CDS3/XPS2 v.s Core/NDac/XPS2

As subject, which one is better and you prefer?

Hi - I’m not sure that is a test anyone will have done. Number of variables, has the CDS2 been serviced. To really get a fair comparison I would suggest the nDAC should also have a XPS.

All I can really say is that I’ve yet to hear any other digital source that persuades me to give up my CDS3.



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They are two very different things. If you want a machine to spin CDs then of the two, only the CDS3 will do. Conversely, if you want something to play just about any music file you care to throw at it then of the two, only the Core/DAC will do.

From a performance point of view, they are both superb, albeit slightly different and really there’s no substitute here for first deciding what it is you want from your source.

It’s worth bearing in mind that you cannot simply play CDs with a Core. They must be ripped first and then played using the Naim App. You can’t just stick it in and press play. There is also a third option of say NDX2/XPSDR, with music stored on a NAS.

Back in 2011 I went from a s3 with xps, to a ns01, ndac, xps. From the tests I did I would say some tracks were better on s3, others are better on ns01, ndac. Most are close. Changing from an x2 in my view will be a much more different experience, but we listen to and value different things in the music, and this will influence how we listen to the ddifferent systems.

I was owner of ndac + xps2 + unitiserve + naim dc1 and also cds3 (with the same xps obiouvlsy not at the same time) and in this situation in my opinion cds3 was much better than ndac + unitiserve.
When I sold xps2 and bought 555 ps (not dr) the situation it’s upside down, in this situation dac + unitiserve is better than cds3.

Yeah and I think that’s a downside of the Core. HDX used to do it.



I suspect the Core is the same as the Unitiserve in this respect, and I find that there is only a delay of maybe 4 minutes while the CD is ripped before it appears in the app and can be played. That doesn’t seem like a long time to wait to me, certainly easy compared to firing up a computer, opening DBpoweramp, etc. while your friends are waiting.
(The US could, I believe, also play CDs via its SPDIF output, but not over UPnP, but I think the Core can’t do this.)

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