Which IC Cable to Update?

My system consists of ND555/NAC 252/NAP 300 DR/Harbeth 30.2’s.
Sources are Tidal and NAS.
Cables are Super Lumina
Music taste is analog at moderate levels.
One of the SL’s became damaged and is off to be repaired. I intend to replace it with a C. Music. The question is which would be better:
Replace the one from the ND555 to the NAC 252 or the one from the 252 to the 300 DR? In other words, which would have the most positive effect?
Yeah I know, the best answer is replace them both but it’s not in my budget.

For the price of a Chord Music you could almost upgrade from 252 to 552. I’d do that, even if it means using the standard leads.


That’s a good point. I’d love to have a 552 but I don’t want another device that requires transit screws because I may not be the one who has to deal with it down the line.
I’m also acquiring the Music with some trades that (hopefully) require no out of pocket expense.

I think is debatable whether the Chord Music is an upgrade on SL. At the very least you need to try it.



If you have a good powerblock, I would put the Music from the wall to the powerblock. All your system will be enhanced.
The second position would be 555 dr. I recently bought a Sarum t ( Chord) on my 555 dr . Nice uplift.

I’d go for the one between streamer and 252, although both are superb.

Interested to know where you can swap a 252 and c. £4K for a 552, HH?

I´ve discussed this topic today with a Naim dealer and he clearly says no, you won´t get this kind of performance by upgrading your components as you will get with upgrading to exactly those cables. But at least you need to try it.

I would be absolutely astonished if adding Chord Music cables to a 252 made more of an improvement than moving to a 552. In fact, I’d suggest that the dealer is talking absolute twaddle.


I have an Ansuz D2 Power Cable from the wall to an Ansuz A2 Power Distributor. I once had Ansuz DTC level cables but downsized. I couldn’t sleep nights thinking about how much I’d spent for them.

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Since the applications requires two different configurations of cables and since I would have to buy both, I have to fly by the seat of my pants. I have no way to demo things. My dealer is half way across the country.

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Hmm, I would rather ask myself how big the improvement can still be in this class with swapping components. The changing technical parameters speak for a change that will more likely not be worlds apart.
In this respect it could well be that an individual and very well-fitting cable brings at least a similarly large change. But how each individual then evaluates the sound is a completely different story.

Yes, IC , I read quickly. I confound IC with AC with power…

So for IC, I agree with others : between streamer and pre.

You have to listen to the cable yourself - as always! For it’s so much room/system/taste-depending.
I would think Chord Music IC will make a difference in your system, but probably will not be able to show what it’s capable of.
Once had a Chord Music IC between Superline/Supercap and Pre and thought it sucked the life out of the music. So it went back to dealer. After upgrading speakers and going IC, XLR and speaker-cables with Chord Music (now even cables which are not to be discussed on this forum) they take the system to another level.
Then, a 552 is a huge step over a 252 - that’s not up for discussion to my ears.
Enjoy and let us know your findings!

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I have a bit of a confession to make. In order to make an apples to apples comparison I implied that I was currently using Super Lumina in both applications. I have recently replaced the SL between the streamer and preamp with an Ansuz A2 DIN/DIN. There was a significant improvement.

The A2 was a trade-in towards an Ansuz D2. The A2, D2 and a Music DIN/DIN were compared between an ND555 and a NAP 552. The D2 was chosen (at considerable cost) over the other two.

The A2 and Music went to my dealer where I traded an SL for the A2.

Meanwhile, the SL in my system between preamp and amp was damaged and is on the way to Montreal to be repaired. It will be a few weeks before I get it back. I’m currently using the standard cable (not too bad).

I’ve decided that I’d like to replace the SL with something else. Ansuz doesn’t currently make a DIN/XLR cable so that leaves the Music.

However, I’m a firm believer in source first (hence the ND555). So if the best option to improve the SQ of my system would be to replace the A2 with something better, then that’s what I’ll do.

Nigel, of course there are no absolutes here and generally I would agree with you. That said I was very surprised when I installed the SL ic between my CDS3 > 282. Whether it was the same level of improvements as say going from 282>252 or even 552 I have no idea but…?



I’ve ordered Chord Music DIN/XLR and Chord Music DIN/DIN to connect my ND555 to a NAP 300 DR. The DIN/XLR will arrive next week but it’ll take four weeks for the DIN/DIN.
I’m happy to be going back to Chord.


Congratulations. It appears that you are a big spender on premium cables. Both Chord Music DIN-XLR and DIN-DIN already cost more than my amps. I have the lower level Chord Signature TA DIN-XLR for my 282/250DR and Harbeth SHL5+ and it sounds marvelous. The Chord Sig TA replaced the standard Naim cables in my system.

Do update this thread once the cables are installed. I’m sure they would sound wonderful.

Yup, I have friends who are cable agnostics and think I’m crazy. Probably so.
I had thought about a Signature DIN to RCA to connect my preamp to my headphone amp. The Signature looks like the sweet spot in the Chord lineup.
Your system should sound great. I keep thinking I should have those speakers.

When I had a 300, I compared it to a 300DR and 500 (this was before the 500DR was available). The 300DR was a huge improvement over the 300, as you’d probably expect, but I wasn’t 100% convinced about the 500 being better than the 300DR in all areas- more gravitas, absolutely, but lacking eloquence.

At that point a set of Music Din XLRs were introduced into the mix and, in conjunction with the DR upgrade, I chose it in preference to the 500. It was a superb combination.

A 500DR did replace the 300DR a year or so later, after a home audition, as the DR upgrade, for me, transformed it. The transfer of the Music Din XLRs really added something special (which gets even better when unmentionable cables are added).

You’re in for a treat.

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