12yr old NAP500 back to the Mothership for service and DR upgrade. Hello 300s. Hellllooo 500DR!

Richieroo posted:

Just played the 'why not' track....wow...it does sound fantastic - it goes to show just how good 16/44 is when care has been taken through the recording/mastering chain - this blows away allot of my 192 files. This CD is a must.....thanks for the recommend.

@ SBILOTTA & RICHIEROO

This is a fantastic hobby we share, how to upgrade, how to compare and analyze, how to inquire, all very interesting and at times darn right entertaining.

 But never lose focus of the Why!

Enjoy your Music!

 

pjb_4465 posted:

Swapping my 2 x NAP250DR and moving on to a 2014 nap500. Can anyone here (Naim ?) tell me what the current lead time on getting the DR done is ?...

Hi pjb

My dealer booked me in last week and was told today its about mid -march,so its about 5 to 6 weeks.

ayap1

Rich? Do you think I should start a separate thread on the whole story and findings in due course?  The amp is away and I didn't mess around with my new-to-me bare NAP500 (after all its rather heavy to shove in the rack) sending it straight off for DR and PS service....Philip

Richieroo posted:

I agree - the std 500 is brilliant ..... but the 500dr is fantastic .... be prepared for a long bed in period mines approaching 3 months and is still gradually improving ........ playing 24/7.  I find DR upgraded 500 runs very much much cooler.....

Depending on if you also get the supply serviced along with the DR you may find, as I did, that it continues to improve even at 6 months. At the six month point I noticed a sudden increase in low-bass performance and general clarity everywhere. I waited a couple of weeks to before really commenting here, but other visitors also noticed it and it was not all in my mind as some would love to have it. 

It seems that as the low-end gets clearer it improves everything else too. Low-bass combinations of bass guitar and drums are now far better defined and the interplay between them is makes more sense and reveals rather playful lines that can skip-along that were not very clear before. You also get the more of the well-known 'bass-lead' effect but in the low-bass, where the music is led by the bass and it is so much more engaging and hypnotic; the extra bass weight and quality has changed the perceived timing - for me anyway.

The reason I mention the power supply part of the service possibly being the main part in this is that I had a demo of a new DR with the new PS and swapping the PS for an older one did the same sort of things to bass weight and authority.

So at 3 months you probably are nowhere near their full potential.

I'm very pleasantly amazed with how much performance lift the DR update for the 500 Amp did. Each component in the chain obviously plays a part in the end-result - and I've already found that components that contain gain-stages have more impact than those that do not, but the Power Amp not only has gain but must deliver current and control a complex load - and it is clear to me that there was a lot more to have in performance from this than I formally realised.

Well done Naim.

DB.

Darke Bear posted:
Richieroo posted:

I agree - the std 500 is brilliant ..... but the 500dr is fantastic .... be prepared for a long bed in period mines approaching 3 months and is still gradually improving ........ playing 24/7.  I find DR upgraded 500 runs very much much cooler.....

Depending on if you also get the supply serviced along with the DR you may find, as I did, that it continues to improve even at 6 months. At the six month point I noticed a sudden increase in low-bass performance and general clarity everywhere. I waited a couple of weeks to before really commenting here, but other visitors also noticed it and it was not all in my mind as some would love to have it. 

It seems that as the low-end gets clearer it improves everything else too. Low-bass combinations of bass guitar and drums are now far better defined and the interplay between them is makes more sense and reveals rather playful lines that can skip-along that were not very clear before. You also get the more of the well-known 'bass-lead' effect but in the low-bass, where the music is led by the bass and it is so much more engaging and hypnotic; the extra bass weight and quality has changed the perceived timing - for me anyway.

The reason I mention the power supply part of the service possibly being the main part in this is that I had a demo of a new DR with the new PS and swapping the PS for an older one did the same sort of things to bass weight and authority.

So at 3 months you probably are nowhere near their full potential.

I'm very pleasantly amazed with how much performance lift the DR update for the 500 Amp did. Each component in the chain obviously plays a part in the end-result - and I've already found that components that contain gain-stages have more impact than those that do not, but the Power Amp not only has gain but must deliver current and control a complex load - and it is clear to me that there was a lot more to have in performance from this than I formally realised.

Well done Naim.

DB.

An excellent descriptive post. Soooo excited in wait to get mine back Dr'd/serviced. 

Hi Darker.....yes I am discovering the base is gradually getting stronger and more defined....I am looking forward to the 6 month mark..... the dealer did warn me that the run in period was painfully long....

Regards the base.... you are right it is very tangible..... I had to alter my speaker positioning.....

I a just reporting in ..... well my 500dr is around 3.5 months....in. I had a good session with my system....and I have to say I am gob smacked by the 500. Album after album .... the difference over the 250dr ... is amazing tracks were brimming full of very emersive musical detail that simply was not there before...in some cases this made the whole experience quite different....instruments are kind of locked into a stable sonic landscape...that does not collapse when things really get going. Even playing old stuff... like an old favorite America Horse with no name.....instrumentation sounded fresh and captivating. Voices are laid into the mix very convincingly ... almost seeming quieter ...but full of acoustic character. Sade 'cherry pie' is a prime example....then you can go from this to bang upto date Ben Neill....the album Horizontal is a master piece .... the sonic landscape is incredible....again massively different to the 250dr. I bought my 500 sh....and  got it dr updated. I thought this extravagant ... and something I might regret.... but I can honestly say it is worth every penny.... what a fantastic product. Also respect to the 272 with 555ps what a great combination.

