Supernait 2 advice

Posted by: ThatsNotMyNaim on 22 December 2018

Evening all and Merry Christmas.

After a little while away with Luxman, Densen and Sugden amplification I'm back with a used 2018 model Supernait 2 again. Listening to a H190 in a few weeks however. 

Ultimately at this level the SN2 is the most enjoyable I've heard. That said Sugden A21 has it's clear class A plus points. If it had the weight of the SN2 it'd be a close call.

Sugden just released their first class A/B ANV 50 that is said to retain the Sugden sound and add drive and weight. I must say Sugden are lovely. But the A21 was too light sounding. A21SE better but similar. This new one could be great. Id love a Naim/Sugden hybrid if that was every possible! 

So my question is; how do I 'Naim' improve significantly on the Supernait 2 in terms of; absolute control. How far do I need to go?

System is; ProAc SM100, SN2, Hugo2. Naim Powerlines and Chord Epic cables all round. vertere difi double USB. I have soffits and panels in the right places and use custom made stands. 

The sound is enjoyable and 'decent' but still doesn't get me to that ultimate control like an 'active speaker' would. Sound is slightly soft and a tad supressed. And a wee bit blurry. I don't want to go active as there is only really Dyn, ATC and AVi of which I don't like either other than the last in terms of their sound presentation. 

Cheers

Adam

Posted on: 22 December 2018 by ThatsNotMyNaim

One last note it's space and dimension that I find actives give you versus a flatter less spacial sound of my current passive system.

One of the reasons I come back to Naim is because the sound is more 'see-in' than other brands. But not see in enough at the moment! ProAc SM100 and Hugo2 are probably also fit that mould. 

Posted on: 22 December 2018 by Adam Zielinski

SuperNait 2 can be upgraded with an off-board power supply - HiCap DR or SuperCap DR.
Reading your posts, I suspect that HiCap DR will do the trick.

Posted on: 22 December 2018 by ThatsNotMyNaim

Thanks Adam

I've considered Hi Cap DR but wasn't sure if it will really make all that much difference and whether I'd need to move to 282 250 DR level or beyond?

We're talking small nuances but obvious enough to me that things not quite as defined as I'd expect.

Ta

Posted on: 22 December 2018 by Adam Zielinski

Well - itís Ďcomplicatedí

The only way to be sure, and to avoid making costly mistakes, is to audition the equipment. I suspect that you havenít really auditioned your SN2, have you? Otherwise why the desire to improve it already?

SN2 is a very accomplished integrated amp - the best one Naim makes. I still have mine - cannot bring myself to sell it.
Iíve started my journey with an SN2, bought a second-hand 282 and sold it.
Bought 252 - love it to bits.
But then I bought a new 282, which replaced my SN2 - use it with HiCap DR (I didnít like what SuperCap DR did on the 282 in my room, with my speakers).

So what is the morale of all that rambling?

My advice is: enjoy your SN2 Ďbareí for now. In about 6 moths or so, test a HiCap DR on it and see if you like what it does.

Posted on: 22 December 2018 by SteveJansen

I'm trying out a Hicap DR on my Supernait 2 right now (Chord 2Qute DAC and B & W 803S speakers). The improvements to my ears sound like what you are looking for - more control, more refined, better separation of instruments. Violins and guitars sound less harsh - fuller and rounder. I think I might struggle to go back to the bare Supernait now after a couple of days of listening (it is a well run-in Hicap). At first the Hicap seemed to, along with the refinement, take some of the youthful enthusiasm or exuberance away. A slightly more mature sound perhaps. I'll see if it still feels that way when I unhook it in a few days.

Posted on: 22 December 2018 by ThatsNotMyNaim

Cheers Steve,

Do let me know how you get on. Hi Caps can be sought on ebay. So could be done with minimal risk. 

I have 2 Powerlines. One recent and one old. Older ones makes the sound sharper and more precise. The new one sounds fluffier, warmer and softer. I use the old one on my Innuos Zenith. The new one on the Supernait2. I was thinking another older Powerline on the Nait might be of benefit. 

 

Strange how Naim Powerlines sound different, or maybe not if 5 years in production apart.

