ND5 XS 2 - digital outputs

First post so please bear with if this has been covered previously.

Technical question around the system architecture - do the digital outputs pass original source signal through pre or post SHARC DSP.

I hope this makes sense and will enable someone to respond.

Many thanks for your time.

The digital out is taken from the SHARC DSP, so it is not bypassed.
Just out of curiosity, why do you ask?

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Firstly thank you for the timely response.
I’m just researching possible streaming options but also potential future upgrades.
It looks like Naim have invested a lot in the SHARC DSP technology in this streamer but used, dare I say it on a Naim forum, a relatively old PCM1791A Burr-Brown DAC (albeit I I think the explanation for this and no display was to keep cost down and sound quality good).
This in theory, to me, could be a good product to upgrade with a standalone DAC at a later date.
I have a Naim Nait XS3 so would be inclined to purchase this XS range streamer as it should have been developed based on this pairing (surely?) and be well balanced.
Before you ask why I didn’t buy a Nova I have a 5.1 home cinema set up which I wished to retain running through a stereo amp.
This is the answer I was looking for so thank you and don’t take this the wrong way how have you confirmed this to be the case - do you work or are you a consultant for them?

You can read all about it yourself in the ND555 white paper. The ND555, NDX2 and ND5XS2 all share the same digital board and streaming card.

As Chris correctly says, the S/PDIF output is via the SHARC DSP.

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Thanks that’s fairly heavy going for a lay person, like me, so I may have interpreted incorrectly but it suggests that everything on the Digital Board is upsampled to either 705.6 kHz or 768kHz before being passed to the internal DAC board.
I wonder if this is still true for a externally connected DAC and where clock responsibilities lie.
Anyway proof is in the listening not the science but interesting nevertheless and thank you.

A request to an obliging owner of a ND5 XS 2 that has an external DAC with sample rate received meter.
Could you confirm the sample rate received by an external DAC using the S/PDIF output from the ethernet input and original source material of say 16/44.1?
Many thanks for your kind assistance.

Friend, you need to do some listening. If it sounds good, buy it.


The S/PDIF output sample rate and bit depth mirrors the source. The only option on the later players is how it handles DSD formats.

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That is so last year!

I was only reading this today for another reason. As I was curious to know what Burrbrown DACs the range of NAIM streamers use. It is interesting to note that ND 555 uses two PCM 1704U-K devices. I know the model numbers are the same though do not know about the suffixes of the PCM 1704 used in the CD5 XS. Possibly somebody knows more than I? I am hoping for a response.

Warm regards,


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