NAIM Nac 42 history

Good evening.
Is the preamplifier that was designed to match the NAP 110 power amp the 42? Anyone who knows the history of Naim will surely be able to answer me.

I wonder if there is a preamp with a dedicated CD input in the Chrome series.

The 42 is the answer to everything.


however not all of them have the CD input, I in the used market or always noticed Phono, Tape and Tuner

My understanding is that the 32 replaced the 22, and the 42 replaced the 12 …

The 42 was commonly sold with the 110, yes - maybe because they were (then) the entry level into Naim.

But I am not sure the 42 was ‘matched’ to the 110, anymore than to the 160 or the 250.

YMMV… as… interwbzz…

In your opinion, is it correct to place the preamp and power amplifier so close together? In many racks with components of different brands are placed at a safe distance.
Seen so side by side they are perfect and with great aesthetic appeal.


The CD input is the same as a tuner input, so you can use a 42 for any line level source.

The 32 originally had two phono inputs, but on the 32.5, possibly just later ones, phono 2 became a line level aux input.

The reason the 42 and 110 match is partly because they both have the large tractor wheel knobs.

I wanted to say if in the screen printing of the chrome Bumper series there was the writing CD.
Maybe in 62?

or perhaps it never existed until the appearance of the olive series

This is a 62. Mr Google is your friend.

very similar with an additional Aux input, but with the green led that does not go well with the red led of the 110. “chromatic level”

Love my 42 and 110 just freshly recapped and serviced. Cracking little amps…

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Correct HH. I use my CD player through the tuner input of my early NAC72… and my tuner through the tape1 input ! … :upside_down_face:

I was assured by my respected dealer that the tuner input was the best for line-level stuff because it has the shortest path through the amp. I am mainly a CD guy, so it goes on the tuner input :smiley:

My entry into the world of Naim was the 42/110 combo, which was the entry-level back in the early 80s. You could add a SNAPS if funds would allow. I kept this for many years, upgrading to a 32.5/140/HiCap set-up. The 32.5 could be fitted with two cartridge boards or a line-level board, which I had so I could have both a tuner and CD connected.

The 42/110 was my starting point too, back in 1983. I’d saved some of the cost but needed to borrow a bit; you had to borrow £350 minimum to get interest free credit, so to make it work I got a used Snaps at the same time. What a fantastic amplifier it was, and how wonderful that people still enthuse about them nearly 40 years later. I’m sure it’s not simply rose tinted spectacles.


I got mine in 81 or 82, to go with my LP12, Syrinx and Asak and Kan speakers. It was a fabulous system and definitely sounded better than any other combination at that price point.

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A cracking little pair, the NAC42 and NAP110. Both were introduced together in 1979 to replace the NAC22 and NAP120 and initiated the use of an extruded sleeve with slide in tray. After a year the front to back depth of the sleeve and tray was increased slightly and standardised with the introduction of the full width extruded sleeve for the re-engineered NAP160 and 250. Hence the earliest NAC42 and 110 are referred to as “short sleeve” or “short chassis” versions.


My first preamp and introduction to Naim👍


My 42/110 is under my bed, must get them serviced.

Is it normal that the power LED is red in some and green in others?

if measured the output voltage with a digital multimeter taken from the snaic output it must be + 24V, right?

I believe so. All earlier Naim units had Red LED’s - my '82 ones certainly did. But - the 160 & 250 had Green On/Off switches…