Uniti Core Question

Hoping for some advice or opinions from fellow Forum members.

My beloved 1st gen CDX2 decided to play me up at the weekend after many years of trouble-free listening, the L/H channel’s packed up. I’ve ruled out cable and input failures so I’m pretty sure it’s one of the DAC chips which is also the opinion of the Naim Engineer I’ve subsequently spoken to.

Given it’s age I’m now considering getting with the current times and buying a Uniti Core. I am wondering whether there will be much sacrifice performance-wise but what the best input would be on the 282. I’d welcome any thoughts and opinions please.

It you’re thinking of connecting the Core directly to your HiFi system (as opposed to over your network) you’ll need a DAC. The Core only has a digital output.
There’s lots of choice out there, although Naim no longer make a separate DAC. You could add a Naim streamer (such as NDX2 or 333), in which case you may or may not also need a Core.


I run my Core through a Chord Qutest, which uses an MCRU power supply to very good effect. Main source is the LP12 and NAT01 but the Core isn’t disgraced in this company. Also have the advantage of running a BluSound Node 2i and the TV/BluRay through the same DAC.

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There are a couple of things to bear in mind here. As others have said, you can’t just plug the Core into your 282. This is because it only has a digital output and therefore you need a DAC. The other thing is that you can’t just play CDs on it; you have to rip them first.

What you do partly depends on whether you intend to rip your CDs and how many you have. If you plan to stream music from Tidal or Qobuz then you need a streamer, such as the NDX2. That will also stream music from files stored locally, on a Core, a NAS or some other server. If you do want to rip, you can do it on a computer and store on a NAS.

Thanks ChrisSU, marksnaim and HungryHalibut, great comments and much appreciated.

My main source is an LP12, I play CDs a lot less than I used to but some recordings simply aren’t available on vinyl and I have 100’s of CDs stored. Moving into the digital era looks like it’s going to add up in terms of time and effort to rip and money to boot, I’ve no inclination to invest in a Streamer (yet) so it is looking likely like I’ll either have the player repaired, buy a secondhand but more current one or demo some current options.

The other option to seriously consider is a music library/player from the Melco range. This stores all your music on the internal disc and connects directly to a DAC via USB. The DAC then obviously connects to an input on your 282. The Melco needs to be connected to your router via ethernet to enable remote control from the Melco app on an iPad or similar.

I chose this option over a network streamer because I wanted to avoid streaming over a noisy network and to avoid all the problems that streaming over a network can seem to generate - at least for some people.

You can also stream Qobuz on the Melco and internet radio.

You can rip your CD’s on a computer and transfer to the Melco via a USB stick if you like. Or you can buy the Melco D100 CD drive/ripper which connects directly to the main unit. This allaows you simply to pop in a CD. wait for it to rip and it just pops out again. Dead easy - no fuss, no messing. You can also play CD’s directly if you want to.

I have the Melco N100 with a CHORD Qutest DAC and it really works like a dream and sounds superb. And so easy and convenient to use.

The Melco comes with a medical grade SMPS but you can upgrade this to a Plixir LPS for a substantial increase in performance, as I have.

That’s exactly what I’d do in your position. The cost to fix a CDP was £549 in 2022, and even if it’s gone up a bit it’s way cheaper than getting a Core and a DAC. Time to speak to your dealer about repairs.

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I was quoted £399 plus dealer shipping by Naim when I called earlier this week. It’s looking like a comparative bargain unless the laser mech packs up in which case it’s game over…

That sounds even better.

If you don’t want to fully commit to streaming, I would suggest an Innuos Zen Mini as a more versatile alternative to a Core. It has an analogue output as well as digital so it will play directly into your 282, and it will rip, store and play your CDs. (It’s also quite a bit cheaper.)
If you want to take it further you then have the option to use it with a separate DAC or a network streamer, but that’s all optional.
The Innuos also gives you access to a range of streaming services, internet radio, Tidal, Qobuz, Roon etc. Most people think they don’t want any of that stuff when they first move away from CD playback, but many take to it once they discover how accessible music becomes.


Even if you sell the CD player it has to be worth fixing at that price. You won’t get much for it if it’s not working, if you can sell it at all.

Good point!

Fix it! Those DAC chips have gone up tremendously of late so I’m surprised the repair hasn’t gone up into the next tier!