NAC 202 + Hicap (No NAPSC acquired yet) feeding Non-Naim Power Amp

Hi All,
Further on from my (much) earlier [NAC-N272 vs NAC 202 & ND5-XS2] topic (NAC-N272 vs NAC 202 & ND5-XS2) … sorry didn’t know if that was dead, or how to add on these questions.
Have kept my ND5 XS2 (as mentioned in previous strand) and have bought on eBay a NAC202 with HiCap. (£850 - looks reasonably tidy, no remote, just cable & paddle link plug).
Will be using to feed the power stage on my Creek 100A integrated (direct link via RCA or XLR).
Fellow at Naim said HiCap enough for me for now (could add-in NAPSC later to improve SQ).
My understanding for connections is … Socket 4 of HiCap (with DIN to DIN cable provided) to Upgrade/Link 1 socket (for power) … making sure the link plug connects the sockets marked Link1 & Upgrade/Link2 (top row) … until I have a NAPSC … at which point, remove link plug and connect NAPSC to its namesake socket [top right] (presumably, the cable would come with NAPSC when purchased) [even if will be a used/2nd unit, no doubt].
Analogue/sound output from 202 to my power amp input, presumably out of the ‘Standard’ [bottom right] socket with a 4 pin DIN plug ?
Please any advice thoughts on connections / any additional cables or items needed.
Presumably any 2nd hand remote (Narcom 5 … or* ?) would work, as long as the correct type*.
As ever … any advice, suggestions or thoughts would be very much welcome.
Apologies for any faux pas / breaches or etiquette, if present.
Many thanks for kind attention.
Happy vibes to all,
PS. Sorry, forgot. Any thoughts as to how & where I’d connect my Musical Fidelity MX-VYNL phono stage (RCA & XLR outputs) … again will need to be buying cables I (probably) don’t have. Budget presently tight, so suggestions as such would be great.
PPS. My ND5 XS2 could, of course (at least, I’d have thought so…) be connected straight into the NAC202 DIN inputs with the DIN cable I got with it (which I’ll probably do anyway) - but, to muddy the waters further … am about to buy a Chord Qutest DAC … which I intend to connect to the BNC output of the ND5 XS2. My impression from other’s thoughts is that this is a v good SQ improvement. Anything I might have missed, or not be considering fully ?

Argh - mixing Naim pre amps and other brand power amps isn’t really recommended, sorry. I can’t advise on the wiring having never thought about I hope someone can advise soon.

That’s nearly it.

Hicap socket 4 should be connected via the supplied SNAIC5 cable to the Upgrade 2 socket. The paddle link plug goes in Link 1 and covers the Upgrade 1 socket (where the future NAPSC would plug into)

Connect to the Creek via a DIN4 to RCA cable from Hicap socket 3 rather than the Standard socket on the 202.

The NAPSC comes with a captive cable to connect to the Upgrade 1 socket, so no extra cable needed here.

For the phono stage you could just use some RCA cables to connect to the Aux 2 RCA inputs (don’t forget to reassign the input from the Aux 2 DIN socket to the RCA sockets) or even better get a 2x RCA to DIN5 cable and just use one of the DIN inputs.


There are many good options for a 4-Pin Din 216°/RCA cable, depending on your budget and expectations you should ne able to find something suitable, from the affordable (Gotham, Lynx, designcable, Futurebeat) to the more hi-end (naim, At!as, Witch Hat, AR-Sound) and several others. Many people had reported good results pairing naim preamps to third party amplifiers, including active loudspeakers, there’s no real reason why you couldn’t find a good match, don’t let yourself be discouraged by purist ideologies and let your ears do the judging.

That said, using a Naim pre into an integrated amp is wasting the integrated’s pre. If the 202 is planned to be with you for the long term, it may be worth swapping the Creek for a used NAP200. It doesn’t need to be a DR version as you have the Hicap, and they are not expensive. The 200 comes with the necessary lead for connecting to the Hicap, avoiding the need to buy a Din to RCA.

As James says above, you should take the preamp connection from the Hicap, not directly from the 202, although this may seem counterintuitive.
I don’t see any problem with doing this into a non-Naim power amp. Running a non-Naim preamp into a Naim power amp is more likely to give problems. You will, however, need to get a suitable cable made up with a 4 pin DIN plug for the Hicap and 2 RCAs for the Creek. (Don’t use XLRs, these are for balanced connections which Naim preamps don’t use.)

4 pin DIN, not 5.

Its fine. Dont worry. Naim pre to non naim power is fine. The other way around less so.
Ive had a rant elsewhere on this forum about my disappointing demo of a nap 250 and 300 and dare i say it a 500.

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Sorry, you are quite right, I meant 4 pin!

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Spot on - thank you James. Outstanding succinctness - unlike my own ramblings !! Much appreciated.

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Many thanks. Help & encouragement very much appreciated.

Most likely the Creek integrated will move on at some point. What I like about non-Naim power amps is having the ability to drive 2 pairs speakers (at the moment KEF R7s front, KEF R3s side) & add-in the sides if suitable for listening to whatever at the time … or is this possible using Naim power amps ? Presumably with two power amps (or 4 affordable monoblocks). But is this viable ? With my Creek I can turn side speakers on & off at will, as to what sounds best, usually dependent on listening volume & if I’m sitting down or moving around. If I had the money I might buy a (prob 2nd) Luxman or Accuphase or some-such poweramp.

Cheers Chris … Don’t know why I mentioned the XLR. Guess I knew Naim didn’t accomodate, as use different grounding - presumably, that being the whole point (or it, in the main) ? Then again, I’m really not all that sure !


Many thanks

Thanks … right, 4-pin. Sorry, may have initiated an icon mistakenly (was looking for a thumbs-up !)
… or maybe that was earlier post. Getting a bit flummoxed. Many thanks to you all for your kind help & attention.

You could do that with two Naim power amps, but you’d be turning it all off, unplugging from the back of the Hicap and turning it on again, which would be such a pain as to be impractical. It will be interesting to see what difference the 202 makes over the Creek preamp. I’ve always found Creek to be really good.

Argh good. Of course what the OP could do as an interim - at least - is get 2nd hand NAP 155, one available at a dealer near Leicester.

I ran a Rega Maia from a 282 with flatcap and later a hicap, both without problems from combining the brands. I found a pair of Naim supplied mono DIN4 to RCA cables on a dealer’s ex demo list, which I used from sockets 3 and 2 of the ps to the power amp. Eventually I replaced the Maia with a 250 but that was several years after the 282 arrived. Chord Chrysalis used the same cable as Naim.

Would the Standard socket still be ‘active’ for signal output, with Upgrade Link 2 via HiCap route in use as the main pre-out ? I have a Muso Gen 1 attached to the pre-out of my Creek integrated (with RCA - 3.5mm plug cable) … use for TV, listening at night etc. If would work, could get a …“10cm ‘4-pin DIN - FEMALE RCA’ Gotham GAC-1 interconnect for Naim” on eBay (£28) to connect to the Standard socket on the 202. (and the RCA plugs that are currently fed by the Creek pre-amp output)
Sorry to bother again … Cheers, S.