Novice the streaming

I am looking to enter the world of streaming and am contemplating the ND5 XS to go with my CD5 XS and Nait 5 XS

I have been told I can rip my discs and store them on my current computer (in a different room to my Hi-Fi) and send them to the streamer via the mains cables and that this will also give me global radio via the internet

Alternatively could I also purchase the Uniti core to do the ripping and storing

With price rises due on 1st January I need to decide and place an order

Any suggestions welcome

Original Post

NIMRODMR2P,

It isn't quite as simple as ripping your CDs to a computer and sending via mains cables to your streamer. 

You will need to set up a uPnP server on your computer or NAS, and this uPnP server will be what makes the music available to your streamer over your home network, which could be Ethernet over the mains (as you suggest), but preferably a direct Ethernet connection.

Most people, including myself would recommend that you purchase a suitable NAS device (say from Synology or QNAP) and rip your music to that. The Synology or QNAP NAS will come with available uPnP servers ready to install. So, you connect both your NAS and the streamer to your router (or to a network switch connected to the router) and you are set to go:

1. You rip your CDs to the NAS

2. You install and 'start' the uPnP server on the NAS. 

3. The ND5SX streamer should automatically recognize the uPnP server on your network

4. You install the Naim app (which allows you to select and play the CDs stored on your NAS) on an iPAD, IPhone or Android device and you are good to go.

Internet Radio access will be automatically available via the Naim app. 

If you have any questions or problems, I'm sure that there are many people on this forum who will be able to help you get your setup to work.

I moved to streaming years ago, and like many others would never again move back to using a CD player. I am sure you will love the convenience of local streaming once you get it up and rumming. Good luck.   

For your amp, the ND5XS is certainly a great match — I am listening to my XS2/ND5XS as I write this... But, because of the new streaming platform of the Uniti range, I would not buy a new ND5XS... If you aren’t keen on buying second hand, maybe trading in your amp and CD player towards a Nova? 

If you are contemplating streaming,  IMO that means you drop CD replay.  All your CD's get ripped to a NAS & the streamer plays the rips from the NAS,  then in future you add to the NAS 24-bit high res downloads,  all that is your 'local' streaming,   & I'll bet the CD's sound better once ripped & played from a NAS.    Then with whatever streamer you eventually decide on, you can also stream from one of the www services (e.g Tidal) & also pull in any of the 10's of thousand web radio stations.   

nimrodmr2p posted:

If I chose the Nova I would loose the ability to play CDs?

Yes, but you won’t look back. After getting my ND5XS, I briefly thought about getting a CD transport for the occasional CD one might want to play — I am glad I didn’t... 

Don’t forget the Naim CDPs when you additionally stream, they are cracking devices... I have been streaming for years, but keep my trusty CDX2.. there are some discs that simply sound sublime on the CDX2 voicing... so I have multiple sources to suite mood and genre, certainly if I had had a single homogenised streamers no source I would have missed out so much enjoyment... there is a reason after all why we have those inputs on our NACs, and the automation for Naim CDPs via the Naim streamer app works very well.

Simon

The ND5XS is a good player, easy to use and with respectable sound quality - it was my own introduction to streaming a few years ago. There is much of which to be aware - some of it I wished I had known before I started - however rather than repeating things here this recent thread is worth a study:

https://forums.naimaudio.com/to...-moving-to-a-nd5-xs?

 

I was fearful of jumping into the stream for a long time but I am now paddling around quite happily. I am a computer neanderthal but managed to successfully download dbpoweramp and rip my cds without any problems. I had a little help from my better half with the nas installation but it didn't seem too complicated and I am now very much enjoying streaming. I have still got some aspects regarding the nas configuration I would like to know more about but one step at a time.

