NDX 2/ XPS DR vs. ND 555/555 PS DR

My primary digital source is a NDX 2 with a XPS DR. Amplification is NAC 552 and NAP 500 both DR.

When I have auditioned the 552 I have also heard the 555 in comparison to the NDX 2 with XPS DR. The power amplifier of this demo was a 250 DR. Although I have noticed differences I thought it was the right way to get a NDX 2 with the 552 which replaced my 272. So I was able to power the NDX 2 with my XPS DR which I used to power the 272 before.

In the meantime I got a 500 DR and I am now thinking about an upgrade with a 555. Do you think I can expect a big uplift in sound quality? Are there any positive effects in a complete 500 series?

Thanks in advance.

I think you know the answer to that one! You will be in a different league all round, more of everything. Your pre and power will thank you for feeding them an even better source and yes the complete 500 series system level matching will be an additional benefit.

Well, If I have known the answer, I would not ask. The 555 is without a doubt the better streamer.

The demo of the 552 and also of the 500 showed really big steps in sound quality. To my ears the uplift of the 552 was the biggest step - probably because it replaced my 272 and the 500 replaced the 300.

When I heard the NDX 2 with XPS DR in comparison to the 555 I just thought that the difference is there but not worth the extra money. As I said the amp in the demo was a 250 DR. The step in sound quality with the NDX 2 was not a big as the step from 252 to 552. That is what my ears heard…

Your 552/500 will make the most of a ND555. It will be a substantial upgrade.

If the finance is an issue I’d suggest trying a 555PS on your NDX2 - you should find this is a significant upgrade at relatively modest cost with the trade-in of the XPS2 - and paves the way for an ND555 later on.

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A 555PS would be a great step forward. You have an amazing system. Ideally an ND555 would make the most of what you have. I’ve heard the NDX2 with a 555PS and 552 and 500DR in demo rooms and it does sound very special. Try it out. Ex demo ND555s are available for around 9K.

I did a home demo of NDX2/555PSDR and ND555 through my 52/SC/135s/B&W804S. The NDX2 with PSU was a fantastic source, if I hadn’t heard the ND555 I’d have put an order immediately. I went with the ND555, it had more of everything, midrange accuracy, bass power and drive, and was also more musically engaging, but the NDX2/555PS was an amazingly enjoyable and musical source.

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I’m going to buck the trend here. I’ve heard the ND555 3 times in high end configurations. I’m yet to be convinced.

What don’t you like about the ND555 Lindsay ?

I’ve heard it 3 times.

First with a 552/500 into a big pair of Focals. Awful harsh treble.

Second with a 552/500 with massive Dynaudios. Even worse Life on Mars by Bowie was unbearable!

Third in an active configuration with Kudos 808s. Better but still harsh in the treble.

Just my view.

Regards,

Lindsay

Dynaudio, Focal and Kudos are not the most forgiving speakers. Easily border on brightness with an all Naim system.
It’s my impressions for Focal and Dynaudio, when heard them with Naim. For Kudos, it’s what I read sometimes here.

@ChrisBerlin as you obviously have doubts, I’d suggest getting a 555PSDR for your NDX2, as others have suggested. The 555 will be a large uplift - the only problem is that it comes without a Burndy so you would need to buy an S-XPS, which would be redundant if you later moved to an ND555. Back in the day the NDS fronted 552/500 systems happily, so the NDX2/555PS should not be out of place should you not wish to go further.

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The NDX2 is a great source with either xps or 555 ps. Like Lindsay i listened to the nd555 3 times in group sessions and it did not overly impress. I then had my own demo, we went from NDX2, with xps dr…nice uplift, then with 555 ps again a bit more improvement…but not too far ahead of the xps dr. Then we switched to the nd555, i was not expecting much based on previous experience. Just a few notes on the piano from a Dr John album, was enough to convince me to buy the nd555. Its a great product, albeit expensive one. Take your time and demo.

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I am currently on the hunt for a 555DR for my NDX2 as we speak. May take a bit of time locating the right one however…

I got lucky rang my dealer expecting him to say a few months, but he had a replacement in order for their demo 555ps.

Cheers Gazza however I won’t give tomtom my business anymore.

Will keep an eye out, system sounds good as it is so no rush to get one tomorrow so to speak. :+1:t2:

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That’s exactly it : the ND555 renders the piano in a quite convincing way. Reproducing the piano is difficult.

The ND555 passes brilliantly all the hard rendering tests : piano, voices, brass instruments and percussions, and even symphonic ensembles.

Other sources can do it, of course. But it nice to know that Naim can provide a source of this level.

Gaza - you were at the same demo as me with the Dynaudios back in Autumn 2018!

I know i was not blown away either…not sure they were set up very well, and if its the one i am thinking of the lady present seemed rather disinterested in proceedings.
Hence, i did not expect to be impressed, even with my own music. I can quite understand your view Lindsay…as it was mine until that fateful demo.

Or get a recent pre-loved NDS with a 555DR, save quite a bit of cash over the NDX2/555DR and have a better sounding streamer albeit without the fancy screen and all the latest software etc. It depends whether that stuff is important to you or not.

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