ATC SCM40 stumbles the SN2?

Foxman50 posted:
Patu posted:

I've used SN2 to SCM40 for ~three years now. The combo works well but you do need HiCap DR or some other PSU for SN2 to make it work. I've only once tried the bare SN2 to SCM40 and the result was horrible. Loose bass and great loss of control in the sound. So consider this when auditioning. My room is around 20m2. I first used HiCap DR with mine but lately an aftermarket PSU. Slightly different results but both PSU's work well. Even though SN2 + PSU drives SCM40 surprisingly well, every now and then I do have this feeling that the speakers would benefit from beefier amp. I use Naim DAC + PSU as source and have thought about 272 + 250DR but I think 272 can't come even near the Naim DAC with sound quality. I've not done the comparison though but I did own NDX at one point. NDX lost with clear margin already. So that's why I'm sticking with Naim DAC + SN2 combo. More probable move might be the change of speakers or active ATC's but with active route there's still the problem of which Naim source + pre combo could I get without the need of winning in a lottery.

 

Foxman50 posted:
leni v posted:

Dont like the tri amp speaker conectors of the 40's,does atc have a good solution or are we supposed to strugle with all kind of f connections.

I have removed the horrid ATC binding posts and replaced with one set of quality WBT units, ie only one pair per speaker. The improvement is beyond what anyone would expect. For £150 and a couple of hours, which is totally reversible, is a no brainer.

Could you tell more about the process? I'm interested. I hate the three-way binding posts. I've made short cuts of NACA5 for jumpers and I connect the speaker cable to the middle posts. Sound quality differs when you connect the speaker cables to high or low posts, middle has the best balance (unsurprisingly). 

 

Patu

have a look at this thread, hopefully works, a couple of posts in i detail what i did and reasons why. Its really easy and easy to test.

http://forums.naimaudio.com/to...active-or-not?page=1

Regards

Thanks, I read your description. So if I understood correctly, you don’t need any other tools than a screwdriver and maybe pliers for the job? No soldering anywhere? I’m not much of a DIY guy. 

Patu posted:
Thanks, I read your description. So if I understood correctly, you don’t need any other tools than a screwdriver and maybe pliers for the job? No soldering anywhere? I’m not much of a DIY guy. 

Tools i used.

small wide nosed pliers

pozi screwdriver, philips would do

small pair of cutters, but pliers would do.

small terminal driver to hold the binding post while undoing and tightening retaining nut.

no soldering, but this would depend on the type of binding posts you purchase. I got the ones that require a small star driver. 

I had a thought that to do a really simple test pull off the shoes and tape all three direct to the speaker plug, so bypassing the binding posts completely. Hope that make sense.

Simon-in-Suffolk posted:

Ali, I agree with most of the others here... the SCM40 in its latest incarnation is a fantastic speaker and sounds superb  with a pair of them on the end of a NAP S1... if you have the space do try and listen some how. ATCs have great global following, but primarily through the music recording industry.. that may be a way of getting to hear them... rather than a ‘hifi’ retailer.

 if you have less space the 19s are peachy. One thing you get with ATC is a wonderful grin inducing transparency that is very dependent on the underlying electronics... it compliments Naim wonderfully if you like those clean transparent presentations that gets you closer to how the engineer mixed and mastered the recording.

Simon thanks for the feedback

if I may say : I’m very interested in the passion and feeling of the artist, hope ATC is good at this too ?

analogmusic posted:
SNIP

if I may say : I’m very interested in the passion and feeling of the artist, hope ATC is good at this too ?

Not IME (current SCM11s), but only you can decide if they 'do it' for you.

To my ears, they are clean, detailed, big sounding, play loud with ease etc., but they focus attention on the recording, rather than the music; I found them rather unengaging, and soon lost interest in the music.

YMMV.

Alba1320 posted:
analogmusic posted:
SNIP

if I may say : I’m very interested in the passion and feeling of the artist, hope ATC is good at this too ?

Not IME (current SCM11s), but only you can decide if they 'do it' for you.

To my ears, they are clean, detailed, big sounding, play loud with ease etc., but they focus attention on the recording, rather than the music; I found them rather unengaging, and soon lost interest in the music.

YMMV.

