Uniti Atom v ND5 XS2

I have an old Audiolab 8000S amp and new B&W603 speakers. Looking to stream - have narrowed it down to two options. Would appreciate any thoughts on the Uniti Atom v the ND5 XS2

If you’re happy with your amp and speakers I would just add the ND5XS2. I suspect you would get a lot more out of your speakers if you then upgraded your amp, but the ND5XS2 would make a good source.
The Atom is a neat package, and has a colour screen and remote control that the ND5 lacks, but if sound quality is your priority the separate streamer and amp is the way to go.


I have had the Atom for about 3 and a half years, and just recently got the nd5 xs2. The main benefit of the Atom is its compactness and appearance, its nice screen, and the fact that as an all-in-one it reduces clutter and box count. From a sound quality perspective it sounds very good and is easy to listen to, but it’s not the last word in hifi. The nd5xs2 is much less sexy – just a plain box with no display and no controls. As such there is very little to break and it will probably outlast me. Sound quality wise it is the better solution.

If you are just getting into streaming, then why not consider one of the low cost entries while you get your feet wet? I’m thinking WiiM, BlueSound, Eversolo… Then go from there. As ChrisSU says, you may get more bang for the buck by upgrading the amp.

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Well they’re different things of course: a streamer/amp v a pure streamer. If you’re looking to compare the streaming section of the Atom with the ND5XS2 then the Atom, good though it is, cannot really compete with the ND5 and I speak as an Atom owner. The Atom, after all sits at the bottom of Naim’s range (apart from the Musos). The ND5XS2, by contrast, would set you up with a very nice front end.

At that point your Audiolab amp would probably be a bottleneck. It’s a while since I’ve heard one, but I never found Audiolab very musically involving. I’d be looking to replace it once funds allow. A Nait XS3 or XS2, if you can buy second hand, would be a natural partner and make for a very nice system.


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