CDS3+XPS vs CDX2+XPS2

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August 6, 2008 8:15 AM

Hi again,

I have another question, where forum members surely can help. Of these two setups that I've put in the title, which sounds better:

CDS3+XPS or CDX2+XPS2

I know comparisons have been made between CDS3+XPS2 and CDX2+555PS, but how about the one I pose in this thread title?

Am I correct saying the associated equipment is a factor, e.g. more synergy with the CDX2 + NAC282...

I look forward to all your responses!

Jon
 
 
 
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August 6, 2008 4:28 PM

Essentially your question comes down to CDS3 vs CDX2 and there are plenty of threads asking about that......
 
 
 
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August 6, 2008 5:27 PM

That could be the key question, Svetty, but what is the point in there being a XPS2 if there is already an XPS??!

Jon
 
 
 
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August 6, 2008 6:11 PM

quote:
Currently: CDS3+XPS; Hiline; NAC282+Hicap2+NAPSC; NAP300; B&W805S; Audiophile Base frame; Grahams Hydra power lead.


Jon,

How about new speakers? At this point you need to swap your 805 for better speakers.
 
 
 
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August 6, 2008 6:58 PM

quote:
Originally posted by Consciousmess:
That could be the key question, Svetty, but what is the point in there being a XPS2 if there is already an XPS??!

Jon


The XPS2 is an improvement over the XPS, although for you I would wait until you can afford the 555psu.

In the meantime your Nac 282 is the bottleneck!

Regards

PB
 
 
 
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Garfield (Guest)
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August 6, 2008 8:31 PM

Hi Jon,

There is a view that the CDS range of CDPs have an analog presentation and the CDX range a digital type presentation. Leaving aside the power supply question, the core question is really which presentation is more to your taste - analog or digital?

BTW thank you for your kind words on your other thread.

KR

G
 
 
 
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Guido Fawkes
 
August 6, 2008 9:12 PM

quote:
There is a view that the CDS range of CDPs have an analog presentation and the CDX range a digital type presentation. Leaving aside the power supply question, the core question is really which presentation is more to your taste - analog or digital?


Not sure it is that easy - I know I had it explained to me countless times, but I can't classify musical presentation as analogue or digital. I can only say which I prefer in terms of getting me closer to the music. Of the CDPs I've heard long enough to form an opinion my rating would be (with the last being the best)

Shanling CDT-100
Yamaha CDR-HD1300 as a player (fantastic recorder)
Marantz CD63KI
Pioneer DV-747A
Rotel RB-960
Naim CD5
TEAC VRDS-10
Naim CD5i
Rega Apollo
Naim CD5i
Naim CD5X
Rega Saturn
Naim CD5X+Hi-Cap
Naim CDX2
Naim CDX2/XPS2
Naim CDX2/555PS
Naim CDS3/555PS
Naim CD555

Assuming that my list is accurate, I couldn't say I preferred a digital to analogue sound or vice versa. I just know that as I move down this list my perception is that my CDs get me closer to the music. The only caveat is that I can't really say the Saturn is better the CD5X - they are different, but I like both equally. The only CDP in the list that I think is dreadful is the first one - all of the others give good results - understatement - the last three give fantastic results.

Other people's rankings of the same units might well be nothing like mine - so the only way is to audition and let your ears decide.

My guess is that the Rega Saturn is the most analogue sounding CDP on my list, but it is not the one I'd take if I could choose any. The TEAC VRDS-10 is probably the most digital sounding CDP on my list, but it is not the one I'd take if I could choose any.

Digital - sounds quite unlike Rega TT
Analogue - sounds similar to Rega TT

My classification skills are sadly lacking I'm afraid.

ATB Rotf

BTW the first CDP on my list reminded me of the sound from an old TT I used to own and was glad to see the back of. Confused
 
 
 
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August 6, 2008 9:43 PM

quote:
CDS3+XPS or CDX2+XPS2

Jon

For me it would be CDS3/XPS (especially if the XPS2 burndy was used on both) but it is not a combination I would buy if I was starting from scratch.

Surprise, surprise - I have a CDS3/XPS but I moved to it from a CDX/XPS. I listened to various permutations of players and power supplies and decided that I would go CDS3 first with XPS and then go to 555PS - although there are other parts of the system that I want to address before then.

I thought about going CDX/555PS but I preferred the CDS3 route and I can stiil use the CDX in my study.

Chris
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 6:56 AM

Jon, besides your question but I second Edouard. Your speakers need upgrading the most by a mile (or two). Smile

Richard.
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 10:21 AM

Thank you for all your comments!

I am conscious that my speakers need upgrading, but I feel I am on the pathway to more and more enlightenment as I have my chosen final Naim system destination and I'm working towards it. Perhaps I took the wrong approach my purchasing my NAP300 first and building the system around it, but Im sure it will last the distance!

