A third path might be to look at the Teddy Pardo power supplies. I just ordered a TeddySuperCap for my Naim SuperLine. MUCH cheaper than the Naim unit; it has been shipped but not here yet. Path no. 4 is to buy a Metrum Octave DAC; I have one and it is great.
I have not heard the DAC, but the XPS2 absolutely transforms the CDX2 into another player. All of the musical textures are richer and more complete, with significantly more bass weight. If you like the CDX2 now, you will love the upgrade. No substitute for those big power supplies with Naim gear. IMO of course.
It seems that people either really like Naim or dislike them. I can't say that I dislike them; but the truth is I really don't trust them. The reason is this. I was thinking to buy the same CD player you have, so I went to the nearest Naim dealer for a demo. When I tried the external power supply, not only did it make a difference, but a really big one. In my opinion, too big. I can't help but think that they made the CD player not as well as they could have in an attempt to sell the power supply. I could be wrong, of course, but I can definitely confirm that the PS will make a substantial improvement.
BLK25 I am not sure that is fair. I am not an out and out Naim lover, but as I understand their philosophy, it includes giving a clear upgrade path, to help purchasers. You start at a given level and can add to it incrementally without losing your initial investment.
Secondly, as I understand it, they believe power supllies should be separated from the music part of the equipment, for sound quality reasons. This means power suppies are in a separate box. Rather than forcing you to buy the power supply with the origonal kit, there is a basic supply in it, to get you started. That seems to make sense to me.
To answer the origonal questions, it is axiomatic that upgraded power supplies always make a big difference with Naim, amp, pre or CD player
I understand what you are saying, but I think it is fair. The reason being is that: 1. This is what I came up with when I evaluated the equipment. It's not like I read about it in some silly magazine review or something. 2. It's my time & money and I have every right to check the equipment out and share whatever I find; good or bad.
More importantly, though, I have owned and used other equipment with optional power supply upgrades. No power supplies that I have ever heard made even close to the difference that these that Naim's made. Also, Naim is one of those companies where everything is a big secret. I don't know if you have ever spoken to them, but the only way I can describe it is odd. Any time you ask them a question about how something is made, you can see that they try to avoid giving an answer and they just act like they are uncomfortable in some way.
There are plenty of other audio companies that will tell you exactly how they make their equipment. As a matter of fact, they want to tell you. Why? They want to sell it to you. You hear something like this: "This is what we do that none of our competitors do and we are very proud of that." You won't here Naim make statements like that.
Given all this, it leaves me with 1 question that I ask myself. With regards to sound quality, is there something that Naim equipment does that no one elses does, there by making Naim a must have purchase? My answer is No.
Blk25, you said:
"Also, Naim is one of those companies where everything is a big secret. I don't know if you have ever spoken to them, but the only way I can describe it is odd. Any time you ask them a question about how something is made, you can see that they try to avoid giving an answer and they just act like they are uncomfortable in some way."
This sounds a little strange to me. When have you ever spoken to "them" and who or what is "them". There is plenty of info available on the web about Naim.
To the OP, I am a Naim fan and believe as stated by David that Naim offers a great way to upgrade within the brand wihtout having to sell off anything to achieve said upgrade.
As to then DAC vs XPS2, I would go for the XPS2 first, UNLESS you have other streaming sources that could utilize the DAC. You can add the DAC later when funds allow.
I have had CD5XS>DAC sublime. I currently have CDX2.2>Teddy Pardo XPS excellent.
That, again, is one of the most attractive things about Naim. So many options.
Thanks to all who responded.
I am more inclined now to go for the XPS or similar UPS.
When it comes to making an improvement to the already good sounding CDX2-2,the Naim XPS is a bit pricey and hard to swallow.
Is the power stage in the CDX2-2 really that bad?
Not to my ears, so to really feel alright about the move I would need an audition of an XPS to justify it's cost,which is almost that of the cdx2-2.
If I were technically inclined, I would think that there must be someway to use the built in power supply and augment it with a less elaborate add on one.
In other words,why disable it altogether and render it useless ?
Why can't it be implimented and work alongside the added power stage ?
To me this would make more sense, and should be less costly.
It could be implimented in a quasi balanced power supply, the original PS running the left and the added on PS(made to match the ps of the cdx2-2)to run the right side.
If Naim could bring out something like this and price it at less than half the cost of a CDX2, then I believe it would sell quite well.
Perhaps a word or two to Naim from some of us could put the ball in motion?
forums.naimaudio.com is where you can also inquire. I have the CD555/ PS555.
A few members there suggest adding a secondary PS555. Talk about an expensive upgrade!!
Well it looks like you got me. I don't know how I am going to explain my way out of this one. Let me ask you, though, why would I go out of my way to make something like that up? Unless, of course, I have another motive like trying to get the OP to buy the alternative brand I mentioned, instead of buying a Naim. Come to think of it, I didn't do that either.
The only thing that needs to be addressed then, is who is "them". The only answer I can give is, them is them; or Naim. If you are not that clear, you can dial Them's number at (972) 234-0182. You can ask Them all the questions you want, just like I did.
