I have personal experience with a number of Naim power amp recaps, though not specifically a 140. In every case, the performance improvement was not subtle. If you've been happy with your 140 and it still suits your needs, a recap is a good investment. It will be ready to roll for another 10+ years and, if you decide to sell it on down the line, it will go faster and at a higher price for having the work done. Good luck and good listening.
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Dave from NaimUSA here...seriously, I think you've caught on to a real dilemna that established manufacturers with lots of legacy equipment still out there in the field have to face.
I spent quite a few years in and out of the musical instrument (MI) and pro audio industries, as well as a few stints doing PC systems integration and consumer audio before I joined NaimUSA in 1995. During those years, I have slowly watched the mom-and-pop repair shops that dominated the service and repair field slowly wither away and die, due to tectonic changes in the industry (especially as regards component availability).
As NaimUSA service manager for well over ten years, I instituted a third-party service and repair training programproblem is, it's difficult to find decent technicians with production-grade point-to-point (or point-to-PCB) soldering skills these days, which makes the process of locating decent repair shops with a decent business model even more complicated.
Unfortunately, at the present time there exist no authorized third-party repair facilities for Naim equipment in the U.S., warranty or otherwise. All equipment passes through Chicago, where we have three or four staff members capable of diagnosis and repair of items up to thirty-five years of age.
For most repair shops, the parts cost is quite small relative to the labor and administrative costs, services which permit one to repair and ship units from all over the States. Unfortunately, these costs are escalating while at the same time there are fewer parts available for older, pre-RoHS equipment, especially limited-run, select or binned-value items. Key modules manufactured by others (e.g., Philips) often pass out of availability, which makes this process even more difficult.
Eventually, a threshold is crossed where equipment gets too expensive to repair through normal channelsthis essentially reduces the purchase/resale value to a point where refurbishment service remains viable only as a portion of the overall cost of the equipment (purchase value + maintenance). As the resale value of older equipment affects (to a certain degree) the sale of new manufactured equipment, it is in the best interests of a manufacturer / distributor to keep these maintenance costs as low as possible to keep the bottom of the market from dropping out.
AudioPlus contact: firstname.lastname@example.org in Montreal for Naim service, part of Focal for some time now. Besides Naim in Montreal and AV Options, I believe there is a Naim dealer in California who is also an authorized Naim service operation.
Naim servicing is not just about bringing the gear ’up to snuff’. Its about peace of mind, knowing Naim has revived your gear to like new condition, which is well worth the high price of admission in my book.
There are Youtube videos by Naim proudly showing Naim production and quality control and I think Naim is right to be proud of it. It is one of the very best audio companies out there.