Cd to streaming upgrade?

Current system: cds2/xps DR/ 01/52/135s olive into kudos Titan T88s.
My experience with streaming is zero. I upgrade my olive xps to xps dr to make it feasible to slot in a Naim streamer (ndx 2).
Wondering what difference in sound quality vs cds2.
Also , if I get ndx2, then thought about getting something like a Uniti Core to rip my 700 cds.
I have read on this forum that some say that ripped cds sound better than cds played on CD player.
I’m intimidated by streaming. If I do this would I need to use my IPad to control the ndx 2? Does this change in my system sound like a wise move? I love the idea of being able to stream any music I want.
Also was told direct wired is best vs WiFi. This would mean I would have to get my cable company to install a new line to my house since my current internet line is on the opposite side of the house from my hifi.
Need some opinions on this proposed change from cd to streaming
Thanks, david

I think the key here is that you love the idea of streaming any music you want, and an NDX2 would of course allow that. Streaming is actually not that difficult, it’s just that many - you only need to read some of the threads on here - make it difficult. It’s perfectly possible to plug your streamer into your router and off you go. There is no need for fancy wires that cost as much as your car.

A good wired connection is recommended, so think about that. You will need to use an iPad or similar to control the thing.

Think also about the Core. It’s an expensive luxury to rip only 700 CDs, and a good nas will sound just as good, but you do need a little computery knowledge - or be willing to learn - to make it work. Put it this way, if I can do it, anyone can do it.

If you are able to hold on to your CDS2 for a while, you can use the NDX to stream new music and then gradually rip your CDs.

Remember also that the CDS2 is rather wonderful, and the NDX2 may not live up to it. It would be wise to borrow an NDX2 from your local dealer. Hopefully they would help you set it up, if you feel the desire for a bit of support.


Hi David,
I was in a similar position to you about 18 months ago when setting off on the journey below:
Finding a streamer to replace a CDS3/555PSDR

You will quickly find that a CDS2/XPS DR is a mighty fine player of music and that a switch to streaming isn’t either simpler or cheaper.

An NDX2/XPS DR or possibly NDX2/555PS DR would be a very sensible start point.
Then come a bunch of choices/decisions around whether you only want to play ripped cds or add internet streaming too.

If you only want to play ripped cds, I would keep it simple and buy a Melco music server, which you can connect directly to your Naim streamer. Note Melco, not Innuos, Naim or other.

However, if you want to stream music over the internet, then I would take out a Qobuz subscription (rather than Tidal, Spotify or other) and there many choices of server and streaming software. If you live in the USA (?), I would probably not go Melco but would look at an Innuos Zenith mk 3 and Roon Nucleus but would probably end up with a Small Green Computer SonicTransporter (i5 or i9).

You also need to choose the music streaming software that you like, whether that be Naim, Roon or another make. We went with Roon, which eliminated Melco but you may prefer the Naim app etc.

Lots of choices.

Enjoy the journey and take your time with it.

Best regards, BF


IMHO, the biggest advantage of streaming over CD players lies in the ease and convenience to access both the ripped CDs and, above all, a world of music on streaming services, such as, at the moment, Tidal or Qobuz, setting up as many playlists as you could wish for.

The SQ obviously depends on the system: the quality of the CD player, the quality of the streamer, and, very importantly, the quality of the network. But it’s not that complicated: in principle it would be enough with a good streamer (the NDX2 is it), a NAS in condition (a Synology Play does the trick perfectly), a stable network (better fiber optic), and a couple of quality cables that does not have to be “esoteric”; ah, yes, and a little knowledge and/or learning process, because the configuration, startup and maintenance of the system requires a little attention, much more than that of a CD player. In this sense, there is infinite information on the network to undertake everything, and in this forum, among others, a lot of friendly folks willing to help if, or at the moment, things are twisted a little.

Personally I made the transition early, in 2012, and although the elves of the network do their jokes sometimes, in general a good and big change; I currently keep 3 CD players on three different systems (in another 2 I no longer have CD players), but the truth is that their use is merely supportive and increasingly anecdotal. I still do not give up on the CD players because the knowledge that I have leads me, unlike the vast majority, to the firm conviction that in a few years the Internet will experience a great regression that will return it to its primary restricted state, when it was a luxury only within reach of armies, universities and research centers; but, anyway, this is another issue.

