I currently have a Nait xs with stageline phono. Considering an upgrade on the used market to a supernait 2 or nap 200/nac 202 separates. Wondering if anyone has experience with these units and can comment on the benefits of each compared to Nait xs. Thanks in advance.
IMHO, SN2 all the way. I’ve had extensive experience with all of the above, save that I had an XS2 vs XS. Funny, though, I still to this day have quite fond memories and a soft spot for the XS series. It does a myriad of things well; even helped me truly understand the whole flat-earth idea. That beauty has drive and a fun factor that is difficult to parse, but it’s unquestionably present. There are even those fora-wide that would prefer the XS over a SN. I can honestly see where they’re coming from…but ‘at the end of the day’ the SN2 is a better Integrated; couple that with the fact that there is an inherent and genuine upgrade path that takes it to stratospheric heights by comparison.
As for separates, with those in particular, I think you’d have to move even beyond that to get to the enjoyment level of a SN2. Many might vehemently disagree, but that’s what I have concluded in three separate environments. Separates are what I strive to have, especially when there’s such outstanding choices out there…but for a price. The SN2 is already expensive enough (at least for me), and may prove it’s all you’ll need for years to come until curiosity and/or upgraditis sets in. It hasn’t for me, which speaks volumes in the realm of amplification. The XS, I feel, was always Naim’s true Integrated sweet spot in terms of performance and value, but the SN2 is a crowning achievement. Separates, for me, will always keep me wondering, ‘what if…?’
Having gone from a Nait XS 2 to the SN 2 I can state that I thought it was a very nice uplift and I am quite happy with my four box system.
No experience with the 200/202 but for me the Intergrated amp with the HiCap for the Preamp section does a fantastic job!
Good luck with your decision, hopefully you can demo at your dealer and possibly at home.
Is always surprises me when people post here that they prefer a Supernait to 202/200, as to my ears the separates sound significantly better, especially if you get a 200DR which does a better job of powering the preamp than the old non-DR version. Of course you can add a Hicap which is better again, depending on how many boxes you want.
There really is no substitute for listening for yourself though, so if you’re going to take a punt on some used gear you haven’t heard for yourself you’ll never know if you made the right decision.
Also bear in mind that as you add more boxes, setup becomes increasingly important. A proper rack with carefully dressed cables makes all the difference.
I previously had Nac 122x Nap 150x with flatcap2x. In order to upgrade, at that time I tested Supernait 2 and the bare Nac 202 + Nap 200DR combo: I choose the combo for its best resolution, timing and best bass.
IMO, despite the price difference, it was worth it.
Similar experience to Airdavid re my system; I can only say: find a way to compare the choices before purchase & have your ‘end game’ system in your head/heart, otherwise it’s a slippery slope to an empty wallet
I had the XS, XS 2 - with flat cap. Then up to the 202/200, Napsc and Hi Cap. All through careful spend on the used market. Even getting the 202/200 serviced by Naim I think as a combination it’s tremendous value for money.
Thanks for your insight folks! Unfortunately I can’t demo this I’m my part of the world and travel as we all know is off for a while. Since the pandemic I’ve been listening to my system quite a lot leading to my desire to consider upgrades. A slippery slope indeed but I think we all share that!
Yes, I think tha DR upgrade was to the pre-amp supply on the 200.
If you get a 202, get a NAPSC for it, unfortunatley its optional on the 202, but it does make a noticeable difference.
I had a similar step in my system journey some years back. If funds allow the 202/200 is going to be the most rewarding a flexible system longer term.
It’ll benefit from being racked up properly and keeping an eye on cabling but not so much so you couldn’t just plug it in and enjoy it.
I also had a system based around a SN2 for some time and it is very capable and easy to live with if you just want to keep it all simple and take a step beyond what your XS can offer you.
I imagine you’d enjoy either choice ultimately, if you expect to evolve it significantly over time a 202/200 based system is a solid option.
Good advice from all. I’ve been reading that the 202 will need an external power supply to get the best out of it and others have confirmed the same here. There is a used 202/200(non DR) combo on the market for a reasonable price so I would have to give consideration to the cost of a power supply. It’s also about 11 years old. Some folks are saying there needs to be a recap done at around that age…anyone with experience in that regard and idea of what it might cost? I would have to factor that in to my decision on buying something that old.
I had a quote for a re-cap on a NAP200 from WH for £300 if i recall.
I also used my 202/200 (nonDR) with an olive HiCap for a few years which sounded very good too, so a good S/H Olive HC could be an option.
At that age you will need to budget for a recap. If you intend to buy a Hicap at some point, the non-DR 200 is a good option if the price is right. If you want to keep it simple and avoid the extra box, a 200DR is worth holding out for in my opinion.
Thanks Chris that’s good advice.
I don’t know if you know but the XS is ‘splitable’. You can use your Nait XS as a pre with a separate NAP, or use it as a power amp with a separate NAC.
Just in case you don’t fancy splashing on a NAC202/NAP200 all in one hit.
Majority forum opinion will support the 200/202 option and if auditioning is absolutely impossible, I’d go that way. I have not compared 200/202 with SN2 but I have with SN1. With HiCap on each and after an extensive period of comparison at home I chose the SN. My preference was not unique, so if there is any chance at all of auditioning, I’d do that. If not, going for the pre/power is safer.
@Christopher_M I was not aware of that thanks for the tip! That opens another option for me that I was not considering. Should I go to separates vs sn2 consensus is that the 200dr is the superior amp. But that’s much more expensive and unless i found some uncommon deal out of my reach with a pre. But I could get a dr and use it with my xs until I can get a matching pre.
I had an xs2, did a back to back demo with supernait 2 and a 202 / 200 DR with napsc.
The Supernait 2 a a great sounding amp, very full bodied and has a character of its own really. The 202/200 combo had more detail and space and I found I liked it the more I listened so went for that.
I can however understand how many have opted for the Supernait, more a preference of the overall character.