Using DAC of NDX2 and CDX2 as a transport

hi everybody, I recently bought a second hand NDX2 to replace ND5 XS2.

since I own a CDX2 + XPSDR, too, my idea is to move the XPSDR to NDX2 and then use the digital output of the first feeding into the NDX2 digital input (thus using the latter as a DAC…).

your comments will be appreciated.


I’d simply question why you’d want a CD player when you have an NDX2.

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Yes you can do this if your CDX2 has a digital out. If you move the XPS to the NDX2, it benefits for streaming as well, and generally it certainly makes more sense to have the XPS on the NDX2 in this scenario.

For CD sound it then becomes a question of whether you prefer the DAC in the CDX2 or the one in the NDX2.

Like HH wrote, you may want to consider ripping the CDs, playing the rips with the NDX2, and selling the CDX2 as long as it still works.

Your NDX2 will certainly benefit from the XPS so this may well be a good move overall. Whether ot not you like the CDX2 as much in digital out mode is another matter, you may find that it loses some of its character, or even that you prefer to use it direct into your preamp.
It’s easy enough to experiment and see which you prefer, assuming that your CDX2 has a switchable SPDIF out option. I believe the earlier ones didn’t, although it could be added by Naim as a non-switchable option.

thanks all for the answer.

assuming that that moving the XPSDR to NDX2 is the best choice, the reason I’m not selling the CDX2 yet are three, in particular:

  1. I own some CDs not available in streaming (not many but enough…)

  2. at the moment I’m not going to rip all my CDs

  3. I like the “physical CD”

I also know that ripped CDs will sound better via NDX2 than played on CDX2; thus, ripping them all will be an option in future.

as correctly wrote Chris, I have to experiment CDX2 in digital out mode, because it’s absolutely true, in my modest opinion, that the latter has its own “character” as I could realize comparing it to the ND5 XS2 before and now to NDX2.

finally, suggestions for a good and not expensive BNC/BNC digital cable will be apreciated! :wink:



That probably eliminates the Naim DC1, then… At £349 new… :astonished:

You can pick up a DC1 for far less lightly used.

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When I ran a CD5XS into nDAC, I tried a number of digital cables and ended up with a DC1. TBH, I’m not sure I could hear a big difference between those I tried, so my reasoning was that Naim used the DC1 in their development of the nDAC and presumably knew what they were doing. If a DC1 were available within budget, that’s what I would go for.


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I like the Chord Company Signature Super ARAY between my CD transport ans nDAC.
It bested the DC1, Canare, Synergistic Research and Black Cat Cable.

The character of the CDX2 will be within the DAC and analogue output sections of the player. All of these sections will be bypassed when using the digital output.

Hi, I use a design a cable BNC-BNC between CD5XS and nDAC. It is well made and very cost effective. Given you may start to stream more In the future, it would make sense not to go mad with ‘special’ cable.
Good luck!

I’ve used a Naim DC1 in various systems, and it worked well but it’s longer than I need and rather stiff, so it sits jammed hard against the wall behind the rack and looks ridiculous. I’m now using a Mark Grant HDX1, and I’ve previously used a Gotham cable, both of which work well for a lot less money.


Another vote for the HDX1. Well made and excellent VFM.


of course, probably I didn’t explained correctly; that’s why I want to “experiment” CDX2 in digital out mode compared to itself in analogue mode.

I fired my cd5xs2 into my ndx2 and xpsdr combo via a naim dc1 for a good year before i worked out the ripped cds were better sounding from my nas/asset.
Yes, i liked the physical bit with a cd, but i get that experience from my michell gyro se.
Sold the cdp for good money, boxed the cds and placed them in the loft. Just two inputs to my 282 now. Couldnt be happier.

I liked using my CD5XS2 firing into my nDAC but it didn’t get used enough. I just used it for playing new, unripped, CDs which was clearly as waste and I sold it for decent money.

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thanks everybody for answers and suggestions.

the path is clear; now it’s up to me how to walk on it. :wink:


We are attached to our CDs, we collected them for 40 years and traveled the world with them.

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You don’t have to get rid of them. Ripping is not a destructive process :wink:


hi Crhis, I see that the HDX1 basically is a Canare digital coaxial cable. if positive, I should have found pretty the same cable in France with no import taxes&duties.