It purely depends on rest of the equipment chain. I find ATC's extremely resolving and true sounding, which means that they faithfully let through what you feed them. I also find it weird that someone earlier told that ATC's don't scale when going higher on Naim ladder. I only had to remove upgrade PSU to massively downscale them. I can only imagine what happens when going forward fron SN2 + PSU. I've never had problems with picking up small changes in my setup with ATC's. I've compared NDX to Naim DAC, different PSU's on Naim DAC and SN2, different interconnect cables and even did comparison between digital coaxial cables and had no problems hearing the differences. I come from PMC 20.23 small floorstanders. They were simply crushed by SCM40's. In PMC range 20.26/25.26 are closest match to SCM40 and cost 1,5-2 times more. PMC is easier to drive so you win there. 

From what I read the ATC SCM 40 need a smooth punchy amp with a bit of power to show its sound benefits.  However HiFi choice did a review of the entry level Simaudio Moon Amp 240i using the ATC SCM40 speakers.  The review was positive of the amp descibing it the 'Goldilocks of sound' as to the amp and system, but what confuses me is the out put of the amp is only 2 x 50 (8ohms). If that Moon Amp can drive successfully the ATC SCM40 I don't see why  the Naim Supernait 2 amp cannot drive satisfactorily the same speakers?

I have the actives (SCM 40A) and ATC SCA-2 preamp, so don’t need to worry about power amps or speaker cables etc.

However, if I had the passive version, I would speak to the experts...... ATC themselves.... as opposed to seeking forum members guidance. They could be mistaken 😄

If you really have concerns as to whether the power amp is appropriate for the speakers, why not simply check with your ATC dealer for advice or indeed email ATC direct.

Of course the actives will always be better than the passive version, for all sorts of reasons. In particular, each part of the built in amp pack is specifically tailored to each drive unit and ATC certainly know how to build studio control monitors 😄

Just take a look at who uses them (recording studios and music artists) .... there must be something in it 😄

Mr Frog posted:

I have the actives (SCM 40A) and ATC SCA-2 preamp, so don’t need to worry about power amps or speaker cables etc.

However, if I had the passive version, I would speak to the experts...... ATC themselves.... as opposed to seeking forum members guidance. They could be mistaken 😄

If you really have concerns as to whether the power amp is appropriate for the speakers, why not simply check with your ATC dealer for advice or indeed email ATC direct.

Of course the actives will always be better than the passive version, for all sorts of reasons. In particular, each part of the built in amp pack is specifically tailored to each drive unit and ATC certainly know how to build studio control monitors 😄

Just take a look at who uses them (recording studios and music artists) .... there must be something in it 😄

People on this forum are usually fond of Naim house sound. You won’t get that with all ATC setup. That’s why we’re wondering how well Naim amps or maybe Naim source + pre to active ATC’s work. And it’s a solid question since ATC’s are difficult load for any amplifier. Asking from ATC you’ll be told to get the active version or ATC amp to drive passives, obviously. And I’m sure this combo will sound fantastic but it might not be for everyone. Personally, Naim source + pre to ATC actives is what interests me most and would probably be the sweet spot between Naim house sound and all the best ATC qualities combined.

Innocent Bystander posted:

There have been several suggestions here that ATCs passive are a difficult load on an amp. Is that true? I ask because I’m sure I’ve read in other threads that they are not a difficult load.

 

Not according to the manufacturer:

"Flat impedance curve allowing easy load for amplifiers."

 

Mr Frog posted:

Of course the actives will always be better than the passive version, for all sorts of reasons. In particular, each part of the built in amp pack is specifically tailored to each drive unit and ATC certainly know how to build studio control monitors.

Mr Frog, I would wager you have never compared Active 40's against passive 40's driven by a suitable amp to make such a statement. 

Active 40's are amazing for the money , but I feel can be bettered by the passive 40's. but that's just my opinion after comparing them.

Muttonjef posted:

I now have the active 40’s but prior to that the passive’s combined with 272 & 250DR.

In my experience the 250DR worked exceptionally well with the passives and it’s a combination I would wholeheartedly recommend. 

 

So what made you move to actives if the Passives +NAP250 worked exceptionally well? Box count?

Foxman50 posted:
Mr Frog posted:

Of course the actives will always be better than the passive version, for all sorts of reasons. In particular, each part of the built in amp pack is specifically tailored to each drive unit and ATC certainly know how to build studio control monitors.

Mr Frog, I would wager you have never compared Active 40's against passive 40's driven by a suitable amp to make such a statement. 

