USB flash drive size limitation for Muso Qb Gen 1 or Naim NDS?

Is there a max size? ifso, what is it. i have just bought a 512GB one and having some annoying problems of some albums being ‘cleared’ – if that makes any sense at all??


Hi Ken, I don’t think there is any absolute limit on size, although it may take a bit longer to scan a large number of files.
Not sure what exactly you mean by ‘cleared’?

i suspect there may be a problem with compatibility of file format on the USB with Naim units i tried. This 512GB stick was formatted exFAT file format – and this wasnt recognized by the NDS nor Muso. I couldnt convert this to Fat32 with Windows 10. So i got hold some 3rd party utility ‘Rufus’ that seemed to format to Fat32 OK. Then i copied a few albums to this stick just to test with NDS to start with. I then scrolled down the albums list – all seemed OK – till i had scrolled a few – then all of a sudden NDS reporting that the album was empty! Removed the stick, examined with windows file explorer – that is when i noticed album folders after a certain number were emptied. I really doubt the NDS did this — but i did check while copying that the folders were NOT empty – so i am bit puzzled.

It could just be the the 3rd part formatter that i used is a bit unreliable. i will get a Fat32 one to avoid all this messing about. Thanks for response Chris.

exFat seems not supported by the NDS according to its manual, it needs fat or fat32.
(exFat support was added in an update for the new streamers with firmware version 3.4 IIRC, but I suppose not for the old streamers)

Windows is unable to format fat32 with this size, as you found, so third-party utilities are indeed necessary.

However, the formatting of a drive happens at a much lower level than the creation and deletion of folders and files, and I doubt that a formatting tool can in any way be responsible for files disappearing from within folders (read: I can’t even imagine a mechanism for how this would be possible)

Unfortunately, I have no idea what could have caused the disappearance, but if the files were there before you inserted the stick into the NDS, the NDS does seem like the most likely culprit. On the other hand, it would probably have happened to someone else before, so it seems definitely very odd

thanks @Suedkiez, i suspect the file type issue is the source of all these issues – i also suspect neither NDS nor Muso Qb can handle anything other than Fat32.

thanks guys – i will stop wasting time with all this messing about now…

Aomei partition assistant is what you need.

But there is another issue which is that the old streamers like NDS don’t really like USB drives. They can work ok with smaller USB sticks if they are formatted in FAT32 but I have found it very hit and miss, mostly miss, with actually HDD drives plugged into a USB port.

I don’t know whether muso 1st generation are ok with such drives, but they may be.

In any case I don’t think that either streamer would actually delete any files on whatever drive.

can any of you guys recommend a specific large (512Gb or more)
USB stick that can be formatted fat32 and works well with Muso Qb 1 (and also NDS)??

I’ve never had a problem getting any USB stick to work in a Naim streamer. They have generally worked straight out of the box without being reformatted. Having said that, the 1st gen streamers were never really designed to work with large libraries on USB drives, and even if you can get it to work reliably you will be stuck with a very basic folder browsing option only.

Lucky you Chris!! I guess its because i am using Muso Qb Gen 1 and NDS-- which i suppose are a bit ‘old hat’???

I never had a problem with them in 1st gen streamers. Still, you are right that they are ‘old hat’ in that they were intended primarily to run an iPod, and certainly not to cope with a large library.

someone mentioned the idea of having a internetless LAN with a switch to which a suitable NAS is connected and then my Muso QB would hopefully access the music files on the NAS. I guess i would also need a router to provide Wifi. In fact, perhaps only a suitable router is required – with the NAS connected to that.

anyone done similar please share your experience and correct my imprecise description above.


Most routers can run a LAN without an internet connection if you don’t need one. I used to do this with an Apple Airport Extreme which worked well. Ethernet for a NAS/server, WiFi for the Naim app, and either of those for the streamer, although 1st gen streamers are generally better on Ethernet.

The biggest issue with running a WiFi system with no internet connection is that your phone will connect to it, which means that you can use the Naim app to control the NDS etc, but you have to disconnect from the WiFi to do anything non-Naim with your phone that needs an internet connection, which the phone normally gets via mobile data.

Today i bought a 128GB USB flash drive today from the dept store that is “never knowingly undersold”. i tried to ascertain whether it was FAT32 or other – but i could tell the assistant had absolutely no idea what i was on about.

So far, this one is behaving extremely well. Recorded a few albums tested on NDS and Musu-Qb and all seems well. With the other Anilley USB Flash Drive 512GB, i kept getting loads of sector errors while copying music files to it – a total nuisance.


Hmmm… thanks for the warning…!

With Flash drives, SD cards etc… it pays to buy a well known brand from a reputable seller as there are so many fakes and bogus cards and devices out there. While they may well show a large capacity on a cursory check they are usually much smaller in reality and highly error prone.

As ever, if the price looks too good to be true, it invariably is…

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I’ve never had a problem with a USB stick. I buy them from an online retailer called mymemory who seem to be about as cheap as anyone, and I just buy the cheapest stick they have for the capacity I want. That usually turns out to be their own brand or Integral.
More expensive sticks may give faster read and write speeds, but that’s not really an issue for audio playback.

Yes, I’ve bought plenty of SD cards and the like from Mymemory - all have been perfectly fine (their own brand and Integral are usually, but not always cheapest), so certainly a reputable seller.

I used to use a Samsung 1TB SSD drive, i even thought it sounded better.
It wasnt just the capacity but i found the thumb drives always RED HOT all the time.