naim naca4 vs naim nac a5

Given the price of NACA5 either new or bought second hand, no one would seriously consider NACA4 in reality.

NACA4 was not developed as such, but chosen as being most suitable among the existing cables available many years ago. NACA5 was chosen to replace it after a much more rigourous process of selection, and showing a significant improvement over the the older cable.

If you have NACA4 already, it might be a moot point whether the NACA5 is finer by enough to justify the cost of changing, but starting from scratch then go for ~5, I would think.

ATB from George
According to Naim's Julian Vereker, "We then spent the money on designing a new and better cable with another supplier under a secrecy agreement, and this is the NACA5"

Dear John,

In what way does this not correspond with what I have written above?

I would agree that the design of the insulation - holding the wires further apart than usual - was indeed a Naim design [and common to both variants], but the wire itself was not subjected to nearly the rigour in selection that would later apply to NACA5.

George
quote:
Originally posted by GFFJ:
In what way does this not correspond with what I have written above?


My dear George, this bit:-
quote:
Originally posted by Richard Dane:
NACA4 was a Naim design and was made for Naim by BICC.


Which seems at polar opposites with your comment:-
quote:
Originally posted by GFFJ:
NACA4 was not developed as such


Sorry for not making it clearer in my first response. Smile

And Steve, the NACA5 is just such stupidly good value for money I'd only suggest using NACA4 if
(a) You already have it
(b) You are being given it
(c) budget is ultra tight

HTH

John
Though I would not guarantee it, I suspect that you missed my meaning by a margin, and I missed yours, and the net result is that there is nothing that significantly divides our opinions about NACA4/5.

I agree with you three final alphabetic points at the end, but I don't think there is any doubt that starting from scratch with only a modest budget then NACA5 is probably the best route ...

George
quote:
Originally posted by avhed:
quote:
NACA4 was not developed as such, but chosen as being most suitable among the existing cables available many years ago.

The above is not true according to Richard Dane.
fixedwheel did not miss any meaning.


Dear avhed,

Not wishing to deny Richard Dane's take on this, I shall however point you to what Julian Vereker had to say about the design, production, and lack of further development of NACA4.

http://www.malcolmsteward.co.uk/?page_id=1442

To say you diving around several hundreds or even thousands of works in conversation with Malcolm Stewart, I will post here what Julian Vereker said with respect to NACA4 and the developmenmt of NACA5 as its replacement. I opst the link to the original interview so that you may assure yourself - same for fixedwheel - that I am not merely inventing this. I don't invent things for the forum and this is a question JV covers in some detail.

JV: If you want to refine the cable you need to make some proto-types. And that’s not the cheapest of exercises: you actually have to shut down a plant that’s manufacturing thousands or hundreds of thousands metres of cables per day and sit and run a hundred metres one type, a hundred of another, and so on. It’s an incredibly expensive and time consuming business.

MS: Isn’t much of the process still empirical?

JV: With NACA4 it was very much a case of “with this design we think we can expect this to happen” and it was made and it performed pretty much as we expected it to. But it was by no means an optimized design. With A5 a lot more thought went into it and we had many samples made in order to get as close as possible to the desired result.

… … …


Best wishes from George
quote:
Originally posted by joesilva:
quote:
Originally posted by stevefc:
What is the performance difference between these two cables?

Thanks
Steve


Perhaps someone who has experience using both NACA 4 and NACA 5 would be kind enough to answer Steve's original question ?


I had a very old pair of SBLs with NACA4 between the detachable cross-overs and the driver sockets on the back of the cabinets. This was replaced with NACA5, and there was no change in performance large enough to be obvious without a direct A/B comparison, which of course was not possible as the cross-overs were in the Naim dealership for a day or two while the new NACA5 was soldered into the cross-over boards. I did however have slightly longer replacement cables fitted to allow for better isolation of the cross-overs from the speaker cabinets, and carefully setting the cross-overs on separate stands independent of the speasker cabinets certainly did show a discernable improvement in my view, though looking back, not enough to really justify the cost and work involved.

Somewhere I have a photo of the resulting arrangement,


Which shows the SBLs with the newly fitted NACA5, and the efforts to further isolate the cross-over boards from the posibility of being directly affected by speaker cabinet vibrations.

ATB from George
quote:
JV: With NACA4 it was very much a case of “with this design we think we can expect this to happen” and it was made and it performed pretty much as we expected it to. But it was by no means an optimized design. With A5 a lot more thought went into it and we had many samples made in order to get as close as possible to the desired result.

So more development was put into A5, but both were developed by Naim. The A4, not optimized, but not an existing cable as stated.
With NACA4 it was very much a case of “with this design we think we can expect this to happen” and it was made and it performed pretty much as we expected it to. But it was by no means an optimized design.

Suggests to me a lack of any development stage after the initial design was made as a sample, because the inital design was deemed succesful without any development over the inital design. This can be a very successful strategy of course. I clarified the issue of the NACA4 design being that of Naim in my second post, particularly with respect to the layout of the insulation.

JV tells us that there was a significant development of the NACA5 design where many different samples were assessed, thus optimising the initial design rather than accepting the initial sample as was the case with NACA4.

I realise that you and fixedwheel may regard this as a fine line, but I am happy to give credence, and a public airing to JV's comments with respect to Naim's design and development history.

ATB from George
One thing I wanted to add. When I used to hang around my friend's store (Naim Dealer), when he would be working on cable (shortening, or changing banana plugs), he would cut into it and find the copper was green. Does anyone else remember this quality about naca4? Can this happen to naca5?

Dave
quote:
Originally posted by The Hawk:
... when he would be working on cable (shortening, or changing banana plugs), he would cut into it and find the copper was green. Does anyone else remember this quality about naca4? Can this happen to naca5?

Dave


I would imagine this would happen to any copper cored cable if it got high humidity or damp. There are no shiny copper roofs unless they are new.

Although the cable under the sheathing may have a small amount of verdigris, hopefully the well made soldered joint will have been air tight and preventing the main joint from oxidising.
Thanks BigH! Love that word, verdigris. Had to look it up. I never asked my Naim dealer what that meant in practical terms, that the cable was green when he cut it. I assumed that it wasn't good. If the cable under the sheathing is green (not the main joint), will that impair the sound? Will it go green right to the core? My Naim guy seemed to be suggesting that this was why Naca5 was developed, and that it improved upon the Naca4 'going' green. I like the analogy that there are no shiny roofs unless new.

Dave
quote:
Originally posted by The Hawk:
One thing I wanted to add. When I used to hang around my friend's store (Naim Dealer), when he would be working on cable (shortening, or changing banana plugs), he would cut into it and find the copper was green. Does anyone else remember this quality about naca4? Can this happen to naca5?

Dave
It was the pvc insulator which is still common to most cables but not NACA5. Sonically 4 is less solid and has a bit of hair on it by comparison.
quote:
Originally posted by andrewchiswick:
Thank you.

So it seems that these cables go off with time. I've had my NACA 4 for over 20 years and it still seems fine but maybe I haven't noticed the deterioration.

Andrew.


Is A4 printed on your cable?
quote:
Originally posted by keano:
quote:
Originally posted by andrewchiswick:
Thank you.

So it seems that these cables go off with time. I've had my NACA 4 for over 20 years and it still seems fine but maybe I haven't noticed the deterioration.

Andrew.


Is A4 printed on your cable?


Yes it is!
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