I haven't missed my cdp and finding and playing music is so much easier. Having access to Internet radio, Spotify etc is also another great bonus. 

nimrodmr2p posted:

I am looking to enter the world of streaming and am contemplating the ND5 XS to go with my CD5 XS and Nait 5 XS

I have been told I can rip my discs and store them on my current computer (in a different room to my Hi-Fi) and send them to the streamer via the mains cables and that this will also give me global radio via the internet

Alternatively could I also purchase the Uniti core to do the ripping and storing

With price rises due on 1st January I need to decide and place an order

Any suggestions welcome

Apologies for the delay in replying to your post.  I think the ND5 XS would make a fine addition to your current boxes.  You would then have a visually and sonically matched system which should give you much pleasure.  There is even upgrade potential via an nDAC which is also in an XS-sized box.

When I first dipped a toe in the streaming stream, I ripped some of my discs to iTunes on my MacBook and then installed Asset UPnP which can access the iTunes library.  My streamer found this easily and I was able to stream music wirelessly from the laptop to my hifi with excellent results, even though the computer and streamer were at opposite ends of the house.  Only when I started to download some very high resolution tracks did I find the need to hardwire the system.  At the same time I purchased a NAS but pace HMack, you don't need a NAS to enjoy streaming.

So my suggestion would be to take small steps.  Start, by treating yourself this Christmas: order an ND5 XS.  Install Asset on your computer (I used a free version, but it only costs around £20 for the full version.  Rip a few tracks to your computer  (iTunes makes it easy to do if you're on a Mac).  Enjoy for a few months until everything settles down and then think about new ripping software, a NAS, hardwiring etc.  And ideally get your dealer to install the ND5XS and make sure it's working.

Roger

I’d agree with others on the benefits of streaming and i’d be inclined to rip to the .aif format unless disc space is a problem.  The addition of a steaming service really changes the way one listens to music.  Once you get used to listening to music this way for most people the CD player will just gather dust.  

At it’s simplest just copy your CDs to the computer via iTunes, connect the computer to a USB DAC and DAC to preamp and away you go.  You could just buy one of the cheap USB stick type DACs to dip your toe in the water.

If keeping will the Naim look is important I can see the appeal of the ND5 but I’d also consider something like the Microrendu/Chord Hugo along with a Roon subscription.  More future proof (DAC technology is evolving quickly) and to my ears better sound quality.  I don’t think the ND5 can do Roon.  Roon to my mind is now essential.

i have always found NAS’s a bit troublesome and taking this route you are at the very least introducing another computer into your home which will require updating and mainentaince.  My QNAP NAS sits idle now as too often I would sit dow to have a session and get some annoying error or update message.  My advice, at least to start with is keep it simple.

Thanks for the replies so far, I feel uncertain how to proceed

I have now spoken to half a dozen Naim dealerships and have received as may different bits of advice!!

I feel the most satisfactory way to proceed is to buy a ND5 XS and a Uniti Core and hope I can connect them effectively, costly but I should get the sound quality I require. Besides buying a drive for the Core is there anything else I might need

I presume you will connect via Ethernet cables. Would suggest an Ethernet cable from router to a gigabit switch such as Netgear GS105. ( about£20). Then an Ethernet cable from switch to ND5XS, and another from switch to Core.

Naim recommend a Seagate pipeline hard drive of 2 TB, depending on the size of your CD collection, I bought mine off amazon.

If you are concern with cost,  why bother with the Core?   I started with a NAS,  ripped my CD collection to NAS with dBpoweramp on my laptop & it was a breeze.  (my opinion on the comments above about NAS being troublesome - best keep it polite & say I very strongly disagree)   Most of the streaming world uses a NAS,  go look on the Linn forum,  go look on any hifi/audio forum.  A decent NAS can be bought for 10% of the cost of Core.   

nimrodmr2p posted:

Thanks for the replies so far, I feel uncertain how to proceed

I have now spoken to half a dozen Naim dealerships and have received as may different bits of advice!!

I feel the most satisfactory way to proceed is to buy a ND5 XS and a Uniti Core and hope I can connect them effectively, costly but I should get the sound quality I require. Besides buying a drive for the Core is there anything else I might need

This certainly is a reasonable way to get started!!

