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Hifi Upgrade Phase 3

windhoek

Well-known Member
I've been upgrading my hifi over the last few months and today I went to Loud & Clear in Glasgow to demo and possibly purchase a Naim CD5i cdp as I returned my faulty Cambridge Audio 840C to Richer Sounds for a refund. Below are links to threads about my previous upgrades.


Phase 1: Turntable Upgrade


Phase 2: Integrated Amp



Before I get into things, I'd like to say a bit about Loud & Clear Hi-fi. It's not often Mr Pig is wrong, but he's right again! He told me L&C were the best hi-fi retailer in Glasgow and after going there today, I'm convinced he's right. John @ L&C was welcoming, accommodating and friendly: he even made me a cup of tea! Their basement demo room oozes coolness with an exposed sandstone wall, lots of LPs and stylish décor – it's the kind of room I'd love to have as a hi-fi room!

I took my Pioneer DV-600 DVD player over to L&C to demo it against a CD5i. John hooked up the Naim first and I must say, I wasn't impressed. It sounded good, but considering it was connected to some very expensive gear, I just didn't get a WOW factor from it.

John then hooked up my Pioneer and I was expecting it to sound awful, but it didn't. Although it never sounded as good as the Naim, I was impressed by how decent it did sound because in my set up, it sounds rubbish! What I concluded from the demo was the Pioneer sounded much improved in their set up and the Naim sounded better, but not night and day better as I'd hoped it would be. I decided to buy the Naim on the premise that I could return it if it didn't sound good in my set up. But first, I had to agree a deal with John.

John previously said the Naim would be £850, but added he could do it a bit cheaper on the day. When we got to his computer however, he told me Naim put their prices up in April and the CD5i now costs £975! He added that because they ordered the one I'd be buying before the increase, it didn't apply to me - phew! I reminded John about his offer of a discount (I was prepared to pay £830), so John got out a calculator, did some sums, then said “how does £785 sound?”, I suppressed my excitement and coolly said "that sounds good” and shook his hand. I then asked for a 1.5m phono-phono cable and he gave me a brand new GJ Signature Series cable for free!

I got the Naim home and it sounded better in my set up, but not 100% toe-tappingly brilliant. I then connected it directly to my Monitor II Headphone Amp and boy, it sounds awesome! What I now conclude is that it sounds good in my hifi set up and absolutely terrific with my headphone amp and headphones! John did say it's only been out of its box for a few hours and should sound better the more I use and the more I use it, I shall!
 
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Don Dadda

Distinguished Member
Nice one :thumbsup:

I have the DV400 and think the same as you.

In time, let us know how the naim sounds as it would of bedded in by then.

Not doubting the Naim capability but if the pio sounds that good incomparison, It goes to show how good the pio dvdp is as a cd spinner when up against something so esteemed such as the Naim.
On the whole with what you have witness between the 2, would you say the naim is worth the extra £700/800 more than the pio or Pioneer missed out on something there?
 

windhoek

Well-known Member
Mr Pig said:
What do you mean 'not often'?...

I meant it as a homage to your proclevity to be correct in all matters hifi. I hope that's how it u read it?
 

windhoek

Well-known Member
@ DD, I don't kno why there wasn't a greater gap in apparent SQ between the Pioneer and Naim when I was in the demo room, but once home, the Naim sounded much better. Whether the Naim would sound better than my old CA 840C, is too hard to say. As for the deal I got today, I think it was unquestionably worth it - especially as it should sound even better once it's been run in.
 

Don Dadda

Distinguished Member
@ DD, I don't kno why there wasn't a greater gap in apparent SQ between the Pioneer and Naim when I was in the demo room, but once home, the Naim sounded much better.....

.... As for the deal I got today, I think it was unquestionably worth it - especially as it should sound even better once it's been run in.

Clearly your setup and home enviromment is much better suited and thats where it counts - Excellent.

It maybe too much for my pocket, but I think you done well getting that good deal.

Here's wishing you many happy years of CD listening Pleasure:smashin:
 

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