One week in and already thinking ahead…

OK, so my “Naim Journey” began with last Saturdays installation and I’ve had a wonderful week enjoying this very green, but most excellent system.
Yet! I am already wondering about next steps.
Future source additions include a streamer (probably an ND5 XS2, but that is yet to be decided) and a CD Transport (leaning towards an Audiolab 6000CDT).
The question is where is the future with regard to the NAC/NAP? Will the 202 support a 250DR or 300DR, or will the next iteration mean a complete NAC/NAP change.
There’s no reason to believe that I will ever need to upgrade, but membership of this Community would definitely suggest otherwise!:face_with_peeking_eye:


Add an offboard DAC to your streamer. This will match the SQ of it’s big brother the NDX2. A pre-loved nDAC would be perfect if you can find one.


Or you could, ofcourse, sit back and enjoy what you have for a while…
Spend any unallocated money on some music to play… which is, if you recall, why you bought the system in the first place.
Dont rush… and don’t let others spend your money for you. Being here on this forum doesn’t mean you need to upgrade all the time.


Thanks Neil, very sound advice. :+1:t3:
Sadly, my engineering background means the voices in my head are frequently whispering “What if…”:joy:
BUT, you are absolutely right AND I definitely am enjoying the music. Well, most of it.
It’s amazing how many flaws are shown up by a quality system…:thinking:


You have a very nice, well balanced system there.

Your decision here is whether or not you want to add a CD player and/or explore the world of streaming, or stick with vinyl. Probably best to make that decision first, but in the meantime just enjoy the music.

My personal journey was vinyl, vinyl/CD, CD and now streaming. I would never go back, but that is just me.


Vinyl is my first love. I haven’t listened to my CD collection for a few years now. I moth balled my aging and unserviced Linn Ghenki and have now passed it on to my Brother in Law along with my Roksan K3 Amps and Linn Keilidh’s.
I was just going to Rip my CD’s (or at least many of them) and go Streamer with NAS, but now feeling a bit CD nostalgic and a 6000CDT is inexpensive and can be connected via the streamer, so…


Better go for 282/200 than 202/250 or 300dr.
Ndx2 shines with an additional ps, xpsdr or 555 dr the best.
So for money, Nd5xs2 with Ndac would be a great source.


Why? If you rip your CDs, not only would you be able to enjoy the benefits of streaming them, but instead the money you’d otherwise spend on CD transport could go on a better DAC. As well as Naim DACs there are others people use: I upgraded my ND5XS with a Chord Hugo, some other forum members use Hugo or Hugo TTs on NDXs.

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I would wait a few months before deciding on anything. Get to know your system with the Naim kit you have got and if you are happy with it as is. Then stick there and spend your money on other things you enjoy. If you think there is something lacking or could be improved within your budget, go to a dealer and have a listen. Or maybe accept that it could be better but that you are not prepared to make the investment.
It is important to remember that as your system spend rises, small improvements become increasingly expensive. I would love to have a much better system and arguably could find the money but have decided that I will only progress as far as the 272 replacement once it is released. Well OK, I am likely to add a power supply. I know I could bet a better system but for me, the cost for the benefit doesn’t add up. For you, it might, only you can tell.


What a sad thread indeed!

Why not just enjoy the system as is, and spend any money that is burning a hole in the OP’s pocket on buying music? - LPs, CDs or whatever.

You’re buying the system to listen to the music, not buying the music to listen to the system.


Not sad Graham, no sad faces here at all🙂
I am honestly enjoying both my music and tuning the system in.
There is no loss of joy in the music or the experience.
The expansion of source options is definitely high on the upgrade path, but I am an engineer and part of the joy is considering the future…:slightly_smiling_face:


I would enjoy what you have for the time being………i think we will see many new products next year…….Audio show East at the Trinity show ground by Signals next April may be a good place to look and listen.


Fair enough, but you owe it to yourself to get to know the system that you bought only last week. Many Members use the phrase ‘upgrade path’ as a way of justifying throwing away huge sums of money chopping in and changing stuff that they have only just bought. Upgrading like this is a sure way of wasting a large amount of money - you will never get back all the money that you originally spent when you trade in and buy new gear.