I started into streaming about 6 years ago now with the purchase of a Naim UnitiServe (the predecessor to the Core).  I ripped a few hundred cd's and discovered that I LOVE streaming and that it is the only way for me now.  I eliminated all cd's from my listening room; no clutter, no trying to find the cd I want . . . and the ability to change what we are listening to so easily from my iPhone or iPad.

As you have seen, there are many posts about skipping the Core and essentially making your own server with a nas and server software such as Asset or MinimServer.  If you are comfortable with 'playing' a little with computer hardware, and a fair amount with software, then honestly this is both a MORE ROBUST and a MUCH CHEAPER alternative. BUT . . . if you want to take a much simpler route, buy the Core as it truly is "plug and play" easy and your dealer can support you a lot more.

I bought the UnitiServe and used it for a few years.  I bought a nas and learned how to set it up to back up my UnitiServe.  Then for fun I installed MinimServer on it.  Then I started using it as a server to compare to the UnitiServe.  Then, you guessed it, I sold off the UnitiServe.  But for me I do not regret this at all; starting with the Naim all-in-one solution gave me an easy path into the technology.

All the best,

Bart

(now I have 2 nas'es, one to back up the other. My primary server is a QNAP nas running Asset server)

Mike-B posted:

If you are concern with cost,  why bother with the Core?   I started with a NAS,  ripped my CD collection to NAS with dBpoweramp on my laptop & it was a breeze.  (my opinion on the comments above about NAS being troublesome - best keep it polite & say I very strongly disagree)   Most of the streaming world uses a NAS,  go look on the Linn forum,  go look on any hifi/audio forum.  A decent NAS can be bought for 10% of the cost of Core.   

Or from a different angle why buy the ND5XS, when you could get better sound quality feeding the SPDIF output direct to a DAC such as n-DAC or Chord Hugo (apparently quite different presentations, it seems many preferring Hugo but some preferring nDAC...

Innocent Bystander posted:

Or from a different angle why buy the ND5XS, when you could get better sound quality feeding the SPDIF output direct to a DAC such as n-DAC or Chord Hugo (apparently quite different presentations, it seems many preferring Hugo but some preferring nDAC...

Yes thats an alternative.  However for myself I prefer to KIS(S)    NDX with NAS & iRadio & whatever other streaming services all in one box & controlled from my iPad & the fantastic Naim app.    

Lots of ways to get into streaming. I bought a NAIT XS 2 & CD Player originally this past Nay. In July I traded in the CD player and picked up the ND5 XS and a CD Transport. Then I returned the CD Transport and now just have a two box system on the Hi Fi Rack. I did by a Synology NAS which I have ripped over 1000 CDs onto. Between TIDAL and the NAS all my music is served up to the ND5XS via a CAT5e cable. Lots of music at my fingertips via my iPad or iPhone. 

It was easy to set up and I find the music works for me. Lots of different ways to build a system, mine is pretty simple and has brought me many hours of listening pleasure.

There are a number of members who enjoy the NAIT XS AMP as well as the ND5XS. You can always get on the buy bigger and better and different train at any time. I am enjoying where I started but who knows where I may end up.

Good Luck with your decision.

nimrodmr2p posted:

More comments and more complications

Someone really needs to sort this world out, has someone written the idiots guide to streaming

I can see me sticking with playing CDs at this rate (now I can see how the rebirth of vinyl got started)

yes,it is not so easy to understand at the beginning.  There is a lot of different solutions, like nd5XS with a uniticore or uniticore connected with a bnc( spdif cable) to a dac ( naim dac V or naim dac) or nd5XS with a nas ( if you rip your cds with your pc).  And a lot more....

nimrodmr2p posted:

More comments and more complications

Someone really needs to sort this world out, has someone written the idiots guide to streaming

I can see me sticking with playing CDs at this rate (now I can see how the rebirth of vinyl got started)

I felt the same way six months ago, I found the two naim boxes, NAIT XS 2 & ND5 XS along with a NAS, ROUTER & internet connection to pretty simple to set-up. Between a few questions on the forum and talking with my dealer things got up and running. I thought I needed a CD Player, once streaming was up and running, I found the quality of the music from the NAS matched the CD player that I was using and the NAS was much easier and did not require finding and putting back CD's.  A win/win situation for me. Others feel differently and I respect their opinions.