In any case, good luck with the decision and the possible trip.

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Intrigued as I am regarding the debate over CDs and streaming it has come to my notice thar Linear Power Supplies provide the most dramatic improvement in audio output. Naim has very little to say on this subject, could that be because they don’t accept the benefit of LPS or are the already using them in their equipments

Naim are lifelong, sworn advocates of linear power supplies, the bigger the better.

Best regards, BF


If I get an ndx 2 to go with my xps dr then I’m getting rid of cds2.
So to rip an playback CDs get ? Naim core? Innuous zen 3? Other?
What does the server do besides rip and playback CDs?
Do I use an iPad to control everything?
My internet here in USA is Verizon Fios
What else do I need to make this all work together?
I have a Chord Sarum T 5 pin din-din which would connect the ndx 2 to the 52.

I’d say if you have any sort of computer get a NAS and rip the CDs on to that. With a NAS you have the benefit of being able to use any ripping and metadata editing software you like, you’re not tied to any particular format or filesystem and that will work with almost any other brand of streamer should you decide to change in future. When I got my ND5XS2 a few months ago I invested in a QNAP NAS at the same time and used dbPoweramp to rip the CDs and edit the metadata where needed.

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Sounds easy David :grinning:

Life was simple before it became complicated. :yum:

Will this sound better than the CDS2?

That’s what I want to know

Hi David,
What would you like to know that I missed in my first post above (post no. 2 or 3)?

Best regards


Do you only want to play ripped cds or do you want to stream music from the internet via something like Tidal or Qobuz?

I had a CDS2/XPS and was pleasantly surprised at how good ripped files sounded in comparison. Some of this may have been because I was more relaxed due to not having to worry about whether they would play correctly - in spite of much rubber ring fettling I needed a new puck pretty much every year or I would have trouble playing some discs.
100% streaming now and will never again give a CD player rack room!

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@davidf, as you know the cds2 was given a good sprinkling of pixie dust when it was made, and it has a magic about it that few can rival. If there is any way you can keep your cds2 as well as an ndx2, then I would urge you to do so.

I know several people who let their cds2/3 go when they got in to streaming, and sorely regretted it. One of them has since bought a replacement for his cds2/xps and kept his nd555/2x psu. He is now a very happy guy.

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@davidf I went thru the CD / steaming dilemma about 18 months ago. I used to have a CDX2 which I bought in 2003 and absolutely loved. Curious about streaming though - primarily because it gives you access to millions of tracks for a very modest monthly fee - I tried an NDX2. IMHO the NDX2 was to my ears more musical than the CDX2. In addition ripped CDs via the NDX2 from a cheap WD hard drive also sounded better than the CDX2 (remember though, to ME!). The NDX2 was duly purchased and an XPS DR added shortly after. The CDX2, good as it was went on the Bay and I have not regretted this decision once.
Streaming opens up your musical tastes as you have effectively an unlimited choice, and you can build your own playlists which I particularly like. As HH said earlier, streaming overall is very easy and reliable (assuming you live in an area with good internet).
I would certainly try out an NDX2 / XPS DR together with Tidal and I am sure you wont be disappointed.
Just as an afterthought, the CDS2 was launched in 1998 (according to the internet - dont know if others can confirm this) - if the DAC is 1998 technology then I think you will find a marked improvement in this area.
Good luck on your journey!

I’m afraid you need to go back to mid eighties for the best Dac chips :innocent:

The TDA1541 which is present in the CDI / CDS / etc …

TDA1541 sounds like good news to me but does anything on the Naim forum have a nice simple answer?


If you are concerned about the whole concept of streaming and how it works with streaming services, DC’s ripped to a NAS or Music Server then I suggest you might start by putting an inexpensive toe in the water. I have a CDX2 with XPSDR. I also have a Bluesound Node 2i that can access ripped CD’s on a NAS (I have a Terramaster and it works fine) and will accommodate Tidal, Amazon, Radio Paradise, etc. It has a pretty decent App (I use and iPad) and the NAS and Node 2i only cost around £900. The sound - I’d describe it as easily ‘good enough’ particularly hi-res and MQA feeds. It does not match my CDX2 - but you need to be critically listening (as I like to from time to time) to hear the differences.

If you find steaming to your liking then you can move on to more esoteric from ends.