DAC V1 / Mac vs ND5 XS2

Thinking of buying a ND5 XS2. Currently I use Roon on my Mac which is connected to the DAC V1 via USB. This then feeds into my NAC82.
I still want to use Roon, as I love the interface, but will the ND5 XS2 sound better than my current set up?

I use to run Qobuz on my Mac Mini M2 through a DAC V1 via USB and then into a 202/200. Replaced the Mac/V1 combo with ND5 XS2 and was blown away by the bump in SQ.


That’s the same Mac I have. So on a single vote this is worth exploring. :slight_smile:

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Can you get a home demo Stewart?
Only way to be truly sure is to hear it for yourself :wink:

Am considering just buying one on a well known auction site, if I don’t like it then sell it - it won’t cost much to do that.

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I use the same as you just with Audirvana on the Mac. I don’t know Roon, but It was really bad until I change the upsamplling settings. I upsample to the Dac max, or x2.
That’s change everything and it sounds really good. I was surprised how good it can be - with my WAV cd ripping and with Tidal. I don’t know room but check it out before upgrading…

I did try Audirvana, but Roon integrates my NAS and Qobuz seamlessly. Makes browsing music so easy, not that cheap and I run an Intel NUC in the loft with the network switches and NAS devices.
I am not disappointed with the SQ I get, but wondering if the DAC V1 would be outclassed by the ND5 XS2. I like the idea of not having the hifi tied to my Mac, but streaming directly from the network. As the ND5 XS2 is Roon Ready I can still play music as I do right now, which is appealing to me.

I didn’t think to suggest replacing roon, just to suggest you can check if roon has an upsampling configuration if you go all ‘native’ as I did. In my system with Mac mini and vDac (no network extras like switch and cables just basic Chord c-USB very old) it bring huge change, I wouldn’t believe It can bring. Really like a new black box change. Anyway I just put my hand on an Ndac (couldn’t resist) which I suppose to receive any day now, so will see how is that in compare to the Dac-v1. I will use Audiowise SRC to convert the USB to SPDIF.

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I’ve recently upgraded from a Bluesound Node and DACV1 combination to a ND5X2. Feeding in to NAIT XS3. The ND5XS2 was an open box ex demo and I was able to audition/compare at the dealership.

As good as the DACV1 is, the ND5X2 was a step up in bass performance, and clarity of the sound stage.

I’ve found I’m now streaming music more than I would have before (CD is other source). It just seems more integrated musically and the hardware/app combination makes it a rounded package.


I have wondered about NDac vs Day V1. Interesting to hear what you think.

Just missed a ND5 XS2 last night, it sold for £1332.

Thanks, that’s 2 votes for this being an improvement.

Just remember here, that in both options, Roon is sending your audio system through your Max, which is a noisy environment. Playing direct using the Naim app to the ND5 XS2 will take the audio directly from your local network into the ND5 XS2 then to the 82, without diverting it to the Mac if using Roon. When I used Roon on Mac it didn’t sound as good as streaming directly using the Naim app.

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Again that is something I want to mess with. My Roon isn’t on the Mac but is on a Nuc. As the ND5 XS2 is directly supported from Roon then it would stream directly from the Nuc and not go near the Mac. Right now it streams from Nuc - Mac - Dac V1.
It will be interesting to mess about with this sort of thing, to see how much things compromise the SQ.

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Sounds like a good plan then. I’d expect it to be somewhat better.


Well, night and day my friend. I just couldn’t believe it. The nDAC changed my system totally. I will post about my last few weeks journey, but I can say that I never listened to digital music the way it is now and I had CDX2 with XPS (non DR) for many years.


Well I don’t have an nDAC I have the DAC V1. Not sure that is in the same league as the nDAC. I am currently looking for a ND5 XS2, so will post back when I find one and get it up and running.

ND5 XS2 should arrive tomorrow. Bought on auction site. Wonder if this was from anyone on here.
Looking forward to trying it out tomorrow evening. Nothing better than new toys.

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Wow, a few tracks in with the ND5 XS2 and I am amazed. Only been running for about 30 mins and sounding so nice. Thought using the DAC V1 was good, this is a different league. Just wow. Thanks to those who said I would notice - I do.


That’s one occasion where I have no qualms about saying…
‘I told you so!’ :wink:

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LOL true.

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