Core/NDX v.s Core/Ndac/XPS

Anyone have compared or owned both combination, which one you prefer?

Purely based on sound performance, and just using files on a stick, I have in the past compared an NDX against the Naim DAC (with and without an XPS DR and 555PS DR) and in all cases I preferred the DAC. I now feed the DAC with a Core.

Also in the past I had both an NDX and NDAC/555PS… in fact I used to feed the DAC with the SPDIF from the NDX… but I did also give me the option of easily comparing the NDX output to the NDAC output… and to my mind the performances were very different. The NDAC being more detailed, insightful, less smeared; in short more satisfying.
Both seemed to time reasonably well and render music in an enjoyable way. The NDX was no slouch, but the NDAC/555PS, understandably, was more performant… and I preferred it.
If I had to find one trait of the NDX that I would find hard to live with having experienced the DAC, I would say it’s the slightly increased smearing, and lack of definition, of higher frequency transients. For example choral sibilance is more pronounced, and closely microphoned drum sets don’t sound quite right.

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