Active 40's are amazing for the money , but I feel can be bettered by the passive 40's. but that's just my opinion after comparing them.

Any particular amp you regard as “suitable”? (Cost?)

And how about the 40s actively driven by three of those amps?

Alonso posted:
Muttonjef posted:

I now have the active 40’s but prior to that the passive’s combined with 272 & 250DR.

In my experience the 250DR worked exceptionally well with the passives and it’s a combination I would wholeheartedly recommend. 

 

So what made you move to actives if the Passives +NAP250 worked exceptionally well? Box count?

Box count wasn't a driver in the move but a welcome benefit.

When the actives were launched I went for a listen out of curiosity more than anything. However, once heard in direct comparison (40's + 272/250DR v's 40A's + 272) for me it was a no brainer. The 40A retained the sound I loved but just added so much more. Every aspect improved which is a significant feat considering how good the passives are. 

Ultimately my audition led to a complete re think and with the offer of an excellent trade in, I've ended up with the Chord Hugo TT feeding the 40A's. 

My move away from Naim in my main system is in no way a knock, but the 40A + TT combination is wonderful and compelling.

Innocent Bystander posted:
Foxman50 posted:
Mr Frog posted:

Of course the actives will always be better than the passive version, for all sorts of reasons. In particular, each part of the built in amp pack is specifically tailored to each drive unit and ATC certainly know how to build studio control monitors.

Mr Frog, I would wager you have never compared Active 40's against passive 40's driven by a suitable amp to make such a statement. 

Active 40's are amazing for the money , but I feel can be bettered by the passive 40's. but that's just my opinion after comparing them.

Any particular amp you regard as “suitable”? (Cost?)

And how about the 40s actively driven by three of those amps?

My particular amp is Vitus, but I have heard the 40's driven by many different amps and as you would expect the amp has a large impact on sound. 

Would that even be possible to change passives into actives with six amps. How interesting 

Romi posted:

..... but what confuses me is the out put of the amp is only 2 x 50 (8ohms). If that Moon Amp can drive successfully the ATC SCM40 I don't see why  the Naim Supernait 2 amp cannot drive satisfactorily the same speakers?

It does and it will.

What we're debating here is if the 4.0 V8 will make the most out of the chassis of the DB11 as opposed to the 4.3 or the 5.0. 

Everything in design is a compromise, EVERYTHING. The SU might have less power than the 250 but that does not mean the 250 brings a different set of compromises to the table, it would be naive (at best) to assume that the 250 or the 300 or the 500 do not bring different 'compromises' or trade offs (outside price of course) 

Foxman50 posted:

Would that even be possible to change passives into actives with six amps. How interesting 

 I don’t know. I rather assumed that at least the upper models would allow it, and in terms of production costs it would be simplest if the cabinets themselves were the same with decision to include crossover or not at the final stage, simply as needed to meet orders.

You  certainly can with many PMCs, the crossover being readily accessible and removeable with a simple rewiring job to connect the driver cables direct to the triple terminal pairs.

1. David price does not mention it but I'd be curious to know what amplification did David Price use when he wrote his HiFi Choice review (October 2014)

2. Of all the article, Price's comment below is the most relevant to this discussion

"One problem with this speaker is that it’s not particularly easy to drive. ATC says its impedance curve is flat, so the amplifier shouldn’t require Herculean reserves of current, but it sure does need watts! Quoted sensitivity is low for a big box – 85dB/1W/1m – which means over 60W is the order of the day. I try several solid-state amplifiers and all get hot and slightly bothered at very high volumes. This is in part because ATC has gone for an infinite baffle cabinet, which asks more from whatever is driving it."

Food for thought:

- The reviewer seems to disagree with the manufacturer or at least they might interpret 'herculean reserves' differently

- Also, Price claims that several amplifiers he tried got 'all hot and slightly bothered at very high volumes' Shall we assume that if we are the types that do not crank the volume dial past 10 o clock, then we won't feel we're 'underpowered'

But my favourite comment of all is

"Most buyers with this sort of money will not want something that tears into recordings in such a way" Which is sort of aligned with the comments of some forum members that dont see ATC loudspeakers as their cup of tea because they focus on the 'recording' (I read this as too revealing) and they do not make music sound 'pretty"

 

In 2015, I asked ATC about the amplification required for the SCM40...

