Naim for Harbeth P3ESR

Hi all, I have a couple of Harbeth P3ESR with a Naim 5si. I have the possibility to sell this ampli and buy a pre owned (and older than the 5si) nac 202, nap 200 with napsc and hi cap 2.
Do you think is great step for this speakers and worth the difference in money.

Yes, undoubtedly . I have P3ESR , they are lovely speakers but they need serious oomph to get the best out of.

I had the Naim boxes you mention but they needed a service and it would have been very difficult to get them back into the rack.

I now have a Nova /Powerline combo and it does a very good job with them

I wouldn’t worry about your speakers at this point, they will probably improve with this new amplification.

Get the boxes you want, then ride with it for some months and see how you feel about everything.

Nobody knows how the speakers will react yet, your room and ears, etc.

It would be a good idea to provide details of your system in your profile. What is your source? Is it good enough for a 202/200? How old are the 202, 200 and Hicap? If more than 10 years, when were they last serviced? Servicing can be expensive. Have you considered a Supernait 2 or 3?

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Sorry for that, at the moment I’m renovating all the system. I have an old, modded Lenco L75s with Ortofon As212 arm. For liquid music I use a Mac with Roon and, for the moment, an old Arcam R-dac. The serials of the 202/200 begin with 2039, I think it means near 2004/2005 (production). Supernait 3 is over budget

You need to step back and think about both your budget and where you want the system to go. A 202 and 200 are far too good for an old Lenco and an rDac. They are 18 years old and will need servicing. Do you know how much that will cost? You have some nice speakers and need both source and amplifier to match.

I’m going step by step: I started with an old Cyrus two + PSX and a couple of Sonus Faber Minuetto.
When the Cyrus stopped to work (the service cost was more than the ampli value), I replaced it with the 5si but I was not so happy of the results. When I get the Harbeths the improvement was huge, but it looks like something was missing. I my project I was looking for a good Streamer/DAC, but I’ve found the possibility to get the 202/200/hicap… So you think is better for me to replace the digital source?

You really need to do both.

Can you live without the Hicap? I know I could.

If I were you I would get the 202/200/HC without overthinking it too much, this should make your Harbeths sound a whole lot better - it’s a great pre/power combo and your speakers are begging you for it! As for source and DAC, yes and yes but you can take time to audition. If you like Cyrus, the Stream Xa streaming DAC sounds quite good if you can put up with the App, or look within the Naim range within budget.

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I ran P3ESR out of Uniti (1st gen) for many years and was very pleased with that combination (enough oomph for me). During those years I upgraded the source (vinyl) a couple of times and could hear the improvement on every step very clearly. When I purchased the SuperNait 2 a few years back I still did hear the difference but it was more subtle.

If you cannot (or do not want to) change the source and the amp at the same time the source could be the way to go, however, as always – your room, ears and expectations.

As I said I had that system , and it definitely needs to have been serviced .

Those are excellent speakers , to get the best I would be looking at a SN2 or 3 (if the 200/202 combo hasn’t been serviced )

I would be inclined to also look at the source

Highcapped SN2 playing into Falcon Ls/3s. here
Have recently been fiddling with a REL subwoofer to see if it would give me a little more bottom end but it seems to muck the Ls/3’s balance up. I shall stay where I am.
No heavy rock or symphonics in my playlists though.

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I’ve just asked: they were serviced two years ago…

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In which case, you have no problems.

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Serviced two years ago, and as Christopher M says

However as Mr Halibut points out, they will show up your source material .

spot on

True, but OP is asking whether 202/200 with a HC is a step up from 5si, so this argument is not really of a big concern. I consider 202/200/HC/P3ESR an end game regardless the source.

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I’ve a pair of P3ESRs with a SuperUniti and am very happy with them. I did toy with changing them for Spendor A2/A4 for more dynamics. In a suitably sized room with enough power the P3ESRs are brilliant. I can only imagine the 200 will be great with them. I wonder how a 250 might sound with them though?