Speaker upgrade Dynaudio

Hello all

Have 2 systems

202/200Dr/NACA5/Chord 2 qute (basically Hugo1) in my AV lounge for watching concerts and movies. Dynaudio X16. Has bass response down to 40 HZ for a bookshelf.

282/250DR/HCDR/MScaler/Dave/Superlumina full loom/Powerlines. Dynaudio Focus 260

The room is medium size.

Opportunity has come up for used Confidence C2 for the 282 system. Also a C1 is available with a dealer

It’s always been an aspiration to own dynaudio Confidence speakers, but after many experiments, I have got both systems playing music the way I want and I feel no real need to change. In fact the enjoyment I get from both is equal, (I play a song down, then go up and listen to it, and while it does sound much better on the 282 based system) - do I get much more enjoyment if I am honest… Not that much more.

The experiments final touches were adding power line lites into a mains block from MCRU which allows to use any mains cable… It was cost effective and really took both systems to a level where they are performing well. so HC DR and 250DR plugged into wall, the sources and NAPSC on the mains extension, similarly in AV lounge, 200 DR into wall, and everything else into the Naim power line lite/MCRU mains extension block.

So not sure I want to spend 5000 Dollars on a speaker upgrade. If am being honest with myself the 202/200Dr and Chord DAC do everything so well, I enjoy it for hours on end watching concerts.

While the X16 is for me a stellar performer, I am not so sure about the Focus 260 which seems a tad bit big for the room anyway and is perfectly balanced, maybe a big more soundstage would be nice.

Not sure also a 250DR would be endgame as far as driving a C2 speaker. The other thought would be to “downgrade” from the focus 260 to a special 40, or other Dynaudio bookshelf as to my ears bookshelf speakers seem to be more musical and engaging in the room size that I have. But once warmed up the focus 260 plays music really very well. I once had a Dynaudio Heritage playing right next to it (focus 260) for audition, and my wife strangely put her foot down (she never does) and said this is no upgrade at all, and told me not to spend the money ! I could hear what the heritage did better in terms of refinement, musicality and soundstage… but was it a major upgrade, not day and night. The main difference was the Esotar 3 tweeter in the heritage which was considerably better than the tweeter in the Focus 260. The heritage however did make the X16 sound broken by comparison, but then at the price difference it should do so. In the big AV lounge though I can’t find anything I want to improve on the X16. Tried the Focus 260 in the AV lounge, but it was too much bass for both my wife and myself. The X16 really does have bass flat down to 40HZ so it’s more than enough.

anyway other brand speakers are also an option, but I do like what dynaudios do - neutral and get out of the way of the music with no coloration.

Any advice, thoughts, encouragement to spend the 5K USD… This is the Naim forum after all, we all like to upgrade !

I will be going to audition the C2 anyway this week and play some songs on it. It is a big speaker and the thought of carrying it home isn’t all that great either.

another reason I am hesitating on changing the Focus 260 is also because I have managed to get it to perform very well at low volume listening levels and it does now sing while playing music at levels that won’t wake up the family. I am concerned the C2 speaker might require higher volume levels to sing in which case that is not an option for me.

PS: I know the 202/200 has always been viewed with some negativity on the forum, but here we are I owned it now 14 years, and found it to be quite the musical performer, and kept me happy all these years and still does every day.

1 Like

You seem very happy with your Focus 260s, so why change them? The Confidence speakers are pretty high end and I’m not sure that the 282/250 is really up to them; a 252 or 552 and 300 would probably be more appropriate.

I wonder if it’s worth trying the Heritage Specials again? They are lovely looking speakers, which isn’t something that can be said about the Focus 260.


If you want to upgrade I think your speakers are perhaps the thing to do next.

If you like Dynaudio, this seems sensible direction to go.

If you end up upgrading amplifier these speakers will increase the benefits IMHO.

Of course you might get more improvements with acoustic panels if you don’t have them at the moment!

Hi Analogmusic,

I presume most of us will go through this phase. Although you are very happy with the Focus 260 it is likely you are curious how the higher level Dynaudio will sound like since the lower range Focus sounds great to you. The availability of the used Confidence C1 and C2 might have also added to your desire of going up the ladder.

Let me share my story, and I’ll try to make it short. In summary, only you can decide if you wish to go for it. There is no end to this game, and a change to the Confidence C1/C2 will likely require you to upgrade your current 282/250DR to achieve a good result from the speakers. Of course you may still get great results from the C1/C2 without changing your amps or anything. However, based on my experience a more transparent or revealing speaker will require better amps to shine. If I’m not mistaken there is a Confidence C2 owner here who upgraded from 250DR to 300 Dr and reported a huge improvement in sound quality. Perhaps there are more of such cases I’m not sure.

What I think is you can only decide if you wish to try the Confidence series. If you end up with the C2, do you have the plan of upgrading your amps in future, or you think you will be satisfied with your current 282/250DR and plan to live with it for a very long time. No doubt the 282/250DR is good but there will always be better. When I switched from Harbeth to Marten, I upgraded almost everything in the system - amp, source, cables, rack, power conditioner. Everything matters.