"Why is it that the now discontinued SCM40 spec sheet recommends an amplifier within the 50 to 300 wpc range but the current SCM40 recommended an amplifier with power in the 75 to 300 watts range, when both have the same sensitivity? In other words, How come with the same sensitivity, the current SCM40 has a higher 'minimum power requirement?"

Previous SCM40 specs (from your webpage)

Drivers: HF 25mm Neodymium, Mid 75mm ATC Soft Dome, LF 164mm
Matched Response: ±0.5dB
Frequency Response (-6dB): 48Hz-22kHz
Dispersion: ±80° Coherent Horizontal, ±10° Coherent Vertical
Sensitivity: 85dB @ 1W @ 1metre
Max SPL: 112dB
Recommended Power Amplifier: 50 to 300 Watts
Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohm
Crossover Frequencies: 380Hz & 3.5kHz
Connectors: Binding Posts/4mm Plugs, tri-wire
Cabinet Dimensions (HxWxD): 965x230x315mm
Weight: 23.5kg

Current SCM40 specs

Drivers: HF ATC 25mm Neodymium, Mid 75mm ATC Soft Dome, LF ATC 164mm SC
Matched Response: ±0.5dB
Frequency Response (-6dB): 48Hz-22kHz
Dispersion: ±80° Coherent Horizontal, ±10° Coherent Vertical
Sensitivity: 85dB @ 1W @ 1metre
Max SPL: 112dB
Recommended Power Amplifier: 75 to 300 Watts
Nominal Impedance: 8 Ohm
Crossover Frequencies: 380Hz & 3.5kHz
Connectors: Binding Posts/4mm Plugs, tri-wire
Cabinet Dimensions (HxWxD): 980x265x300mm (inc. foot plinth 980x370x305, without spikes grill adds 34mm to depth)
Weight: 31kg

And ATC's response was, and I quote;

"The specification has changed as we decided the 50W recommendation was too low in order for customers to experience the SCM40 at their best. The spec for the speakers has not changed, they measure exactly the same. From experience, I think that the SCM40 would perform better with more power that's available from your Nait XS.  I don’t think moving up to the 80W Supernait is a worthwhile improvement."

 

 

:

- The reviewer seems to disagree with the manufacturer or at least they might interpret 'herculean reserves' differently

- Also, Price claims that several amplifiers he tried got 'all hot and slightly bothered at very high volumes' Shall we assume that if we are the types that do not crank the volume dial past 10 o clock, then we won't feel we're 'underpowered' 

 

 

 What matters in this context is that the power amp can deliver whatever power is needed on the peaks without losing linearity, or distorting excessively, or, crucially, clipping - and the position on the volume control is of itself no relevance or indication in this regard.

posted:
 But my favourite comment of all is

"Most buyers with this sort of money will not want something that tears into recordings in such a way. "

Which is sort of aligned with the comments of some forum members that dont see ATC loudspeakers as their cup of tea because they focus on the 'recording' (I read this as too revealing) and they do not make music sound 'pretty'  

Interestingly sweeping assumption by the reviewer, and it is clear that there is a good body of forum member who do seem to like what ATC speakers do, generally and SCM40 in particular.

Personally I want the whole system to present the music as recorded and no ‘massage‘ it, or impose a house sound, or emphasise/de-emphasise anything - but of course reality is that everything imposes something of itself, speakers more than most components, however attempts to minimise that are desirable, which is what ATC seeks to do.

Alonso posted:

1. David price does not mention it but I'd be curious to know what amplification did David Price use when he wrote his HiFi Choice review (October 2014)

2. Of all the article, Price's comment below is the most relevant to this discussion

"One problem with this speaker is that it’s not particularly easy to drive. ATC says its impedance curve is flat, so the amplifier shouldn’t require Herculean reserves of current, but it sure does need watts! Quoted sensitivity is low for a big box – 85dB/1W/1m – which means over 60W is the order of the day. I try several solid-state amplifiers and all get hot and slightly bothered at very high volumes. This is in part because ATC has gone for an infinite baffle cabinet, which asks more from whatever is driving it."

Food for thought:

- The reviewer seems to disagree with the manufacturer or at least they might interpret 'herculean reserves' differently

- Also, Price claims that several amplifiers he tried got 'all hot and slightly bothered at very high volumes' Shall we assume that if we are the types that do not crank the volume dial past 10 o clock, then we won't feel we're 'underpowered'

But my favourite comment of all is

"Most buyers with this sort of money will not want something that tears into recordings in such a way" Which is sort of aligned with the comments of some forum members that dont see ATC loudspeakers as their cup of tea because they focus on the 'recording' (I read this as too revealing) and they do not make music sound 'pretty"

 

As someone who has owned and lived with ATC 40’s and now 40A’s, I have to completely disagree with the below.

