Headline2 power supply?

Since upgrading my Uniti to a 282 I have lost my headphone output. Not a huge problem as I did not use it a lot but when I did use it I really enjoyed it. I have contemplated buying a headline 2 but thought it needed a highcap to power it. £500 or so for a headline is OK but another £1500 to power it seems a bit too much for the use I would get from it. I have now seen a HL with a naim iSupply power source. Has anybody used this power source and if so is it any good ? My sources are an RP10 and an HDX and cans are Sony Z1r’s. Of course I will have a listen and see what I think but if people have used this cheap iSupply and it is no good I wont bother wasting anybodies time.Thanks in advance.

I have a FC2X powering mine — never tried iSupply, but that is a popular choice. I did demo a HCDR — noticeably better; but I felt the old FC2X meets my needs; and no need to add another shelf, as I would keep the FC2X anyway.


1 Like

The Headline can use an i-Supply (H), a NAPSC, or, with the addition of a SLIC lead, a Flatcap, Hicap, or Supercap.

1 Like

The I-supply powers my Headline just fine.

Moderated Post: Please ensure you understand and your posts comply with forum rules. Thank you.

1 Like

I’m a regular headphone user, I tried the headline2 with all the powersupplies, Flatcap, Hicap and Supercap, I ended up with the Hicap. But I also run a valve headphone amp as well on my 252.

1 Like

Have tried my olive Headline with NAPSC, FC & HC into Sennheiser 650.

Once again the PS hierarchy seems to work. Currently using an HC.

1 Like

The output voltage of the iSupply/NAPSC is significantly lower than the FC/HC/SC.

I found that with HD800, the NAPSC worked fine but felt like it didn’t have enough steam. A HC sorted that out. I suspect that a FC would also do the trick.

But don’t feel like you have to be married to Naim headphone amps. I’ve heard a lot of really great ones and some were not very expensive at all. As cheap and cheerful as it is, I still think the Rega Ear takes a lot of beating. Some interesting valve headphone amps out there too.

Me and some others may love the HL2/HCdr combo but there is more than one way to skin a cat.

1 Like

I’m using HD800’s on my SN2 and that seems to drive them pretty well.

1 Like

One of the limitations of the Naim range is the headphone stages IMHO. If I want to go from a SN2 to separates (282 or more) and use headphones, I go from 1 box to 5 boxes. I’d like to see headphone stages in the pre-amps.

1 Like

Yup. 6 boxes unless you use a NAP 200 to power the 282.


It is a lot of boxes for an amp with headphone support. It does bear serious consideration before going for a 2 box headphone amp.


Thanks to all. Yes another couple of boxes is not the ideal but needs must and all that. My hifi is in the library and is a mess in there at the mo so I don’t suppose it will get noticed ! I will have a look at the Rega as well. I think if I do go for the HL I will just get an iSupply for now and if I upgrade the 250 I can repurpose the HC from that.


Do you require the closed backs for isolation? I found the open back Audezes to be notably superior to the closed back versions in air and soundstage if you can tolerate the sound leakage.

How does your Schiit Mjolnir 2 compare to your Headline 2 / Hicap?

@ Tamarin
This is the inventory at the moment, Fidue A83, Shure SE846, Campfire Solaris, Audeze LCDi4, Vision Ears VE8, Yamaha HP-1, Meze 99 classic, Sennheiser HD800S, Audeze LCD-XC, Audeze LCD-4z. I agree that open backs give a larger soundstage but the XC or IEMs do give good isolation when others are watching the TV or opens for late night listening when we have the grandchildren. The advatage of the M2 is the valves and the ability to change the sound to match the phones or the type of music. Generally the M2 for classical and jazz and the Headline for rock and blues. Downside of the M2 is that the valves come alive after about 1/2 hour so you need to warm it up before use. They are both very good but with different sound signatures as are all the phones I have.

@Peter1480, Ah-hah! You were holding out on us profile-wise. Nice collection! It’s good to have options.

I’m a bit valve-curious, headphone-amp-wise, so perhaps I’ll give one a whirl someday.

By the way, besides my LCD-X, I also have a high-isolation option for TV, which is Sony WH-1000XM3 via BT.

However, the sound quality is underwhelming to a greater degree than I had hoped for, despite lowered expectations given the BT wireless headphones. No joy even with an attempt to optimize the sound path as follows:

UQ2 -> Douk Audio 24bit AptX-HD Bluetooth Transmitter

It wasn’t noticeably better than the TV’s built in BT transmitter directly to the Sony’s, so that’s how I use the Sony’s currently (only when necessary).

How do you find the Audeze LCDi4?

For BT you need either LDAC or aptx –HD to get sound approaching wired. I use a Radsone EarStudio ES100 with iems, a good seal on the SE846 it is as good as noise cancelling. Once you get use to wearing the LCDi4 they are unexceptional bit of kit.

Another vote for Headline plus HC2 with HD800s…

I’m running HD800’s through the SN2, sound lovely. I wonder whether a HC2 would add anything?

You can only try. I found a HL2/NAPSC didn’t quite give the HD800 the authority they needed but a HC did.

But maybe a SN2 headphone out is better than a HL2/NAPSC. Only one way to find out.

Indeed, but as the HL is not stocked in New Zealand, you have to buy one from Salisbury to find out, so I went for the SN2 to avoid the rabbit hole.

Hmmm, well I guess another way to test is to try a lesser headphone. If HD600 sound better on the SN2 than HD800, then you know the HD800 need more.

1 Like