Hypothetically ... if you were to choose between

An ND555/555 PS or an NAC 282/NAP250 as an upgrade to a SN2/HiCap DR, what woukd you guys go for?

Not saying I’m contemplating such a move… well maybe not :upside_down_face:

Ive not heard a SN2 but I’m sure it’s a might fine amp, However I’d go the 282/250 but I’m sure others with better knowledge will disagree. Either way you’re in for a treat, good luck.

ND555/555PS. What do you currently use as a source?

SN2 is a good amp; while the 282/250 IS better, the ND555 is as good as it gets.

Ahh yes… I should have mentioned… I have an nd5 Xs2 (which I have to say, sounds perfectly fine). My speakers are standmount Focal Kanta No1s.

I suppose I’m asking if the two options which would provide the greatest lift? Although I recognize that it might be a very subjective question.

If you have a ND5-XS2 a 282/HCDR/250DR would be a wonderful upgrade. I had NDX2/282/HCDR/250DR and it was excellent.

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What I’ve done, having the SN2 and HiCap is maxed that out using a source first approach. So, in my case a NDX2 and XPS DR, with full loom Superlumina and Powerlines. Another forum member has the ND555 and PS with the same set up. All of that except the SN2 can be carried forward with a 282/250 if you want to go down that route later. I imagine the SN2 can drive the Kantas fine, so a source first upgrade would be my choice, as the SN2 will show the better source.

The 282/250 will be excellent of course and worthy of a great source too, as it won’t add anything that isn’t delivered from the source.

Go with the ND555/PS.

THEN you can think about your amp. More of a difference from the 172 to the ND555 than from SN2 to 282/250. IMO, obviously . . .


Nd5xs2 with 282/250 is more balanced than Nd555/ SN2/hicap. Be careful with second hand Nd555. There are some faulty first batch on the second hand market. It’s risky.
You can upgrade later for an ndx2/ xpsdr and have the sweet pot Naim system.
Or begin with the source, but be assured first that this Nd555 is optimal. A lot were returned.


I didn’t realize that the first batches of ND555s had issues… good to know, thanks. If to go down the 555 route I would most likely buy new. But for the nac282/250 route I may well go with a (newer) used set of boxes.

I agree that SN2 with ND555 is less balanced than the nd5 xs2 with 282/250. Which brings me back to which path would provide the more noticeable improvement.

Source first. There is a bigger difference from 172 to ND555/PS than from SN2 to 282/250 (as good as the latter are, the ND555 is simply on another plane of existence).


The OP has a ND5-XS2, not a 172. The former is the new generation streamer and much closer to a ND555 than a 172 will be. A ND5XS2/282/HCDR/250DR will be a lovely, well-balanced system that can grow.


For the nd555 first batch, I just read here that many ( or some ) were returned. I read several cases here like that.
However you can find also a very good second hand nd555. But better be careful and test it before.
Some say source first. Yes. But a system have to be balanced also and the electronics and speakers able to reveal the potential of the source.
Ndx2/ 282/ 250 will sound better than Nd555/ SN2.


Yep, noted - I blame reading too many middle schooler papers. :wink: Thank you.

Point still remains - bigger difference from ND5 XS2 to ND555/555PS than from SN2/HC to 282/HC/250, hence, the "greater lift is with the ND555/555PS, and so I would do, and recommend, the ND555/555PS.

Given the early ND555 challenges, I’d definitely have it checked by Naim, though OP doesn’t say used or new. If new, then no issue. If used, easy enough to check with Naim via serial number.

I started with an ND5 XS with an XS 2. Then moved to NDX with a SN 2. Since then I upgraded to a NDX 2, and then added an XPS DR, then with the SN 2 I have now added a HiCapDR. If I had the opportunity I would not hesitate to place the ND555/555PS as the source for the SN 2. Some may see it as a mullet but I would rather have the best source vs a lower end source with the 282/HiCap/250DR.

Its all hyperthetical and I am going with I am familiar with, the truth is it would be better to demo both if you can. …if you can’t then go with your gut feeling so you have less regrets. Don’t forget to have fun on the journey!


I recently moved from SN2 with hicap dr to 282/250dr and the difference is huge. If you can find a friendly dealer perhaps you could home trial both options

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Agree balance is key, i have experienced it myself and with a ND555. It needs the rest off the system to fully shine and without that its performance is trapped
Amp and pre is where my money would be going

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Of the two choices presented, I’d first go for the ND555 on the Supernait2/Hicap DR, without a doubt. Then start putting money towards an amp upgrade. Doing the amp upgrade first is just back to front. But of course, with the ND555 fronting the system you may just decide you’re happy sticking with the SN2/HC2 for a while…


I share Richard’s opinion.

Having owned a DAC-V1, nDAC, then ND555 and almost simultaneously a SuperNait2/HiCapDR , then 252DR/300DR and finally 552DR/500DR.

I had the opportunity to play around with a few combinations.

If you plan to keep in the “Naim ecosystem”, I’d go for the ND555 first.


@Mhitchi for me I would look at the whole balance in the system 18K source into SN2, I am sure the ND555/PSU would be super and I would then look at SN3

however I would look at a balance accross the whole system as others have menitoned, if I was spending your money for you I would look NDX2,282,HCDR then either 250DR or 300 to see if that deliveries more music than the ND555

it’s a journey


If this is a system that’s going to last a good while without further upgrades I’d take a middle route, NDX2/555 and 282/250. The £8,000 saved on the ND will pay for the amp. I’d also ensure good mains and ideally a Fraim is in the mix, to ensure you get the best from what you have.

On the other hand, if you plan to go to say a 552/300 then the ND555 makes sense as the first move.

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