Spotify and Uniti Star kills Spendor A7's

I have been a NAIM users for the past 12 years. Supernait 2, ND5 XS, power supplies, Stageline. Recently I have moved to the all in one’s for their convenience and built in apps. Tidal, Spotify etc. I have the NAIM atom in my art studio listening to Classic FM and the NAIM UNITY STAR pre-amp out to my NAIM NAP 250DR in my lounge for more formal listening connected to my Spendor A7’s. Im delighted with this setup. I use it for music and movies. The sound quality is exceptional.

Unfortunately there is a BUT.

A few days ago, I was listening to some background music on my Unity Star/NAP/Spendor A7 setup via the Spotify app on my iPhone 12 mini. The setting (and this is critical) in the Spotify app - under Connect to a device - is: Show Local Devices Only. I use the latest version of the NAIM app, the NAIM firmware for my Star and the latest iOS for my iPhone. On my iPhone under settings, Ringers and Alerts - Change with buttons are disabled.
I got a phone call. I drove 20km’s to pick up my car from service. Arriving, I got a call from work. I increased the sound on my phone to hear the conversation and completed the conversation. I head over to the technician to pay the bill. I got another phone call from the security company at the building where I was living. Apparently, neighbours were complaining of deafening music emanating from my apartment. I assured them that I was not at home, and neither was anyone else. They said they will take a video from my front door to show me upon my return.

I thought - OMG when increasing the volume on my phone, did I increase the volume on the UNITI STAR from where I was? Using my data network? Using the setting ‘Show Local Devices Only’? I quickly reduced the volume to zero on my phone. I killed the Spotify app.

But it was too late.

Arriving at home I head down to security. They showed me the video - deafening music indeed. But they said its quiet now. I went to my apartment with some trepidation. All quiet. Touching my Uniti Star and Nap 250, it was practically on fire. Hot as coals. Looking at my Spendor A7s - I dreaded what has happened.

Listening to some Jazz after the incident, I confirmed the worst. The A7’s are done for. No hope. GBP 3400 is gone. Despite the setting, changing the volume on my phone has killed my Spendors. Leaving home, leaving my home network - the Uniti Stars continued to respond from inputs from my iPhone on an entirely different network, 20km away.

Though this was heartbreaking, the response from NAIM was even more so.
Basically, they are sorry, but that’s the extent of the compassion. This is Spotify, not NAIM.

If you use Spotify for casual listening, heed this warning. If you leave your house. Kill the app and shut down your NAIM amplifier. If you don’t, you will end up like me. With loss.

To some here a few thousand quid for a pair of speakers blowing up may be nothing worth noticing. But as a Nurse, this is as bad as it gets for me. The response from NAIM was heartbreaking. They did not even say they will follow up or test the scenario. Nothing. Just - Oh we are sorry.

Though NAIM has partnered with Spotify for the convenience of us all (and boy its convenient) - they did not anticipate - or warn against this catastrophe.

Welcome to the forum and thanks for sharing your experience and your warning.
Of course not a nice reason to register here. So sorry to read this. What a disaster!!

I am not using spotify. So I cannot help or test this. I never thought that is possible that it has any effect when changing the volume on the phone when I am not in my local network. I will be aware of this now with all the streaming functions and apps. Thank you.

I really hope that there is maybe a way to repair your spendors for a reasonable amount.

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Thanks for your concern.
Yes it was a disaster. Same applies to Apple Music. Hence in a different way

Fortunately I have set a maximum volume in the settings of my atom.
But I did that more with an unintended volume change at the control wheel from little guests in mind …

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Oh dear, what a nightmare. It’s not actually Naim’s fault so there is little more they can say. When you use Spotify Connect, the Spotify servers send the music direct to your streamer, and if the streamer is still connected to your Spotify then you can control it from anywhere. I found this out when my son started playing music on my Qb, while he was 150 miles away. None of this helps you of course. Take a look at your home insurance; if you have accidental damage cover you should be able to claim, albeit with a likely premium increase. You may find that the cost is less than you think, depending on whether the bass units as well as the tweeters are fried.


I’m sure you can buy new drivers for the Spendors, also it may be covered by your house insurance, ah I see HH has got there before me!