Of course this is only my opinion. This is incredibly subjective and only individuals can decide what is for them with a proper demo and time in their own system.

"Most buyers with this sort of money will not want something that tears into recordings in such a way" Which is sort of aligned with the comments of some forum members that dont see ATC loudspeakers as their cup of tea because they focus on the 'recording' (I read this as too revealing) and they do not make music sound 'pretty"

 

Alonso posted:

"The specification has changed as we decided the 50W recommendation was too low in order for customers to experience the SCM40 at their best. The spec for the speakers has not changed, they measure exactly the same. From experience, I think that the SCM40 would perform better with more power that's available from your Nait XS.  I don’t think moving up to the 80W Supernait is a worthwhile improvement."

I’m not sure that I understand this statement. They seem to be saying that more power is needed, but a more powerful amp won’t help 

ChrisSU posted:
Alonso posted:

"The specification has changed as we decided the 50W recommendation was too low in order for customers to experience the SCM40 at their best. The spec for the speakers has not changed, they measure exactly the same. From experience, I think that the SCM40 would perform better with more power that's available from your Nait XS.  I don’t think moving up to the 80W Supernait is a worthwhile improvement."

I’m not sure that I understand this statement. They seem to be saying that more power is needed, but a more powerful amp won’t help 

They're saying that more power is needed (than what my Nait XS could provide) but moving up to a SuperNait would not be enough! - Hence the 'worthwhile improvement' so yeah, it's an 'improvement' but not worth it... 

but then this is the comment from WHF  (Naim Supernait 2 on 31st January 2014)

"But in use, through a range of speakers including ATC’s SCM 50s, Monitor Audio’s PL300s and KEF LS50s, there wasn’t a moment when we thought it needed greater loudness, dynamics or punch"

and this is about the SCM50!

Alonso posted:
ChrisSU posted:
Alonso posted:

"The specification has changed as we decided the 50W recommendation was too low in order for customers to experience the SCM40 at their best. The spec for the speakers has not changed, they measure exactly the same. From experience, I think that the SCM40 would perform better with more power that's available from your Nait XS.  I don’t think moving up to the 80W Supernait is a worthwhile improvement."

I’m not sure that I understand this statement. They seem to be saying that more power is needed, but a more powerful amp won’t help 

They're saying that more power is needed (than what my Nait XS could provide) but moving up to a SuperNait would not be enough!

Maybe they are saying that 80w up from 50w, which is only about 2dB increased headroom, is enough of an increase to be worth the effort/cost.

Innocent Bystander posted:
Maybe they are saying that 80w up from 50w, which is only about 2dB increased headroom, is enough of an increase to be worth the effort/cost.

That's what they're saying. I just was not sure about the numbers...  (mind you, that comment about the SN was regarding the SN1, the SN2 was not out yet when the email exchange took place. I am not sure what was the improvement in power from the SN1 to the SN1 though.

Hungryhalibut posted:

All they are saying is that the extra power of the SN isn’t enough to make a worthwhile difference. It seems perfectly clear. 

This aligns with my experience, my SU (don't know how close the amp in the SU is to a SN2) had poor control over the bass at enthusiastic volume levels 55-58 'on the dial'. By introducing a 220W amplifier (on loan Musical Fidelity M6Si) the bass control improved noticeably.  

If I opt for the SCM40 I will be looking for a 'bigger' amplifier.

I am currently considering alternative speakers, before I jump in  

Lot of love here for the SCM40's. I listened to the SCM40's in a back-to-back comparison with the SCM19's. The SCM19's sounded tight and bouncy, exactly as you would expect from a sealed box loudspeaker. The bass from the SCM40's sounded looser and free'er, a quite different presentation. Not even the slightest hint of boom or overhang from the 19's in a room about 3.5 x 4.5m, very clean and precise in the bass, but not as weighty or extended as the 40's. The 40's seemed to be hinting at some room issues, although I asked if this was the case and was told they were working fine in that room.

