Power amp upgrade to Nait XS

Hi Folks

I'm going to look into the above soon as I'd like more power to my Spendor S3/5R-2 speakers as I'm told they respond well to 'better' amplification & I don't always feel the Nait really 'gets hold' of them.

200DR & 250DR are on the cards to go with the XS as pre (for the time being) & HiCapDR which I already have. Intend to demo both units but interested to hear of experiences with a similar setup etc...?

Enjoy the music!

Original Post
The Strat (Fender) posted:

Hi,

i don’t know your speakers but in many ways improving the pre-amp will yield a better result.  Have you considered a SN?

The same thought here -- unless you ultimately plan to go down the 282/250 route. 

Before I bought my 282 I used Nait XS + HCDR as pre with a 250DR. The Nait XS + HCDR was good enough to hear the differences between 200DR and 250DR and to enjoy a nice improvement over the Nait XS power amp section. 

I would not recommend NaitXS+250DR as final system, but on a way to a better pre amp why not?

I would say the warnings about using a weaker preamp are valid here, but as an interim measure, it will still work as a stepping stone. If you decide on a 200, you could go for an older non-DR model, as you already have a Hicap, so the DR spec is no advantage to you. This does not apply the the 250DR.

Have a think about how far you want to take this in the foreseeable future, so that you end up with a balanced system. If you go for a 250, you should ideally partner it with a preamp of similar calibre, which means a 282 or better. If you go for a 200, that would be nicely matched with a 202 (or a 282) if you don't want to spend so much.

All good advice thanks folks.

Yes the ultimate goal is to end up with 'proper' pre-power setup. I'm currently thinking that the power amp would be first as Naim have already updated the models which I'm in the market for. The Spendor's sensitivity is 84dB/W/m & most reviews seem to conclude they require a decent amount of power behind them. I'm not unhappy with my current system I'd just like to explore how far a small stand-mount like this can go? Also I can't help wonder if Naim Pre's are also due an update soon so am happy to hold off on a pre for now? This would be a two stage upgrade over the next year or so, so the Nait will ultimately be traded for any pre I decide on down the road...

I've never heard a 200/202 or a 250/282 so hopefully that will be part of the demo process to get a better idea of where I want to end up. Although any changes in Naims pre-amp range may put a spanner in those works down the road :-)

 cheers!

SingleSpeed, I was quite surprised that the upgrade path in the XS's manual shows addition of a HC and a NAP200. I took it to mean that the preamp is the NAIT XS's strength.

Be warned the XS is a very fine amplifier! It will take some beating. I am happily on my second and having matched it with the right speakers have no desires to travel upwards again.

Cheers, Chris

Singlespeed posted:

@Christopher_M - Did you ever try Naim's suggested upgrade path with either of your NaitXS's?

Certainly not going to bother with it on this one!

On the first one, memory is sketchy but I know I had NAIT XS and HCDR.... I think I bought a NAC202 and used the XS as a power amp because, clearly, I knew better than Naim  ;-)     Later on I bought a NAP200 and was very happy, especially when I bought a NAPSC.

No Probs. Serious question, are you deeply committed to your S3/5R-2 speakers? Clearly there are other speakers which offer a far better match to your NAIT XS, I know because I have a pair. That way you don't get caught up in the whole cult of the amplifier, you just stick with the glorious sound of one of Naim's finest.

Chris (LS3/5a owner of fifteen years, though never with Naims)

Singlespeed posted:
Christopher_M posted:
Singlespeed posted:

I've wanted a pre/power setup since getting into Naim....

I was the same.

So Chris, was it just a preference for the integrated sound after living with the pre/power for a while or for other reasons...?

Initially, it was financial. I was made redundant and needed money for my new business so I sold the big rig. I had no hesitation in buying another NAIT XS since I'd loved the first so much.

Know that I got the XS, a forum mate gave me a great speaker recommendation and I'm very glad to have taken his advice.

Basically this set I have now is more fun, more balanced and just more of a pleasure to listen to than anything I had before. Probably my best ever set! So more musical pleasure and some help for my business. Happy chap.

Christopher_M posted:

Basically this set I have now is more fun, more balanced and just more of a pleasure to listen to than anything I had before. Probably my best ever set!

& that's what it's all about at the end of the day.....

Thanks for taking the time to explain Chris 

Cheers!

Took my Nait & speakers to Nintronics last Friday as I'd arranged for a demo of the NAP200DR & also NAP250DR.

Started with the 200 & was impressed by what it did to my little NaitXS. The 250 was a different beast altogether, once I had gotten over the initial wow moment and the more I listened, the more I preferred what I heard from the 200... The 250 seemed to put a vice like grip on all aspects of the music & didn't appear to let my speakers sing like the 200 did? I have to say I went in under the impression that once I'd heard the 250 I'd be reaching for my wallet but the 200 was clearly right with my other equipment & my ears! Maybe the 250 was just 'too much' for my Nait  as CDBOY mentioned above...?

