Upgrade path

At the moment I have a Nova, Zen mini mk2 and Special 40 speakers.
I use Spotify so the grandchildren can play their favourites. I’ve ripped my entire CD collection to the Zen which I play through wi fi.
I’m looking to upgrade but don’t wish for two racks of equipment.
I’ve been waiting for an updated 272 but am becoming impatient as I’m likely to have fallen off the perch before it arrives.
What would be my best upgrade path to include a 300DR power amp?

The dilemma presenting itself due to the multi-box preamp keeps on coming up here! You can go straight for a 300 with your Nova if you really want to. I suspect you’ll find it initially impressive, but that it will expose relative weaknesses in the Nova.
In an all Naim system, a 300 should, to my mind, be fronted by something like NDX/XPS/252/Supercap to really show its full potential. That’s 6 boxes, which I’d say is the absolute maximum you want on a single stack.
You can, of course, cut down to 4, or even 3 boxes with a 272, for a much neater system, but if you want the new streaming platform you are used to, or there are non-Naim options to consider.

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As Chris said you could add a 300 dr, i did while i waited for the new streamers. It was a lot of fun, but i would not go that route permanently. But it would give you a sense of moving forward, and perhaps after a another year with no 272, an ex demo Naim 282 plus hicap might be worth considering.

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I’ve stopped at a 272 + 555PS into a 300DR. It’s very good. 4 boxes, 1 neat stack.

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If you are only using local streaming and Spotify the 272 is technologically more than capable. Why not buy one used for about £2k and upgrade later if a replacement appears and having the latest thing is important. I would not add a 300 unless the 272 was powered by a 555. Alternatively the NDX2, 282 with Hicap or ideally Supercap would work, though you’d really benefit from a PS on the NDX2. If sticking with the Dynaudio speakers, do you really need a 300?

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Thank you HH. My rationale for the 300DR is as a once and for all purchase. I would move up the Dynaudio ladder later on. In the meantime the S40s are very good and punch we’ll above their price range. I’m very tempted by the 272 with a PS as I wish to keep the box count low.
The other avenue I’ve considered is the SN3 with NDX2 and PSs. I’ve heard the SN2 with the NDX2 at an audio show and was very impressed.
I could go the full hog with a 252 and Contour 60 but £30k strikes me as a bit excessive for a music system.
I did intend not to get back into racks of equipment again and stick with a Nova which is very good value. Unfortunately the bug has bitten me once again.

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@JohnF i went a slightly different path to your plan but 272/555/300DR is 4 boxes of black magic

I too am a member of the 300DR one time purchase club, mine was 300 non DR and then DR back at mothership -

enjoy the journey

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@JohnF what dilemmas to have! In the first instance I would ask a Naim dealer to demonstrate to you a 272/XPS/300 vs NDX2/XPS/SN3. That will give you a starting point. If (and it’s a considerable if) you consider the more advanced streamer is what you are after then you might think about a further demo of say a 282/SC/250 or 300. On the other hand as @anon4489532 suggests you might think the 272 is just what you need and I personally wouldn’t be put off by it being a generation behind it’s not redundant. Alternatively Nigel is also right buying a 2nd hand 272 would represent great VFM.

Good luck.


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You are in the same boat as I was, having downsized from lots of boxes to a SuperUniti. I chose the 272/250 over the NDX/SN2 partly because it is less upgradable and partly because of its nice volume control. Little did I know I’d end up with a 555PS, a 300DR, SuperLumina leads and a Fraim but hey, it sounds good.

The 300DR is a hell of an amp and the SN3 won’t come close. Perhaps surprisingly the 272/555 is perfectly fine with the 300DR, and Naim have used it at demos. If you go the NDX/282 route you’ll need at least a Hicap and before you know it you have six boxes.

We used to have twin Fraims and cables crossing the room under the carpet but made the decision to stick to one rack this time. M

It’s all good fun!

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I am strongly tempted to follow your route HH. It’s just that in the back of my mind I sense a 272 update is imminent. It’s a pity Naim never give anything away unlike car manufacturers.

When we were at Naim last year they said that they were updating the streamers ‘first’ ie before the 272. On the other hand my dealer has been told there would be no replacement. It’s certainly a dilemma. While existing users may be in no rush to upgrade it would be galling in the extreme to buy one and then a new version appears in a couple of months. That’s why I suggested getting a well priced used example. That would minimise losses should you subsequently replace it. Tricky.


demand is generally followed by supply! It’s more a question of when

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Going a bit left field has anyone heard a Hegel H590?

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