Firmware characteristics

Apologies to Naim for dragging this up.

I’ve been really struggling to enjoy listening to the Nova in recent months, perhaps due to subconscious lockdown annoyances/stresses that aren’t letting me relax.

The other night after a few glasses I decided it was all sounding a bit ‘thin’ so I reverted to an older firmware, something I’ve not done for ages, and lower registers are much fuller, sonorous, piano especially. The latest firmware did wonders for detail, but I’ve consistently found an older version more engaging. I’ve been playing a lot more music.

I think it’s purely down to me preferring analogue, but it makes the Nova closer to my LP12 than recent firmware does.

You need some tone controls! (As do I, come to that.)



It’s the problem with this digital malarkey David.

A long time ago your amp, source, speakers etc had fairly defined characteristics and were what they were.

Digital allows improvements in some areas over time, especially when it comes to features (and Qobuz support was extrememly welcome), it’s just that I’ve always preferred the sonic character of certain firmware versions from a few years ago on the Nova, and admittedly I don’t use it as primarily intended but as a streamer into NAC282 and active SBLs.

I only have a single firmware version to revert to courtesy of Naim support a few years ago, but I’m glad I have the option to flip back and forth, as I simply feel certain firmware sonic characteristics work more synergistically in particular setups than others.

I just think it’s a shame older versions aren’t readily available as part of standard support even with caveats.

If we accept every digital firmware update currently will affect sonic character in some way it’s easier to then accept that if you like a particular version,even if older, that you cannot expect bug fixes/feature enhancemenst without changing the sound in some way even if imperceptibly.

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