Upgrade: Naim HiCap/HiCap Dr vs NAP100/150X

I m using Naim SN2 with ATC SCM11. Planning for minor upgrade/ add on. Which one more appropriate ?
Option 1) add on HiCap/ HiCap DR, which turn SN2 into pre & power.
Option 2) add on Naim Nap150x/100 for bi-amp config in which Naim Nap150x/100(rated 50w x 2) for tweeters & SN2 for mid.

Welcome Kemp. What’s your source?

Marantz SA10

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Playing DSD mostly

Okay, great. I’m not familiar with your speakers, but unless they need more current, bi-amping may not be beneficial.

Adding the HiCap added more cohesion in my system.

I’d also check that you have a high quality interconnect and look at adding a Powerline to the SN2. Also checking that the mains supply is good.

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ATC are quite power hungry & demanding speakers

I can’t give a technical answer regarding bi-amping other than its not generally favoured. Matching the power amp to the speaker is the usual approach - but a quick look at reviews suggests the SN2 should be fine with them.

I actually traded a NAP100 against my SN2.

Anyway, what’s lacking in the system that you want to address?

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Neither the 100 or the 150 are exactly gutsy and I’d forget about them. Biamping is generally viewed as a bit of a waste of time with Naim. If you want to try it, I’d be looking at a 250DR. Adding a Hicap DR - forget non DR with the SN2 - gets mixed reports. Some owners feel it brings benefits while others prefer the amplifier unadorned.

It’s worth thinking where you ultimately want to take the system. The logical decent upgrade is to the 282/Hicap DR/250DR. The optimal way to do this is to add the 282/Hicap and use the SN2 as a power amp, then swap the SN for the 250. With speakers that need a bit of grunt, adding a 250 first is worth a punt.


HH gives great advice here, yes there are better options than bi-amping.

(As is usual) I broke convention and added a new 250DR first to my SN2 as I had the opportunity to get one at a very good price, and since I have ibls which have tuneful but not ‘heavy’ bass the amp added grunt and much more to the SN2. Absolutely no regrets with that move at all, and a Hi-Cap DR eventually followed - which was another step up again.


I think Kemp was after a minor upgrade, hence my comments about power and cables.

The order of a 282 or 250 is interesting. Theoretically the 282 makes more sense from a source first perspective, but I think the 250 first has better functionality - you still have the headphone stage and more simplified controls.

I actually started by adding a 250 DR to a UnitiQute. That led me to a slippery slope of upgrades. LOL

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Yes, I’ve been scarred following your posts :flushed: You were on a SN2 if I recall correctly?

Never had a Nait of any kind. My path was…

UQ2, 250-2
202, NAPSC, HC2, 250-2, ND5XS
282, HC2, 250-2, ND5XS
282, HCDR, 250DR, ND5XS
282, HCDR, 250DR, NDX2
282, HCDR, 250DR, NDX2, XPSDR
282, SCDR, 250DR, NDX2, XPSDR
252, SCDR, 250DR, NDX2, XPSDR
252, SCDR, 300DR, NDX2, XPSDR

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