Or you could just live with the current set up and forget it all…

Because most people go from 202/200DR to 282 without ever adding NAPSC/HiCapDR to the mix. Without dual voltage rails the DR in 200 is barely adequate, the 202 potential will never be met without the quality power supply units.

I used to own special 40s and they were very good. I’m told the Heritage are even better so I’d definitely give them a listen.

1 Like

Medium to one person may be small to another, or large to someone else. What are the dimensions?

I have the Special 40 with good source but driven by 250DR. It really sounded wonderful but… but only when it is driven loud. Low volume, the whole thing collapse and to me at least unlistenable.

I want to try it with 500DR to see if the beefy amp can improve on low volume listening or not.

Failing that, I will have to investigate in changing a more revealing speaker or a floor-stander. They said floor-stander aid in low volume listening. Not sure though. :thinking:

1 Like

I really enjoy my Contour 20i, which think is a good match with 282 as it has a v refined sound that takes the edge off even the harshest recording. I agree that when before that I had Special 40, they needed to be booted into action with some volume. The Contour’s more enjoyable at low volume. Dynaudio are an amazing speaker manufacturer though. Also heard the Evoke, which was excellent- one of the few speaker brands that is quality at each tier of the range. The 20i is a good match with the 250dr - but wouldn’t want to put a more demanding speaker with that amp.

I have the Dynaudio Confidence C2 Platinum. I got one of the last pairs at retail in the U.S. when they went out of production. I love these speakers. I’ve had them five years now and just don’t desire anything else (although C4s in my bigger living room would be dreamy).

When I got them I had a 250DR and I thought they sounded great with that. Soon thereafter I upgraded to a 300DR. The C2 really didn’t shine and show what they are capable of until I had a 300DR. They sounded good with the 250DR but I was missing what they are capable of.

The C2 with a 200 will very likely sound OK, but maybe just meh. They really want a high current amp. A 250DR is the minimum in my opinion. They are excellent with a 300DR. The other thing I noticed going from 250DR to 300DR is how much better they perform at low/moderate volume, and how much the bass really opens up and improves.

I wonder what a 500DR would be like, but getting one is not on my radar.

1 Like

I believe Analogmusic wants to possibly run the C2’s with his 282/250 DR JDP.
I have ran a 272/XPSDR/250 DR with C1 platinum’s for a week long home demo once. This was after I sold my own pair of C1’s. They sounded great at lower volumes Analog, but pushed past 85 DB’s, the woofer would pop. This is a flaw with C1’s, if you like loud music, steer clear of them.

OK. Getting a 300DR to upgrade a 250DR was like I upgraded my C2s to something bigger and better. They worked just fine with a 250DR but really didn’t shine and reveal their true nature (excellence) until they had a 300DR driving them.

I think buying C2s for a 250DR will be fine, but they may struggle at times.

If I’m playing large scale orchestral music with the 300DR/C2s they can get into the 90+ db range effortlessly on fortissimo, and it doesn’t even seem all that loud. I mostly listen to music in the 70s db range and they sound great like that too. I’ve never heard them pop.

yes that is what I am also concerned about, it isn’t only spending 5000 USD on the C2, it is having to upgrade to a 300DR, and then later a 252 or 552… it is quite a bit of money to spend to listen to music…

the majority of my listening is pop/rock (which was never mastered to play on such a hi end speaker like C2) …and loads of live performances content on YouTube which cannot be purchased as it is not available for sale.

for example…

As an alternative to a 300DR (now discontinued) I will bet (based on specs) that a NC 250 will drive the C2s at least as well.

The C2s will sound very good with a 250DR. You just won’t really hear what they really have to offer.

…or get an Étude, which is a great match for your Dave and would allow you to sell your 282, Hicap and 250. Total cost approximately nothing :wink:

It certainlty copes with demanding speakers better than a 250DR.


Hi. I had Focus 260 with the same setup as yours and they were boomy in my room. A couple of years ago I found a deal on the bigger Contour 3.4 LE. The difference was huge. Much cleaner, detailed sound and deep nice bass😀.

1 Like

thanks that is the kind of feedback I was looking for

For that to be relevant to the OP what is needed os a comparison of rooms - dimensions, shape if not rectangular, speaker and listening positions, and furnishings/acoustic properties. (Part of the reason why I suggested simply stating that a room is “medium size” is not very meaningful as different people have different concept of what is medium.)

Yeah, I’ve heard Focus sound perfectly good (not boomy at all).

I suspect C2’s would be a very nice upgrade, even if the power amp is not end-game (suitable room treatment not withstanding if required). I bought Dynaudio Sapphires just over a year ago when I had a 200/282 system (Sapphires were known to be a easier to drive than C4’s, at about the same price when new). The 200 was marginal, so I grabbed a well priced Olive 250. That was ok, so with a bit of creative interpolation, I suspect your better 250 DR would be fine with C2’s, at least for an enjoyable while. I then bought a Conrad Johnson Prem 350 with loads more power and now love the Dyns even more (impatience, limited funds, and small local market didn’t enable me to try a used 300). The point being that I doubt you would regret the speaker upgrade, even if it does lead you to an amp upgrade in due course.