I think that you owe it to yourself to listen to what you bought just a week ago. Buy a set of Mahler Symphonies, or all Led Zeppelin’s albums, or whatever other music floats your boat. Then think about what you might do to improve your musical enjoyment. And that’s what your dealer is there for. They’re taking a nice little chunk of whatever money you spend ‘upgrading’ your system, so you should do what you can to ensure that they increase your musical enjoyment.

Anyway, I’ve got that off my chest. Just take a bit of time to get into all this lovely stuff before rushing out into changing it all wholesale.

Incidentally, I apologise if my first response came across as condescending. I just counsel you to give yourself a bit more time to get used to what you have, before setting off straight away on an ‘upgrade path’.


Upgrading is great but without fully getting to know your system and what an upgrade may or may not provide you will be top of your dealers speed dial (if that still exists).

Then consider the future in the future.

You need to give the system time to -

A - Settle in &
B - let your ears get used to it so you are very clear on what it does that you like & what it does not do as well as you were hoping it would.

If you don’t follow this process then I fear you could be in danger of spending considerable sums of money that will still produce sounds that leave you thinking ‘if I swop this for that ‘perhaps’ the sound will improve’. Most likely it won’t to your satisfaction, leading to even more spending & simply keeping your fingers crossed for better results.

As someone hear has already suggested, far better to discuss matters with a dealer, or dealers, who will be able to demo possible improvements at no unnecessary damage to your wallet. A good dealer should be happy to do this as a satisfied customer is more likely to spend more with them in coming years & possibly recommend friends to them. Rather more profitable than a slightly disappointed customer &, hopefully, a highly satisfactory outcome for all parties.

Couldn’t agree more Graham, & pretty much what I have said in the preceding post.

It seems clear that (as always) there are lots of things you could change, but nothing you need to change in your already balanced system.

Can I add my voice to those suggesting you deliberately avoid thinking about upgrades until you are really used to how a wide range of your favourite music now sounds? Apart from anything else, you’ll have a better idea in (say) 6 months about anything that is ‘good but not great’ in how the new hi-fi delivers your favourite music.

I’d also agree with suggestions that ND5XS2 is a good streamer, and that ND5XS2 + nDAC (or equivalent) is better and about equal to the excellent NDX2, and that the NDX2 is significantly improved by an XPSDR.

You can spend as much or s little as you like on streaming. FWIW, my best efforts suggest strongly that a ripped CD sounds exactly as good as the playing the CD itself if the streamer is good, so you can (if you want) expand your sources dramatically without buying a CD Transport (good though the Audiolab is).

To give an IMHO answer to the actual question, how big an uplift you would get from a 250 or 300 may well depend on your room and how quiet/ loud you tend to listen.

If your sources are that LP12 and a streamer of the NDX2 level, then in theory the weakest link is probably the pre-amp. However, with a springy floor and higher preferred listening levels, the best VFM upgrade for your system could be Isoacoustics Gaia feet under your speakers.

Alternatively, if you listen a good deal more quietly than many here or if you really turn it up in a big room, a 300DR may impress you more than a better pre-amp. However, even then some caution may be needed because you have well matched amps now - the next equally well balanced Naim combinations are probably 282/HCDR/250DR or 252/SCDR/300DR, and those cost a lot more.

Finally, if and only if you want to satisfy your curiosity with definitely relevant data now, it may be a great time to persuade a dealer to lend you a box or two on trial for a day or a week. After all you have just spent money and are thinking (most obviously on streamer/ CD transport) about spending more.

If you hear (say) a 252/ 300DR in your living room at the volume at which you actually listen, you might find that it sounds great - and about as great as your 202/200. Think of how many pristine bits of vinyl you could buy with the money you would then know wasn’t going to be needed on big amplifier changes!


It’s rather fun ganging up on a new Member to STOP them spending their money unwisely (at least as we see it!).


No judgement here.
I have a lovely system, that I will enjoy for years to come.
I appreciate the wise words of those who’ve been on their journey for years.
You are quite correct, the financial outlay to get here has not been small and the pockets are not as deep as all that.
Digital source to come in the next 3-6 months and the future remains the undiscovered country😊