Operation of Naim pre-amps

Is it good practice with Naim pre-amps to mute them and turn the volume to low when not in use? Over the years I’ve got into the habit of turning the mute button off and turning the volume to minimum after use. I suspect this is completely unnecessary but interested in what others think.

I just leave mine as it was last used. If I was going to mess around with cables etc I’d turn the volume down and/or shut the PS off.

Being relatively new to Naim,around 2years,I do exactly that,my dealer told me to and to be honest I’ve never questioned it. Somebody more knowledgeable may be able to prove /disprove the merits of doing so, but if the dealer says it’s the way to go,I trust him .

After 40 years of Naim ownership, I normally just leave the volume as it was during last use. Not sure if this is correct or not and to be honest never even thought about it.

I do tend to turn the volume down to minimum - I usually have the phono stage input selected so, just in case…


If you normally listen at really high volume it makes sense to turn it down after listening, simply so you don’t get a surprise next time. Otherwise, there is no need to turn it down or mute.

Back in the day my 42.5 and 32.5 had lovely little toggle stitches for mute, and I’d always use them. But with a modern preamp, with the display set to off, you can’t instantly tell if it’s muted or not. The little light on the volume knob, when unilluminated, is also hard to see. It certainly is with my Supernait 3, so I never mute it or turn down the volume.

I tend to leave my volume back down when not in use. A belief that things are running at an idle quiescent, thus drawing its minimum power, perhaps if left at a higher gain it could be drawing more from the mains.
Although I’ve never tested this.

I can’t see why it would draw more power, as there is no signal to amplify. So it’s sitting there just the same.

Could depend on how quiet the pre amp stage is. :slightly_smiling_face:

I normally leave mine on mute with input set to Tuner (NAT05) as that’s what we normally use for background music.
Input buttons, volume & balance ‘disp’ (lights) off.
The remote is normal set to ‘tun’ (tuner) and we use the remote number buttons to switch between preset stations.
When I switch to UPnP (NAS) or iRadio from the iPad app, system automation changes all the settings as required.

I usually turn the volume down and engage mute.

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Not normally, but with the Nait 5i now back on av duties and being fed by netfix etc direct from the internet, I find Mrs Bruss turns on the Denon acting as the pre amp, and the speakers ‘pop’ quite loudly. I have asked her to remember to turn the Denon mute on before switching off but its not always remembered.

I normally turn my system off after use, but I have been caught out several times when I mute the pre section and the next time I come back to it I can’t get any sound!

At all other times I leave the vol at mid listening level. I can always turn it up or down from there.

It does no harm to switch to phone and MUTE the pre-amp. Then run the volume and balance controls to maximum/ L-R a few times.

It might help to detail your system in your profile for more specific answers, but the usual Naim advice is to always leave your HiFi devices powered on, and if you have a record/monitor section on your amp, then leave that on mute.

Beyond that, I think everyone does different things. Some people will mute after use, which will remove that very low level hiss from your speakers. I can’t really hear that, so just leave it as is, and leave volume as is.

If it was necessary or recommended, one would think that the manual would mention it, just like it mentions “Ensure that power amplifiers are switched off and that the preamplifier volume is turned down before the power supply is switched on”, or “Better and more consistent performance will be achieved if the system is left switched on for long periods”, or “At times when the … record outputs are not required it is good practice to mute them in order to minimise power consumption and maximise sound quality.”

Hmmm, but come to think of it, if mute minimises power consumption for the record outputs, I guess the same applies to the main ones. Would be interesting to know by how much.

So far, if I happen to listen at unusually loud volume, I turn it back to the normal level at the end of the session. Otherwise I leave it at the normal volume and without mute, don’t want to fiddle every time I press play; it’s not a separate listening room, so I often turn it on for short periods.

An advantage of muting (but not turning the volume to zero) is that the hiss goes away, but I don’t hear it anyway unless I am very close to the speakers.

It would be a tiny difference, yes the amp would be amplifying the noise, but it’s a very small ‘signal’ and small power. Just one Watt average of power when playing music through a speaker makes a noticeable noise!

You could try and measure it, I did this with my brothers Cambridge CD3, switching from ‘on’ to standby makes almost no difference (it turns the led display off!) same with our last sky hd ‘box’ on is 24 Watts, standby the meter reads the same!

As I’d have expected, many thanks for the details

If a Spotify user has ever been anywhere near your system you should definitely mute it when not in use!

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In the early days, like early 70’s, I had a couple of surprise high-volume startups that luckily didn’t blow anything, but could have been a problem with my McIntosh setup. So I a!ways just zero the volume when when I’ve finished listening. It’s automatic for me, I hardly realize I’m even doing it.

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