Matrix Audio & Naim. N follows M alphabetically, but what about musically?

A recent bout of upgradeitis has left me with a spare pair of speakers (KEF R100) and Roon capability. I’ve also got a hankering for a vintage chrome bumper Naim amp to fit into my smallish home office as a second system.

Looked at different options of streamers/ DACs and Auralic Aries Mini, DAC V1 have been suggested, and I like the look of the RME ADI - 2 DAC, but I think a Roon ready streamer is the way to go for me.

I have my eye on a Matrix Audio Element i which measures really well, frequency response as flat as a pancake with very impressive signal to noise performance. As it is also a preamp, thinking of partnering with a CB NAP 110. I also like the small form factor of the Element i.

As there is no way I’ll be able to demo this combo, wondering if anyone else has partnered MA kit with Naim, and if it works? I expect the MA Element i to be quite revealing and with aforementioned flat response, will it work well with the NAP 100, which I have no previous experience of.

I can highly recommend the RME DAC love mine but no experience with Matrix. The RME it will sound excellent with just a modest pi4 as an endpoint. It’s usb implementation is very very good. I get the all in one approach is neater but also at a premium.

I’ve had the Matrix Audio Element-X on home demo for a couple of weeks now. I’m feeding it with my NDX2 using S/PDIF. It’s a great unit, combining DAC, streamer and headphone amp. It has 7 PCM filters which allow you to set different timbre effects.

The overall sound of the DAC section is subtle (as in not a night and day change) but has allowed much more detail to come through. I can hear intricate noises and effects in the music that I couldn’t hear before. As I’m not using it as a streamer I may go for the X-SABRE Pro as DAC instead, as its £800 cheaper (and also available in black)

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