Atom Headphone Edition plus speakers?

I’m currently enjoying my headphone edition with phones and send music to my muso gen 1 via multiroom.

I’m considering my options using the Atom as pre amp. Has anyone experience of active speakers?

Eg. Acoustic Energy AE1 or Elac Navis ARB51 active speakers?

Alternatively I could go for a Naim power amp and passive speakers? Or indeed a non-Naim power amp. Possibly Benchmark AH2B? I’m likely to be streaming from my Atom as a source, plus some ripped CDs. Suggestions welcome.

Focal do some active speakers that would be a good match and likely have been tried together already by Naim and Focal.

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I’m a big fan of actives, so a few ideas:

  • Acoustic Energy AE1 - not heard these, but they are well reviewed and look worthy of an audition

  • ATC SCM40a - I have these, so I’m clearly biased :slight_smile:

  • Various Genelec options - these are typically used in studio’s, so very neutral. I have these on my short list for a second system.


Thanks Paul, I’ll explore. I do not think they are favoured by many on here though! I do like my Focal Clear MG headphones though.

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Currently running, as a interim step, Atom HE and ATC SCM40A :ok_hand:


Interim to a 272 successor or something else?

I guess it depends how much money and how big active speakers you want/spend. If you want to keep costs and size down, then I would certainly have a listen to the Acoustic Energy AE1 actives. I have had various versions of the passives and they have never failed to shine. Just a question of a demonstration with the Atom HE, as to whether a suitable match. Next up, is a big jump to something like ATC SCM19A or the 40A. I can say the Atom HE is a match with the 40A. In fact i would not put it that far behind a Auralic Vega G2.1. You could try with Dutch and Dutch 8C speakers, but this is a unknown to me and maybe to in balanced .

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I wish I could say more, but I would be expelled from the forum - again :blush:

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They are not my favourite speakers, but Focal does make good speakers and in the right system and room can sound very good. I have SCM40s powered by a 250DR. The active version of them is a popular choice here and I would agree with @Oxbow the 40s would go well if you have enough space for them, then there are the SCM19 actives which are significantly cheaper. Room size and form factor of speakers will also dictate your choice, both the ATCs are floor standers (though the passive SCM19s are stand-mounted). In reality, you need to go out and listen to a few and make your own mind up and if possible take them home for a home trial.

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Thank you for your suggestions and advice.

Room is small 4m x 7m with an open arch to another room. In the past I’ve had Dynaudio floorstanders, but my partner has got used to the muso as a one box solution. I’m thinking that small stand mounted might be negotiated in the living space. But I need to arrange a demo.

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Atom HE + AE1s + 1xREL t7i here.
My room is approx 6x4 and speakers fire across the room. Beware AE1s are rear ported, have some mean bass and need room to breathe behind them.
I can’t get rid of some room modes, but otherwise very happy with the setup, in the end not many songs bring the issue to the forefront.

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PMC’s Result6 active speakers provide a front-firing port if space is an issue. I have not heard them, but they have received good reviews. PMC speakers are generally a good pairing with Naim gear. As always, a home demo is recommended.

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Thank you. Yes my Dynaudio floorstanders needed to be placed a metre out into the room for best effect. There can be four of us in the room at times as my children have grown. I guess this is why I didn’t replace them or my system and bought the muso.

DynaAudio also produce a range of actives that might work well.

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Thanks. I’ve liked the sound of their passives in the past.

Another fan of actives here, ATC SCM40s in my case. The first time I heard active ATCs I knew I had to own a pair. For my tastes in music, nothing at the price quite matches them in presenting a convincing presentation of the musicians and they ooze musical enjoyment. Big smiles when I listen even after a couple of years with the setup.

However, they are quite big (active 19s are the same size) and, in spite of being sealed boxes, they do benefit from positioning some distance from rear and side walls. I’m sure they’d work well in a 4x7m room (mine’s somewhat smaller than that) but domestic acceptability is important. I’m fortunate … my wife is very tolerant of my hifi addiction. Were it otherwise, I’d still be considering active speakers from other manufacturers.


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Thanks Roger,
I guess it’s a tribute to the Muso that she values the space saved even though we don’t get the stereo image or bass that I used to enjoy. Plenty of the Naim sound is packed in that compact box. I’ll think about the alternatives and perhaps make up some dummy boxes, to gauge dimensions. I might yet end up with a Muso Gen 2?

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