Stageline and 102/Hicap

I am thinking about getting a stage line S to replace my 523 boards in my 102. I have a spare Hi Cap supply to power the Stageline but looking at the connections manual on the Naim website I am still a bit confused. The stagelines I have seen come with a 5 pin snaic for the power but what do I use to connect the stage line into the Aux Din connector on the 102.

I also understand that the amp will require a change to the board wiring to cut out the phono boards, can this be done at a dealer?

So apart from all the extra expense what are your opinions to doing this? Worth the money? I am currently using a AT OC9/11 but looking to change this to the replacement OC9XML or possible the OC9XSH. AT have said I can get a 35% discount if I trade in my old cartridge so am tempted by this. Deck is LP12 with Ittok LV11


many thanks

With the internal boards, I’d say a Stageline is totally pointless. If you want an upgrade, and as you have an LP12, get a Prefix mounted in the turntable and power it from your hicap.

Does the internal board sound better than the Stageline?
Btw @StewB, you will need an addition 4-pin snaic from the Stageline to your pre-amp.

I wouldn’t say it’s any worse.

I wouldn’t bother. If you want a proper upgrade then consider a Prefix or better still a Superline instead.

The Internal phono boards do pull down the overall performance of the Preamp a bit because the HiCap then has an extra load on one of its rails. Probably more significantly, the internal phono boards have to share a single power rail with some of the pre’s line stages, so they won’t work optimally either.

A Stageline powered by a separate HiCap will mean it has a dedicated power rail for each channel and the preamp line stages will then have a HiCap to themselves, so the whole lot works more optimally. That’s the way my system is set up (my ‘stageline’ is not one I can elaborate on here - but it’s the same thing without the logo :wink:). I wouldn’t go back to internal phono boards now as the music is just so much more enjoyable this way.

I had considered a prefix, but that’s not compatible with a Rega arm without some work and I wasn’t about to butcher the leads of an RB1000! In your case with a Linn arm it makes sense though and would likely be the best move.

One other thing - if you haven’t already, get a NAPSC for the 102 before doing anything else. It really helps the 102 perform much more musically.


Thanks for all your comments, very helpful and some things to consider now. Mr Tibbs, I do have a NAPSC for the 102 and yes it did improve it. I have a NAP 180 plus recently purchased NEAT Iota Alpha speakers which are wonderful. The combinations works very well, but the LP12 does need some attention and a service, so perhaps now is the time to think about a prefix as it all has to be taken apart for this and the new cartridge when I get to it.

1 Like

This topic was automatically closed 60 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.