I think this question has been asked in various ways over the years but I haven’t been able to find the thread, so here it goes…
I’ve been using a Bluesound Node 2i as a transport for my nDAC. Mostly streaming Tidal and local FLAC files (no Qobuz in Canada ). I enjoy it quite a bit, but I’ve been considering trying an ND5 XS as a transport. Any thoughts on this path? I’d love to try a ND5 XS2 but it’s outside the budget right now.
I’d keep what you have for now and wait for a ND5XS2. I know Qobuz has been promised in Canada for awhile and if it finally arrives you’ll be much happier with the ND5xs2. The new streaming board is fantastic IMHO.
Naim streamers make good digital transports, but I would think carefully before committing to such an old design as the 1st gen models. They were originally designed to stream from your local network, and had Tidal support shoehorned into them due to the rise in demand for web streaming services. They can work well with Tidal, but the small buffer can cause problems with internet streams. Also their WiFi performance is poor, so a wired connection is advisable.
These older boxes are still serviceable, but it remains to be seen how long Naim can sustain this if the availability if digital spares becomes difficult.
If WiFi performance is a concern I’d follow ChrisSU advice or it’s another reason for the ND5XS2. From personal experience it’s WiFi performance is first rate. Rarely have I had a drop. IIRC the new streaming board buffers the stream regardless so after 30 seconds or so the track is being served up from its internal memory.
I have a Google mesh network with a wifi node located about 2 meters from the streamer location and high speed fibre. The wifi speeds in the house are very good, and my stack location has a very good signal strenght, but I acknowledge the the ND5 XS is using older tech.