I got a sense that the acoustic suspension in the 19 litre enclosure had a firm grip on the mid/bass unit, but the similar sized bass unit of the 40's, working into a 40 litre cabinet, wasn't being controlled to the same degree. Another factor that might be in play is that the 19's are the only speaker in the ATC Entry range that have a Super Linear bass driver from the higher product ranges. It's actually the same one as used in the Classic 20 and SCM20 Pro. A case of less ambitious but higher quality ingredients perhaps? Or, it could just have been a room issue. However, in conclusion, on that occasion, my preference was for the 19's.

Hungryhalibut posted:

All they are saying is that the extra power of the SN isn’t enough to make a worthwhile difference. It seems perfectly clear. 

Well OK, maybe I was being a bit thick, but it didn’t seem like a very well worded statement. Also, out of context, it wasn’t clear which versions they meant, 60 or 70 watt XS, and 70 or 80 watt Supernait. 

Muttonjef posted:
Alonso posted:
Muttonjef posted:

I now have the active 40’s but prior to that the passive’s combined with 272 & 250DR.

In my experience the 250DR worked exceptionally well with the passives and it’s a combination I would wholeheartedly recommend. 

 

So what made you move to actives if the Passives +NAP250 worked exceptionally well? Box count?

Box count wasn't a driver in the move but a welcome benefit.

When the actives were launched I went for a listen out of curiosity more than anything. However, once heard in direct comparison (40's + 272/250DR v's 40A's + 272) for me it was a no brainer. The 40A retained the sound I loved but just added so much more. Every aspect improved which is a significant feat considering how good the passives are. 

Ultimately my audition led to a complete re think and with the offer of an excellent trade in, I've ended up with the Chord Hugo TT feeding the 40A's. 

My move away from Naim in my main system is in no way a knock, but the 40A + TT combination is wonderful and compelling.

Muttonjef's experience exactly mirrors mine, but with different Naim & ATC models.  "The active version retained the sound I loved but just added so much more. Every aspect improved" ...is just what I heard.  So I ditched (sold) my NAP500 and bought the active 100's, retaining the 'Naim' music experience I love. As I've mentioned elsewhere, this 'Naim experience' isn't crreated in the amplifier as many believe, it's a function of the pre-amp, be it 272 or 552, which is acurately reproduced by the ATC active model(s) that we're talking about.

Innocent Bystander posted:

posted:
 But my favourite comment of all is

"Most buyers with this sort of money will not want something that tears into recordings in such a way. "

Which is sort of aligned with the comments of some forum members that dont see ATC loudspeakers as their cup of tea because they focus on the 'recording' (I read this as too revealing) and they do not make music sound 'pretty'  

Interestingly sweeping assumption by the reviewer, and it is clear that there is a good body of forum member who do seem to like what ATC speakers do, generally and SCM40 in particular.

Personally I want the whole system to present the music as recorded and no ‘massage‘ it, or impose a house sound, or emphasise/de-emphasise anything - but of course reality is that everything imposes something of itself, speakers more than most components, however attempts to minimise that are desirable, which is what ATC seeks to do.

Which is what drew me away from my B&W 802Ds and toward my ATC SCM100As. 

I occasionally miss the slight midrange forward presentation of the 802's, but that's only when SWMBO is shouting at the television in the background  (football - Wycombe Wanderers - something I don't undersand fully).

Alonso posted:
SNIP

"Most buyers with this sort of money will not want something that tears into recordings in such a way" Which is sort of aligned with the comments of some forum members that dont see ATC loudspeakers as their cup of tea because they focus on the 'recording' (I read this as too revealing) and they do not make music sound 'pretty"

 

In respect of my earlier comment (and I can only speak for myself), your reading is incorrect.

I found the SCM11s to be superficially revealing (like a lot of hi-fi equipment), but less revealing in musical terms (like a lot of hi-fi equipment), glossing over subtle (and sometimes not so subtle) rhythmic interplay, expression, emotion, and the other things that bring music to life, and without which, you have little more than pleasant/impressive sound - 'aural wallpaper', if you like.

I also happened to find them fairly easy on the ear, so, in my case at least, my dissatisfaction with them has nothing to do with them 'not making music sound pretty'.

As I said, YMMV.

ChrisSU posted:
Hungryhalibut posted:

All they are saying is that the extra power of the SN isn’t enough to make a worthwhile difference. It seems perfectly clear. 

