Naim Uniti Star All-in-One System Review & Comments

Discussion in 'Hi-Fi Stereo Systems & Separates' started by Phil Hinton, Jun 9, 2018.


    1. Ed Selley

      Ed Selley
      AVF Reviewer

      Joined:
      Jun 26, 2003
      Messages:
      11,229
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      2
      Trophy Points:
      166
      Ratings:
      +3,717
    2. TheCrow

      TheCrow
      Active Member

      Joined:
      Jul 16, 2004
      Messages:
      675
      Products Owned:
      2
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      28
      Location:
      London
      Ratings:
      +86
      "Insert ‘Star’ song reference here" LOL
       
    3. mainaman

      mainaman
      Member

      Joined:
      Jul 27, 2005
      Messages:
      1,842
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      63
      Location:
      london
      Ratings:
      +207
      Thanks for the review,would be great to test the Nova too.
       
    4. ozzzy189

      ozzzy189
      Well-known Member

      Joined:
      Jun 1, 2006
      Messages:
      7,578
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      136
      Location:
      North Lincolnshire
      Ratings:
      +1,122
      I've always found Naim to be a harsh and very 'shouty' listen that soon becomes tiring and headache inducing. Anyone else?
       
    5. Chester

      Chester
      Well-known Member

      Joined:
      Aug 18, 2003
      Messages:
      3,390
      Products Owned:
      3
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      137
      Location:
      Peterborough, Cambs, UK
      Ratings:
      +565
      I'm lucky enough to have had the opportunity to listen to this connected to a mighty set of Focal floorstanders. I didn't get to 'use' it so can't comment on that side, and the tracks played were largely 'safe'; however there was a short period of playing some rather dynamic classical on radio 3 (apparently in some form of 'HD' but not sure what exactly was meant by that) and it was the demo of the day. The Star managed to unlock detail, depth and steering that was really convincing supposedly from the worst source of the entire demo!

      Unfortunately the evening was largely let down by talk of needing a toroidal transformer in the Unity Core which I'm afraid is absolute rubbish, but going back to the Naim/Focal combo, exceedingly good. I got a further blow when discussing the Focals and the fact the tech wasn't coming to a model that my room would accommodate.

      As long as you've got a good room prepared for stereo, the Star would work superbly. I echo what Ed says speaker wise in that you really don't want anything too bright because there's a lot of crisp detail at the top from the Star which would become brittle if exaggerated by the speaker. It can get down to those low B-string notes on the bass with both power and poise, and plenty of ambience too if the recording asks for depth, whilst vocals are life like and instruments are steered with care.

      Naim's approach to achieving this solution and at this money, it's not for me, but let's do a little flag flying here: it's nice to see Naim doing so well and deliver a really well appointed, good looking, integrating a fabulously accomplished amp, all-in-one system. If you're in the market for this sort of thing then it deserves a listen, but take it home and partner them with equally well accomplished speakers.
       
    6. High Fidelity

      High Fidelity
      Member

      Joined:
      Sep 1, 2007
      Messages:
      951
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      64
      Ratings:
      +270
      Definately No , Naim Supernait 2 is excellent
       
    7. Iain42

      Iain42
      Well-known Member

      Joined:
      Oct 6, 2012
      Messages:
      1,419
      Products Owned:
      2
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      116
      Location:
      Hertfordshire
      Ratings:
      +1,064
      Agreed, as is the XS2.
       
    8. fizzgog

      fizzgog
      Active Member

      Joined:
      Feb 6, 2006
      Messages:
      1,290
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      2
      Trophy Points:
      63
      Location:
      wirral
      Ratings:
      +110
      Hi guys, thanks for the review - it has answered most of my questions.
      I am really interested in getting either the star or nova to replace my current separates system, but have a couple of remaining questions if that's ok?

