Uniti Atom: first use...and first issues as well

Hi All Naim lover,

After read Bouba experience with Naim Uniti Atom (HDMI ver), I know that we have reach the same problem.

My problem is:

While listening (i.e. TV , Bluray , USB , Tidal, etc.) , the system will drop out initially the Right channel , then about 1 ~ 2 mins , the Left channel out too. The drop out was not related to loudness of volume.

After about 3 mins, both channel up again. Seems a "watchdog" mechanism is bulid-in to the system software, it will awake the amplify section of Atom. Besides, pressing the power for few seconds for a hard reboot , also fix this problem.

It occurs randomly, but with 5~6 hours continues listening, it will come out at least 2 times.

At 1st, I think it may be the software problem (as I buy it on 2017-July, the 1st batch of shippment), after upgraded to latest ver.2.3, the problem still exist.

My Setup:

Naim Uniti atom (non HDMI ver. , with original Naim PowerLite which come out of box) , with plenty space for machine Cooling

Neat Acoustics Elite SX speaker

Naim NACA5 speaker cable.

LAN cable connect to router.

Coaxial Cable (for Bluray player) , Optical cable (for TV)

USB HDD at the back.

 

Regards,

Terry

Richard, my TV is "Sony Bravia KD65XE9305". I didn't notify NAIM yet, because I'm sure it is small software problem and will be fixed with future updates.

Also, I've noticed, If I change the volume a little bit (for example, from 40 to 41 and back to 40) the countdown renews. I mean, If I do not change the volume, the right speaker disconnects after ~2 hours, but If after 1 hour I will change the volume like I said, then the right channel will be off 2 hours starting from the volume change. So overall that would be 3 hours .

So I think changing the volume do some kind of "reset" or something.

Sad to hear others are having the same issues. 

Well, on my side, since my last visit, I received a brand new Atom replacement for my unit from my dealer. He told me that naim simply found the unit was faulty. 

So my new Atom came 2 weeks ago and seems to be from the latest batch, brand new, but guess what, I'm still having exactly the same issues again and again. The unit is still playing music just fine though. 

Naim was kind enough to replace the unit but now even my dealer is speechless. So to me this is definitively not a hardware issue. 

Kudos to naim for having replaced my unit after 2 returns to my dealer's shop, than to Focal, however the problem is still there.  So I do hope they'll investigate to find a solution, otherwise it's pointless to buy something intended not only to play music but also to be connected to a TV set. 

To me on the list of issues with the Atom, this is top priority for a fix. 

I had exactly the same issue with my first Atom - one of the first units delivered in Germany last August - right channel would drop after crackling sound, followed by left. Sometimes both at once. This only occurred when watching TV after several hours - optical in (no HDMI). Took the unit back in early October (at the time there were no posts about the issue) and it was immediately replaced (thanks to the Naim distributor MusicLine and my AD here in Hamburg). 

The second unit apparently had a faulty wiring harness (see my post from Jan 16) and became non-responsive after a few weeks. The unit was repaired by MusicLine here in Germany. Got it back and now the channel dropping is happening again! Just like the original unit! 

So far it only happens when watching TV. I have a Sony Bravia XBR55X850B using a Van den Hul Toslink connection. 

This issue has cost me a considerable amount of time and frustration, and I'm really growing tired of schlepping faulty Atoms back and forth. 

Please get this sorted, Naim. 

If a customer says he has a problem with a NAIM product, the first thing the dealer should do is exchange the product.  That's why they have such a high dealer markup - customer service.   After my poor experiences with my NAIM dealer here in the US, I won't be buying anything else from him (after spening over $30,000 on Naim equipment over the last 10 years), which probably means I won't be buying any future NAIM products.

Also, I noticed another problem in Uniti Atom - hiss from speakers. The hiss isn't dependent on volume level. I hear it on zero volume. It is not a problem in day time. But late at night the hiss becomes noticeable from 3 meters distance and then it becomes a problem.

Did anybody else noticed the hiss on zero volume?

Tony, a small amount of hiss is normal with all Naim amps - its level will somewhat depend on other factors such as acoustics, sensitivity of speakers, speaker cable, how bright the speakers are at a particular HF, etc...  I haven't really noticed it on the few occasions I've used an Atom.  If you are concerned then I would talk to your dealer and compare with their demo unit.

AndyHamburg posted:

I had exactly the same issue with my first Atom - one of the first units delivered in Germany last August - right channel would drop after crackling sound, followed by left. Sometimes both at once. This only occurred when watching TV after several hours - optical in (no HDMI). Took the unit back in early October (at the time there were no posts about the issue) and it was immediately replaced (thanks to the Naim distributor MusicLine and my AD here in Hamburg). 

The second unit apparently had a faulty wiring harness (see my post from Jan 16) and became non-responsive after a few weeks. The unit was repaired by MusicLine here in Germany. Got it back and now the channel dropping is happening again! Just like the original unit! 

