NDS or 272 in a Roon environment

@JimDog

Sorry couldn’t figure out how to PM you back

Hi,

From what I understand there should be a big step up from a 272 to an NDS.

It would certainly be a better DAC than in the ND5XS2 (I had a ND5XS with NP5XS before the NDS, and also used the NP5XS to power the NDS before the 555DR).

Now the nDAC is meant to be good, especially with a 555DR, but again it is using both A & B feeds? Only the NDS and ND555 have the double Burndy feed from the 555 PS.

Plus from Roon what are you going to feed it with, a S/PDIF feed is flawed, and no USB input.

In my book it is either NDS/555DR or ND555/DR or dCS, Meridian UltraDAC

So, if you are going Roon, i.e. with the Roon Core, Subscription how best to realise it without going to a ND555 with the 555DR?

The cheapest option is the dedicated unit for the SonoreUPnP Bridge, and house with the Roon Core, or a SonicTransporter which can run Roon Core & the SonoreUPnP Bridge on the device.

Then after than is a more expensive platform for the networking. Yes you could go optical with an oR from your Cisco, or Cisco to an ER via optical then NDS. All good options.

But it depends on where you are storing music library, and what plans for that.

I do believe that a Roonified NDS with the SonoreUPnP Bridge with good networking implemented would give the ND555 using native Roon a good run. Naim don’t demo the ND555 being used with Roon, focusing on a unit driven over UPnP from a UnitiCore server, as they use to the NDS, i.e. WAV on the Ethernet input, minimal CPU processing and therefore current draw from the 555DR PSU.

This is the configuration I have for the NDS, the Roon feed presents as a WAV UPnP feed to the Ethernet port, feed from the dedicated isolated ‘B’ port of the EtherREGEN.

I get all formats supported by Roon, MQA unfold for Tidal Masters, Roon Internet Radio (the latest release only threw 320k AAC at the classic devices, but with Roon FLAC streaming has been live since last year), plus all the Metadata enrichment, better Artwork presentation etc.

So let me know what you think of the current units on demo.

Simon

Hi Simon

Thank you - that’s very helpful.

I have no music files and don’t plan to rip or buy any soon, so it’s just a web streamer for Tidal/Qobuz that I’m looking for.

So maybe a Sonic Transporter i5 to run Roon Core, if that also has the Sonore upnp Bridge software built in, would be sensible, rather than a NUC?

I have a Naim DAC, a new ND5XS2 and a new Chord Qutest, using the 272 as a preamp.

As the new units have only been running for 2 days they are sounding better and more stable each time I hear them.

I started by listening to the ND5XS2, Naim DAC/555DR, 272, 150x, SL2s.

I was so delighted, I drank a bottle of Cloudy Bay and raved about it on another thread!

I then tried ND5XS2, Qutest, 272/555DR for a day and a half.

The Qutest (on the 5 volts setting) sounded a wee bit slow to me (!)

I just plugged the nDAC/555DR back in and the system sounds very good again!

Much better separation than the 272, clean and present and joyful.

Tomorrow I’ll compare this to the ND5XS2 dac, but I can’t imagine how it could be better than this.

So probably just stick with ND5XS2, nDAC/555DR.

It would be good to compare this with the NDX2/555DR.

But there are advantages of keeping the streamer and dac separate, of course.

So I think the remaining issue is what NAC?

I do love the 272s volume control.

Very useful in various ways.

But would a 72, 82 or 52 sound better?

Jim

Try an NDS with the 555DR and come back.

Yes, I should do that too.

As you say, it would make better use of the 555DR with digital and analog feeds.

Although I was just reminded that the nDAC powers its digital circuits via its internal psu even when the 555 powers its analog circuits.

But how do I set up a fair test of NDS vs nDAC?

Even if I could borrow an NDS, it would not be easy to set up Roon for such a trial.

If I knew someone with a Roonified NDS/555DR, I could take the ND5XS2 and nDAC there to compare them.

Surely at this stage wouldn’t you be better getting something a bit more modern? it does not have to be naim.

Why bother with Roon, as you have now native Qobuz on the Nd5xs2.
If you stream online, better have the new Naim platform.
If you were like me, only streaming local files, then the Nds would be a better choice.

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Yes agreed.

I really like the Naim app, and don’t want the hassle and cost of setting up Roon.

And actually I need to sort out a preamp and then pause.

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I had a 272 then went over to NDS … both with 555ps … the NDS was superior… but the 272 was close…however, I suspect 2x555ps on the NDS would step up the NDS substantially… I did not try Roon… on either…

Where I stream 95% local files, use Tidal to discover new & fill in the gaps and Internet Radio.
Roon also gives me multi-zone playback with non-Naim devices, e.g. Chromecast Audio, Google Assistant based devices, etc.

Not sure what you should be doing here @JimDog, you need a new streamer for Tidal/Qobuz, but getting rid of the 272 means a new PreAmp, you need to make good use of the 555PS.

Sell both the 272 & 555 PS to get a NDX2 and PreAmp?
Or sell the 272, 555PS & PowerAmp, to get a NDX2 and Integrated Amp

@simon.pepper

What did you mean by “Plus from Roon what are you going to feed it with, a S/PDIF feed is flawed, and no USB input”. Could expand on your thoughts on the S/PDIF side please?

S/PDIF digital protocol, created as part of the original Redbook specifications by Sony ‘S’, and Philips ‘P’ is subject to digital jitter, due to it being a synchronous protocol.
This is why many DACs use Asynchronous USB as digital input. However this also has flaws, so some use I2S but there is formalised standard here.

Thanks

With you, although as you say USB also flawed with regards noise on power lines so I guess it’s finding the one the works/sounds the best in your environment.
I’ve always found SPDIF to be pretty good but maybe that’s down to the equipment I’ve been using and isolation methods used by the manufacturers