Well OK, maybe I was being a bit thick, but it didn’t seem like a very well worded statement. Also, out of context, it wasn’t clear which versions they meant, 60 or 70 watt XS, and 70 or 80 watt Supernait. 

Very possibly they weren’t aware of different versions of each - anyway, In terms of power driving loudspeakers there isn’t a huge difference between these, even the widest jump 60w to 80w only being combination being just 1.2dB, and no difference 70 to 70, so in terms of consideration of available power ATC’s statement seems reasonable

ROOG posted:
Hungryhalibut posted:

All they are saying is that the extra power of the SN isn’t enough to make a worthwhile difference. It seems perfectly clear. 

This aligns with my experience, my SU (don't know how close the amp in the SU is to a SN2) had poor control over the bass at enthusiastic volume levels 55-58 'on the dial'. By introducing a 220W amplifier (on loan Musical Fidelity M6Si) the bass control improved noticeably.  

If I opt for the SCM40 I will be looking for a 'bigger' amplifier.

I am currently considering alternative speakers, before I jump in  

I used to have bass control issues with my SU too, but the SN2 should be better in that respect. For me, adding a 200 to the SU helped, despite its lower power rating, but what really cleaned up the bass was adding a 282. 

I've only done extensive side by side comparison with Spendor D7 and my SCM40's. I had D7 in home demo for ~two weeks and I was very close to buy them but changed my mind in the end. It's funny that in Hifichoice review, they also compare these with D7. I do have different opinion of the comparison though. In my system, it was the D7 which sounded super fast and agile compared to SCM40, which already is very fast speaker. D7 is clearly an easier load for the amp and it felt like SN2 had a walk in the park with them when with SCM40's it really has to work. I did get this impression that D7 digs even deeper into the recording than SCM40's, which is really impressive. Both speakers have exceptionally goof midrange. It's slightly more prominent with D7 while it sounds more natural with SCM40. What bothered me in the end was slight listening fatigue in long sessions. Over produced recordings were difficult to listen to with D7. Every now and then the sound got so edgy that I had to pause it. SCM40 has clearly more pleasant sound signature and it can even sound little dark and slouchy after D7. You also have to remember that SCM40 is much bigger speaker than D7.

Alonso posted:
Patu posted:

I've only done extensive side by side comparison with Spendor D7 and my SCM40's.....

Patu.... did you every try your SCM40 with anything more powerful than the SN2? - I apologise if you have answered this question already

No I haven't. Only SN2 with two different PSU's and without PSU. I have heard them with 282 + 250DR but it wasn't at my home so it's difficult to compare. Also the space was almost twice as big as my room. But I did like that setup a lot. Many times I've wondered if 250DR (300 is out of my budget) would clearly improve over SN2 but going that route would also mean new pre (this would also get too expensive) or source/pre (272) and I'm not too happy about either of these options. I don't want more boxes at this point and I seriously doubt 272's DAC section could match Naim DAC + PSU. I know NDX didn't.

At this point, if I'm gonna move to some direction, it will more probably be new speakers or then completely change my electronics to something else than Naim. Next thing I might try from Naim is NDX2. 

Patu posted:
Alonso posted:
Patu posted:

I've only done extensive side by side comparison with Spendor D7 and my SCM40's.....

Patu.... did you every try your SCM40 with anything more powerful than the SN2? - I apologise if you have answered this question already

No I haven't. Only SN2 with two different PSU's and without PSU. I have heard them with 282 + 250DR but it wasn't at my home so it's difficult to compare. Also the space was almost twice as big as my room. But I did like that setup a lot. Many times I've wondered if 250DR (300 is out of my budget) would clearly improve over SN2 but going that route would also mean new pre (this would also get too expensive) or source/pre (272) and I'm not too happy about either of these options. I don't want more boxes at this point and I seriously doubt 272's DAC section could match Naim DAC + PSU. I know NDX didn't.

At this point, if I'm gonna move to some direction, it will more probably be new speakers or then completely change my electronics to something else than Naim. Next thing I might try from Naim is NDX2. 

Thank you for your thorough reply Patu

i like your set up very much and it will probably be my next step (from ND5XS/NAIT XS/NEAT MOTIVE2), or at least something very similar to yours.

 Im my case, anything beyond a used SN2 or used NAP250 (non DR) is out of my budget. Obviously those choices carry different implications, both positive and negative; a SN2 would imply swapping my NAIT XS altogether and the NAP250 would mean using the Nait XS as a pre. 

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