Job done & the 200 is now residing at mine on a 2 week home demo period. I'm very much enjoying what I'm hearing so far & it seems (to me at least) that Naim's advice on upgrades in the manual was bang on 

Going forward I will return to Nintronics to audition a NAC202 or 282 next year at some point...

Thank you for all your helpful comments folks 

Enjoy the music! 

Mayor West posted:

Singlespeed... would it not have been worth checking which combo you preferred out of the 282/200 & 282/250? Just thinking that even though 250 might not have been the best for the Nait XS, it may have been better with your potential future pre-amp.

Good point, you should always work out what your endgame is, and make upgrade steps towards it, or else it gets (even more) expensive. Having said that, in the interim, you still have to live with what you've got. Maybe a used non-DR 200 would make sense then, as the DR bit of the 200 would be unused with a Nait as preamp, and it could be sold off to make way for a 250 with little or no loss. 

Thanks for your views folks but not being able to afford more than one upgrade every year or two, I knew I couldn't live with the 250. Each upgrade I've managed so far has always been worth the outlay, to me, at the time. I have no 'end game' plans, once I come to upgrade the pre, I won't be worried about how much 'better' it might have been with a 250 instead...

I find myself in a similar boat.  Current: Nait XS2, Marantaz CD5 and a pair of Celestion Sl6Si's.

I think I will upgrade the CD player to a CD2.  Then maybe work forwards to the amplifier to a SN2 and then maybe to my aged old ears some $8kAUD speakers later on...or not.

To those who follow and advise me.  Still enjoying Bach : )

Thank you xxxx

Mitch

I think CDX2 and SN2 will be a nice set, Mitch.

I'm calling it a kind of standard integrated set. Thesedays there don't seem to be that many of us running them here, potentially you, Max, Stephen Tate, myself, doubtless I've missed a few. Others have gone on to supposedly 'better' sets. What do they know!?  ;-)

C.

Singlespeed posted:

Took my Nait & speakers to Nintronics last Friday as I'd arranged for a demo of the NAP200DR & also NAP250DR.

Job done & the 200 is now residing at mine on a 2 week home demo period. I'm very much enjoying what I'm hearing so far & it seems (to me at least) that Naim's advice on upgrades in the manual was bang on 

Going forward I will return to Nintronics to audition a NAC202 or 282 next year at some point...

Thank you for all your helpful comments folks 

Enjoy the music! 

Since you plan on adding a 202/282, Would it make more sense to get a preloved 200 and hicap?  Would improve both preamp and amp. 

Michael Mccullough posted:

Since you plan on adding a 202/282, Would it make more sense to get a preloved 200 and hicap?  Would improve both preamp and amp. 

Had HicapDR since 2015. I am aware of the relative 'redundancy' of the DR module in the 200 but I'm not bothered about that. After all, most of my Nait is currently 'off-line'...

Christopher_M posted:

SK, I can see what you're thinking. IMO an XP5 XS on your streamer makes more sense.

Chris

......my thoughts were a slow upgrade path, possibly adding a NAP200DR with the ND5XS & NAIT XS 2 and then in the future trading in the ND5XS/NAIT XS 2 for a NAC 272 (or its replacement). At this point it is just a thought and would be interested to hear how demo with the NAITXS/NAP200DR works out for SINGLESPEED.

I am in no rush to make a change but always interested in what others are doing with similar systems.

seakayaker posted:

Interested in hearing about your experience after you have had a chance to demo the XS/200DR combo.

Which model of the XS do you have?  

 

I have the original XS 60W model. Already having the HicapDR (which was a great upgrade) the 200DR has taken it a big leap forward! Just been listening for a couple of hours tonight & very happy so far 

 

Singlespeed posted:
seakayaker posted:

Interested in hearing about your experience after you have had a chance to demo the XS/200DR combo.

Which model of the XS do you have?  

 

I have the original XS 60W model. Already having the HicapDR (which was a great upgrade) the 200DR has taken it a big leap forward! Just been listening for a couple of hours tonight & very happy so far 

 

Thanks for the information and the update on your experience so far, it does sound promising. I look forward to hearing  your opinion after the 2 week home demo period has concluded.

YES! it's a keeper for sure. just more of everything good about music. It has taken the little Spendors by the balls & really makes them sing.

Just to note, I notice that they don't list the 200 as an upgrade to the XS2 like they did in the original's manual? Perhaps the increase in power over the original has narrowed the gap...? Certainly worth doing a demo though if you are considering going that sort of route ;-)

cheers!

Singlespeed posted:

YES! it's a keeper for sure. just more of everything good about music. It has taken the little Spendors by the balls & really makes them sing.

Just to note, I notice that they don't list the 200 as an upgrade to the XS2 like they did in the original's manual? Perhaps the increase in power over the original has narrowed the gap...? Certainly worth doing a demo though if you are considering going that sort of route ;-)

cheers!

Thanks for taking the time to reply, it is greatly appreciated.   I am happy to hear that it has worked out for you!

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