Welcome to Audiogon. This type of behaviour is common and just has to be tolerated, no matter how well meaning. When you ask for advice and opinions, not every reply will be good. If it were, there would be no point in asking anything. When I make a comment on something, I give a truthful one, good or bad.
It wasn't my intention of bringing brands into this; I just wanted to give you my thoughts on Naim. Given the confusion, its probably best to give you some more info and why I think what I do. A few years back, I had an Arcam FMJ 33. I was happy with it but thought Naim might be a logical upgrade so I went to my local dealer, who is excellent, and spent over 5hrs in the store comparing the Arcam to Naim. I tried all their models and power supplies. The owner of the store was there with me the whole time, giving his opinion and making sure I was setting everything up right. In the end, it turned out that my Arcam was more than competitive. To equal the sound quality with Naim equipment, I would have to spend $5000; more than that if I wanted an improvement. Just to note my Arcam went for $2500. I will admit that this was a subjective judgement, and you may feel different. I did, however, appreciate the owners honesty in his recommendation that I keep my Arcam. For what it's worth, my opinion was exactly the same.
So am I now telling you to get an Arcam? Compared to Naim, yes. Compared to my Ayre 7, no. Should you get an Ayre? Yes over the Arcam, no because my Wadia 861 is even better. -- I just put that last part in to show you why I held off on talking about any other brands that Naim in my earlier posts.
Good luck in your search and I think that I can safely say for the 3rd time, that a PS upgrade will be a noticeable one.
All I can tell you is - yes, the PS upgrade is worth it. I had the advantage of a dealer demo and it was certainly worth it to me. Of course, if you're buying anything used without a demo, there is always the element of faith. Therein lies the problem.
Well faith does have a lot to do with it, but real hands on experiences hold more water for me.
People can speculate about things that can or can't work, I've had my share of those battles, so they're not news to me.
But I do have more "faith" in the posts from the folks who have actually used,or bought the items in question.
I have no doubt that both the Naim XPS2 or the Teddy Pardo unit would be a welcome addition to my Naim CDX2-2.
Do I find that my new CDx2-2 is performing less than satis
No, I am quite happy with it, the longer I play it the smoother it is sounding, or I'm becoming more used to it's sound,I replaced an old first version Audio Aero Cap 24/192, which was a very analog sounding player, but didn't have the speed or snap that the Naim has.
From what I've gathered, an upgraded power supply should bring a bit more smootheness back to the sound but keep the speed intact, so that's a win win for me.
Naim also has the new less expensive XP5 XS, about which not much, other than a small review in HFN, is known about it.
Where faith comes into play is how well you will be treated after you purchase the unit.
So this takes us into new territory.
Does anyone have any after purchase service stories they would like to share?
You will be treated splendidly.
Naim gives great service.
Naim digital is superb.
Buy the power supply first, and no, there is no mingling
of supplies. The external one yields way more than the
built-in. That is Naim's way. One either buys into it or looks
The new XP5 XS is for the newer line of streamers, like the NDX,
or the DAC.
No, the upgraded power supply does not bring a "bit" more smoothness. It is a night and day difference. If you can't listen for yourself, there is nothing else I can tell you. If you don't want to spend the money, then talk yourself out of it by telling yourself it won't be that much better. People do that all the time.
"Well it looks like you got me. I don't know how I am going to explain my way out of this one. Let me ask you, though, why would I go out of my way to make something like that up? Unless, of course, I have another motive like trying to get the OP to buy the alternative brand I mentioned, instead of buying a Naim. Come to think of it, I didn't do that either.
The only thing that needs to be addressed then, is who is "them". The only answer I can give is, them is them; or Naim. If you are not that clear, you can dial Them's number at (972) 234-0182. You can ask Them all the questions you want, just like I did."
Ummm, "them" at that phone number are NOT Naim -- that is the phone number of their US distributor, The Sound Organization. They are merely a distributor of Naim (and other brands including Quadraspire) equipment, and if you called "them" and asked how Naim products are made, I am not surprised you did not get an answer. That would be like calling Macy's and asking how Chanel perfume is made . . .
Lol to Bartolo..... I think a good 5 min chat with a Naim dealer would have sorted Blk out....maybe. It appears the OP received good advice regardless.
I suppose I could talk myself out of it and tell myself it won't be that much better, or I could talk myself into thinking it will be that much better.
Easy to do either,what's hard is to talk yourself into thinking it's better after you buy it if there's not that great of an improvement.
Lots of folks do that also.
I just bought a Shunyata Annaconda Helix VX power cord for the player and I don't have to think if there's an improvement,it's quite apparant that there is.
So the next step is an improved power supply, which will take full advantage of the VX cord, or not?
Could the Pardo PS for example, be too smoothed out with the VX power cord?
Too much of a good thing?
Anyone have any experience with such a pairing?
No one said this would be easy, except for the folks who run straight out of the box and into the wall.
But I want more than that.