Tell me about NAIM

I am upgrading my system. The main room will have B&W804's powered by Naim AP 180 with the NAC 102 Preamp. What do you think of this combo. The other rooms will be powered by my old Denon 825R linked via tape loop. I await its delivery and in anticipation want to educate myself more. By your standards it may be nothing but this is a big purchase for me.
Congratulations on your Naim purchase. Naim gear is well-built and very reliable, so you should have a set up that is without tears. The sound of Naim gear emphasizes pace, rhythm and timing. Performers sound more in sync with one another on Naim gear than with other gear. At the same time, Naim's tonal quality tends to be lean and performers are arrayed across the left-to-right stereo stage with little depth.

Naim has certainly captured some elements of musical truth to a degree that others cannot claim. Other elements of musical truth are less within Naim's grasp. For people who like popular music and jazz, Naim gear is terrific. For people who identify more with the particular tonality of voices and instruments, the Naim gear may not equal other makes, particularly tube brands.

I have owned Naim gear for over 15 years and have more recently owned a number of tube pieces. I have enjoyed both and hope that you have fun with your rig. Remember, no matter what anyone else says about your system, they don't have to listen to it; you do. If it makes you want to listen to music, if it sounds good to you, it is good.
fidelio: what is your question? casarossz: what does your "answer" mean? do we all get in a circle now and chant, or what? -kelly
Cornfedboy, I sympathise with your bewilderment about the question, and find Casaross' post a little Jingoist and certainly simplistic, but no worse than my posts, for example. None of us have the time, space or audience to go much beyond generalities. But I wanted to point out that while PRAT may seem like some wierd mantra to Americans, the American obsession with soundstage seems just as oddly narrow to many British (and their colonial descendents).
And, by the way, I don't like Naim gear much. Exagerated upper bass and a fatiguing etched sound where images have no palpability let alone depth, are my main concerns. Don't mean to trash the stuff, just point out the qualities I don't care for. I suspect these are the very qualities that some people like about Naim gear - lots of leading edge detail so you know exactly when notes start, and a propulsive bass - it may add up to PRAT, but at the cost of too much else for my liking.
I personaly think that Naim makes a very good soundstaging product that competes well with american brands at their price piont. if you want dynamics without slam, Naim might be good choice.
Naim gear pleases people who are most interested in music emphasizing rhythm. Usually, rock and jazz fans are most inclined to Naim. Classical fans are more keyed into the tonal qualities of the instruments. They tend to like tubes and don't care as much for Naim. Naim stuff is not as full or warm as many tube pieces.

Naim gear has a family sound and as one goes up the line, the bass tends to be a bit fuller in the amps (until one arrives at the 135 monos)and the preamps have better detail. The 102 can be improved significantly by an outboard power supply, such as a HiCap or Supercap. These power supplies provide an overall improvement and do not focus on one area of the tonal spectrum or on a characteristic like soundstaging.

Using Naim cable to connect the speakers is highly recommended by Naim and the NACA6 cable is not unreasonably priced. Your dealer can get some made up for you with Naim's own banana plugs. This is a worthwhile investment with Naim gear.

Kelly/cornfedboy: Can you tell us what you think of Naim gear? Maybe you have opinions on the Naim NAP180 and NAC102 vis a vis the NAP250, NAP140, NAC72, NAC82, etc. Do you have experience with Naim's power supplies?