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Which of the NAIM olive CD players is the best ?

Discussion in 'audio' started by louballoo, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. louballoo

    louballoo Banned

    I'm curious, which of the NAIM olive CD players is the best? Which one should I look out for on the 2nd hand market? I thought it might be nice to have one to round out my set of olive gear.

    From the frozen north western edge of the former empire,

  2. gary yeowell

    gary yeowell pfm Member

    Easy... CDS, then CDi/CDS2
  3. Gaius

    Gaius Trade: Stiletto by Tangerine

    Damn well beat me to it and absolutely right (as normal)!

    I'm playing Gomez through my CDi right now, blindingly good!


    PS: CD2 and CD3 ain't half bad, same 1541A chip set.

    Sweet 16.
  4. louballoo

    louballoo Banned

    Gary, can any of these be run off of standard NAIM power supplies? If so this will allow me to obtain a supply locally (maybe a teddy) and purchase the CD player from the PFM classifieds.

  5. gary yeowell

    gary yeowell pfm Member

    CDS2 can be run with a Teddy XPS no problem. CDi cannot be run with external PSU, but it sounds so good without one, why would you.... CDS on the other hand was made and designed with the CDPS in mind, and all the better for it, it has more caps in than a standard XPS/XPS2 and sounds better IMO. I think, but not certain, that the CDS can run from an XPS and therefore Teddy, but you may need a modified Burndy. Personally if you are going to bother with the CDS, the CDPS should be used with it. Also bear in mind that the CDS head unit is the part that may give you problems at some stage with the transport, and although you may be able to get it fixed, you may not. CDPS's are also cheaper than XPS too, but more expensive to service due to the extra caps. If it were me, i'd hunt for the best CDS/CDPS i could find or just use a CDI.
  6. JemHayward

    JemHayward pfm Member

    CDS - I didn't really like the CDS2
    I did like the CDS3 and the 555 not too bad, but sadly the SBT and MDAC blows them all away, which is a shame in some ways, as I do miss the engineering, a plastic box covered in fingerprints doesn't enhance the listening experience.
  7. gary yeowell

    gary yeowell pfm Member

    CDi is sweet Mark!
  8. gary yeowell

    gary yeowell pfm Member

    My Mac Mini/Dac V1 certainly doesn't blow my CDS3 away.
  9. gary yeowell

    gary yeowell pfm Member

    I think it says a lot for how good a CDS is when last week i saw one on that auction site with over 60 bids on it...... for a product that once the transport dies, may be resigned to the bin. Gotta be something in it
  10. JemHayward

    JemHayward pfm Member

    Best value CD player I ever owned. I bought mine from a chap who was emigrating to the US, and it was cheaper for him to sell me his 240v model and buy a new 110v CDS2, so I saved a huge amount on what was a virtually new CDS. I owned it for maybe 12 years or more, sold it on eBay to a dealer in HK who paid me about £600 less than I'd bought it for. It wasn't a paragon of reliability, but in those days Naim would fix things very cheaply, so maybe cost me £1000 for 12+ years of pleasure.
  11. Joe P

    Joe P certified Buffologist / mod


    Level-matched and tested blind all CD players sound the same. Pick up a $30 DVD player from the grocery store. Don't fall for that audiophile nonsense, man.

    From the frozen southwestern corner of Soviet Canuckistan, man.


    Independent suave dude and Trek aficionado
  12. gary yeowell

    gary yeowell pfm Member

    Hilarious :D:
  13. audio42

    audio42 Active Member

    Oh I think the cold has gotten to poor Joe, he's gone all crazy on us :)

    Completely agree with Gary's recommendation regarding the older players. I have a SBT into Naim DAC and it sounds quite good but for pure musicality, I still prefer my CDS3. The streaming is convenient, no doubt, and the DAC helps my TV sound much better. But there is just something magical with that CDS3. For me the 555 is just too expensive and finicky so I never bothered.

  14. MJS

    MJS Trade: Consultant at WH Audio

    The old CDS and CDi are easier to keep serviced than the newer players. Their lasers are good for decades and they rarely go wrong. Compare that to the obsolete and difficult to obtain transports in the newer ones.
  15. Norman Green

    Norman Green pfm Member

    I enjoy the CDX - with the XPS . The sound has that ‘live’ feel.

    It’s excellent for accurate portrayal of piano by, for example, Ronald Smith or Jerry Lee Lewis.

    Its flat response was shown in the Stereophile review.

    Excellent match for Super Elves,72,250 .

    The sound is warm or neutral or sometimes even a bit ‘edgy’ - reflecting the original recording.

    However, it is sensitive to the preamp : l once temporarily ‘upgraded’ to a more advanced preamp and the whole system became much more detailed and much harder to listen to.

    So, for me, it’s a case of keeping everything working together in a balanced way.

  16. Gaius

    Gaius Trade: Stiletto by Tangerine

    That is extremely good news Mark.
  17. Joe P

    Joe P certified Buffologist / mod


    Just Boob-a-looin' a thread as Boob-a-lou from the frozen, frigid Prairies is wont to do, foo'!

  18. Klyde

    Klyde pfm Member

    CDi is the cutest by far. CD3 is nice and simple and 'as it is'. I don't like multi-box thingies with separate power supplies and cables and plugs and stuff.
  19. Linn Naim

    Linn Naim pfm Member

    CD3.5 + Flatcap or Hicap

    Chris N
  20. maxflinn

    maxflinn Tulsi Gabbard 2020.

    Joe :D

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