Options - for Streaming and/or Ripping

OK. So I have done some searches on here, read a number of threads - and checked pre-loved prices, as well as downloading several relevant Naim manuals.

Currently I have - CDX2/XPS2 into 82/250. Applying normal NaimLogik, I should aspire to an NDX2 - but even pre-loved , the NDX2 is rather too much (c.£3500) - but I accept the argument that its better, cheaper to go straight for the end game, if possible.

So, parking that obvious option, now to explore other ideas… What does the Forum think about these…?

Get an Innuos ZenMini, which I understand can rip, store - and stream (I think…). In its Mk3 form it also has a built in DAC, so could connect direct into my 82. Quality maybe not appropriate…?

Or get an Naim NDX, which is much more affordable. Yes, I know its not got Naim’s latest Streaming Platform - but I have nothing,so… Maybe OK…? Could also use my XPS2 with it.

Or get a Naim DAC…? Affordable, but needs a Digital feed - say from an Innuos ZenMini or Zen…?

To further complicate, I could get a NAS (QNAP something…) and rip to that using say dB PowerAmp on my PC. Then feed that into an NDX…?

I am thinking that whatever I do, I am likely to need a hardwired Ethernet connection - unless I can leave a NAS next to my router - and then (somehow) go WiFi to an NDX…?

If possible, I would like to go pre-loved, where I can - and am not in a rush… Very used to and happy with hunting things down…!!

Any thoughts, ideas, views welcome… :crazy_face:

Best option with NDX is ethernet, wireless works OK but your signal strength in the house considering walls & other restrictions can always be bettered with ethernet.

Ripping with PC/Mac using dBpoweramp is a breeze.
My NAS choice is Synology, but QNAP is favoured by others

Consider adding a network switch as a single ethernet cable to/from your wireless hub might be easier rather than two.

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A used NDS may be in reach and work well with the XPS. You will find that you won’t need the CDX2 which should help things moneywise. A used NDS is one of lifes bargains.

I used an NDS with an XPS DR and it was excellent, not as good as the 555DR supply I now use but way better than an NDX.

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@Mike-B - Thank you. I do have a small house - the Router is only about 8 metres from HiFi Central - and almost Line of Sight. However… I believe that a NAS - such as a QNAP or your Synergy - needs its own Ethernet feed…? Could I hang a NAS straight off my Router (via Ethernet), then go via Wifi from an NDS to the Router and then the NAS…? Or do similarly via a Network Switch…?

@trickydickie - Thank you for your Vote for a pre-loved NDS…!!!

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Yes thats correct

You can do any of that … however I really would go ethernet all the way, wireless is OK, but.
Don’t go mad with costa-packet boutique stuff, BlueJeansCable Cat6 is hard to beat
LAN 2 Schematic - Switch

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@Mike-B - Thank you. So I should aim to get a hardwired Ethernet connection at/near to my HiFi - and have everything located there…?

I already have a hardwired Ethernet from my Router to my PC, which is upstairs from the HiFi. Is that any help…??

You could connect the PC to the switch if it helps with wire routing re cable numbers hanging off the wireless hub

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My existing Router has 4 Ethernet sockets - only 1 is in use, going to my PC.

I could run another Ethernet from the Router to near my HiFi. Would that fix it…?

I used a NDX into 82/250 for several years and it was a superb combination. CDs were ripped to a Synology NAS using dBpoweramp.

I sold my Naim CD players as it was just gathering dust the XPSdr on the NDX is a worthwhile upgrade.

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Ian

My thoughts are, forget about the NAS/Ripping.

I’ve been streaming from a Nas for 10 years, but since I discovered Tidal, then Qobuz hires I’ve hardly streamed anything from the Nas.

Buy a streamer with digital out, (I use optical). See how it works with Qobuz WiFi/wired. Upgrade with a DAC.

I use an old SBT/Ndac, it sounds great.

A benefit of buying a s/h Ndac, is you won’t lose any money if you sell it.

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@Fatcat - Thank you. I have a CD collection of around 400 discs - for which I have my CDX2. So, stick with that (for now) - and get a Streamer - such as a used NDX…?