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I have done the same for my Star. Max is 85. Still too high I guess

I guess that’s the point. If I’m no longer connected to my home WiFi this should not be possible.
Anyway I’d rather not mess with insurance. Waiting for response from Spendor. Maybe it won’t be such a huge shock

WiFi isn’t involved. Spotify Connect works differently to Qobuz /Tidal.

The 250’s thermal protection circuitry should have prevented damage so it should be OK. Fingers crossed that the A7s (I have A7s too) can be sorted. As HH as suggested insurance may help here and cover the cost of all checks and repairs including the Star and 250.

Appreciate everyone’s responses. I don’t have insurance- but I’m working with my Spendor agent in South Africa to see how to replace the drivers.
I’m actually more curious as to the root cause of the problem- Spotify. Was hoping NAIM could alert them to this. I guess I should too.
Learned an expensive lesson

It is actually a very well known Spotify issue. It’s just that you haven’t met it before! Spotify won’t need alerting to this.



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Yeah I’m bearing the brunt of it. It’s a serious flaw I’m just wondering what are they going to do about it.
It’s just a pity if NAIM is aware of it why don’t they alert their customers. It’s a very heartbreaking experience. As you can imagine.
Thanks for the reply David


My heart goes out to you over all this.

Hopefully the speakers can be repaired rather than replaced

best wishes

Like others, my heart goes out to you. It is gutting to find the fruits of your hard earned income has been destroyed, especially if it is a known event that can occur. hopefully the Spendor agent can help in some way with a repair or replacement of drivers.

I would suggest that Spotify should be alerted to this. It’s a known issue that is, as far as I’m aware, due to the fundamental way in which Spotify Connect works, so fixing it may or may not be easy, or even possible for them. While most people have just been inconvenienced by it rather than had physical harm done, the more people complain the higher the chances of a solution. I would also be pointing out to them that to prevent a recurrence I would be cancelling my sub and using a different service.

(I wonder if Tidal Connect could have the same glitch.)

Seems another instance of “mobile device focused development” not taking into account the “power” of connected HiFi.
Phones and Bluetooth headsets cannot usually do such damage.

(Then again he question: is it reasonable to have equipment standing around, which can damage itself, if sed to its full potential? Especially when connecting it to many digital service and online platforms/remote control. Maybe some “controls” beyond the system wide “max volume” setting could help here from HiFi/streamer side as well?)

I’m pretty sure they would see it as a feature, not glitch. You can control devices without being on the same network. Probably not intended to be used “remotely”, but more if, for example, the WiFi is flaky everything will keep working.

Again thanks for everyone’s responses.
With Spotify HiFi around the corner more audiophiles may consider Spotify. This may happen to more people in the future. Unless you read forums how could anyone know? There’s certainly no warning from the Spotify app when you connect to devices on your local network.
It can’t be that hard to fix either. If Spotify is no longer connected to the network you used when adding devices, it should default back to the phone speaker.

I had Tidal HiFi but their algorithm for suggesting songs and creating playlists comes nowhere near Spotify. I did not come across this issue with Tidal.

Apple Music had a similar issue but since it’s a Bluetooth connection, it won’t control your amp from further than a few meters away. But there was a workaround. I ditched my Apple Music because of that. That time I was using Harbeth SHL5 40th anniversary. So whatever the sound volume on your phone, if you start playing music via Bluetooth and your phones volume is 90% Queen will start rocking at 90% volume when you press play. Many times I almost had a heart attack. It came to a point where I never listened to Apple Music anymore because I never knew what my Uniti would do should play a song on Apple Music from my phone.

For now I’m waiting from Spendor on the cost of new drivers.

I’ve had many issues with Uniti. Last year I noticed if you use the HDMI connection to your TV, and HDMI was the last input selected it would ignore your setting for auto standby. Even if you switch off the TV.
I discovered this after returning from a 3 week holiday. My Uniti Star radiating heat from across the room. This issue has been fixed in an update last year. Uniti now goes to standby as it should based on what you choose.

Maybe I should just stick to playing vinyl. Less surprises.


Exploding speakers and systems being turned on in the middle of the night waking their owners are glitches by any standard. If they are the unintended consequences of a feature that is in someway useful, it should at the very least be something against which users are warned when they try to take such action. It is, in my opinion, something for which Spotify should take responsibility.

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You should use AirPlay instead of Bluetooth for Apple Music. This should give you better sound quality, and will work from any location as long as your phone is connected to your network. (But not when you are connected to any other network!)