I’d sell the 272 and XPS and get a 282 and Hicap DR. I don’t know how good the Node is so can’t comment on how good it is as a source for the nDac.
I think the 282 would be excellent but you really need a demo to decide for yourself.
How does the Node compare to 272/XPSDR?
It’s not in the same league (it’s on a par with a Sonos Connect).
The Node 2 with nDac/XPS to 272/XPS sounds better than 272/XPS as Dac/Preamp in my system.
I suspect the Node 2 is the weakest link too…but there is no easy fix. 1 thing at a time I guess…
I think getting the right preamp now is a good move. A 282 is the obvious choice, but I wouldn’t rule out a 202 either, if you have the chance to listen to them first. On the used market, that isn’t going to cost much, and you should make a profit by the time you’ve sold the 272 and XPS. Save that towards an NDX2, and then you’ll be done!
I have a friend running a Node into nDAC/202 and he seems happy enough with that conbo that he’s not currently looking to change to a Naim streamer. Thanks for the response as I’ve wondered myself how the 2 compare.
I found the 272 pre amp pretty good … but it does need the better psu … I used it with the 555ps and it was stunningly good for the price. My only reservation is the headphone amp which I found a big disappointment … oh the other thing - it is very sensative to placement you need a really good isolation rack.
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