Same DAC chip as ND555 and NDS

Not to mention anyone seriously considering buying one would need to remortage their house.
Cost aside there’s a point at which it becomes more of a manufacturers vanity project than a sensible equipment choice.

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Knowing how good an nDAC with one PCM1704 per channel sounds, I would be wetting myself with excitement to audition this DAC if I had $100k burning a hole in my pocket :laughing:

You’d need at least a few, one for each of your residences.

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Heston Blumenthal and Lidl both use Maris Pipers for their chips.


CH Precision and Totaldac use the same dac chips but the sound has nothing in common with Naim. Lean , crystal clear and analytical for CH Precision, nice, warm and holographic for Totaldac, but more suited for classical music than rock.

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Not the same chip, but Schiit Audio is producing DACs with a similar logic to nDAC (proprietary digital filter in Analog Devices SHARC processor) and then a variety of current “R-2R” or “Multibit” DAC chips, depending on the model.

  • Texas Instruments DAC8812
  • Texas Instruments DAC11001
  • Analog Devices AD5791BRUZ
  • Analog Devices AD5781BRUZ
  • Analog Devices AD5547

The Analog Devices chips are even not marketed for audio applications.

Curious to see which direction Naim will take for the next reference network player!

Not quite true FR. See:

Not quite true for you Billyrubin, but for me, having heard Rossini on Naim electronics, CH Precision and Soulution ( however on CH precision and Soulution electronics), the sound was very different than Nds or Nd555.
But I confess not having heard these two last streamer/dacs on Naim amps. Same for Totaldac.
However if you say that you have heard Lampizator, Totaldac, MSB, Soulution, CH precision, Nagra…all with Naim electronics, I would ask myself how did you managed to do that.

Apologies - should have been clearer. TotalDAC do not use legacy R2R chips. They use discrete resistor arrays. With regards to DAC auditions, no I didn’t write that I heard all of those models with Naim amplification (apart from the ND555 + 2xPS into 552/500 which I owned at the time). Some of the others were heard with 552/500 amps but others were heard with CHP L1/M1.1, Audionet Stern/Heisenberg combinations.

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All good then, just misunderstandings.
As someone posted above that Totaldac use the same dac chip as Nds, Nd555, I repeated that information thinking that the person was sure about it.

Sure, but Schiit get away with selling 18-bit and 21-bit DAC:s in the Yggdrasil, they are mainly judged on sound-quality (which is great!) and no-one bothers looking at the numbers or nag about esoterics like DSD or MQA. On a larger market DAC:s are judged by numbers (latest model, bits, whatever).

The current model buying some “cheap” chip-DAC where you can replace clocks, filter and stuff it with your own solutions works o.k. Perhaps it is time to look beyond the basic IIR/FIR filter-models rather than spend a lot of time starting a DAC-project from scratch. Or perhaps not. I am not sure Organik is so good it would beat an evolved Katalyst. Or even a BorderPatrol DAC.

It will be interesting to see (hear) what they come up with.

Organik was as much about a power source redesign as anything.
I know with my Selekt DSM it seemingly offered s mind boggling array of configuration options, possible as it’s all nicely modular, but at eyewatering cost!
I was happy to stay at Katalyst with the (now) inferior power supply.

Simon. How do you used Roon with the NDS? I’ve tried in the past but with any good result.
Thank you!

SonoreUPnP Bridge. I run the bridge on a Sonore UltraRendu with Uptone UltraCap LPS PSU (with single faceplate on the two units).

This makes the NDS work as a Roon Endpoint, however was iS presented to the NDS as a UPnP stream is either PCM in uncompressed WAV or DSD64 (if dsf files are played). It took a while to get the right hardware & settings (there was a SonicOrbiter SE before which was swapped for the UlraRendu!).

I also have the LMStoUPNP Bridge running on a RPi2, as backup. The RPi2 is my Asset UPnP server from pre-Roon configuration.
This Bridge works also, with WAV delivery but not sure about DoP for the DSD. But you need much more Linux knowledge to install & setup.

Both these units are placed on the same switch as the NDS, so downstream of the Roon Core, which is running on a ROCK based NUC on the switch with the NAS serving the files. This switch, since Nov 2019, is an Uptone EtherREGEN, but the streaming from Roon was working fine with a standard Cisco 5-port switch (& a Netgear GS105e before that). It just got better with the EtherREGEN (but off-topic)

I have documented this setup and all the settings used in various different posts on this forum and the Roon one.

Now I also believe other NDS users have used the RooUPNP product, for which there is a whole section on the Roon forum. But for me, this solution came after the SonoreUPnP Bridge, which works for me (and if it ain’t broke, don’t mess with it).


Thnx @simon.pepper
Really appreciate. :pray:

I read the review in Stereophile you refer to. Individual resistor ladder DACs are labour intensive - that’s why the Chinese can produce them so cheaply. The Swiss - CH Precision - can’t compete with that cost. The profit margins of the expensive DACs like CH Precision must be massive as it is especially when they use a $100 chip do do the work.

I have also have the NDS and used the LMStoUPNP Bridge running on a Mac Mini which also runs the Roon core. I was happy with it for a while (2-3 years) but now have found that it is perhaps not optimal.

I find that you can get better implementation by putting a dedicated good quality streamer in front of the NDS. I am currently looking into Raspberry Pi with different OS (Moode, Ropiee etc.). Also AirPlay was important for me since Apple Music went lossless and I have discovered Raspberry Pi can give you a very good implementation of Airplay.

It is definitely better than LMStoUPNP bridge. I tried Sonore Bridge never worked for me.

Keen to other’s experience of using Raspberry Pi with NDS.


Hi, I tried the USB output of the UltraRendu through an XMOS based USB->S/PDIF conversion into the NDS, although acceptable still not as good as the bridged UPnP stream into the NDS.
Now the XMOS USB->S/PDIF was a $100 Breeze Audio model using the +5V on the USB output (which would be taken from the UltraCap LPS), though with the upgraded Crystals, but a high-end convertor.

But given this is the only other input for the NDS (S/PDIF) and no async USB input, I will keep the UPnP stream as my preference over any form of S/PDIF protocol and converting RAAT to a unlocked digital stream.

Are you using a HAT on the Pi for Digital output?

I have Tidal and Qobuz and dropped Apple based Music, iTunes etc. some years ago.
Though 2 iPods still knocking about. The 60GB one in the Car was still in service until Roon ARC was released and I found the iPod interface to my BMW headunit worked with Roon ARC, so I have 24/48 playback in the Car. The Car being a 2003 318Ci Coupe.

If you can still find Rpi’s new anyway…I currently have piCorePlayer/LMS 8.3 installed on an Rpi4 streaming to a Squeezebox/nDac, its very stable but LMS (even with Material Skin) / iPeng controller interface is nowhere near like the Roon experience. If you’re considering a Rpi based streamer, have a look at the new Holo Audio RED, which uses a CM4 board, supports I2S and can be used as a DDC.

Naim R&D will have every aspect of this covered and researched. The ultimate goal is sound quality, or musical enjoyment if you prefer. It’s what sounds best that matters, there is no compromise. If you have never done a factory tour and you live in the UK, I would highly recommend it. It’s an eye opener.