552 obsession or stupidity

Bryce Curdy posted:

For the avoidance of any doubt, I do recognise that streaming had a substantial role in the withdrawl of the CD555, but equally I suspect Naim will release amplifiers using the Statement technology but at a less crazy price, and equally that they will release a reference streamer to companion the Statement.  I don't believe the 552 and 500 will be available 5 years from now.

Of course statement technology will and is already coming down to the other series. And these totally makes sense. Capatilizing on great technology. However I don't think the amplification will be removed so easily. At it's price point and with the upgrade to dr technology, the 552 and 500 will still have a place for a long time. For people who don't have statement funds but which want extreme quality in reproduction of music.

Wugged Woy posted:
The Strat (Fender) posted:
Hungryhalibut posted:

Complete bollocks. Holidays and meals out enrich one's life extraordinarily. Who wants to sit by themselves listening to music all the time? I'm always saying this, but a 552 won't change one's life. 

Crap   A 552 (in a matched system) is guaranteed to provide great music -so will most certainly "change your life"...............

Ahhh  but so does a NAC72  !   

So does a SN2 !!!!!    

The Strat (Fender) posted:
Innocent Bystander posted:

(I make no comment on, and have no wish to contemplate, the perfection or otherwise of your backside! )

Good!!

But to these ears WAV from a NDS/555 lacks the dynamics of the same track from a CDS3/555. Just my opinion of course.

And to complement Strat's comparison, I prefer my CD source (CDX2.2/XP5XS/nDAC/555PSDR) to a NDS/555PSDR too, and I've heard the latter a few times in optimal set-ups.

Over the years I've owned and enjoyed four Naim CD players (CD1, CDX2, CDS3, CD555), all were fine at their price point at the time but all had their failings and I can't see myself ever going back to a CD player, the technology is now well and truely redundant both in terms of sound quality and useability.

 

 

 

 

and you can be sure that you can see the correct album cover and read the booklet produced with the CD - not the wrong displayed data which seems to be designed to promote more sales and misses out much important information - nor will it disappear and be subsequently unavailable.

The Strat (Fender) posted:

Sound quality is a matter of opinion. 

As to usability - let me see now.  Put the CD in the drawer and press play or at most select the tracks I want to hear vs hours of ripping and tagging ensuring back ups. Really?

Rip cd once that's it. Automate back up. Simple. Now search for and play ripped cd in seconds using the app.

How I used to love searching for that CD amongst the thousand on the shelves.

Really ��

I'm with John on this. Pop the disc into UnitiServe on receipt, quick check to ensure all metadata present and correct. Place disc in loft, never to see light of day again. Should the Naim App fail to correctly i/d the album when you want to read about it, simply enter name into search bar, 100% success so far. As a bonus I can read these notes without the magnifying glass necessary for CD booklets! My Synology NAS automatically takes care of backups - simples.

As for sound quality - well, the streamed version does for me, and having conducted informal double blind tests on friends, it has proved indistinguishable from the disc version to them. 

All that said, no one is forced at gunpoint to listen to either version. Freedom of choice is a truly wonderful thing in a democratic society, eh?

Bert Schurink posted:
Bryce Curdy posted:

For the avoidance of any doubt, I do recognise that streaming had a substantial role in the withdrawl of the CD555, but equally I suspect Naim will release amplifiers using the Statement technology but at a less crazy price, and equally that they will release a reference streamer to companion the Statement.  I don't believe the 552 and 500 will be available 5 years from now.

Of course statement technology will and is already coming down to the other series. And these totally makes sense. Capitalizing on great technology.

{However, I don't think the amplification will be removed so easily}.

{At it's price point and with the upgrade to dr technology, the 552 and 500 will still have a place for a long time.}  

For people who don't have statement funds but which want extreme quality in reproduction of music.

There you go again Bert, just stop it!

That makes to much Sense! LOL!!!

I agree, the Baby Boomers within the Forum, will keep Naim's Marque Separates going for now.

But when we check out, the Digital Pre-Amp will be king!

What would Linn be, without the TT?

What would Naim be, without the Amp?

Allante93!

PS. But 10 years from now, Hmmmmm, don't want to think about that now!

Your money may be long, but life is short!

Enjoy The Moment!

 

Timo posted:

Certainly, CD players are a dinosaur technology -- but nothing wrong with dinosaurs... 

