NAC-N272 vs Upgraded NAC32 feeding a NAP250

Apologies if this is a stupid question but I’m about to get my 1980’s kit upgraded (NAC32-5/HICAP/250/NACDI/NATO1 feeding Isobarik DMS) by Naim & wondered how my upgraded 32/HICAP would compare to a N272? I hope my upgraded kit would sound a lot better but I’m just curious before I spend the money on all my upgrades :slight_smile: Any views gratefully received. Thanks Gareth

Hi and welcome,

First from your system details I presume you listen to FM a lot of the time. That being the case the radio facility on the 272 isn’t going to get close to what the Nat 01 can deliver.

That then brings us on to how the Nac 32 delivers against the 272. That I can’t answer as I don’t know where the 32 stood in the Naim hierarchy. However, there has been much debate as to how the 272 performs against the Naim pre-amps in general and of course it is a subjective argument. The recent thread in love with the 272 will give you a flavour. The only way to judge is to trust your ears through a demo.

Good luck,


I have a 272 and am a big fan of it. I’m curious what has made you consider it - for example is it to add streaming or internet radio? It’s very good as a preamp by itself but to be at home with your 250 and Isobariks you’d really need to power it with an XPSDR or ideally a 555PSDR, which is how I use mine with a NAP300. So not a cheap option. It’s perfectly possible to play the NAT01 through it, and I use a NAT05 very successfully.

The 32.5/Hicap is of course a superb preamp, and one I had for a good while back in the day.

So it really depends what you want to do with the preamp, what you want to replace and what you seek to gain. If you just want to add streaming and internet radio you’d probably be better simply adding an ND5XS2 or NDX2, unless you are willing to stump up the cash for a power supply to accompany the 272.

What a friendly forum. Thanks! I omitted to mention I also have an LP12 & a huge collection of vinyl :slight_smile: It seems that the 32-5 is still highly thought of so I will get it upgraded & see what it sounds like. Its amazing that 30 year old kit is so good. My 30+ year old Belling cooker just died and you cant get elements for it any more :frowning:


To be honest I just wanted to add streaming but am also lazy so liked the idea of a remote control. I’m going to get all my old stuff upgraded/serviced and take it from there. Much as I like the idea of streaming the prices are quite high of the “good” Naim Streamers so I’ll probably just buy more CDs or add a streamer when I can afford it!

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