The 500DR is something very special. It says a lot that it delivers for you with the 272 Pre and for me with S1 Pre - this confirms my impression that this DR upgrade was a very significant for the power-amp. The DR obviously improved all of Naim's hierarchy of Amps that I have heard so far. I've heard the 250DR taken into a very special performance league for a relatively small single-box power-amp, then the 300 taken to an amazing performance that in many areas was better than the old 500 - but the 500DR is very special. The only amp I've heard better was the S1 Monoblock Amps that are in a different financial league for me if I want to remain Active.

Speaking of Active, then I can say the 500DR will not disappoint! Anyone that has not had their Active system DR-updated is missing an incredible musical experience.

But the fact it is working so well and delivering with the 272 Pre tells me that the Power Amp is a critical component in any HiFi system. From the day many decades ago I heard the first NAP160 comprehensively obliterate a nominally more powerful Quad amp that was then considered a reference, I have realised Naim know how to make power amps. They have taken their craft to a new level with the DR-update and the new amp makes the old one sound so wrong! The upgrade is far larger than the 552 DR upgrade I had when that was my Pre - by comparison that was subtle!

But for me in my system the full fruit of the DR upgrade really emerged properly after the 6 month point of run-in. I'm now at month 7 and it is still taking-off into hyperspace improving even more.

DB.

Hi Richieroo,

I saw in your profile that your room is tiny, I also have a 10x12 feet room and currently enjoy a SN2 with Hicap DR with Neat Motive SX2 speakers. I am thinking of upgrading in the future to separates and I wanted to know if having a powerful amp like the Nap 500DR in a such a small room may restrict some aspects of its performance. I read your posts about  how it improved many things vs  the 250DR. I am not after more power as my SN2 rarely goes beyond 10 O'clock but I want a wider and deeper sound stage with more micro dynamics especially at low volume for late night listening. I am glad that the Nap 500DR is working nicely for you in your room.

MOussa

Hi Moussa don't worry about the power of the amp.... it's not really about that ....  this amp has huge amounts of finesse .... and a very very good sound stage that does not collapse with musical intensity and dynamics. The amp has got a very good grip of the speakers....I was immediately aware of its qualities even from a very low volume. It would be fine in your room .... The thing is the 250dr is a fine amp ... and when you have it you think how can this get better .... you realise as soon as you connect the 500. I originally got it sh and it was 16 years old...non dr ..... this still  completely blew the fresh 250dr away .... so if you can get one take the opportunity ... with me I was so close to getting a 300 ... and then the 500 opportunity came up .... I am glad ... I did this now it saved that inevitable upgrade. Now I am aware my source is the weak link .... but hey its making great music.

Richieroo posted:

Hi Moussa don't worry about the power of the amp.... it's not really about that ....  this amp has huge amounts of finesse .... and a very very good sound stage that does not collapse with musical intensity and dynamics. The amp has got a very good grip of the speakers....I was immediately aware of its qualities even from a very low volume. It would be fine in your room .... The thing is the 250dr is a fine amp ... and when you have it you think how can this get better .... you realise as soon as you connect the 500. I originally got it sh and it was 16 years old...non dr ..... this still  completely blew the fresh 250dr away .... so if you can get one take the opportunity ... with me I was so close to getting a 300 ... and then the 500 opportunity came up .... I am glad ... I did this now it saved that inevitable upgrade. Now I am aware my source is the weak link .... but hey its making great music.

Yes Finesse! That's the word I was looking for, thanks for mentioning it. I think I will start first with the preamp and then the amp

Hi all,

Just to add that tonight i will pack away 500 amp & PSU for service/DR Upgrade. Just a wee bit excited!!

Just to add that pre DR upgrade my system is sounding rather nice this evening.

Just one question that has passed me by, do i send any cables back? 

No need to send cables back - unless you want them serviced too!

I did send mine back, as one of the Burndies (or my set of six) was loose and wanted them all the same, so Naim did that.

You will not regret the 500 DR update. Run-in for a couple of weeks will probably annoy, but it all gets a lot better by week 3 and then goes into turbo improvement at the 6-month point.

DB.

Darke Bear posted:

No need to send cables back - unless you want them serviced too!

I did send mine back, as one of the Burndies (or my set of six) was loose and wanted them all the same, so Naim did that.

You will not regret the 500 DR update. Run-in for a couple of weeks will probably annoy, but it all gets a lot better by week 3 and then goes into turbo improvement at the 6-month point.

DB.

Thanks DB. 

Yes, really looking forward to this upgrade. All this waiting around with Naim...they better hurry up....I'm getting old...not deaf!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I included the pair of burndies plus a little note to mothership that on one end of a burndy, the sheath had worked loose from the clip (though I tried stuffing it back in) and they came back all perfect. Further, Naim will change backplate (now with "DR" ) and I'm sure they changed all the sockets (don't quite me) or at least cleaned the contacts as on close inspection the contacts were all spangly clean! My 500 is now just over 3m back from mothership and the last 3wks have seen (heard) them progress noticeably further! Yay!

..I love my music too and I am really not sure if I could go through with 500 DR upgrade if no amp in the house. My personal  route was buy an old 500 and immediately upgrade without even listening to it. This was/is upgrade from 250DR - so obviously holding on to 2 x 250DR while 500 away

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Richard SellicksrschMoussa
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