After I retired 3 years ago, I treated myself to a new NAIM System, comprising a 282/250/HCDR and NDX2/555PSDR. The NDX2 was upgraded to an ND555 shortly afterwards when a good offer from my dealer arose.
Initially, I was happy with the system, but after a while it became a little tiring. Specifically, I found that the top end was shrill, harsh and fatiguing at high volumes and in extended listening sessions. I experimented with cables etc. to no avail. I then decided to try some alternative equipment.
I tried the NAIM 252/300/SC and even a 552/300. Whilst an improvement, I was not blown away. Then, on my dealers advice, I tried a high end Linn system; a Klimax Organik DAC and Klimax Solo monoblocks. Whilst I liked this more, it was at the other end of the scale in terms of smoothness, and was just too laid back for my tastes.
I then consulted another dealer and tried some Integrated Amps from Ayre, Vitus and D’Agostino. The D’agostino Progression Integrated just totally blew me away from the first time I heard it. The dealer then suggested that I try dCS streamers which “work very well with D’Agostino!”. He gave me an extended loan of a Rossini player, which I ran side by side with my 555/555PS through a loaned D’Agostino amp. It became very clear very quickly that the Rossini was streets ahead of my NAIM streamer in terms of resolution and warmth. It was significantly better.
So, orders were placed and my system now comprises the following:-
dCS Rossini Apex DAC
dCS Vivaldi Clock
Dan D’Agostino Progression Integrated
Symposium Superplus EA Platform
Chord Sarum T cabling
Kudos Titan 606
I have posted some “before, during and after photos”. This has been a long journey, and at times has been emotionally and financially challenging. However, I knew it had to be done and I cannot believe how lucky I am to have the system I have ended up with. It is simply astonishing.
I have bought NAIM kit on and off since the 1980’s. I still have a few MUSO’s at home and will always have a soft spot for the brand. Good luck to all of you out there in your hifi/musical journeys.