As each upgrade step I make is a substantial bit of money, I am in a state of perpetual wonder - should I down grade the CD to assist purchasing the NAC552 or should I keep all I've got and increase what I have...

I will probably get a Supercap2 next for my 282 and after that upgrade my speakers to floor standing - possible B&W803s as I love the aesthetics of B&W - then get a second-hand 555PS.

Now I am getting funds together and budgeting my 3 final steps, each around 3200 - that is a SC2; my speakers; second-hand 555PS. Probably in that order.

Would you agree with the order? Either way, I will ultimately address these areas, it just might take me 5 years to do so!

Many thanks again.

Jon
 
 
 
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Guido Fawkes
 
August 7, 2008 12:50 PM

quote:
that is a SC2; my speakers; second-hand 555PS


I'd go Allaes, 555PS, Super-Cap - but that's just me.

ATB Rotf
 
 
 
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Garfield (Guest)
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August 7, 2008 1:13 PM

Hi ROTF,

I remembered your post from a while ago:
What is analogue

My earlier comment was an observation on the different presentation of the CDS range of CDPS from that of the CDX range. As I understand it a major factor in the character of the presentation of the CDS range is the floating mechanism and more sophisticated circuitry.

In this context, if we leave out the words "analogue" and "digital", the point I was making was that with the CDS range the presentation you get is characterised by a much more analytical and almost laid-back sound, and with the CDX range the presentation you get is characterised by get immediacy and vibrancy.

Clearly with the 555 you are in a very different place altogether.

G
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 3:16 PM

3200 for speakers seems more than a little out of balance in your projected system to me...

Richard.
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 3:29 PM

Can I ask why, Richard?

In fact the question I'm tempted to ask is do speakers also suffer the law of diminishing returns i.e. 1000 vs 2000 = 2x, whereas 5000 is 1.5x better than 2500 speakers?

Should I be using the rule: speaker cost = source cost??

I'm curious as to your advice!

Jon
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 3:59 PM

quote:
Should I be using the rule: speaker cost = source cost??
Jon...not a rule to use IMO.

Speakers are soooo environment dependent that price is not the factor it is with electronics.

Certainly as a general rule more expensive speakers will have been built with less compromises in design and superior quality materials and components but the way the speakers behave in your room is a major factor.

For example take a speaker like the B&W 800D. It is often given plaudits by reviewers and certainly costs enough to be a top performer but it is way too big to behave in a small listening room.

It is difficult to say that at a certain price point and above you will be sure to be buying a speaker that can fully resolve what a class front end throws at it but your starting price is high enough IMO to ensure that....

So all you have to deal with then is how the family likes the look of them and where in the room you will be allowed to put them ( behind the potted palm in the corner or well out into the room for example) Winker...then you can get on with the task of finding some that work well in your room.

The nice thing about Naim speakers is they have all the resolution you could need and work against a wall....if you like the way they sound Cool

regards
Geoff
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 7:21 PM

I don't agree at all I'm afraid...

In my view and experience speakers are the most essential and critical link (in fact the only) between you and the music. The room interaction is the most profound with speakers obviously but at the same time bright and forward sounding electronics also sound nasty in a hard and bright room. The quality of design, components and voicing is just as important as with any other component. One could argue even more so. At the end of the day you'll only hear what the speakers are able to reproduce. Never anything more or better, less than what the front end puts in is more likely.

I do agree there is no rule of thumb for the budget for the speakers compared to the components. At the same time I think that speakers costing the same or less than only a PSU from the system driving them are very likely to be(come) the bottleneck of the entire system.

BTW, I'm not looking to trigger yet another (useless) source first thread. Winker

Richard.
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 8:04 PM

quote:
I don't agree at all I'm afraid...
.....I don't see where we disagree much.

The context here is a full Naim system so I don't see where the 'bright forward sounding' bit comes into it.

Other than that we are saying pretty much the same thing.

regards
Geoff
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 8:14 PM

Then I misinterpreted you post Geoff. Smile

The bright forward sounding bit was just an example that components are not completely excluded from room interaction (although not the case with Jon).

Richard.
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 8:32 PM

Hi,

I agree with others here, the loudspeakers are certainly worth an exploration before you look at swapping the electronics.

You already have a great set!

steve
 
 
 
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August 7, 2008 9:16 PM

Loudspeakers are the last thing I would consider changing.

Partially due to it's so much easier to swap electronics than doing a home demo of largish full range speakers.
 
 
 
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August 8, 2008 6:10 AM

quote:
Originally posted by kuma:
Loudspeakers are the last thing I would consider changing.

Mybriks.com ehh?....

Winker
 
 
 
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August 8, 2008 6:11 AM

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