Sell my 500 system and go to Bang and Olufsen, am I mad

Am I completely mad? Have had Naim for over 30 years. Now have a 552, 500 and Linn Klimax. Recently serviced and DR’d. B &W 804 speakers. I have had the 802s, and I have also tried excellent Dynaudio Confidence, better but more money. (pic is of RHS of room, symmetrical the other side). But my hearing is not as good as it was with tinnitus as well. The big issue is this is part of a square room in a Georgian house and I really don’t want to spoil it with acoustic treatment. Also if I’m honest I’m slightly bored with all the boxes and cables and cable management and so on. In the picture are not the speakers I have mentioned but a pair of Bang and Olufsen Beolab 28 speakers, on loan now for a week. The thing is they are seriously good and while they are not quite as good as the rest of the system all one needs are the two speakers and they do everything pre and power amplification and streaming. And they work very well. I am almost decided to replace the lot with them and put some money in my pocket but would love any thoughts anybody has. (quick edit, one can adjust the sound on the B & O, like a graphic equaliser, to make less brittle, and also it has room compensation, reads room and adjusts…


If they satisfy you, why not?

From a different angle, if the room sounds better with them, then maybe what’s wrong is the speakers you presently have, or their positioning (square rooms are particularly difficult).

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I think we all move on and if the B and O suits your lifestyle then enjoy the music in the way you want to. One of the reasons I decided to move to a 500 just now is that I want to have a few years with such a system before the inevitable hearing changes with age, stop me enjoying it.


The only advice I’d give is that you should just do what you want. Some will say go ahead, others will say you are barking. It’s best, sometimes, not to ask.


I would be very surprised if a 500 level system would sound inferior to a B&O system no matter how poor the room acoustics or hearing loss. My parents had a B&0 Beocenter in the 70s/80s and it always sounded too warm and slow. Maybe current kit has improved but I tend to view B&O as manufacturers of lifestyle systems rather than true hi-fi with the focus on design and convenience over sound quality.


Ross, you appear to be asking social media users to empathise with your situation!

I hope it works out for you, whichever path you choose.



Can’t you do the same with the Linn Klimax streamer? I don’t have one but I remember reading about it. Roon also has EQ capabilities.

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Frankly, I’d be over the moon if could find something that compact and unobtrusive that keeps me happy. Every now and again I try, generally with the result that I just end up with more boxes. The antidote could be to buy another piano…

All I can say is the best of luck with with a good long audition.

If you find it keeps giving you musical pleasure, why not go for it?!


If you are happy with that great, but perhaps don’t get rid of the Naim products just yet ?

I downsized from a five box 200/202/Hi Cap/NAPSC/ Stage Line and ended up with a Nova and a phono stage , HH has also downsized and is happy

In other words , perhaps keep the Naim in storage whilst you do a long term evaluation ?


A couple of years ago a friend asked me for my thoughts on what stereo he should buy, I rapidly came to the conclusion that Naim would not be what he wanted, too much stuff.

I auditioned a pair of B&O Beolab 50 loudspeakers, he isn’t short of a few bob, I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them to non-HiFi people. Simple but, Staggering!


If you still like listening to them after an entire week, why not? After a week you probably have a good idea what they sound like.

I’ve gone into B&O boutiques and for the first 3 minutes or so there is a lot of “wow.” For me that’s faded rapidly. But I’ve not heard these. Your listening/living with them test will reveal your truth.

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It’s all in and then between our 2 ears.
I think that sometimes one can just get ‘fed up’ with all the hi fi hardware and long for a much simpler solution. Plenty of examples of that here. Less “extreme” than yours is the Nova + Speakers; or Atom + Speakers; or SN3 + NDX2 + Speakers . . .

Or a Muso or a Qb.

We’re going to be the proud lessees of 1/2 of a flat in New York City starting in a few months. (One of our daughters rents the other bedroom.) I think I’ll get a Qb and play Qobuz.


When I updated my system some 10 years ago I took a friend along to audition to various Naim kit. His wife was put off by all the boxes … sure enough he bought a B&O multi room system. However, ten years on the system is eccentric and does not play nicely with Roon.

Nevertheless, he likes the sound of the big B&O speakers … so if you can live with them after a week, as @Bart says above, go for it.

Would be great to keep them for a few weeks or months longer to see if you miss your system (or rather if the new speakers are good enough). If the resale value is good or you can get them used, maybe it is an option.

If that satisifies you and you want to invest the money from the 500 series elsewhere, why not.
I would definitly wait half a year or so to sell your kit though as Naim will increase prices soon and the used value of your equipement will probably increase by a fair amount (probably around 20%)

Sometimes too much stuff gets in the way of the enjoyment and letting some things go is acually a relief.

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Not sure what that means? Being satisfied for 10 years doesn’t sound eccentric to me, rather it sounds like he is in [his] audio heaven.

(Roon is irrelevant - some people don’t find it any benefit at all.)

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That is probably what makes it sound as good as it does, the room being the elephant in the, erm, room, with probably most setups to some extent, albeit worse with some rooms like square ones than others. Some people use DSP to improve things with even Naim systems - I know Roon offers a tool that some people here find invaluable. However it is not a universal panacea, it can’t fix cancellations, nor early reflections, nor make speakers go lower than they can reach, but in fixing other things it may make an otherwise limited system punch well above its apparent weight.

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The Beomaster 5 rips in wma, which is not ideal. And as my friend was seduced by Roon, it is relevant to him. Nevertheless, SWMBO preferred the B&O multi room system rather than something that had PRaT.

And I expect the B&O multi room system was cheaper than the Naim equivalent, certainly it was cheaper than my 4xUnitiqutes and NDS.

Hi if it is what you want go for it… I passed the B&O shop in Manchester and they were playing Whole Lotta Love really loud through some really huge speakers (B&O)…it sounded mighty impressive…


Take me to your leader…!


It’s like Davros’s speakers from Dr Who…but they did sound very impressive…