If CD is dinosaur technology, what kind of technology is a TT?  They both still sound superior than any streaming format I have heard. Go old school!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  

streaming options have saved the hifi shop and manufacturers from going down the pan  ,expensive cdp players are dissipearing too.  in the uk the large power amps  are finished  . naim can see that with a great line up for todays new customer.  I work with young people  and they are not interest in hifi at all so the market will decline.  hang on vinyl.  

 

nigelb posted:

Chaps, there is no argument here. Some prefer CD, others prefer to stream. It's all good and no one is right and no one is wrong.

BTW, I have applied for a job at the United Nations. Still waiting to hear.

Wasn't quite sure if you're serious, Nigel, or just promoting your mediation skills,  but if you are  serious I wish you good luck sir.

(PS - does the UN have a High End Audio delegation, I didn't realise?)

badlands posted:
Timo posted:

Certainly, CD players are a dinosaur technology -- but nothing wrong with dinosaurs... 

If CD is dinosaur technology, what kind of technology is a TT?  They both still sound superior than any streaming format I have heard. Go old school!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  

Old School? how about pre-1920s gramophone/phonograph discs/cylinders, where the signal hasn't been through a single electronic component?

I don't understand how anyone can think that vinyl is better than digital - except as a purely subjective matter, enjoying the clicks, pops, distortions and inherent problems for themselves.  Technically vinyl has far too many disadvantages - changes in the speed at which the vinyl passes the stylus as it moves from the outer edge to the inner sections, vinyl grain size (becoming more affective as the stylus approaches the centre), intrusion of adjacent grooves (I remember when playing Pink Floyd, for instance, hearing the next bit of the track in the preceding quiet bits), changing stylus alignment as the arm sweeps in towards the centre (which doesn't happen in the original cutting of the LP).  Changes over time as the LP wears.  So many things wrong with the medium.  Yes there are problems with digital, but they can generally be overcome, and are minor in comparison.  

Beachcomber posted:

I don't understand how anyone can think that vinyl is better than digital - except as a purely subjective matter, enjoying the clicks, pops, distortions and inherent problems for themselves.  Technically vinyl has far too many disadvantages - changes in the speed at which the vinyl passes the stylus as it moves from the outer edge to the inner sections, vinyl grain size (becoming more affective as the stylus approaches the centre), intrusion of adjacent grooves (I remember when playing Pink Floyd, for instance, hearing the next bit of the track in the preceding quiet bits), changing stylus alignment as the arm sweeps in towards the centre (which doesn't happen in the original cutting of the LP).  Changes over time as the LP wears.  So many things wrong with the medium.  Yes there are problems with digital, but they can generally be overcome, and are minor in comparison.  

It depends what you mean by 'better'. Technically, yes digital (done properly) is better than Vinyl. Subjectively it's a lot different. For me, digital now delivers what i want but i appreciate why someone else may find Vinyl does the same for them. Same with valves and transistors, boxes and panels.

It's all about the music in the end, whatever you choose to be your preferred playback mechanism 

Yes, of course, if you prefer the sound that vinyl produces then that's great - more power to your elbow.  But I often come across people saying that vinyl is closer to the true sound - how it should be heard.  I don't think this can be true.  It might be something that they like more than digital, but it is further from the 'truth' in so many ways.

Valves is different.  There are advantages and disadvantages to both valves and solid state - particularly with regard to the types of distortion they are each subject to (odd-order harmonics, for instance, instead of even-order harmonics which tend to be ignored by the ear/brain).  Hiss rather than hum.  But these are usually well controlled these days.

So yes, as I said in my post, I can understand a subjective preference.  But that is probably more from what someone is 'used to' or grew up with.  It would be interesting to know whether someone who had never heard vinyl would - on first hearing it - prefer it to digital.  Certainly it is subject to far more distortions and inaccuracies, though.

 

Beachcomber posted:

 

So yes, as I said in my post, I can understand a subjective preference.  But that is probably more from what someone is 'used to' or grew up with.  It would be interesting to know whether someone who had never heard vinyl would - on first hearing it - prefer it to digital.  

That's an interesting point. Musical enjoyment is an emotional thing so i suspect there is a lot more to it in the enjoyment of Vinyl. Deserves a thread of its own really. 

