Looking for advice.....Naim Knowledge

Hi Everyone,
This is a genuine request for Naim advice. I once owned a Naim Nait with a rega Planar 2 and Heybrook speakers back in the Mid eighties . I crossed over to Linn in 1992…looking to have a better system ? That is subjective. I have owned the same gear for 32 years …I am not a hifi audiofile obsessive. I want a change back to NAIM mainly because the equipment is upgradeable and I fancy a different experience. Please could anyone tell me what would be comparative in in Naim Terms to my existing system. I have a LP12 with Akito arm and an Audi Technica VM95 paratrace stylus.
Linn Majik-I Amplifier
Linn LK140 Power Amp
Linn Active Keilidh speakers

I appreciate this is entry level but what would be comparative Naim equipment …firstly back in the day. And more Importantly what would be a upgrade in today’s equpiment. Budget is the first thing any dealer has asked me when I have asked for advice. I’m not skint but not mega rich. I want to enjoy my listening experience with the opportunity to upgrade when I feel the need. Thanks Alam

I’d keep the LP12 turntable and maybe the speakers (if they can run passive ?)
Most Naim amplifiers would in many ways better the old Linn stuff.
That said I was pretty happy when I had an old Majik-I upstairs.

Would you want integrated I’d look for SuperNait 2 (if s/h) or SN3.
SN3 is not yet merged into NC range, maybe a good discount available before these are being discontinued.

If you can rely on 2x25W, then the latest Nait 50 is considered one of the best sounding Naim amps at all, even 500 owners consider their kit. :disguised_face:

Seperates are many, do you want the latest NC range or older kit ?

I would hang onto the speakers if you can. If you make a complete change then you won’t know where you are if something is not quite right for you.

I have N50 and Keilidhs/K20 and it will drive them fine. SN3 has a lot more grunt and will provide more speaker flexibility in future, esp if the room is on the large side. XS3 also has in built MM phono so is another option.

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I appreciate the quick response…as I am not familiar with Naim …I will build up my knowledge base upon the response I get. Thanks for setting the ball rollin

Forgot to mention that standard VM95C/E/ML work well with the in built Naim phono stages, but not tried the Paratrace version.

Also, N50 doesn’t have a remote.

Thanks murmur, appreciate the advice. At the moment i’m leaning towards the xs-3. I gather there is always an ongoing Linn v Naim debate. Have just decided that music listening is my main hobby/way to relax and as I have not bought any gear apart from servicing the deck last year and having a new cartridge it might be time for a change. The Linn stuff has always sounded more than decent. I want to upgrade and take it up a notch. Naim appears to be upgradable whereas the Linn stuff is of a vintage and not quite so flexible to upgrade. Thanks


The Linn is good, so get into a Naim dealer and demo a Nait 50 or SN3.

I can’t argue with NAIT50 or SN3 advice, I’m sure they’ll sound great!

I run a XS3, which is pretty good too! Depending on budget and appetite for used gear, I would also consider older pre/power setups. I say this after recently impulse buying a NAC42.5/NAP110, which although short on inputs compared to the XS3, sounds more enjoyable, and more detailed. I’m still in a quandary regarding which setup to keep (no way can I afford to keep both), but I was very impressed with the '87 vintage kit. A NAC72/NAP140 might be even more compelling.

Are you able to share your actual budget? Or don’t really know and want options at different price points?

I don’t regret the XS3 purchase at all, but I also don’t regret the 42.5/110 either, particularly given they were 1/4 the price of my integrated.


I believe a new XS3 is more expensive than reduced Nait 50 stock.
I have an early XS w/Flatcap 2X, nice little amp, rocksolid.

BTW, if your LP12 is untouched in decades, it may need some attention.

More than a little, probably… :thinking:

Agree with @gthack - do look at older Naim units, to get much more, for a lot less.

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Two things I’ve learned along the way, which are kind of linked. One, folks experience music differently, so what works for one may not for the other. Two, nothing is perfect so despite Linn and Naim having their own development ethos which each thinks is the ‘best’ approach, neither has created the perfect product that appeals to everyone. Same for Audio Note, Rega, and many others.

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My dealer does both linn and naim and I’m sure there are others and that any of them would be happy to share their opinions/expertise and set up demos so you can find out which you prefer.


Exactly :+1:

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What about the cartridge? For such a classic Linn turntable-arm yours is quite a modest set up, and a switch to a MC cartridge (e.g. I run a new Dynavector 20X2L on my 1985 much serviced and upgraded LP12/Ittok) might reveal much more music.

Naim amps will give a very clear, articulate reproduction of your existing cartridge.

Linn were of course the first to shout, “Source First!”



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Dear Alam,

Your Linn LK140 Power Amp is no slouch. According to the internet, " The LK140 is a more powerful stereo amplifier that improves loudspeaker drive unit propulsion with 140 watts per channel into 4 Ohms or 95 watts into 8 Ohms."

I am confused with your “Linn Active Keilidh speakers”. Are these speakers active as the name suggests? As I have no experience with active speakers. My confusion stems from such a powerful amplifier driving an active speaker.

Could you please confirm, Alam?

Money can evaporate very quickly, looking at possible options.

Warm regards,

Mitch in Oz.

Hi there, I have just got it into my head that I fancy a change. When you have had the same set up for thirty odd years and to be fair it has always been good enough. As I said I had the deck serviced/Power supply changed in December 2023 and it came back and sounded stellar…like I remembered it when I first got it. I’m sure that things have moved on since 1993. Naim has always appealed to me after my first set up in 1984. The Nait 1 and Rega Planar 2. Budget is always subjective…I am not opposed to spending good money. The idea though is to have a noticeable upgrade on what I have with the Naim set up then being added too as I go along. If I spend 1500-2000 on an amp then possibly similiar amount of money on other components to take me a notch or so higher. Thanks Alan.

Dear Alan,

I am hoping somebody else might chime in with some advice. Amplifier-wise, I think you will be looking at at least an SN3, if not a 300DR, to match the power of your Linn Amplifier. With the latter comes all its accompaniments and will blow your budget by miles. However, I could glean from the internet that your speakers’ efficiency is 93 dB SPL. Therefore, all you will require is an XS3. I am very happy with my XS2 driving a pair of 84 dB SPL speakers. Though, as I have mentioned in other posts, if I had my time again, I should have purchased an SN2 at the time. In your case an SN3.

Warm regards,

Mitch in Oz.

Keilidhs are not hard for a Naim amp to drive with their current capabilities. Even the original Nait can just about do it. Nait 50 has no probs, so I’m sure an XS3 will also cope fine.

The OPs dealer will need to convert back to passive though, which will also make them easier to sell.

The Nait 1 is still the most ‘fun’ Naim amp I’ve owned but no matter which model you go for, most folks would notice an improvement in rhythm and timing over the Linn. For me this benefits rock music most of all. When I bought my first Naim amp (cheap 2nd hand Nait 5i) and compared it to my top Linn equipment, all of a sudden rock music from my youth was enjoyable again. I’d assumed I had just grown out of it but not at all. Of course, swings and roundabouts, so some music may not be as enjoyable , but you want a change so that’s what you’ll get for sure :slight_smile:

You could always keep the Majik-i for a second system and partner with a small pair of Tukans on a sideboard/chest. My daughter uses them in her bedroom and they sound great just on rubber feet.

Alan - you’re based in Hertford? If so book a session with Cymbiosis in Leicester or Tomtom in St Albans.