Building a New System

I am in the process of building a new system, for my partner. She already has a set of Wharfedale Diamonds, so those are the basis. Wanted are an Amp, a CD player & a Record Deck.

So far…

Amp - Rega Brio - pre-loved (from eBay)
CD Player - either a Rega Apollo or a Naim CD5si - both ex-dem [with 2 years warranty]
Record Deck - Rega Planar 3 (fitted with a Goldring 2200 cartridge) - pre-loved [with 3 months warranty]

I have the 2 CD players & the Planar 3 at mine, for initial listening. The Rega Brio is expected to be delivered today.

Well… both the Rega Apollo & the Naim CD5si, sound fabulous, with my 82/250, driving my Kudos X3’s.

More updates may follow…!!


The Rega Brio has now been delivered.

We are all set for some listening, from tomorrow… :smiley:


My first proper pair of speakers were Wharfdale Diamonds, albeit from 1985 and £63 from Comet in Exeter. Had then for 15 years. Zero real bass though from that 5" rubber driver. Served me well through 3 years at Yorkshire’s finest University.

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These Diamonds were already ‘in situ’. So we will start with them.

Need to fix something, before chopping and changing… :expressionless:

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NAIT 50 perhaps?
A friend has a brio with a P3 (using B&W bookshelf speakers) decent setup to be fair.
A Naim CD5 XS is worth a look as it has a digital output and options for a PSU like a Flatcap or HiCap.
Thst opens up numerous upgrade options down the line but it’s also a solid standalone CD player from the off.

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Lols… :crazy_face: Too Much Money…!

A Nait 3R might be a candidate. Internal phono is a requirement (*).
And I have several sets of 3xx phono boards…

Or… I could ‘loan’ out my 72/140… :astonished:

[* - any external ‘boxes’ are a no-no at present. Early Days.]

I had a Brio-R (my daughter has it now) a great amp and pretty decent mm phono stage (line 1).
However I am a Rega fan boy.
The choice will of course be a combination of sound and aesthetics.
Only a bad case of gas would give need to change any of your selections.

Good luck and enjoy the auditioning.

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Well… I am a former Rega fan…! My first good TT was a Planar 2, back in 1977. Much later I got a Rega Apollo CD player - and I still have a Rega Ear headphone amp…!!!

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Here is a picture of the back of the Rega Brio in question -

Not Rega knowledgeable enough to know which version this is… :thinking:

(its just says Brio…)

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Here is the ‘trial’ set up, with the Rega Apollo sitting on my LP12’s lid… :open_mouth:

(the eagle eyed may spot another Rega item in this picture)

I suspect it is the next generation after the Brio-R.
I see they have also marked the input 1 for phono, which is helpful :smiley:

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I’m sure the Apollo won’t mind :wink: and there is space for the Brio.

My eyes are more ‘mole’ like than ‘eagle’, haha I see the phones amp.

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That will go on the spare shelf (*), below the NAC82 and above the NAP250… :crazy_face:

[* - this might just be intended for some future addition…!!]

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Time for an Update. Testing and listening has now been completed, at mine. Everything ‘worked’ - nothing was broken or sounding weird.

Initial listening was between the Rega Apollo and the Naim CD5si into my 82/250. Both are ex-dem units. Just swapping between the inputs. The 2 clearly sounded different - and my (non audiophile) partner could hear this. Conclusion - both very good, but Naim was … better.

Next swapped in the Rega Brio (from eBay). The outputs sockets are close to Naim Standard, but not… So my Naim SA8’s had to come apart. Once up & running, the little Brio sounded fabulous, driving my Kudos X3’s.

Again, ran the CDP’s off - initially via different inputs, later on the same input, with the same i/c lead (a Chord C-line, on loan). Same conclusion - the Naim was preferred. Also, the Naim with its drawer & puck got the nod on ease of use, vs the Rega top loading, click in system.

Finally, the Rega P3-24 was got going. Straight into the Brio - sounded great. Slam Dunk. That’s a definite Buy In Now… :crazy_face:

Next phase is to move over to the intended actual listening location. More, as/when this is completed.


  1. I did run my DV10X LP12 into the Brio - sounded great.
  2. Also tried the Rega P3 (with its Goldring MM) into my NAC82. Worked, but definitely not right. Clearly the Goldring MM didn’t like Naim 523 E boards…!! No surprise. I have a set of 522 N’s, but swapping them is not quick, or very easy. So…
  3. Have now restored my system back to ‘normal’. Got Left & Right wrong at the NAP250 - Test Records can be useful. Fixed. CDX2 restored to its proper place, XPS2 powered up. No Fuses were blown. All good…!!

Sounds like a busy time.
I’m glad you have got to a happy result, after all the testing.

Now it is time to go and buy some “tunes” to play.

Next and probably final update. Listening tests at actual location confirmed previous results. The Naim CD5si was preferred (to the Rega Apollo) and is to be purchased… :slightly_smiling_face:

Another - new - addition to the Naim Owners Club… :smiley:

Here are a couple of pics, of the system.

Here is the Rega P3-24 and Rega Brio, alongside one of the Wharfedale Diamonds -

Here is the arrangement with the CD5si in situ, and the Rega Brio on a lower level -

Now looking to purchase something to allow the Brio is sit above the CD5si, on a separate ‘shelf’ of some sort. Like an Isoblue shelf, but cheaper…!!

A Monitor Riser is a possibility… :astonished:


How about an IKEA bamboo chopping board and some rubber feet?

I’m interested in your thoughts about the Rega Brio current model (the one you have) - my Arcam Solo Movie MK1 2.1 that we have in our main bedroom has just started playing and may not be repairable - something like the Brio, Marantz PM6007 or similar would be ideal.

Your wife’s system look great. I am also a CD5si owner.

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That looks great Ian. I do love a basic system like this, functional, elegant and delivers quality sound that fits into normal life. Great job!

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Careful… Do Not Assume… Partner… :slightly_smiling_face:

Her system was ‘created’ very quickly. The spec was CD Player & Record Deck - Amp - into existing Speakers.

Rega amps won over Naim, as they all have Phono Stages. Yes an older Naim does, but she easily & quickly found a Brio and bought it, on The Bay.

The rest came from Cymbiosis. The Rega P3-24 was pre-loved. The Naim CD5si was ex-dem.

The only comparisons were of the Rega Apollo vs the CD5si. No Contest.


Thanks. Its nice and simple. And meets the spec…!!