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Life after Naim

Discussion in 'audio' started by cayorob, Nov 7, 2021.

  1. cayorob

    cayorob Member

    Given the recent Naim price hikes interested to know who owned Naim and has since moved onto other manufacturers. I’ve had a Nait XS for 12 years and am looking at alternatives due to its age. Quite frankly I love it, so had looked at a supernait as a replacement, anything higher up the Naim chain is out of my reach so just wondered where others may have gone.
  2. roach

    roach pfm Member

    Used to have Nait 3 then 72 Hi 140 back in the day. Now got a Rega Elex r that I really like but am thinking of trying a Rega Aethos next.
  3. jobseeker

    jobseeker pfm Member

    I had a Superuniti that was really good for a one box system. I moved to a Mytek Brooklyn Bridge / Brooklyn amp combo with the same footprint.although now I’m in the process of tweaking again. I’ve gone a bit retro an have a Pathos Classic One Mk III integrated. The Rega Aethos was on my list though.I’m still mulling over the streaming and DAC side of things. ND5 XS2 is under consideration though. I’ve also changed speakers from Boenicke W5 SE to Audio Physic Tempo 35.
  4. mega lord

    mega lord Centre tapped

    I modded the bollox off my naim stuff. Still not satisfied I moved to Avondale and now NVA.
  5. johnacurtis

    johnacurtis pfm Member

    I too was a "Naimee", having gone through Nait 3, CD3.5, flat cap, 72/140, 202/200/napsc/hicap/CD5X/SN2/hicapDR/250DR and tried a 272.
    All very good, but should have stayed at the 72/140 level, as it got really expensive and knowing I could never afford the next step very easily!
    Now on Townshend Allegri + pre and Dynavector HX75, totally blown the Naim away with an actual tuneful and textured bass presentation, but all the speed and dynamics of the Naim sound.
    Currently also trying the EWA M50 amp, that is proving to be every bit as good as the Dynavector and maybe even better!?
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2021
    CJ14 likes this.
  6. Del monaco

    Del monaco Del Monaco

    I had a NAC82/NAP 180 for a couple of years. I sold on predominantly due to financial reasons. I must admit that at the time I
    wondered how much I would lose in the process. I needn’t have worried.All it did was open up a whole new world of audio and a move away from a more limited approach. I now have gear that exceeds the sound and function of the Naim I had for a fraction of the cost. I liked the Naim but it’s limitations became very apparent once I pursued other equally valid brands. A good move for me in the end.
    Snufkin and Mynamemynaim like this.
  7. Jono_13

    Jono_13 Duffer

    I have only really paddled in the shallow end of Naim, Nait 3, 155/152XS and now Atom, and to be honest they have served me well. Like @roach suggests Rega is probably on r of the best alternative brands to listen to.

    To go really off piste try Yamaha's latest offerings for something a bit different in a similar price range.
  8. gustav_errata

    gustav_errata pfm Member

    Similarly I'm just splashing around in the Naim kiddie pool with a NAP150/NAC122X. If I were to start saving for an amp upgrade, I'd be looking at EWA personally. Seems like the bang/buck ratio is orders of magnitude larger than Naim's.
    samz likes this.
  9. chris@panteg

    chris@panteg pfm Member

    I just switch between my XS2 and Puresound 2a3 for an alternative sound/presentation.
    Rather extravagant I guess but why not if I can.
    I enjoy listening to both.
  10. tiggers

    tiggers pfm Member

    I had a full Olive Naim active setup - CDS3/XPS2/52/SC/SNAXO2-4/SC/135x4/SL2s and loved it. However in the interests of aesthetics I decided I wanted a minimal number of boxes so sold it all and am in the middle of auditioning its replacement (no hurry as doing a huge house renovation right now). The new system will be a Rega ISIS partnered with ATC SCM40As but still deciding on a pre. Done a lot of auditioning and I am not going to be one of those who say I can get a better sound than the Naim for a lot less money because I can't, but I will get something as good for the same outlay and with a lot less boxes which was my goal. Still have a smaller Naim system in my other property (CD5X/202/200) and will not change that as it works brilliantly.
    Sloop John B and Ian Stafford like this.
  11. CJ14

    CJ14 Oh not again.