Not sure what your SBT is… Google didn’t help me much… :thinking:

Squeeze Box Touch, which I bought many years ago for £200
Even though it is old, it is able to stream Qobuz, Tidal, Deezer and Spotify.

If you buy an old Naim streamer be aware that it may not be possible to stream from Qobuz or Deezer???

@Fatcat - Thank you. Made by Logitech…?

Yes, I know that an NDX is not up to date. But… I have nothing - zero - at present.

You are suggesting that a ‘Something’ into a (used) nDAC might be a better way forward though…?

PS. I see the SBT can still be bought, on eBay. Is that an option…?

Yes that’s how I connected my NDS. Straight to the router.
The buffer of the 1st gen Naim streamers is pretty small and you will almost certainly get dropouts with hires streaming if you use wifi.
As others already stated,preferably use hardwired ethernet.

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@SneakyPete - OK, so I definitely need to get hardwired Ethernet to the HiFi then…!! My Router has 4 Ethernet ports, so its do-able. Just a lot of wire…!! (around the front of the house then half way down the inside of the garage)

Hi Ian,
I think it’s really important to work out exactly what you want in terms of rip and store or streaming from Qobuz/Tidal?
I was in a similar position to you earlier this year with a CDX2, 282, 250DR.
I already have a Qnap and have my CD’s ripped to that using DB Poweramp, but I find that infuriating and felt that I wanted to move away from Qnap and DB P.
I bought a Zen Mini Mk3 as it has the rip, store, serve facility with an inbuilt DAC. I tried it straight into my 282 and also through a Chord Mojo to listen for any difference. Both were really quite good. The Innuos is brilliant and can be upgraded with a PS and external DAC if wanted, but to dip a toe in the water it is really a quality product.
My dealer told me that Naim wouldn’t service my CDX2 and they wouldn’t take it as a trade in, so I sold it privately and I went to audition a NDX2 with XPS and found it a little harsh, but then I was struggling with everything since upgrading from 202 to 282.
I ended up having a big change but the Zen Mini is still there and I will eventually upgrade it to a Zenith, but the Zenith only has USB or Ethernet out, so beware.
Whatever you do it will ideally want to be hard wired to the internet. In the case of the Zen Mini it will need to be near your 82 for the analogue interconnect.
My current Linn DSM is a great streamer, but the Innuos Sense interface is just so much better than either the Linn or Naim native control apps in my opinion. Even if you decide to get an NDX2 or ND555 in the future, the Zen can still store your CD’s and serve. It’s a great and easy way to try it out and it doesn’t need to be got rid of if you buy a streamer later on.
The only other advice I would give is to avoid the 1st gen NDX and NDS as the streaming technology is out of date and can’t be upgraded to current spec. Fine if streaming local files but not good if you want Qobuz or Tidal. There are work arounds but it’s a faf and just not worth it IMHO.

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@IainW - Thankyou. Very useful - I have been looking at the Innuos devices. Its difficult to say what I want - but I recognise that not knowing, is a problem. I think I need to start with something which gives be options.

I am already sure I need to get hardwired Ethernet to my HiFi…!!! That’s required, for pretty much everything.

Note what you say, re NDX & old Naim platform. Hmm… Better cross that off the Wish List.

Perhaps getting an nDAC would give me more/better options…??

Yes, no problems

The only downside of the nDAC is the lack of Asynchronous USB, which is almost mandatory on new DACs. If using with a Zen mini though you could use SPDIF to nDAC and it would be fantastic. It would just limit upgrading the Zen Mini without changing the DAC.
It’s a bloody minefield.

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I would not write them off that easy. They all support Tidal,no problem. 1st gen streamers are relatevily cheap if bought used. Paid €2500 for my NDS. ND555 at that time was €16,000…
2nd gen streamers still use the same DAC as the 1st gen. Difference in SQ (if there is one at all)is not that big imho. They are still great value for money.
If you want Qobuz or other streaming services there are easy work arounds. Had Qobuz setup at my NDS using a Windows PC and an Android control app in literally 15 minutes or so.
I would seriously consider that option. But your call ofcourse.

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