Hello music lovers!
Probably a rare post but I am looking for downgrading advice rather than upgrade…my dealer thinks I am mad naturally!

I have been a Naim disciple for nearly 30 years finally acquiring a CDS 3 after years of being a vinyl devotee with stereotype LP12/Aro/Troika.

20 years ago I went full CD and still have a CDS555 ,a552 pre and 300 power driving SL2s…and no surprise it sounds sublime. However I am in my 60s and whilst still love music I very rarely sit down and listen to stuff intently especially at high volume. I am downsizing and am moving to a smaller but still reasonably sized apartment but the current system sitting on 6 Fraim racks is not viable…and the SL2s are also just too big.

Nowadays I find myself using streaming services mainly Spotify and Amazon Music. As part of downsizing I have sold through Music Magpie over 500 CDs but still kept 200 of favourites.

I am looking for advice as to how to downgrade…as I say my usual dealer is horrified! I have not kept up with Naim advances for almost 20 years so have no real knowledge about options. I run a Chromecast into the preamp and stream to that from a tablet and have to say ( sacrilegious I know) that it sounds more than ok. How much of that is down to the downstream kit I don’t know! So…long winded I know…I am looking for a relatively small system based around streaming but with the ability to play CDs.

Any thoughts much appreciated…

How about a Nova with a nice pair of compatible stand mounters along with an Innuos Zen Mini to rip your cd’s to, no need for a cdp. Compact and apartment friendly!


I was just about to say Nova. I have one (and therefore obviously biased!) but I do think it is a fantastically realised piece of kit that works with a very wide range of speakers


He wants to stream and play CD’s. Would the Unity Star not do it? Streamer/CD player.


Yes the Star would be a good fit, also the Nova/Innuos route, just rip the CD’s. Either of these solutions would be good.

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I think you’ll get better results with a Nova though, ok a Star would be cheaper then a Nova plus Zen but if downgrading I’d aim as high as possible to avoid regret and disappointment. Nice to not have the clutter of 200 cds in an apartment too, they could be ripped and stashed.


Same here


Hi Rheggie,

Great news that you got such a long return on the system. If space and transport allows I would try and take your current system with you. It will give you a good feel for how the new room is affecting your sound quality. The SL2s, apart from being great speakers, are not huge and space friendly. This will give you a good baseline against which to plan your next moves.

Perhaps you could streamline what you already have rather than risk throwing the baby out with the bathwater?



Simple. I will generously take your system off your hands and undertake to supply a compact alternative :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


A Nova would be a good option but, a small system after 6 Fraim racks could easily be a 2-3 box system… NDX2, XPS DR, SN3 and possibly a Zen Mini. That would still be very small in comparison.

Maybe some clarification as to how small is small :joy:


As long a you have a solid network connection (wired preferred), a Muso-2 and a Qobuz subscription may be all you need. Do you really need the physical CDs anymore? I prefer Qobuz to Amazon and Spotify because I believe it to be the best sound quality and it will soon be natively supported on the Muso-2 with the upcoming Naim App upgrade. I am part of the beta and am using Qobuz now with my Muso-2. It’s a wonderful sounding setup.


The Muso 2 is good for what it is, but it’s not serious HiFi for someone coming from a real Naim system. I wouldn’t advise going lower than an Atom with some standmount speakers.



Might you have the chance to listen to a few things before you commit?

For essentially a one-box system, the Nova.

For a 2-box system, a Supernait 3 plus an NDX2.

With either of the above, you could subscribe to a music service that will deliver cd-quality (“lossless”) to the Naim system, and you’ll appreciate that quality over the way you’ve been using Spotify and Amazon music I bet.

With both of those options, the question remains what to do about your 200 cd’s. You could commit to ripping them and stream them in-home, or you could purchase a compact cd transport and connect its digital output to the digital input of the NDX2. Maybe something from Cyrus or Rega? There was a thread here pretty recently about cd transports. Frankly you could do both; learn to rip and in-home stream them, and have the cd player in case you don’t take to that.

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My plan for the past few years as I head into retirement was for a limited number of boxes for a system. I am currently 68 and living in a single story house currently but could see my wife and I moving to a condo/apartment if we decided to downsize. The system has ended up being: XPS DR > NDX 2 > HiCap DR > SuperNait 2 > NAC A5 > ProAc D30RS. system picture here

If moving into a smaller living area in the future the four boxes would stay and possibly replace the speakers to fit the room if the D30’s did not work in the room.

I also have a NAS with my CD’s ripped but use Qobuz to stream music the majority of the time. Quality of music is excellent and for $14.99 a month well worth the convenience.

Good luck with your decision.


Yeah… very nice. I’d be very happy to finish up with the same system. Depending on a demo, it’ll be that or a Chord DAC variation for me I think!


Probably about 15 years ago I was in exactly the same position with my system, which was the same as yours but with a CDS3. I sold the lot and downsized massively. Then followed years of chopping and changing. Nothing really made me happy until five years ago I got another pair of SL2s with a 272/250. The SL2s are marvellous speakers and with a footprint of under a foot square, and a need to be against the wall actually take up less space than a small bookshelf speaker on a stand.

What I have now - 272/555PS and 300 isn’t really that far behind the CDS3 and 552. It fits on one stack of Fraim. Going smaller still the NDX2/Supernait 3 would be great. Subscribe to Tidal or Qobuz for a world of music at way better quality than crappy old Spotify.

You are not old in your 60s. There is no need to give up on great music. I’m 59 and fully intend to enjoy music on a good system until the end. If you want to discuss anything just say, and our esteemed moderator can put us in touch.


(Another) Nova ( sugestion).
By the way: smaller apartment equals less dust to clean :clown_face:

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Thankyou for taking time to answer…appreciated. Longevity of Naim gear is underrated…the kit has never been unplugged for over 17 years…on 24/7. Getting a lot of great opinions…great community.

Thankyou for taking time and for great advice…appreciated. Need to google all tour thoughts but it seems to fit my thinking. Smaller rather than small I guess…not going Muso kust yet! Thanks again

As others have mentioned… if you go NDX2, look at Qobuz. I’ve used Tidal, Deezer, Amazon but Qobuz have been the best quality, value for money so far and far more convenient!

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