I have been a Uniti Core user for three months now. I had enjoyed 10 trouble free years with a 2TB NS01, but was getting concerned about the increasing probability of a HDD failure, even though there had been nothing to indicate this might be imminent. It was just a matter of time.
Overall, I feel the NS01 is better than the Core, since it offers tray loading and, more importantly, a parallel internal backup HDD. It also facilitates format switching (e.g. WAV to FLAC) through the Desktop Client (DTC). The downsides are that it is based on Windows XP with the control software stored on the HDD and the drives can only be replaced by Naim Support. It also needs three applications to operate it, the DTC, N-serve and the normal Naim App.
On the other hand I do like the compactness of the Core (I suppose I can’t have both a compact unit and tray loading), its Linux operating system and, above all, the ability to change the drive myself. Also the need for only one user app is pretty neat. Having chosen an SSD, it’s silent too, although being in another room, the hiss of an HDD would not interfere with the music.
However, yesterday I performed my first backup to a NAS drive on the same network. This I had programmed monthly on the NS01, so I already had a good backup on that NAS. I have only ripped a few additional CDs since the change, but I thought these could be added through a differential backup. But no, I wasn’t offered the option of a differential backup and the Core decided to perform a full backup. Checking today on a PC, I see that the NAS drive now contains two full backups, but both are the same, in other words the new backup doesn’t show the new CDs. Thinking this odd, I looked at the Core through Windows Explorer and it wasn’t showing the new CDs either! These can, however be seen in the Naim app and they play just fine. Weird! Has anyone else noticed this and found a logical explanation?
For the record, the Core is running production software, version 188.8.131.5207, so it is possible that any later beta version might offer differential backups. I thought I’d better get used to the production software and how that works before selecting the beta version.