    I loved working for Naim such a professional company, and my design of the Nait 5i was well liked at the time. Not my sound, Bass was bit woolly for my taste, just one note. But still a well made beast.
    Maxbertola and gavreid like this.
  12. samz

    samz pfm Member

    I also had the Naim 150/122. When I wanted to upgrade I tried extensive home demo’s
    Elex R, Elicit R and ended up with a Heed Obelisk MK2 which I used for a few years.
    More recently I’ve been looking to upgrade and wanted to try an Exposure Amplifier so I bought a used 2010S from the classifieds on here.
    It’s the best amplifier I’ve had in my system. I’d like to try the new Exposure 3510 though.
    gustav_errata and Rushboy like this.
  13. RBrinsdon

    RBrinsdon pfm Member

    Had a full Naim system and moved it on to replace it with Teddy Pardo and it has been in use now for about 5 years with no regrets other than I wish I had kept my SL2's. The sound is different to Naim but in no way better or worse.

    In a box-reduction and downsizing plan, the TP gear will go next year and be replaced with Hegel possibly.
  14. JezmondTutu

    JezmondTutu pfm Member

    Active speakers are definitely one option. I bought Event Opals which I still love but have returned to Avondale again.
  15. uncl_nigel

    uncl_nigel pfm Member

    Nait 3 through 72>202>stripped-doan 72 plus 180>250 via Avondale (PS and power amp) and Teddy Pardo (PS)

    Canary valve pre then MFA Classic passive pre plus unreliable (but nice sounding until it went up in flames) valve power amp

    Aesthetix Calypso Eclipse, Rhea Signature and Atlas Signature (pre, phono, power)
  16. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    I moved on decades ago now. I very much liked the ‘80s Linn/Naim system and eventually got up to the full chrome bumper LP12/Naim/Isobarik rig, though most of my time was with shoebox amps and Kans etc. I’ve since gone back even further beyond where I started off as a teenager (Lenco, Quad, JR149s etc) and deep into the world of classic/vintage audio. I find this area far more rewarding as I very much enjoy collecting, restoring and refurbishing stuff. I’ve moved right away from opening brand new cardboard boxes and have no interest in that anymore (I’ve never followed the ‘flavour of the month’ thing). My various systems are a mix of vintage valves, UK studio classics and even US/French high-end, all painstakingly restored. I’ve actually got to the point where I have little if any interest in modern audio, it just doesn’t speak to me anymore somehow.
  17. Voyd the Voyd

    Voyd the Voyd Voyd lover

    Very similar path to myself Sir! Tried valves (Leak stereo 20) and even Class A (Sugden A20a) via long term loans from a close audio engineer friend. Both of those very good indeed but alas for me I ended up with two systems, one Avondale based the other customised/homage' NVA. I just love the little black boxes and home built cube style speakers.
    mega lord likes this.
  18. Gervais Cote

    Gervais Cote Predator

    I had/have :

    Nait 1
    32.5/Hicap/160 BD

    Now have an Exposure 21/4 dual mono unregulated and Treshold Fet Two/Musical Fidelity P170 on another set up.

    The two last kits beat Naim on some aspects but still not convinced on the way they take control of bass notes, seems to me nothing beats Naim on this although the Exposure 4 is a very close match.

    Moving away from Naim, I would tend to go to Exposure.
    Oneandtwo likes this.
  19. Mike Reed

    Mike Reed pfm Member

    That seems a good exemplar of the phrase 'damning with faint praise' :D

    I started at the bottom (42/110) and worked up through the C/B and 2 shades of Olive to 552/135s x4 plus 01, Superline and Headline over a generation +/- Gradually weaned off into NAD tuner, E.A.R. pre/power x 2 valves (built-in phono stages) plus Myryad can amp.

    Let's see now; 42/110, 32.5, 160, 250, 4 x 1353, 52 and 552 plus 3 x HiCaps and 2 x Supercaps plus ancillaries. Gosh ! Only 18 pieces? Surely must have missed one or two...... (excluding I/Cs, Snaics and Burndys, not to mention obsessions with dedicated mains or course)
    naimnut likes this.
  20. gavreid

    gavreid pfm Member

    I had Naim front ends CD5, CDX2, CDS3 and then nDac for quite a while with both Naim and Teddy Pardo P/Ss.

    On the amp side only chrome bumper 32.5,Hi,250 for a short time before going Avondale Grad1, APX2 and 260z and M130s. Nait3 in a second system for a few years too.

    I've not had a CD player as such for a decade now and these days I use Chord and RME dacs. As for amps I'm using Sugden Masterclass AA pre and stereo power amp now and Neat speakers.

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