is priced similarly to nd5 xs2/quest/332, so worth knowing that the latter is (as might be expected) preferred.

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Interesting, thanks!
I thought maybe the NPX300 could improve the streamer section to a higher level than the ND5/Qutest hence my question :blush:

Also didn’t know a bare 332 would be a better pre amp than a 222 with npx.

Just seen your reply. It’s an interesting question as I am contemplating 222/300/250 and can’t afford 333/332/250. Going ND5 XS2/Qutest instead of 333 is a cheaper option. Or maybe Innuos Pulse/Quest.

Something to add to my January demo.

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By way of an update, I’ll be bringing my January demo forward due to my XS2 left channel failure. So hopefully this or next week.

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Whilst I’m sorry you’re having issues I am interested to hear about your demo.

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I’ll be sure to post my impressions - my old ears (not as good as they used to be) and dealer’s much larger room.

Once I have decided my path, then I’ll arrange a home demo to make a final decision. Exciting :smile:.

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Interesting, I’m starting to wonder whether the 222s real strength is its preamp. Did you try just the ND5XS2 into the 222?

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Not yet actually.

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Could be an interesting experiment.

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Try the 222/300 with a PhoenixNET – yielded an excellent return with the integrated streamer/pre particularly if you use subscription music services. YMMV.

Home demo done! I’ve ordered a new NSC 222 and NAP 250 as they sounded good in my room with my existing B&W speakers. The NPX 300 was a good uplift too, more musical with better timing, but I will wait until I upgrade my speakers sometime mid-year. Shame!

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