Looking for system advice

I’m looking buy some amplification to go with my LP12/Lingo and Epos ES14s and would appreciate some advice. I want to buy used for best sound/pound. I’ve come up with the following possibilities after looking through some sites: NAP 250-2/NAC282/HiCap/StageLine-MM; NAPS 250-2/NAC 272/StageLine-MM; NAP 200/NAC 202/StageLine-MM; or NAP200/NAC62 incl MM boards. These range widely from around £4,500 to £1,400, and I would say my ideal budget would not go above the £4k mark. My goal is the best sound quality and upgrade potential for the money. I’m not interested in streaming at the moment and want to add a used Naim CD player at some stage. Auditioning is a problem obviously but, having owned naim amplification before I know I like the sound and many on this forum know these combinations and will have a view.

Welcome to the Forum.

You’ll probably be aware that the ES14 was developed with the 250 power amp, and that’s really what you want. The 250-2 you mention is a very different beast from the chrome or olive 250 and I would avoid it, as it has a fatter sound. The current 250DR is superb, but may be too pricey.

On that basis and to get the best sound per pound, I’d be going Olive. The 82 and 250 is the one to go for, with either a Hicap or Supercap as budget permits. The 82 can carry a phono stage, so you can plug the Linn directly to it.

If you want current equipment, the 282, Hicap DR and 250DR are the things to go for.

I’m sure you know that Naim gear needs recapping every ten years or so, so bear that in mind.


Hi there and welcome to the mad house!!

I have 282/HCDR/200DR which is excellent along with a Lehmann Black Cube phono stage for my LP12. I think you would be pushed to acheive a similar set up on your budget though. A 272/250-2/Stage line seemss more realistic, but it depends what route you want to take long term. The NAC202 is a decent pre amp but the 282 blows it away big time in every department. Had I known that when I bought the 202 I would have gone straight to the 282. Your LP12 deserves better than the 202 speaking from personal experience. I have no experience of the Olive or CB range but some on here get very good results. A recently serviced 82 for example would probably be a lot cheaper than a 282. Others will be able to give you their first hand experience of the older Naim ranges.

Sorry if I’ve rambled a bit but hopefully it makes some kind of sense. Best of luck!!

Looks like HH beat me to it with his suggestion of the olive range!


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Many thanks. I have seen olive 250s which are old and I would need to factor in service charges. No equivalent olive pre amps seem available so far, except a 52 which, at £3k alone is above my total budget. I appreciate you taking the time to reply.

Many thanks. I take your point about the 202 vs 282. DR seems to add about £1,000 to the price so looks unlikely at the moment. I’ll keep a look out for 82.
I appreciate your time.

No problem. I have bought the majority of my system ex demo or second hand. Naim stuff is very reliable even the older stuff! You should have no fears about buying second hand. There are a number of second hand hifi specialists who have on line presence.

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The EPOS ES14 was originally designed, developed & voiced by Robin Marshall to go with his Linn LP12/Ittok/Troika, chrome bumper Naim 32.5/hicap/250. Other than the cartridge (I had a Linn Karma), this was the very system that I had back in the late 1980s with my ES14s.

HH’s recommendations are spot on. If you can’t find an 82, then a recently serviced 72, 62, 32.5 or 42.5 would work really well.

Hope this helps, BF


If you have no interest in streaming I would knock the 272/250 combo out from your short list …

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Thank you Bluesfan. There is a NAC62 available, with MM boards. That might get me up and running. None of it has recent service though, or any service at all in fact although its supposed to be good working order. So I will need to factor in service costs.
Much appreciated.

Yes, I did wonder if I would be better off with a dedicated preamp. Thanks

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I ran my ES14 with LP12/72/HC/250 olive back then.
Had a spare Nait which was used occasionally, after a short “getting used to period” the little amp sounded superb but with less dynamic and SPL.
I’d not pair ES14 with new black boxes.

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I can attest that the ES14s work just as well with the current Naim kit.

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Would use of a NAC 62 with Olive 250 require a Hicap to power the NAC? Also, will they all connect to each other with the 5 pin DIN leads that (should) come with them?

I have read many posts on other hifi forums claiming that Naim pre-amps can run for decades without a service and be fine. I recommend taking such claims with a very large pinch of salt.

A few years ago, I sent our NAC32.5 back to the factory for a service. Nothing was wrong as such but the system just sounded a bit tired and shut in. It had been 16 years since its previous service. Naim Service Dept. head called one day, saying that it was a very good job to have sent it in because it was “about to completely fall over”. Our NAC32.5 came back with A LOT of replacement components in it and sounded somewhat sprightlier as a result.

Worth bearing in mind if the vendor has a NAC62 that “sounds fine and will run forever without a service”.

As others have said already, while a 250-2 may not be an ideal match for the ES14s, a serviced CB or olive 250, a pair of serviced 135s or a 250DR should all be brilliant.

Happy hunting, BF

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When using any NAP250, the pre-amp would need an external power supply such as a Hicap or even a Supercap (if you are feeling ambitious).

Best regards, BF

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Ran ran ES14s and 25s very well with Exposure many years so to. 6/7/8 first and then 21/18 and naturally the 16 monos which were fantastic. They still seem to service then soon.

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Just saying welcome. I can’t really add anything to the good advice you’ve received already!



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Cheers - many thanks. Everyone has been very helpful

I used a 82 With a Supercap and 250 for many years with a pair of ES14s for many years a superb combination source was an LP12 well recommended.

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Your first option of NAP250-2/NAC282/HiCap/StageLine-MM will sound best. If it is over your budget you can replace NAP 250 with 200.

In my limited experience, the sound of the 282/82 is unique in the sense not many amps outside of Naim will sound close to it. The dynamics, vibrancy and punch of the 282.

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