B&W 805 D3 & Naim Amplification

Hi All, Over the last few years I have slowly been moving into naim individual boxes after starting out with a Nova. I have a 282, Hi Cap, 250, (All non DR), Superlumina Speakers cables, CD5XS, HDX and a (nDAC that has not been connected yet). I have always had B&W speakers and like there sound. And also stand mounted. My first set years ago were 805 matrix’s, 4 years ago I picked up a pair of CM 6 s2 that I used with the nova. I am really thinking of moving up to the 805 d3 to use with the black boxes. So, my question is :

Would the non DR 250 be enough power and intellect to bring it the best out of the 250 given how much the 805 d3s drank power and given the rest of my setup. Just really wondering if the 250 will do the job. Looking for info from Naim/805 d3 owners and non alike. Thanks

I’m using B&W 805d3 with 282/SCDR/200 with a good result. By the way, I have tried pairing them with a NAP250 olive and got better sound quality. I believe NAP250 will drive them effortlessly, so NAP250 DR has been ordered. FYI, my room is only 18 m2.


Your room looks great ! Thanks for the info

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Also look at Dynaudio special 40 and contour 20

Yes 250.2 will be enough amplifier for an 805D3

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Your sources are a little lacking compared to the quality of your amp, and this speaker will only show up the relative weaknesses of your sources more as they will be more revealing. I would deal with that issue asap if you want a balanced, enjoyable system.


I have just replaced my old B&W 805N - lovely speaker - over the period they were in my system had driven them with 200, 300 and then finally 300DR

the 200 drove them well - as you can imagine the 300 and then 300DR was on a different level altogether - pre were 282 with HCDR and SC and then finally 252 - my sources are NDX & LP12

the 805 to me have always been a star in the B&W range - they work best with well matched control and power

only changed them when I moved to my new Kudos T505

Since I switched to Dynaudio had a few auditions of bowers D3 800 series speakers

Nothing convinced me to come back to bowers

Not at their elevated prices anyway !

The 805D3’s are a very good speaker. Currently being driven by 282/HCDR/200DR. On that basis a 250 either DR or non DR will drive them with ease.

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Interesting, I’m considering dynaudio heritage special too but afraid they are too big for my room. Since they are limited built, I cannot have a try before buy.

I am running 252/SCDR/250DR for my 804D3. Certainly enough power from 250, but be careful as the D3s are brutally transparent and will show up any flaws in the chain, so they need to feel the love from source, interconnects, dressing, mains etc.

Bowers d3 series… seems A tad bit bright and not enough of rhythmic ability compared to a Dynaudio

Needs some volume to come alive

D3 here, with 252/SCDR/250DR.
250 drives them very well. They are not at their very best for low listening in my room, but at 9ish on the dial really come alive with a gorgeous, clear presentation with very nice low end.
They can show up bright, thin recordings somewhat, but as I’ve gone up the NAC range, this has improved greatly.

Lovely little speaker.

Hey ChrisSU, I know the CD5xs is entry level for Naim & was one of the first pieces I picked up but you really feel it’s outclassed by the 250-2 and will be totally outclassed by the 805d3 ? I know the HDX will be underwater with out a power supply & a NDX-2 is out of the cards for anywhere in the near future at least. Thanks

And thanks to all !

My memory of my CD5x was of a very capable player. Moving up to CDX2 and CDS3 certainly added more but I didn’t find that the CD5x into 200/250 sounded poor, it was only on hearing upgrades that one heard the potential improvement but I wouldn’t necessarily agree that you will hear “limitations” in your CD5x. A damn fine machine as I remember it.


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Thanks, with the right music in my system it sounds very good, so I guess I will have to wait and see with the 805s.

You mentioned that you also had an NDAC. This would be a decent upgrade to both the CD5 and HDX if you connect them to it via SPDIF, but if you really want to raise the quality of your sources add a PSU upgrade to the NDAC, such as an XPS (or a 555PS, but that’s expensive).
I would then consider whether you really need both of those sources. Trading them in against an ND5XS2 would simplify your system and with the NDAC it would be better than an NDX2.

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Wow, thanks great advice. I recently was gifted the HDX that was not in working condition, I sent it in to focal/naim and for $500 with the plan I have a source to used until down the road I pick up an ndx2. The nd5xs2 is a great idea with the only exception is that I would really like a screen. But still a great idea and option. Again thank you for your advice.

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@ChrisSU is spot on! Sure I’m biased because I have the exact setup he outlines, but it really is a great spot to be in. My eyesight is so poor I couldn’t see a screen at distance except one that’s inches away from my face lol


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you can always use your digital out of your source and spend 1K or so on a DAC. Mytek or Chord come to mind