Second systems - do you use them?

I’m thinking of grabbing a used 272 for around £1k to add to an old CB 250 for a bedroom system. My hesitation is over whether it will get any meaningful use. Interested to hear how much folk here use their second systems, particularly a bedroom system?

I have alternative systems to the one in the main music room. The bedroom system gets used sometimes, but not as much as the one in my office, kitchen, or in the study.

My second system probably gets more use than the main system. The third system, a QB2 in the kitchen, gets even more. None of these are in a bedroom though.


Second system is in the study so both the main and second are on most of the day.
Tv room has french doors out to a terrace, so summer use mainly evenings or weekends.
Bedroom 15-30 mins on a timer most nights, 15 mins while I drag myself in to the land of the living most mornings.

I have a 72/HC/180/Totem arro on the closet. But its there…

Second system is in the media room (see profile) and gets used quite a lot, in fact I’m sitting in here listening to Eric Steckel on it whilst typing this. This will soon be replaced by the 202/200 from the cabin, which is being upgraded to a 282/300 later in the summer.
The third system is Sonos in the Lounge, Kitchen and Bedroom. All get used most days. Lounge is a Beam so connected to TV, Kitchen (least used) is a Play 3 and frequently used during cooking.
The bedroom Stereo pair is used every night and morning for Bedtime & Wake-up tunes😊

Everyone’s life is different, some may spend hours in the bedroom listening, others may go there just to sleep. What will you do? Do you really want two Naim black boxes and a pair of speakers in the bedroom? Might a Qb suffice? We have a Tivoli Model One, tuned to Radio 4, and have never felt the need for anything else.


In order of actual use:
Main system- qb on my desk, every day M to F.
Second system- unitiqute/nap100 in a dining room …. This will soon be the nait 50; frequently during the week.
Third system- ndx2/supernait2 etc. rarely.

My bedroom system gets listened to every day, mostly for the radio but fairly regularly for rips. I also use the ripping and server functions of the Star to store music for my main system.

I’ve always had multiple systems and often two that were both “main systems”.

My office system gets by far the most use. The living room system much less due to lost battles with the family over room time.

After the move I’ll have 4 “proper” stereo systems not counting the Muso Qbs in the kid’s rooms or the AV system. I predict the office system will get used most followed by the kitchen system. While the money on other systems could be focused on the main system consider this: at the level of the main system, all the other midrange systems together would maybe equal one box upgrade of the Naim system and that Naim system would still be used only 10% of the time. So spending on real, by slightly lesser systems for other rooms is definitely worth it.


My 2nd system (282, HC, 250DR, Kudos C10s) is in the room I have no turbo-trainer in. I use it to listen when training. The source is an Arcam bluetooth receiver - it’s clearly a mullet but does the job of being audible over the fan.

Second system is a Uniti Nova which doesn’t get used much. The Nova is a great bit of kit and I’ve been enjoying it since 2018, but it’s in the front room, which itself doesn’t get used much.

Third system, Muso Qb, used most of the day when we’re at home, mostly for internet radio. It’s in the kitchen/diner.

For contrast, the main system is used in the evenings when we’re home. Generally, two albums per evening, and two or more for me once Mrs. G has gone to bed.

A small collection of spare Olive kit lies unused in a spare room.

QB2 in the bedroom. Doesn’t get a lot of use tbh.

I don’t think of it as a ‘system’, any more than I think of my wife’s UE Boom (not sure of the name) as one, or the CD/radio in the kitchen.

My main system is in a log cabin at the top of the garden, it gets listened to ever night between 10pm and 1am. My 2nd system is in the living room and gets listened to every morning if I’m not sitting outside so mainly autumn/winter and rainy spring/summer mornings. Afternoons as well if I’m stuck inside. I must admit, I wasn’t sure how much use it would get when I bought it but it really fits in with my current lifestyle so it was a great move for me.

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My second system gets used more when it’s not winter, it’s in the upstairs lounge which has even better views than downstairs, so gets used more when there are sunny days. I decided to get it when I realised how much time I was spending in that room, before there was a Qb in there for Multiroom. So one way to think might be to ask yourself do you use the room it’ll be in, and if not would it get more use when there is a second system.

Our SuperUniti in the office gets many hours use per day, far more than main system!

Piling on…yes, my 2nd system in the office gets more use than the main system by a large margin. But that’s only because I’m in there a lot. Not sure I’d use a bedroom system that much unless it had a lounge area…

Until I moved to my new home, I never had a bedroom system, relying on a Ruark Radio. Once here though, I had some spare bits so thought I might as well set it up there. I am somewhat surprised how much I listen to it, morning R4 and evening R6 whilst reading and then sometimes a rip to fall asleep to if I have trouble dropping off. The kittens also like it, as it gives them more perching places to survey the bed and plot their next attack on my toes through the duvet.

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I don’t have a second system. In essence over the years all my available cash for hifi went on my one system, selling older stuff to help fund upgrades. However I did keep an old MF P170 power amp as a backup, it having negligible resale value, and having recently changed amp and speakers I have yet to dispose of the old, so it would only need a streamer of some sort to set up another system.

However, I haven’t really got anywhere to put one! No point in our bedroom - aside from not having enough room for decent speakers, that room is purely used for sleeping (and, erm, other activities for which music may be a distraction), I don’t need music to get to sleep - and good music would likely keep me awake, while bad music is pointless or annoying! We have a clock-radio in the bedroom, however our only interest and use for it is as an alarm and presentation of local news while thinking about getting up in the morning. The kitchen-dining room is one place where music might occasionally be good, but only at social pre-prandial background levels so not worth tge effort of a system (and no room for decent speakers anyway). The sunroom, which is our second lounge, is variously TV room or quiet reading room, purposefully separated from the music room. Once our offspring move out, which will be in not far off future, there’ll their bedrooms, but no point at all, and the landing/office area they also use, but scarcely worth bothering there. Garden I wouldn’t because not fair to neighbours.

Two boxes would be my limit. Currently is a Uniti Star, thinking to replace it with either NDX2+SN3, or NSC222+NAC250.3 (no PS).

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