Good luck with your decision, but you will find out it is pretty easy to get up and going.

Yes, before one has jumped in, this seems QUITE complicated.  That is why starting with a simple solution, such as a Naim ripper/player/server, is not a bad way to go.  One can get started without really knowing how this stuff works, and then learn as one goes....all the while enjoying the benefits of streaming the music.  Relatively low frustration factor!!!

I started off with the UnitiServe and the Naim Dac; using the uServe as a player and thus not really "streaming."  But I quickly wanted a second system in the home and thus needed a true UPnP server function which of course the uServe and Core perform. So I sold off the Dac in favor of NDS/555  and a Qute2 for my second system.

It seems complicated because it is unfamiliar - compared to a vinyl system it's simplicity itself. The main problem is that it is so versatile that people get overwhelmed by choice but it's actually very simple and easy.

If it helps, think of it as a collection of records or CDs that magically fit into a box (could be a Core, a NAS, or a computer).  Feed the output of the box into a DAC and the output of your DAC into your amp - voila. Just decide what you want to do and do it! Once you have that working you can then look at Tidal and internet radio etc. but if all you want to do is play music that's all there is to it.

Hi Nimrodmr2p, I “discovered” streaming (and NAIM) popping into a HIFI store looking for speakers 5 years ago. The rep had a small elegant black box playing music ... He explained it was an “all in one solution” (it was a UnitiLite) with CD, USB input and internet radio... I asked to borrow it for a few days and was hooked immediately, primarily on the convenience of it. Funny enough, the rep didn’t have a NAS and did not tell me anything about Upnp etc...I figured that on my own a caple of days later ...it was that easy. Ripping CDs on the PC, transferring to the NAS. I honestly see no reason to worry about “mastering the streaming ritual”. Good luck with your next steps!

Mike-B posted:
Innocent Bystander posted:

Or from a different angle why buy the ND5XS, when you could get better sound quality feeding the SPDIF output direct to a DAC such as n-DAC or Chord Hugo (apparently quite different presentations, it seems many preferring Hugo but some preferring nDAC...

Yes thats an alternative.  However for myself I prefer to KIS(S)    NDX with NAS & iRadio & whatever other streaming services all in one box & controlled from my iPad & the fantastic Naim app.    

My point was that to me Core into ND5XS doesn't seem the best approach: better options in my view would be NAS into ND5XS, which is cheaper, or Core into a DAC, which is better sound quality. All three are simple systems, though arguably NAS-ND5XS is the least simple.

NAS into NDX is another take on NAS-ND5XS, better sound quality but more costly, however from what people say might not be as good sound quality as Core-DAC

Simplest of course might be an Atom or Nova...

 

Innocent Bystander posted:

My point was that to me Core into ND5XS doesn't seem the best approach: better options in my view would be NAS into ND5XS, which is cheaper, or Core into a DAC, which is better sound quality. All three are simple systems, though arguably NAS-ND5XS is the least simple. 

I have not heard a Core myself,  but someone who has said he was not convinced that there is a difference or a difference worth the money.    Then reading the threads on the problems with Core,  it seems its not at all ready for someone venturing into streaming for the first time.    Whatever,  I still don't understand the need for such a device,  once the CD's are ripped its mostly redundant.   

I really don't understand why you say NAS-ND is the least simple,    my NAS-NDX is pure simplicity & convenience.

nimrodmr2p posted:

More comments and more complications

Someone really needs to sort this world out, has someone written the idiots guide to streaming

I can see me sticking with playing CDs at this rate (now I can see how the rebirth of vinyl got started)

That's one of the problems with asking on a forum. Have you got a good dealer who could take you through the steps, show you what you need, install it and get you going ?

