Naim olive pre and power

Hello, I am literally a complete newbie on this or any forum, some years ago I had a 62/90 with a marantz cd85 front end, due to family circumstances I had to sell the outfit, I have recently retired and would like to rebuild a set up out of olive series, no front end as of yet and speakers probably pmc gb1i, I am unsure as to what to buy a 72 or 102 and a 140 or 180, hicap to follow, I have a small living room hence the pmc speakers that are not fussy about placement, I don’t listen at loud volumes, any help would be appreciated, regards Neil.

Welcome aboard Neil. It’s a simple choice really. If you’re a pipe and slippers kinda guy then the 72/180 is the pairing for you. Otherwise, grab a 102/140, get them serviced, and never read anything else here ever again :blush:


If you like a bit more detail, go for the 102. If you like a bit more musicality (whatever that is) go for the 72. Make sure they get serviced and you get a brilliant system for which you can spend your last penny on expensive source upgrades.


72/140 is a dream team, punches way out of its league but probably not ideal if your a Bing Crosby fan. If I had a second system they would be in it without doubt


Hi, I’ve just binned the pipe and slippers, I noticed that mr tibbs doesn’t pair the 102/180 combo, I have wide admittedly not that up to date collection from fleetwood mac to rag n bone man, throw in a bit of paloma faith and my disc which I demo kit would beTracey chapman and acoustic alchemy, does this help or shall I retrieve the pipe and slippers, thanks again Neil.

Any of the 72/102/140/180 permutations can work well together, assuming all are working as they should. People have long argued the 72 is more ‘musical’ than the 102, but when pushed will come up with different definitions of ‘musical’, so hardly definitive. I would simply say the 102 offers a wider window to your sources, therefore source quality becomes more important. The 102 and 140 have a more lean and fast sound compared to the 72 and 180, with the 72/140 pairing being a popular compromise if you don’t want the full fat sounding 72/180 or full on 102/140 sound.


Hello and thanks again, your input is very important as previously I made some questionable purchases, probably well before your time but we had people advocating putting a piece of paper under one foot of your turntable or colouring the outside edge of a cd to improve sound quality, it seemed sense to ask people who appreciate the naim brand for advice, I have taken on board your suggestions and will look out for a 72/180 which I will get serviced and a hi cap at a later date, front end probably a cdx but open to suggestions, as I am for speaker cable used to use the linn which I believe was the same as the nac4 cable but much more flexible, anyway please any more advice don’t hesitate please pass it my way. kind regards and thank you all again.Neil.

That’s the right cable for sure. I have it currently with my 140 into the sbls. Linn K20.

@Neil1956 I’m using 72/180 into GB1i with WitchHat cables in a small lounge. My music taste ranges from acoustic to full on heavy metal and can honestly say this combination sounds fantastic with what ever I play.


Hello, and thank you for the confirmation regarding the pmc speakers, years ago I had a pair of TDL 0.5 studio speakers, and I liked the transmission line sound, I have listened to the pmc and they are in a different league so I have made my mind up to find a decent pair, as for cables well as I’m starting completely afresh then they are a consideration for after I have purchased the system, although linn cable is on the shopping list it’s a lot cheaper than the nac 5 and I did used to have it before, so many thanks, all input and suggestions are a great help, kind regards. Neil.

@Neil1956 look at the witch hat N2 cable. Good match with naim and a lot cheaper then Naca5. Also if you do get some GB1s and have to have them hard against a wall I’d recommend getting the speaker cable terminated with spades.

Or for a little more give WH Phantoms a go. The reviews on this site have been rather good and I like what I hear in my system.

Linn K20 is ‘… remarkably simuilar to…’ Naim A4 cable. It is the newer and current Naim A5 cable which is much stiffer.

Hello, really appreciate all your suggestions, need a new tv now as well, for some reason the tv and the hive hub both went last night, tv is 10 years old so on borrowed time, fancy the new Philips 9235 ambilight as it’s got B&W speakers, I suppose whatever I choose will be better than the bedroom tv I’m using today, as for cables as soon as i sort system I’ll look to cables, your input is valuable as I have been out of the loop for years, thanks again, regards Neil.



Hello and woohoo, after finding a very good condition 72 I have managed to find a late 180 on a well known site, if it’s condition is half as good as its description I’m going to be very happy, decided to wait until after restrictions are lifted and will take 72/180 for service it’s only 65 miles away to Sheffield and that way guaranteed delivery, cdx next, regards Neil.


Well Done…!!

Need a remote? Nac 72 has no remote …

Strangely it’s less of an issue than you think. Set and live with it. Or get up. Changing sources can be annoying, I’ll give you that.
Most annoying is only being able to use a quarter of the volume pot range

Hello, no remote is absolutely not an issue, didn’t used to have one and it was that tactile thing nothing like a good old fashioned clunk click rotary control, simple and last forever (well I hope), not quite sure what you mean regarding only using a portion of the pot range, could you expand on that, regards and thank you for explaining. Neil.

I find I don’t get to take the volume pot beyond 9 o’clock. From no music to a very little is the smallest of clockwise turns. Just means that delicate volume changes are more difficult.
My previous MF pre amp was half or even a third as sensitive.
Allowing more use of the pots range.