So far it only happens when watching TV. I have a Sony Bravia XBR55X850B using a Van den Hul Toslink connection. 

This issue has cost me a considerable amount of time and frustration, and I'm really growing tired of schlepping faulty Atoms back and forth. 

Please get this sorted, Naim. 

I could not agree more.

I don't know whether Phil or someone else from Naim is reading the forum, but the frustration is just getting worse for Atom's user.

 I have to say great thanks to my dealer who's been very understanding and felt my frustration and he did it best to help with the issue.

Naim and its distributor is the one to blame: Great Customer service (in every regards, the best I"ve come to deal with) does not necessarily help if not accompanied with Communication.

I've emailed the Naim support and even called the support line from France. They were clueless (which I can understand as there're not technicians from the factory) and only able to advise doing the basic tests I already performed by my own since the very first times I experienced the dropouts issues.

Now I blame Naim for being unable to even communicate on what's happeing here with the Atom units, even to say "we have no clue about what's happening but will take a closer look about it"

My dealer told me my replacement unit is of the latest production batch and should have no issue at all. He does not know what to do because he and I both fear to get it replaced a third time and having the same issue again, that'd be wasting time for both of us and money for him. 

I've read about this very same issue all across the Streaming section of this forum and apparently more units are involved than I initially thought (I even thought my ears were playing tricks on me at first !!)

So please Naim, for god's sake, couldn't you just tell us what the heck is going on ?

Very frustrating experience yesterday: I enjoyed my unit all day long yesterday streaming tunes through Upnp from my Synology Nas (at least when the unit was able to run the "discovery" process to hook up to the Synology nas- because the app itself did seem to have issue scanning the network  to list the available server although all dedicated firewall settings were set the right way, and please don't nobody talks about blood* network set up issues, mine is very simple and has been operating for years with no issues with my UQ2 and my other kits and appliances), playing at "realistic" volume and no issue of any kind from 11am til around 9.pm until I decided to watch a movie. Those blood* dropouts occured again and again every 2 to 3 hours.

I'm getting tired of it.

 

Hi,

We don't spend all our time on the forums - that just isn't possible - which is why we ask anyone needing support to contact us directly (information in the sticky at the top of each forum or on the right hand side of each thread) then we can do so - doing non-trivial support on forum threads unfortunately just isn't practical.

The software guys are still looking into the cause of the dropouts whilst playing from TV but I have no information as to what is causing it or when there will be a fix for it.

Phil

Hi Phil, and thank you for your feedback. Appreciated.

I can confirm I already contacted the Uniti support-desk and after re-repeating the symptoms and tested I've run so far again and again, I've been told by the support team that the issue is certainly not software related. However, from what you're saying, I can only assume that the issue may be software related, which I tend to as well.

If so, now the only question is should I send my Unit back again knowing that the 3rd replacement unit may well have the same issue, or just wait until further information from Naim about any fix or firmware update to solve this?

 

With so many Atom owners reporting exactly the same issue, the odds that it's not software related seem rather low. 

And at this point, my dealer here in Hamburg is - out of sheer frustration - just shrugging it off, saying the Atom is just "buggy" and "hopefully new firmware will fix it". No offers to resolve the issue by sending it to service or (as one might expect after all the hassle) replacing with a new unit like they'd normally do. My dealer has always gone to any lengths to make sure I'm fully satisfied with my system. I'm guessing their hands are tied on this issue now.

And if this is not a software issue, I sincerely hope Naim reaches out to those affected with an offer to replace the faulty units. 

Further heads-up on this, I believe the right channel 'tear' distortion noise damaged my B&W 707 S2 speaker when the issue occurred with the volume was around 60. Dealer replaced my Atom unit and speakers but since receiving the new one i've not reconnected my TV (via optical) until i'm assured the problem is resolved.

Anyone just starting to experience the problem take note, I first noticed it when I received the unit around early November, it became progressively worse until finally replaced in January - but other issues started to occur, including non-responsive device, display showing details for the previous album/track and volume moving in large jumps.

Nova and prior Atom owner the same issues.

Listening since midday and an hour ago artwork freeze on the Nova, all from Tidal no input swaps, figure will power cycle, MISTAKE. iPad found Nova all fine but nothing at all would play, recall same issue last week, so switched to my Samsung mobile and working fine.

Really is beyond Irrating ruins a great experience.

Paul Summers posted:

Further heads-up on this, I believe the right channel 'tear' distortion noise damaged my B&W 707 S2 speaker when the issue occurred with the volume was around 60. Dealer replaced my Atom unit and speakers but since receiving the new one i've not reconnected my TV (via optical) until i'm assured the problem is resolved.

Anyone just starting to experience the problem take note, I first noticed it when I received the unit around early November, it became progressively worse until finally replaced in January - but other issues started to occur, including non-responsive device, display showing details for the previous album/track and volume moving in large jumps.

