The upgrade bug always hits me in waves. I’m now thinking of adding a Hugot TT2 to my NDX2 in my second system. It’s paired with a Supernait 3 HiCap DR. I was really leaning towards an XPS DR but instead thought of exploring an outside DAC to the equation. It never ends… Wouldn’t have it any other way though as without my music I would be a lost soul!
I preferred to take the DAC upgrade option, but there are no right or wrong answers here. Ideally you should try to listen to both options and see which you prefer.
I wish I could listen to both and decide. Only option for me is to purchase (mostly used) and decide. I thought about the Dave as well which seems to be “reasonably” priced on the used market. I did a lot of reading on the boards yesterday. Seems like give a go for an external DAC could be fun to try. Would be cool to hear it in my main system as well.
What about are used NDS?
I already own the NDX2,
To my mind a used purchase is a good way to demo equipment as you can keep it for as long as you like. Keep an open mind, and if you don’t like it, just sell it on and think again.
Chord have said that they are working on a new top of the range DAC, which will be part of their Ultima range, so it will be expensive. When it arrives there will likely be a few more Daves on the market as people trade up, so what looks like a good deal now may look expensive when that happens.
I’d say the tt2 without question.
And the ndx2 into a DAVE provides a substantial uplift over the 555DR (imo)
Thanks, I may start with the TT2 and listen to how it sounds. Maybe move to a Dave at some point.
Isnt this Ultima DAC supposed to retail at 100k?
If so I doubt if many DAVE owners will be looking to trade up to it!
If I understand from other chats on here, then an NDX2 with an external DAC (e.g. Hugo) should sound the same as and ND5 XS2 with an external DAC, which gives the option to downsize one box, and get some money back, which might then go towards a Dave.
I know this has been discussed, but not sure if anyone has tested it. Anyone?
I have no idea what the cost of the Ultima DAC will be, but if anyone’s going to buy it there’s a good chance that they are already Chord fans, and Dave is the best DAC they make, so I don’t see why not.
I spent a long time at my dealers trying to hear any difference between ND5XS2 and NDX2, both into Dave, and I couldn’t reliably tell them apart. Not sure how it reduces box count, but yes, trading the NDX2 for an ND5 would free up some cash for upgrades.
Ah yes, thought it might have been you Chris. Yes, I meant downsizing as in price. In my case if I did prefer a DAC on my NDX2 and XPSDR, then exchanging both for a ND5 XS2 +DAC would soften the financial blow
Yes, with an XPS to sell too a DAC could be an affordable option. It was only after I had Dave for a while that I subsequently discovered I could do without my 282/Hicap as well, which simplified my whole system.
It’s very similar but not the same in my experience, certainly into DAVE with DC1. I would be hard pushed to say one is better than the other, but I prefer the slightly weightier sound of the NDX2 digital output signal into my DACs. Of course another key reason of using the NDX2 is its control and display so one doesn’t need to be tethered to a mobile phone or iPad… which for me is important.
But the nd5XS2 is certainly a great option if you don’t want the local transport control or display.
Interesting that you heard a difference, Simon. Neither I nor my dealer could. On the first listening session I thought maybe the NDX2 was slightly better, but couldn’t be certain that this wasn’t down to some subconscious bias.
I returned to my dealer a few days later for another listen, and this time he had kept both streamers powered up for 24hrs as the ND5 previously used was brand new and not warmed up. This time I really couldn’t detect any difference at all.
I agree that the NDX2 does seem like a more complete package, but for me an iOS device is a far superior remote control than the thing that’s packaged with the streamer, and I don’t look at the front panel display, so I don’t see any justification for the extra cost. But we are all different, and that’s just my take on it.
I had not thought about the idea of running a TT2 or Dave directly to an amp. I can search on the boards but what connection could I use to run in straight to a 250 DR? If you put in an mscaler can that still be achieved?
I’ll probably stick with the NDX2, kids like seeing the artist pictures as well! Plus not much being offered for trades these days, might be more lateral then anything else.
@ChrisSU I see you have the Dave into the Etude. I read that you once had the 250. Did the Etude make a better fit for the Dave?
Hi, yes I sold my 282 once I realised that the Dave digital preamp made it unnecessary in a system without analogue sources. That worked OK into a 250DR, but much better into the Étude. I guess that was partly because Dave/Étude are designed to work together whereas a Naim power amp really shines with a Naim pre, but also because it has more power to drive speakers well. I had recently acquired a pair of Shahinian Arcs, and while the 250 was able to drive them well enough, the extra power of the Étude really improved their performance.
it was subtle - and it was not at home - so could have been other things like support, interconnect etc…