If not, Linn has one of the best guides (IMHO) which a few other companies should really emulate for their streamers. 

If you google 'introduction to DS concepts Linn' then this will get you to the page. They have a whole knowledge base there covering, streaming, hardware needed, ripping etc. Well worth a read. 

It really is worth persevering as it's a great way of being able to access and enjoy your whole music collection. 

James

james n posted:

It really is worth persevering as it's a great way of being able to access and enjoy your whole music collection. 

And not forgetting that with a ND or other streaming player you also get 10's of thousand iRadio (webradio) stations & the web streaming services.

nimrodmr2p,

A few months ago I was in a position similar to yours, having no experience with streaming music at all. 

Visiting a dealer I noticed how convenient streaming could be, with an ipad and a NAC 272. I could see an advantage in reducing the number of cd's in our living room as well, and decided to get myself a streamer.

On the internet I found a s/h ND5SX at a reasonable price. So I had to do all the setup myself. I can assure you that setting up a basic solution is very easy.  I did it like this:

ND5SX was connected to router (with standard ethernet cable, wifi also possible) and to AUX on amp. Now internet radio was working. Downloaded Naim app from app store. Then with windows media player I ripped some cd's to wav files on a USB memory stick. This I inserted on the front of the ND5SX and the files were immediately available for streaming.  

This is all it takes to get started. I used this setup for about a month. 

Next, I added a basic NAS drive, 2 TB Seagate Personal Cloud (100£). Connecting to pc and setup was simple, following the included setup guide. When connected to the router the NAS drive automatically showed up on the ND5 (when selecting UPnP input), and I could stream the music from the NAS. 

Nothing so far should be too complicated to do yourself, and a setup like this is (IMHO) a very good place to start.  

 After this you may want to fine tune things. Going for a higher spec NAS, changing server software to Minimserver or Asset, install a dedicated cd ripping program, change ethernet cabling etc. etc. And optimize use of metadata info (artist, year etc) on your music files. Of course, the more you get right in the first place, the less you'll have to change things later. But that also makes it more complex to get started. 

There are many things you can do to tweak the setup, and reading on these pages about all the options could make things sound more complicated than they are/have to be. 

Claus

Mike-B posted:
Innocent Bystander posted:

My point was that to me Core into ND5XS doesn't seem the best approach: better options in my view would be NAS into ND5XS, which is cheaper, or Core into a DAC, which is better sound quality. All three are simple systems, though arguably NAS-ND5XS is the least simple. 

I have not heard a Core myself,  but someone who has said he was not convinced that there is a difference or a difference worth the money.    Then reading the threads on the problems with Core,  it seems its not at all ready for someone venturing into streaming for the first time.    Whatever,  I still don't understand the need for such a device,  once the CD's are ripped its mostly redundant.   

I really don't understand why you say NAS-ND is the least simple,    my NAS-NDX is pure simplicity & convenience.

Because  a network is less simple than an SPDIF cable - and going by the not infrequent calls for help, more prone to problems from other factors.

I'm with Claus, above.

Rip CDs to your PC for a start to get used to how that works. Windows Media Player will do a job, to get started. Rip to your local C: drive at first. Then try something like DBPowerAmp as a free trial and if you like it pay for the full-fat version. Try changing things to see how easy it is, e.g file names, tags (the values in album titles, composers, track names etc that you'll see when you play them). Download MP3Tag and see how easy it is to change individual track tags or whole albums' worth. It's free, and easy.

Once you've got a feel for it, probably an afternoon tbh, get a NAS (I too use the Seagate Personal Cloud), connect it to your router with its supplied Ethernet cable and find it in Windows Explorer as a netowrk drive. You can set it up via the Personal Cloud shortcut that opens its control panel. When you're happy, create a folder in the Public folder called Music (or some other suitable name) and move your ripped music files to that. You'll want a folder structure of Artist and within each artist folder the folders that contain your ripped albums. 