Posted on: 28 December 2018 by SteveJansen

Hi Adam

I've just gone back to the bare Supernait 2. Pretty much everything I posted earlier still stands. It's all gains for the Hicap DR, except that I still feel my foot tapping a little more readily with the bare Supernait. The dryness and more shut in sound of the bare Supernait, which hadn't been obvious to me before, is transformed with the Hicap DR. It isn't subtle and instruments have a fuller tone in comparison. 

This is just my own experiences in my own system, so someone else may find it completely different for them. 

Posted on: 28 December 2018 by ThatsNotMyNaim
SteveJansen posted:

Hi Adam

I've just gone back to the bare Supernait 2. Pretty much everything I posted earlier still stands. It's all gains for the Hicap DR, except that I still feel my foot tapping a little more readily with the bare Supernait. The dryness and more shut in sound of the bare Supernait, which hadn't been obvious to me before, is transformed with the Hicap DR. It isn't subtle and instruments have a fuller tone in comparison. 

This is just my own experiences in my own system, so someone else may find it completely different for them. 

Cheers Steve.

I'm having some sockets done and then I'm going to consider a listen. 

Are you keeping the Hi Cap DR or reverting? Sounds like you are torn?

Cheers

Adam

Posted on: 28 December 2018 by SteveJansen

Hi Adam

Definitely keeping the Hicap. The gains are too great to give up and the foot tapping was such a slight difference, it could be just going back to a sound I was used to. If you get a chance to audition, I would be very surprised if you didn't really enjoy what the Hicap does too.

Posted on: 29 December 2018 by GraemeH

After several extended trials with the HCDR on my old SN2 I concluded I preferred it bare. A tad less Hi-Fi but more musical I thought.

G

Posted on: 29 December 2018 by ThatsNotMyNaim

Interesting thoughts, both. Perhaps some musicality (as we understand it) comes through less definition? 

Graeme, what are you running now? And is it a signficant step-up? 

I'm looking for more grip, more tightness. Otherwise enjoying the sound. 

Was lured away for a while but found other options lacking. Only Sugden felt as musical but a bit lightweight and lacked Naim transparency. 

Posted on: 29 December 2018 by GraemeH
ThatsNotMyNaim posted:

Interesting thoughts, both. Perhaps some musicality (as we understand it) comes through less definition? 

Graeme, what are you running now? And is it a signficant step-up? 

The SN2/NDX S400 has been a 272/XPSDR/250DR Proac Tablette 10 for a good while now and Iím very happy with it...no Ďupgradeí urges since the change nearly two years ago.

G

Posted on: 29 December 2018 by ThatsNotMyNaim

272 so a move on from 202. Probably 282 territory. 

Not heard the Tab 10s yet but keen to hear them. I'm using SM100s which I can't really fault. Fantastic monitors but I heard the 10s are crazy enjoyable due to being sealed boxes.

I think the 250DR would get me the control I desire. The 200DR is no more powerful than the SN2. 

 

Cheers

Posted on: 29 December 2018 by Popeye

I am in the Supernait2 with HiCap DR camp. I wonít be removing it, to me it was/is a big upgrade. 

More so than to my ears a NDX to NDX2 plus XPS DR. 

 

Posted on: 29 December 2018 by analogmusic

Whatís your source into Hugo 2?

 

 

Posted on: 30 December 2018 by ThatsNotMyNaim

Innuous Zenith MKII (With a Powerline) into Hugo2 via Vertere DiFi Double USB.

Everything is plugged direct to mains. I find sound gets softer using any form of mains blocks or extenders.

Cheers,

Adam

Posted on: 30 December 2018 by analogmusic

Thanks

I remember one of your posts, you thought USB was not a particularly good input to your Hugo

so the combination of Innuos and Vertere works well for you now ?

Cheers

 

Posted on: 30 December 2018 by ThatsNotMyNaim

Yes I think my USB paranoia is over! 

Changing my speakers was an eye opener. The quality of the ProAc SM100 vs my 118s was a very big improvement providing substantial control gains. Plus then SN2 instead of the Sugden. 

I actually tried some other routes including a Naim CD (and other) but i felt the draw factor of the music was lost when substituting the Chord out and no gains in control.

So back to the Innuos over USB. Electrical SPDIF didnt convince me there was anything wrong with USB.

Amp and speakers were a far big impact that I thought. Im not sure I agree with source first anymore. Buy quality speakers for the right room ... get an amp capable of controlling them and plug in your source seems more logical to me. 

I simply was missing a lot of music with the 118s.