Ah - I was thinking of the hum in the audio that they can put out.  My 135s' power supplies hummed somewhat, but my current setup seems, mercifully, to be hum-free.  Long time since I heard a valve set-up, TBH, so I imagine that they have pretty much eliminated that - just as my current (NAP 500) seems to have almost completely eliminated hiss.

Cheers

Steve

Very valid points, and that would explain why manufacturers must adjust to the times.

Point and case: 

Where would Linn Audio be without the TT?

Over 4 decades of success, and the LP 12, is still a major player in the TT arena.

But then came those Silver Devils, The Digital CD.

Early on, I preferred my LP 12/K9. The CD was just to thin and harsh, for my ears.

But as time passed, the CD was refined, and Linn unleashed it's 20K reference CD Player.

The Analog TT

Vs

The Digital CDP

Same Argument that we are presently discussing, omitting Digital Streaming!

My Answer was both, my trusty LP 12, partnered with Linn's 2nd tier CDP (Ghenki).

At the end of the day, A manufacturer must adjust to the times!

Linn Audio:  1973 ~ LP 12

Fast forward 2008, a year after Naim Debuts its Reference CDP!

Linn Ceases it's Reference CDP:

"The CD player is dead. So says Linn Products, the high-end audio specialist based in Glasgow which for 20 years has been making .. CD players.

The reason:

{its audiophile customers have moved}

, with alacrity, to hard drive-based systems - its DS "streaming players" - that allow them to encode their entire CD collection in order to play any track at will"

Ok, getting a little long winded, but successful manufacturers like Linn & Naim must conform to there consumer base.

Focal/Naim is making the same Adjustments.

Out > Ovators, CD 555, XPS ... Baby Bommers

In > NDS, Muso, all in one, Nac 272, Nova...

The Millennial Age!

Sign of the times!

Allante93!

PS. JMHO & View of Todays Market Place!

Two major Factors

Cost & Convenience!

A New Paradigm 

TT, CDP, Streaming 

Depending on Music & Mood!

Just in case, anyone is interested in the source of information:


High-end audio maker Linn declares death of the CD player

The British maker of stuff for audiophiles says digital streaming is the way forward for its music products

 

Conclusion:

"The question is always, of course, whether you really can hear the difference. And that, of course is subjective. When you've spent nearly £2,000 on a piece of kit, you're probably going to be predisposed to think it sounds better. The reality, though, is that the majority of music these days is still listened to in compressed form, using headphones that are barely doing the job - yes, Apple's iPod. But Linn, still going strong after 27 years (and saying there are no job cuts to come from dropping CD manufacture), does seem to demonstrate that you can always make money at the top end."

Allante93!

PS. If I'm not mistaken, Linn no longer manufactures an analog pre-amp!

Allante93 posted:
PS. If I'm not mistaken, Linn no longer manufactures an analog pre-amp!

...and I auditioned it when still making my decision as to if I was doing the right thing purchasing the S1 Pre. I wondered if it could all be done differently to good effect than using a dedicated analogue Pre.

I purchased the S1 Pre.

I heard you can do things differently but it was not even close to what the 552 did let along the S1 Pre - a silly difference in performance.

People need to audition the different options and trust what what they hear.
The concept of a digital Pre I really like, but it has got to meet a certain minimum performance threshold before I can relax and enjoy music through it. Some devices really do not meet this minimum of not injecting their own qualities, distortions and noise onto the music in ways that horrified me to hear at the level of outlay being asked for.

But we all like different things so people must decide what works for them.

The 552 is a fine Pre that slaughters almost everything else apart from things costing a lot more.

DB.

Beachcomber posted:

It would be interesting to know whether someone who had never heard vinyl would - on first hearing it - prefer it to digital.  

me. (i feel i've been waiting for someone to pose this question but never knew it until now.)

i was 9 and just getting interested in music when CDs hit the mainstream. as Estelle Getty used to say on The Golden Girls, "picture it!" -- 1986 -- Phoenix, Arizona, USA -- your narrator was a kid with:

  • a CD of Peter Gabriel's So
  • nothing to lose
  • a dream
  • etc.
  • a belief that the recording industry would never have introduced another format unless it was superior to its predecessors.

but as Allante 93 may or may not have said upthread, "fast forward to 2001!" -- when my friend Paul played a copy of the Jam's Sound Affects on his Sony turntable.

i remember the moment vividly. i was all:

  • holy shit!
  • my Jam CD sounds like shit!
  • i will get a turntable!

 

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