The new NAIT 50 Limited Edition

Things like the Nova don’t come with an exhaustive manual (IMHO).

I was wondering how people are using the standby/power switches on the Nait.

Initially I was confused by the ‘auto on’ statement in the manual and I couldn’t understand why the amp didn’t spring to life when I started a CD or LP. My misunderstanding was clarified by finding about the error in the manual explained in this thread.

I started by leaving the rear switch on auto standby, but I found this quite irritating. The problem being that if I interrupted a period of listening to do something else temporarily, the amp would turn off and then when I started a CD again there was no sound, until the power button was reengaged.

Now I have turned the rear switch to what the manual calls ‘instant on’, but I don’t really understand what this means. If I manually turn the amp to standby when I am not going to listen for a while - maybe overnight - does this keep the audio circuits powered up. Or does the power have to be on with bright indicator light for this to be the case?


Been trying to run mine in so just been leaving it at full power all the time.

Means auto standby off. It’s on and it stays on. If you press it to standby, then it’s on standby and saving electricity.

In other words:
Off = no power = no cost. Cold and will take a while to reach “ready to play” temperature.
Standby = little power = pence cost. Needs 30 minutes warmup to sound its best.
On = power = £ cost. Ready to play.


I believe that if you put the “instant on” switch on the back panel in the “on” position, it keeps the preamp circuits powered up and settled even when the Nait50 goes into the standby mode. That is what my dealer advised and it seems to work well that way: Always ready.

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@110dB Hi Steve, can you clarify please? Instant on vs auto standby: does instant on just prevent auto standby? Meaning that regardless of the switch position, if it goes into standby itself or because we put it in standby, it’s exactly the same? Or is instant on keeping one eye open ready to spring into action, even when in standby? Thanks

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Thanks - that’s the question I was trying to pose unsuccessfully!
This should have been a reply to @robert_h

Here’s what I found:

I think instant on just prevents auto standby. And standby is standby, minimal stuff powered.

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That’s what I think as well. The button has the wrong position names; it should be auto standby on and auto standby off. “Instant on” is misleading.

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Thanks for that summary. Do you think ‘Instant on’ might have been wording that was devised when it was thought that the amp would have auto on? Clearly it was thought that would be a function at some point as it was written into the manual. With its current functionality, ‘instant on’ doesn’t seem appropriate.

No idea :smiley:

I’ve worked for a variety of engineering firms, software and hardware, mistakes and misunderstandings surely happen. I would be surprised if something like that got through though. Particularly given the small form factor and that packaging all the functions in was likely a high priority issue from the start. 110db likely knows for sure, but I’m hoping he doesn’t give us too much insight into how Naim work, I’m happy that some of the background is just magic :sparkles: :wink:

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I think the ambiguity was a deliberate design choice to

  1. Provide a quirk that endears itself to owners and potential owners alike.
  2. Give forum dwellers something to discuss

Hi @robert_h,

The quick answer is that the ‘instant on’ switch will enable/disable the music sense auto-standby function.

Going deeper
The Nait 50 has two modes; ‘on’ and ‘standby’.

When it is ‘on’:

  • Ready to play music.
  • The main toroidal transformer PSU is on
  • EuP 0.5W SMPSU is off (better for sound quality)

When is in ‘standby’

  • It will not play music
  • The main toroidal transformer PSU is off
  • The 0.5W SMPSU is on and keeping the power button awake
  • The amplifiers have no power

The rear panel ‘Instant on’ switch has two positions; ‘on’ and ‘off’

When it is set to ‘on’

  • If the Nait is on it will stay on
  • The music sense circuits are turned off
  • If the Nait is ‘on’ and the front panel ‘mains’ button is pressed it will go to standby (as detailed above)
  • If the Nait is in ‘standby’ and the front panel ‘mains’ button is pressed it will turn ‘on’ (as detailed above)

When it is set to ‘off’

  • If the Nait is on it will stay on if the music continues
  • The music sense circuits are turned on and will put the Nait into standby after 15 minute of silence
  • If the Nait is ‘on’ and the front panel ‘mains’ button is pressed it will go to standby (as detailed above)
  • If the Nait is in ‘standby’ and the front panel ‘mains’ button is pressed it will turn ‘on’ (as detailed above)



What is the soundstage width and depth like on the NN50 ?

And how does it compare to the SN3?


Check out this thread: Is the new NAIT 50 a better integrated than the SN3?

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On the Nait 50 performance, I hadn’t quite twigged at first (although I think a few folks did mention) that the Nait 50 is similar to the original in that the midrange is particularly transparent and clear.

Overall, I think the best thing about it is that it’s so well balanced. I supposed being in control of phono stage, pre- and power amp design helps, but even so, it works really well as a whole and sounds just right.


Yes - I’ve seen that. Doesn’t really comment on soundstage.

To my mind this is where the SN3 falls over relative to its competitors.

Perfect, thanks!

Thanks Steve, so standby from an amplifier perspective, is effectively off. The standby SMPS only enables the logic circuitry to bring the amp out of standby when the power button is pressed, powering up the linear supply, disabling the SMPS in the process and is now ready to play music.

Mine is warming up nicely after being turned off for a week whilst I’ve been away. Sounding excellent again already :+1:


Tonight with the album “Ultimate Santana”, it’s wonderful. And of course it plays Nait 50, Qutest and the outstanding ATC SCM7v3.