To me it is not clear how you intend to use the opticalRendu with an NDS: the opticalRendu is an (optical) Ethernet to USB transport, the NDS has no USB inputs, to the best of my knowledge.
If you are looking for an Ethernet (wired or wireless) to SPDIF transport and Roon endpoint, you could consider an Allo DigiOne Signature. You will need two good power supplies, one for the RPi side and one for the “clean” side of the Signature. With GenToo Player, you also have a plug and play OS than is better supported than SonicOrbiter, in my view.
Jim, I think the answer is the NDX2. You only stream from Tidal/Qobuz and although you have asked the question a few times nobody has, I believe, given you the definitive answer that the sound quality is better through Roon.
The NDX2 would be fairly straightforward and fit well with your SN3, also giving you the potential for incremental upgrades.
I do not use Tidal or Qobuz anymore but the BubbleUPnP app (only for Android) has support for Tidal, Qobuz and much more. I understand that the app allows one to replay Tidal and Qobuz streams on any UPnP renderer that has been wrapped into an OpenHome renderer by BubbleUPnP Server, but I have never tried this approach. BubbleUPnP Server has to run on a networked machine. For instance, I run it on an RPi4 that is wired to my router and also runs MinimServer and serves music files on my LAN. If I enter http://rpi7:58050/ in a web browser (rpi7 is the name of the machine that runs BubbleUPnP Server), I see all my servers and renderers and, for each renderer, I can select to create an OpenHome renderer and the maximum audio quality of Tidal and Qobuz. I have never tried this scheme with Naim renderers, thus you should better check with someone who has “rooniefied” his/her NDS or simply try this approach with your 272. It costs you nothing.
There are of course plenty of Tidal and Qobuz endpoints but very few with high quality SPDIF outputs. If you do not mind system redundancies, you could use an ND5 XS 2 as a pure transport, see also https://community.naimaudio.com/t/nd5xs-or-nd5xs2/6782?u=nbpf. Another device that looks very interesting is the dCS Network Bridge, in my view.
I’d prefer not to use a usb to spdif converter at all.
The idea of moving to another system is aimed at improving sound quality, (not functionality).
Yes, I am looking for a simple system without long and complicated chains of boxes.
Nds or Ndx2/ SN3 will not sound better, just different, vs 272/555dr/ 250. A better source but lesser electronics.
The real uplift would be ndx2/ 555dr/ 282/ 250. And why bother with Roon, if sound quality is your goal. Ndx2 will give you Qobuz with hirez streaming, all you need I think.
Nds is apparently still a bit better, but not by a big margin. However it can’t stream Qobuz or with additional hardware which is not optimally integrated.
Ndx2 has Qobuz integrated and your goal is to stream online with best sound.
If you wanted to stream locally, from a nas or Melco, nds would be the first choice.
But in your case, Ndx2 without hesitation.
Wow - that means a lot coming from a happy NDS user.
But you have a library and I’m a freewheeling web streamer.
A lot of people have also said the same, that the NDX2 would be the better route to go.
Maybe I’ll sleep in tomorrow then…
In that case, I should probably then wait until May to see if the 272/2 does arrive.
And then compare it to the NDX2.
I must admit that I’m struggling (as Nestor did) to find an elegant way to get Qobuz into the NDS.
Anyway, I really love the SQ of my system as it is - so waiting a few more months will not be bad at all.
But adding an extra power supply to replace the internal one is part of the Naim ecosystem… I don’t look at it as system redundancy on the internal power supply regulation and stand by optimisation. The same can be said, though possibly less impacting on using the device as a digital out or analogue out… the products are designed for max performance so you can’t do both simultaneously … again it’s not really system redundancy, it’s system capability, you choose which features to use and system optimises itself appropriately… it’s a nice feature about many of the Naim products.
Ok, but like wise you may not equally be using the SPDIF output and stream transport capability function of the streamer if you only ever use its analogue out…
My point these are product features, rather than circuitry which is replaced more capable circuitry, which to my mind would be redundancy…
To my mind the biggest improvement with the new streamers is it s digital streaming architecture and circuitry… huge advancement went here… I would be disappointed anyone reading these threads decided not to take advantage of it just because they weren’t thinking of using the analogue outputs which in them selves are less significantly changed in the new streamers.
I look at the analogue outs as a fall back resilience option if my DAC needs to be serviced… another option of using Naim streamers.
@Simon-in-Suffolk: I basically agree with your analysis. Still, looking at the analogue outputs of a Naim streamer as a fall back option is a viewpoint that might not suit everybody if you consider that those outputs make up for a significant portion of the costs (isolation, dedicated PSU rails, etc.) of the new streamers. I can imagine that a bare NP800 with a good intergated power supply would not cost much less than an ND5XS2. But I very much doubt that the same applies to NDX2 and ND555 and, if I had to buy a new transport to feed an NDS or a Naim DAC, I would very carefully compare a Naim streamer used as a transport to a pure transport before making my choice. That is also because the Naim streamers, in contrast to NDS and nDAC, rely on a software system that still needs some polishing.