Analog dj mixer with naim chain

hi everyone !

here comes a, maybe strange sounding, question :grinning::

has anyone ever tried an analog mixer in front of a NAC followed by NAP chain ?

phono -
into phono pre amp -
into line in mixer -
into NAC ( any input like CD or Aux or HDD or…) -
into NAP -
into Speakers

would this work ?
and would you still have the great sound attributes from the phono pre amp and the Naim NAC ?
or will the amplification that will happen in the mixer „take over“ most of the sound quality ?

what do you think ?
best regards and thank you for your thoughts!

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It would work… I have used a Naim chain to proof listen my masters… my view that the 252DR is probably the best in terms of neutrality, the 552DR digs deeper but for me for master mixing it is not the most neutral. I think if you master on the 552 unless you use master eq referencing you might end up with a slightly dark balance.
But if you are just mixing sources and instrumentation for play back it should work well subject to speakers and amp.
(You may need to match the mixer output levels on its unbalanced outputs to not overload the NAC line input. )

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If the signal level from the phono preamp is in the right range for the mixer’s sensitivity, and mixer output level set to be in right range for the NAC input it will work. Likely worth some playing with mixer output level and NAC volume control to find mixer level for best sound quality.

Re sound character, you will get whatever the mixer adds, plus the sound character of the amplification. Unless very high audio quality - mixers vary enormously, but your reference DJ doesn’t encourage - the mixer might degrade the sound compared to direct, but whether noticeable and acceptable to you is something you can only find out by trying.

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There was a mixer at the Naim Factory back in the days…


thank you very much for the swift thoughts and suggestions!
very appreciated :pray:!
i guess i might try it,
do you have suggestions on a good mixer ?
the naim one from back then looks amazing
( thank you for sharing that great pic ! )
and for sure it would be tempting if something like it would still be around :grinning:
to star with something on a budget,
have you heard of the Ecler Warm2 and do you think it could work regarding the in and output levels ?
again, thanks a lot and have a nice sunday !


I haven’t heard of the Eclar Warm2… but appears to be a popular 2+1 mixer in DJ circles along with Pioneer, Behringer, Numark etc. I would get a demo and try out… not sure I would like all rotary pots.

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Depends hugely on budget, number of inputs snd any other facilities required…

For messing around with musical instruments I use a Behringer Xenyx - pretty good quality for the price for what ut is.

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That Ecler Warm2 looks very nice. With ALPS blue pots.
Most mixers have more knobs and flashing buttons than you can shake a stick at. Great if your a superstar dj flicking and twiddling every second :star_struck: then activating the fireworks :crazy_face:
Otherwise look for something relatively simple - especially if using just vinyl.

A dj mixer is strictly speaking a creative device rather than a replay device.
I found it useful to set all tone to 0± then using another preamp input with a cd player and checking back and forth input with the mixer, to find the similar levels and to see the ball park.

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imho it`s not great to go into a preamp with a mixer which is basically another preamp.
The best result you get if you plug your mixer directly into a NAP power amp.

Depends from your expectations and sensitivity of speakers there are maybe better solutions.

I have two Mixers.
E&S DJR400
and soon a Isonoe ISO420 is comming.
Currently I drive my set up with the E&S DJR400 becauce I don`t like the synergy of NAIM and ARS. Depends from the AMP, the ARS can be a beast.

my amp it the NAP250DR

In the past I drove my system with the Supernait 3 int. amp and it was not good. this is where my experience is coming from.

so I recommend to connect direct into the AMP

edit: make sure your mixer tone control offers a bypass option in case you want the purest possible sound from your system.


why I can`t see this picture?

edit: now it works - nice idea :wink:

thank you for the suggestions on the mixers and thank you also for the recap of your experiences.
perfect !
great workflow suggestion with the seperate cd input and great hint to lokk put for the bypass option.
if i‘ll end up using the nac and a mixer, i obviously would love to change the least as possible from the nac sound.

i guess for me, getting rid of the nac in favour for a highend mixer as a pre amp is too big of a change. but lets see, you never know !
thank you all again for your support!!
have a great sunday evening!!


Thanks for that! I must admit having pondered about that like @Vegas from time to time, what would Naim do, and you reveal that they already had this at one point.

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I don’t know if Naim power amps will have enough grunt to drive PA type speakers.

It all depends on the speakers - no idea if the OP is using “PA” type speakers, but some of those can be far more efficient than hifi speakers so not necessarily an issue, of course depending how loud wanted.

A few years ago I ran a mobile rock disco, with residencies in a music pub and an underground nightclub. Speakers were large horn loaded, 105dB/octave. Amp was my hifi one, a 50WPC Radford. After one particularly good, and very loud, night, someone after saying they had thought it was a band playing before they came in, asked “What power are you running, 2k, 3k?”. He didn’t believe me when I said total 100W!

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thank you all again.
my intention was just to check if a mixer in front of a nac does work at all and if one would sacrifice much of the great naim sound that i live so much. it is just about playing music at home not as a PA or anything.
so all comments have helped me a lot.
i guess it is now to find a mixer that influences the music the least as possible and than try to do some mixes for private use only.

I think if this is what you are aiming for the transistor version of the isonoe 420 could be the kit of gear you are looking for.

talk to Justin Greenslade in person.

btw. I use the klipsch cornwall iv

thank you !! yes, that looks really nice!
thank you for sharing.
will definitely check them

PIONEER DJ AlphaTheta Euphonia Professional 4-channel Rotary Mixer
This looks fab if your mixing in digital with analogue.

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