Upgrade from NAC102 to 82 sound quality issues

Have you had any joy without the HC? This would mean the LH link plug (in Graeme’s diagram) would have to be fitted.

The banded end of the Snaic4 would go into the NAC82. The other end into your NAP180.

A serviced 72 should immediately cure the headache.


I’m sure you meant to be humourous but it would be nice to get this issue resolved for the OP. :slightly_smiling_face:
Besides the 72 is well outclassed by an 82😉

Sure, if real hi-fi is what you’re after :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:

I owned an 82 and 180 for several years. I had my 180 serviced by Darren at class A it did have a tendsncy to sound bright with certain recordings. I had B&W speakers too which were bright at the best of times. It did settle down though or more I got used to it and really liked it. Just with certain recordings I couldn’t listen to it really loud as it was too much. I think this is similar to what you’re feeling. I’ve also owned Arcs Mk1 until recently and they can also sound a tad bright with certain Naim combos (I’ve tried a few). The 82 is a very revealing and open sounding amp. I wonder if it’s the ndx causing the harshness as I had a super Nait 2 for a while and found some of the newer Naim stuff to be too detailed and bright for my ears. The ndx through the 82 could be what’s causing it. As you say I’m not a huge subscriber to the ‘burn in’ theory and think that’s largely bs. Yes components tend to sound a tad better after a little use but it’s not weeks of burn in or any such nonsense. It should sound good straight away then a little better with time. Not terrible then amazing. Not in my experience anyway.

My current combo is similar to yours in that I run an old skool chrome bumper amp and HC with a unitiqute which is the newer Naim range of products. However it’s not ‘high end’ so it’s not super bright and detailed. It sounds amazing to my ears but not too analytical. The 102 may not have revealed the same detail of the ndx as the 82 does. Not sure if you can try a different combo via a dealer or whatever.

Just a note on the buzzing, that shouldn’t be happening so as the guys have said above check all connections are correct etc too.

I am pretty sure from memory the 180 can power some pre amps too? So definitely worth checking the connections and also your snaics to make sure none are damaged. I’ve had a few old ones fail on me in my time.

Good luck and I hope you sort it. It can be stressful when something that normally gives you joy causes a headache!


Also worth noting is speaker cables and any non Naim cabling as this can affect the sound too. Not in a good way in some cases.

I also went 102 to 82 some years ago, and the 82 was much better. In fact, the 102 is the only Naim pre amp I ever sold. I preferred to keep my old 42 and 42.5 pre amps which sounded as good as the 102 and looked nicer.

All day long. I never got on with the 102 or 202. The 82 should be a night/day difference to the 102.

You guys should re read the first post - apparently he was ‘In heaven’ with the 102. I’m not surprised, it’s a highly underrated preamp :blush:


Hi MC2,

In your picture you have a Snaic 4 & a Snaic 5 connected to the 82 - the Snaic 4 shouldn’t be connected to the 82, it goes between the Hicap & 180.

That will be the cause of your issue as the 180 earth reference will be wrong.



OK. Some glasses of red wine later…

I rewired the whole thing (see photo above) and when stuck back together there was no buzz, indicating that I’d screwed up the wiring earlier. Not at all unlikely.

The Nac82 has been running continuously nearly 48 hours since my last but one post…

I’ve just played my three go-to hifi tracks of the moment:

Leonard Cohen: You Want it Darker
Nick Cave: Hand of God
Johnny Cash: Hurt

The sound is un-f*******-believable

Floods of tears.

The hifi is just fine (small understatement)

Thanks everyone. I’m very, very grateful for your help.

Better find some happier music before I slit my wrists.


Glad you are sorted :slightly_smiling_face:

Now all the cables are in place it’s worth undoing the locking collars and leaving them loose. And then listen again :grin:

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Yes… How about… Don’t Stop Me Now…??

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Is that a SB+ lurking at the top of the rack ?

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That’s great. Glad it’s sorted out and can enjoy the music!

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Very pleased it is sorted out.

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Not recommended with SNAIC’s, I think…
Too much risk of serious damage if they come out… :expressionless:


I lock them up when sorting cables into position and then unlock them. More relaxed and refined with the collars unlocked. :slightly_smiling_face:

So Glad to hear all is well. Probably worth labelling up the cables next time you have it apart

Or take some close up pictures… :grin:

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