My returned and new Nova had the same issue - I just gave up on HDMI or Optimal not fit for purpose.

Obsydian posted:

Nova and prior Atom owner the same issues.

Listening since midday and an hour ago artwork freeze on the Nova, all from Tidal no input swaps, figure will power cycle, MISTAKE. iPad found Nova all fine but nothing at all would play, recall same issue last week, so switched to my Samsung mobile and working fine.

Really is beyond Irrating ruins a great experience.

I've had frozen artwork too but via Roon and Tidal.

Paul Summers posted:

Further heads-up on this, I believe the right channel 'tear' distortion noise damaged my B&W 707 S2 speaker when the issue occurred with the volume was around 60. Dealer replaced my Atom unit and speakers but since receiving the new one i've not reconnected my TV (via optical) until i'm assured the problem is resolved.

Anyone just starting to experience the problem take note, I first noticed it when I received the unit around early November, it became progressively worse until finally replaced in January - but other issues started to occur, including non-responsive device, display showing details for the previous album/track and volume moving in large jumps.

Paul, what did exactly happen with your B&W speakers?

Has the unity fried tweeter..?

Did anybody else experience speaker damage due to Unity/Nova channel drop off?

If so, this becomes not only Unity/Nova replace problem for Naim.
Speakers will have to be replaced also. And that would be NAIM problem...

My friend, for example, has Nova with 12K $ speakers .

Yes the right channel tweeter ‘fried’... The speakers were new with the Atom. Noticed the loss of sound quality almost immediately after a ‘right channel crack/pop’ incident. Switched the unit off, listening to something on Tidal later and clear there was a problem. AudioT in Bristol were fantastic, the speakers were only about 10 weeks old so B&W replaced them.

It feels more a software problem. I was connected via optical from my LG 4K screen.

my replacement unit is (and will remain) disconnected from the TV but I’ve not had any of the other freezing display, unresponsive or volume control problems with this one, makes me think these are related to the audio problem.

I am surprised Naim haven’t acknowledged the issue, sounds like there are enough reports and 3+ months have passed since they started to appear.

My main annoyance was the wasted time sorting this out - and that with a less helpful dealer, I could have been left out of pocket.

Would be interesting to hear if anyone else has exerpienced speaker damage, maybe people need to give the right side a good listen with a nice clean clean quality Tidal track. 

Second attempt at posting this so sorry if it comes through twice.   I have experienced something like this with my Atom. Around a week ago my wife and I were listening to music at low level and there was a very loud pop from the right speaker (B&W CM6 S2).  It was the first and only time it has happened and I don't detect and damage to the speaker. At the time I put it down to a curiosity and forgot about it.   My Atom was one of the first shipped in the UK (of the first 3 assigned to my dealer in Clapham anyway) and it's been sonically great apart from this incident.  

I'm not sure if software can control such powerful energy bursts which damage tweeters... Seems that it is some kind of not planned hardware discharge, immediately followed by some kind of NAIM amp protection.

Or, another theory, - maybe the disconnection is because of the extremely big volume level activation (for example 100% or maybe even 1000%). This leads to huge clipping (and this is what we hear). Clipping damages tweeters. Speaker disconnects because of amp protections.

So the new question arises: how to check if the tweeters are NOT damaged by Unity drop offs? Maybe right channel is "half-damaged" and will die soon.

No just dealer as both Atom and speakers were approx. 10 weeks old. I know easy to start pointing lots of fingers at the hint of problems but I'm quite clear that the speaker issue was immediately noticeable the very next evening when listening to a nice clean Pink Floyd Tidal stream. Possible Audio-T in Bristol could connect you with B&W to see if they've diagnosed the speaker and can suggest the cause...

Do want to add something here - I purchased the Atom to listen to music, hooking in my TV via optical was a plus - and seems the cause of these problems. I've not reconnected my replacement unit for fear of further issues and I'm now using it for music only - it is problem free and awesome. I genuinely would not be put off by these forum posts if you're going to use the Atom as a standalone streaming music player. Yes there are some software quirks but I've absolute confidence that Naim will address these in future updates. As an all-in-one device for listening to high quality streamed audio, I don't think anything else comes close.

Actually, I did have an issue with my speakers while using the first Atom unit. I can't say definitively whether the two are connected, but I was using the Atom with Kudos C2 speakers while the right channel bug was happening. The right speaker mid/bass driver "failed" (dealer said it was the coil) and was replaced - again as a courtesy of my dealer - the speakers no longer had any warranty. The dealer asked me how it happened and said it normally only occurs at extremely high volume (due to neighbors, I never listen above 50). This feels a little like puzzle pieces coming together.

In the meantime, I sold the Kudos speakers and have new Spendor A4s. 

And now I'm pretty concerned about using the optical in at all. 

Do we all need to disconnect Toslink cables until Naim chimes in on this? 

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