Once you've done that, connect your ND5XS to your network, install the Naim app on your phone / tablet and that's it - prod away, select whatever you want to hear and off you go. It really is easy to get going, and once you've got to that stage then you can start to experiment and change things as you'll have grasped it by then.

Good luck, have fun and enjoy. Btw the ND5XS is very good.

After another day or ringing around I am trying to make a decision to beat the price rise

I felt I was favouring the ND5 XS to go into my Nait XS however one dealer has suggested I go for the Atom streamer but feed it into the Nait Xs via the pre-amp out sockets. They feel the Atom streamer section is better but this way I get the clout of the XS over the Atom power amp section. Will this allow me to still select the CD player on my XS amp or do I feed it through the input section on the Atom

 

Any comments

nimrodmr2p posted:

After another day or ringing around I am trying to make a decision to beat the price rise

I felt I was favouring the ND5 XS to go into my Nait XS however one dealer has suggested I go for the Atom streamer but feed it into the Nait Xs via the pre-amp out sockets. They feel the Atom streamer section is better but this way I get the clout of the XS over the Atom power amp section. Will this allow me to still select the CD player on my XS amp or do I feed it through the input section on the Atom

 

Any comments

If you are going to go that route why not just trade in the Nait XS and go with the STAR, streamer with a CD player built in? Attach your speakers and away you go.  This takes your worry away from having the ND5XS being updated since the STAR is the latest and greatest streaming technology.  

Good luck with your decision.

My experience, along with others, has been the use of a CD diminishes over time when a streaming device is added to the system. Between HiRes Downloads on a NAS, Ripped CD's on the NAS, TIDAL HiFi or Spotify HiRes subscriptions, along with internet radio  replaces or reduces the use of the CD player. For some of us we ended up trading in the CD player towards other hifi gear. For others they moved to a CD transport and ran the file through the DAC on the streamer. Then for some who have kept the CD Player they have mix use of using the CD player and the streamer.

When looking at what streamer you want and the cost, you can look at trading in the CD5 XS towards a streamer. With the CD player on the star you can play and rip the CD's.   The convince of having the tray vs having a CD Player that could play and rip CD's is a consideration worth taking a hard look at with choosing a Atom vs Star. One other consideration would be the box count on a rack and power considerations.

Good luck with your decision.

I have only used UnitiServe and Core (just started serious demo testing). The Core metadata editing seems to give one the option to recheck the metadata source, which allows ones database to be updated quite easily. Not sure how Minim, Asset and others work.

The cover art editing is as good as the US. The ones it doesn’t find can be explained by the titles being common tags for lots of things. Once you get the hang of finding them it quite good.

Perhaps in time as all the features appear it will be a better solution.

Phil

Today I have taken the plunge and ordered an ATOM rather than the ND5XS. I was persuaded by the more modern streaming platform and better screen. The plan is to keep the Nait XS and take the pre-out from the ATOM and feed it into the Nait XS to take advantage of the extra clout. I have been told I can still play my CD5XS through the NaitXS in the conventional way but that a better result will be had by taking the digital output from the CD5XS and feeding it into the ATOM to take advantage of its better DAC. I just hope I have understood this correctly. As regards ripping CDs to storage I will leave that until later since I have been told to avoid the CORE at present until difficulties are sorted out

Merry Xmas to everyone

nimrodmr2p posted:

Today I have taken the plunge and ordered an ATOM rather than the ND5XS. I was persuaded by the more modern streaming platform and better screen. The plan is to keep the Nait XS and take the pre-out from the ATOM and feed it into the Nait XS to take advantage of the extra clout. I have been told I can still play my CD5XS through the NaitXS in the conventional way but that a better result will be had by taking the digital output from the CD5XS and feeding it into the ATOM to take advantage of its better DAC. I just hope I have understood this correctly. As regards ripping CDs to storage I will leave that until later since I have been told to avoid the CORE at present until difficulties are sorted out

Merry Xmas to everyone

i would have sold the nait XS and took the uniti star but your choice is perhaps less expensive....

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