New Classic 222/300/350 - The Modern Mullet

The New Classic era seems to be embracing The Modern Mullet (BTW, this really is the latest must-have haircut).

I have always adopted the ‘source first’ philosophy when it comes to system building and it has served me well, even with my OC system where I went up to ND555 first, then from 282,252 to 552, and finally 250DR to 500DR. I possibly pushed the ‘source first’ thing to extremes though.

Now it seems folk move from NC 222/300/250 to 222/300/350 first. Indeed my dealer says next upgrade should be 250 to 350, and leave the streamer and pre amp ‘till later.

Is this the end of the ‘source first’ mantra?

I give you the Modern Mullet:


I had a 272/555DR with 300DR, which is effectively the predecessor to the 222/300 and 350s. It was a great combination and was very well balanced; I certainly never considered it remotely mulletesque.


It might depend on how good a 222/350 is, and what speakers are with it. Is the 222/350 at the level of a Linn Klimax DSM for example? The cost would suggest not.

Hi Nigel - I get the reasoning of the mullet system and I’ve already gone to the 222/300/250 and from what I’ve heard if - and it’s a very big if - if l were to be tempted I would swap out the 250 for a pair of 350’s - the 222 is such a versatile unit ie it’s a streamer it has a dac and a phono stage if fits all my requirements for vinyl and digital replay. With a 300 added the price is £11.4k and a pair of 350’s is £12k so in a way it’s fairly balanced and only increases box count by one - a 332 and 333 would be quite a bit more and then I’d need a phonostage and then I’d be wondering how much better it might sound with a power supply and the box count would be increasing - just my thoughts :wink:


Please post your picture of your NC mullet……we need inspiration😂
I feel the 350,s are possibly quite special……just one listen.

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From my point of view - yes. With a TT there are many options such as tone arms, cartridges, motors etc. which warranted (probably still does) a source first approach.

With the advent of streaming in particular although there are obviously transport/DAC combinations to play with, generally the source is more straight forward. Therefore it makes sense to ensure the amplification is top notch.

In my case, I have only ever owned integrated amps but now have a four box solution! My source is purely the NSS333 without additional PSU.

As always, just my opinion and experience - many will disagree and have different views.


For me, the 350’s were the “star of the show”, during the recent Naim sponsored 300 series listening events.


Just one condition on the modern mullet.

Most are saying that you do need a 300 powering the 222 for them to be capable of fully exploiting the ability of the 350s.

A 222/350s is possibly a mullet too far!

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It would have been interesting if the 300 series demo i attended would have put the new 300 psu on the sources after a change from 250 to 350. They did the usual psu on source one by one . I Did not feel the usual Naim demo did the new psu justice……it was all a bit ho hum until the 350,s were connected.

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And that said system 272/555/300 was what influenced me to go the 350 route. I do think @NigelB will swap out his 250 for 350’s in 2024😁

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[quote=“HungryHalibut, post:2, topic:32334”]
I had a 272/555DR with 300DR, which is effectively the predecessor to the 222/300 and 350s. It was a great combination

“Only an idiot” would consider such a thing.

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I think there’s a little user error on the quoting there, Lindsay!

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i believe the source first dogma was originally a linn marketing ploy but at the time it may well have had some validity. i feel the world has changed since then - in particular i feel it is possible to buy excellent streaming solutions at relatively low cost. i have gone for 222/350 (arriving friday) because after extensive demos i could hear the improvement the upgrade from 250 to 350 gave and for me it was clearly greater than adding the 300 to the 222/250 for much the same cost. my ears and YMMV but working on the basis of what i heard rather than a possibly outdated theory i am happy i am getting the best sound for my budget - in future i may add the 300 or look at the 333/332 but i will already have an excellent foundation to build on.


Gosh I must be an idiot :flushed: oops my wife agrees :joy:

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What I read sometimes here, on the NC range thread, is that 333/332 into 250 seem to not work optimally.
Before the 252/250 combo was successful. Something is maybe different now.

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You are a bad man @David preying on my upgraditis!

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Nigel rather than preying I am indeed praying that you see the light on the 350’s :sunglasses:


Okay many ways to skin the cat and whatever. Source first, at least as the only way, always was ill-conceived.

Back in 82 (ish) I used to buy my cassettes from a dealer in Middx, no longer around. He was a Linn dealer and one day I got talking to him about what I might do, I had a Pioneer 512d/Pioneer amp (forget which) and little Wharfedale Dentons. Quiet day midweek he invited me into his demo room and in position were a pair of Heybrook HB1s and 2 stacks, one partially hidden behind a screen and he told me to not to look but the other open Linn LP12, original Basik arm and Grado cartridge through NAD 3020. Played Sultans and In The Gallery from Dire Straits. Then the speaker wires were disconnected at both ends, Heybrooks replaced with Celestion SL6s and connected to the other rack and of which I still had no view. Sultans and Gallery, can remember way way better. Revealed Michell Focus One, Mayware Formula Arm (pivot, gorgeous thing), Mayware MC, SUT and A&R A60. Balanced system with wonderful synergy, the Linn was also great but not in the same league.

Now forward 40 years my unfair quip at @HungryHalibut was quoting from his response on here a while back to someone proposing to pair a Nova with a £10k pair of SF (I think) speakers when it is widely proven that a Nova works extremely well with Titan 505s, indeed at least 2 very widely respected dealers recommend the pairing, and I’ve even heard the Nova with 606s and again it’s a great pairing. So for the person who doesn’t want several boxes or stacks and would like to get the very best they can from a Nova get the best you can that work in your room.

Merry Xmas guys, @NigelB, I trust Mrs B approves of your new hairstyle!


@NigelB the 350 don’t take up too much space :sunglasses:


No discussion with Mrs B re 350s, as I am very happy with what I have.

I may test the water by getting me a new mullet haircut and gauge her reaction!