OK perhaps a bit unusual request - My configuration is old but to my ears still wonderful it comprises CD4, NAC 72, NAP250, 2xPSU Hicap2 (recapped), driving SBL Speakers. My question is what would give me the best upgrade buying second hand say about £500.
I guess that its either the preamp or the CD player but would welcome suggestions. For the record I am about to turn 80 and so hearing is not quite what it was. My musical tastes are Opera, Orchestral & Chamber music.
in case its of interest I do have a second system in my study which comprises CD 3.5, NAC 72, NAP180, 2xHicaps (Green), driving Lowther Acousta (Horn Loaded) Speakers.
This is your challenge, should you wish to accept it I’d be grateful.

I’m wondering what the CD4 might be. Certainly Naim have never made such a thing. You wrote that you have two Hicaps; presumably one is for the 72 and the other is for whatever the CD4 is.

I would look to get a NAC 82, then sell your 72 to help make up the difference.

Hi Terry,

I would consider servicing, although that would cost more than £500. Otherwise I would leave things as they are and spend any spare cash on more music.

IF you get an unbearable itch then I would think about adding some streaming to your system.



Sorry my mistake should read CD5

If your hearing is downsized, why do you want to upgrade ?
Personally I would sell all and buy an Atom or SN2/ Ndx second hand
Or eventually service all your boxes, but it will cost you some money .
Not sure the CD5 can still be serviced.

Serviced 72s come up somewhat often. I would consider buying one such 72 and selling yours as it would be cheaper than having it serviced, unless yours is in mint condition (or you’re particularly attached to that unit).

You can’t beat a serviced 72 for 500 quid or anywhere close to it. When I had one it replaced a 282 with no apparent loss.

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Fully agree with @MrUnderhill - get everything serviced, as a first move. For Olive kit, Naim recommend servicing every 8 to 10 years. Priority would be 250, then HiCap, then 72.

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If you are committed to CD replay I would go for a CD player upgrade. Your amp is plenty good enough to show off the abilities of a better source, assuming it is properly set up and doesn’t need a recap, in which case that should be your priority.

An hicappped cd5 is quite something especially in the context of classical music.

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There are a few of us that would not swap a 72 for an 82. I still have mine from 1992 and is a particularly sweet sounding one. It took a 52 to eventually unseat it. I used it when my 552 went back to the factory for a service and DR’ing a while back. Just simply a stunning little preamp.

As a few have suggested a service might be good but expensive. I’d maybe look at the Bluesound Node for more music?

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Thanks for the advice my kit was serviced by Naim about 10 years ago and the HICAP2’s a couple of years ago.
It’s good to know that my equipment still appears to hold up, I’ll maybe look at upgrading the CD5, is there much difference between the two upgraded versions of the CD5 and can they used with my HICAP2’s?
Thanks for all of the responses, I really appreciate it.

I had a CD5x for a few years, it turned me back onto Nam after a Nait 5 put me off. I used a flatcap 2x with it but later bought a CDX2. This was a bit two edged as the CDX2 was very sensitive to what it sat on whereas the CD5x wasn’t. On my old steel rack the 5x had been quite happy, the CDX2 wasn’t and didn’t really earn its place until it was sat on Fraim and even then never quite convinced with classical music when feeding a 282/250-2 based system. The 5x was benefitted rather well from a full Naim powerline, feeding the player rather than the power supply, or anything else in the system for that matter, something which surprised me at the time but it seems those digital circuits need all the help they can get.

Hi All
I expect that you are all waiting with bated breath for my response!
I’m afraid the the advice to do nothing because of my “downgraded”hearing capacity fell fell on, well deaf ears. I was really pleased to hear that the 72 was still “highly” regarded and eventually I have kept my existing kit and upgraded my CD player to a CD5XS which means that my CD5 now replaces the CD 3.5 in my study this in turn passes on to my son.
The difference this upgrade (the CD5XS) has made to my system is quite astounding, everything seems to be so much tighter, dynamic range improvement is evident, particularly in percussion. The improved transient response adds a dramatic quality that wasn’t there before.
This simple upgrade in equipment has upgraded my entire collection of music and I get great pleasure in anticipating an appreciatio of what will be revealed as I work my way through it.
Many thanks to all of you who came to my assistance, it gave me a real basis for me to come to a decision.


I hope you didn’t took my advice badly, because personally if I had a hearing loss I would not consider an upgrade. But it’s me.
Glad you followed your own desire and that it worked for you.

Not at all, my hearing is only slightly impaired and I just turn the volume up a bit to compensate.
And, as I said, this upgrade also upgrades all my existing music collection, which is a good way of evaluating system tweaks I guess.
Thanks for taking the trouble to respond.

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