NAP140 to NAP200

Would a move from my late 90s NAP140 (serviced 2018) to a NAP 200DR be a worthwhile upgrade? What difference in sound quality could I expect?

A 200DR will do a much better job of powering your preamp if you don’t use a Hicap. On paper it’s a better power amp too, but only a listen will tell you if it sounds better than your particular 140.

It depends. What is the rest of the system?

Personally, I have found that matching an amp with a preamp that is it’s natural partner gets better results than going with an amp that has the higher specs on paper.

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CD5si, Arcam R-Play, NAC 202, Piega TS5. The (NAP140) system sounds really good but would the NAP200 be significantly better?

Keep the 140. Add a NAPSC. I’d also look at the sources which are starting to lag behind the amp and then add a Hicap DR.

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I’m going to write up some stuff in the next few days, but my recent experience tells me that I wasted 7 years by going from a 150 to a 200. I should have gone bigger back then. The jump was too small and now with a 252 the improvement is massive. Should have waited, saved and gone that extra step. Just my opinion.

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I see. I haven’t heard either of those amps with a 202.

The 140 is possibly (probably?) the superior amp in terms of musicality but the 200 is the natural mate for the 202 so there may be a level of synergy the 140 does not have.

I have a 32.5/hicap/250, all chrome bumper. I find the 72 to be a better preamp than the 32.5 on average but when I did A:B testing between the two in that particular system I found the 32.5 had slightly better synergy. There was an edge to it in conjunction with the CB hicap and 250 that made the whole work better than the individual pieces.

One consideration may be the end game you have in mind. If you are open to going full olive you might consider keeping the 140 and moving from a 202 to an 82. The 140 is a true classic.

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Hi Thruster,
Last time I did the comparison, the step from a Nait power amp section (note, not Supernait) to a NAP140 was a significant improvement. With speakers that were fairly easy to drive, the next natural step up from a NAP140 was a NAP250.

In your case, a NAP200DR brings both a beefier power supply for the power amp and a considerably better power supply for the NAC202, so it absolutely will be a worthwhile upgrade if considered in isolation.

However, this is where it gets more complicated. I would personally stick with the NAP140 because it is so very, very musical. In the context of the amplifier as a whole, a NAPSC and a Hicap DR would be my preference over the power amp upgrade. Better still a serviced NAC82 (and Hicap if funds permit).
An 82 (Hicap) 140 is a considerably better combination to these cloth ears than a 202/200DR.

The 282 is perhaps incrementally smoother and calmer than an 82 but may cost a lot more, even used.

Hope this helps, BF

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The 202 replaced a NAC92 - modified Nait3 when I got the 140. The 202 brought much more detail and musicality and with the 140 sounds really good to me. Maybe I’ll borrow a Nap200 but it would have to be special to beat the 140!

I replaced my 140 with a 200 (non DR) a few years ago. The preamp was the 202. Although I loved the 140 (mine was an upgraded 110), the 200 was a huge improvement. I was using a Hicap and Napsc as well, but the 200 just gave more detail, weight and authority to the proceedings. There was also a rightness about the sound which was quite unexpected. However since the 202 and the 200 were designed to go together, perhaps I should have expected it. Go for the upgrade if you can afford it.


Keep the 140 it’s not the weak link in your system. Look at your source first and maybe a Hicap on the 202.

I’ve heard a 140 in a system fronted by an ND5XS2 and a nice LP12 with an Aro and a 252/Supercap DR and the 140 sounded right at home to me!

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