Is the NDX2 streamer significantly better than the ND5XS2 which I have?

Been aNaim user for thirty years and generally that is true, there is an occasional nuance , but most of the time the idea of good, better, best is clearly reflected in price and by - product standards

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I bought a Isotek DC blocker for the SN3. It didn’t remove the slight transformer hum. However, I felt the amp sounded more open.

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I used the IFI DC Blocker which seemed to work well.

DG…

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That’s great. Will keep that in mind. The IFI must be doing something correct compared to the Isotek or the electricity in my previous home is just bad.

Can we get back to the topic of the post?

Back on topic, I had an ND5XS2 for a few weeks about 5 years ago with an XS3 amp. This was my first foray into streaming and I just wasn’t convinced. I bought an NDX2 on sale or return and immediately out of the box it was significantly better. It resolved more information and improved bass response. I enjoyed music a lot more with the NDX2 so it stayed and I traded the ND5XS2.

Very quickly I did the same with the SN3 and it was an immediate, substantial improvement so it stayed.

I personally enjoyed having the screen though I didn’t use it much -not a reason to upgrade. The NDX2 was better with streamed music and also CD rips on a USB drive.

So, my opinion based on my actual decision is that yes indeed, the NDX2 is significantly better than the ND5XS2.

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@Bjm thanks. Sounds like a good move for me, even if I don’t do the PS.

Indeed. I never used a PS on mine and never felt the desire to try one. Enjoy the NDX2 - you will not be disappointed.

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You made the right decision! NDX2 is a fantastic streamer/ dac with or without a external PSU.

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To some extent I agree… I would day the order priority is

speaker / room coupling
Source
Amplification
Stands and other supporting items like mains leads.

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I’m not sure this helps, but when I went from the original ND5xs to the original NDX it was the first time music sounded “live”, “real” or like you’re in a recording studio. This was the sound than many people chase (shut your eyes and the band could be in the room).

The NDX was a big step up, but a completely different sound/presentation.

Reading the above posts, it sounds like the difference between the new ND5XS2 and NDX2 isn’t so dramatic in terms of “nice sounding” vs “real/lifelike” sounding?

P.s. the 555ps on the NDX2 really is something special and very much night and day.

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Must agree with the 555ps on a NDX2 this is a superb combination.

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Although these comments are all subjective - I enjoyed what the NDX2 brings over the ND5XS2. The former has more capable analogue circuitry so by design it delivers a higher performance. Whether it is significant to you or not will be down to you, your tastes and possibly the rest of your system.
However I find the analogue output of the NDX2 even with 555PS quite a bit behind the ND555 which is hardly surprising so its all relative - I guess it depends what you are used to and what you able/willing to spend…

As far as Night and Day - I really dislike that expression as it is nearly always used as hyperbole and therefore hard to judge to what extent there is real performance difference as opposed to a tonal shift … yes most agree the ND555 provides a performance lift to the NDX2 - whether its enough of an improvement to you for the price is again subjective and only you can decide. Always worth while trying to borrow if you can in this game.

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I am assuming that streaming with the NDX2 would be significantly better than streaming with the Atom HE?

I wouldn’t use a superlative… but I guess a fair assumption.

My NDX2 will be arriving soon. I am upgrading from an ND5XS2. My system is SN3 with HighcapDR. I have also purchased Focsl Utopia headphones, Focsl headphone stand, a custom Cardas Beyond Clear DPT (4.5 meter) cable to use with the SN3. Given the cost of these items, I am ambivalent about adding an XPSdr at this time. Maybe I should just wait to add a power supply and see how the NDX2 sounds without it?

At a later date (a year or two) I could add the power supply or even consider the better 555dr power supply. Would the 555dr power supply exceed the capability of a SN3 based system?

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I would say yes & yes to both of your questions. Enjoy NDX 2, i’m sure you will be very pleased with it.

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I decided to add the XPSDR. Assuming I will stay at the SN level, I can’t see myself upgrading beyond this

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You haven’t even heard it, and you’re already adding an xps?

That was quick, I would let your new NDX2 run in before you decide whether to replace its power supply with an XPS2 DR. You might prefer it with its own PSU… I do, though I do use a full fat Powerline.

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