      My current system is:
      Cyrus mono X x2
      Cyrus Dac XP with psx r
      Cyrus cd xt se with psx r

      Sonos connect (for Spotify + deezer)
      Rega RP3 turntable

      Spendor A6 speakers
      BK xl200 sub

      My main concern is sound quality and power - often i will play my music v loud (-28db), and it packs quite a punch without losing any clarity. How would the Naim star and nova compare to this?

      Also, would my current speakers be suitable?

      Thanks for any input.
      Pete
       
      Last edited: Jun 11, 2018
    9. tony @ suffolk

      tony @ suffolk
      Active Member

      Joined:
      Aug 9, 2004
      Messages:
      782
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      31
      Location:
      stowmarket
      Ratings:
      +75
      What particular model of Naim are you referring to? In what system? I've heard most models, from Naits to Statement, and none of them have been “Shouty” or harsh.
       
    10. ozzzy189

      ozzzy189
      Well-known Member

      Joined:
      Jun 1, 2006
      Messages:
      7,578
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      136
      Location:
      North Lincolnshire
      Ratings:
      +1,122
      I've heard a few systems from an integrated amp and cd player with dynaudio audience 42's to a monster 100,000k +system that was a load of boxes piled up on racks to around around 6 feet tall. That just hurt my ears.
       
    11. dollag

      dollag
      Well-known Member

      Joined:
      May 30, 2015
      Messages:
      1,436
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      116
      Location:
      Kent
      Ratings:
      +612

      probably the db levels that hurt your ears.

      I demoed the supernait recently with a pair of kef reference 1's and for the most part sounded great. the only issue I had with it was it's bass control, was very flabby and was not to my liking.

      The also demoed the Atom whilst there with a pair of R300's and some focal bookshelves (cannot remember which ones) and that sounded very nice. Never was a huge fan of naim but their atom, star and nova all in ones do seem like very good all in one solution. Their aesthetics are fantastic too and seem very well built.
       
    12. mainaman

      mainaman
      Member

      Joined:
      Jul 27, 2005
      Messages:
      1,842
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      63
      Location:
      london
      Ratings:
      +207
      I would consider an used Devialet 200 too.
       
    13. High Fidelity

      High Fidelity
      Member

      Joined:
      Sep 1, 2007
      Messages:
      951
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      64
      Ratings:
      +270
      Have tried Devialet at Home and find Class AB better than overpriced Class AD. or Class G.
       
    14. fizzgog

      fizzgog
      Active Member

      Joined:
      Feb 6, 2006
      Messages:
      1,290
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      2
      Trophy Points:
      63
      Location:
      wirral
      Ratings:
      +110
      Thanks for the replies fellas, any chance either of you could answer my 2questions regarding the sound comparison of the naim and Cyrus system, and the suitability of my current speakers please?
      Ta, Pete
       
    15. russraff

      russraff
      Active Member

      Joined:
      Aug 1, 2000
      Messages:
      2,444
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      51
      Location:
      Newcastle
      Ratings:
      +69
      I would say that any of the uniti range from a uniti2 upover would be an upgrade to the Cyrus kit you have. I recently had a pre2 dac qx and stereo 200 and even an XS with the built in dac on a Bluesound node was comfortably more musical. Not only are naim boxes better engineered they make a sound that's simply enjoyable whereas Cyrus is thinner and lacking in low end grunt. Cyrus kit also has a layer of grain over the sound that I find odd but some like when listening to rock. Maybe it's the qx dac but for me there are far better options for less.
      Older Naim kit such as the 122pre and 150 power amps are indeed forward. More modern efforts like supernait 2 still have that forward drive but with a more rounded mid.
      The uniti ranges have always been voiced less aggressively and the nova (and by extension the star) continues that trend. Personally I prefer the Linn all in one systems that, initially don't sound as impressive but eventually show far more detail and never tire the listener. Space optimisation is a class act, too.

      Never heard those speakers, so can't comment.

      I've had all of these options on dem, so not talking out of my backside. Of.course one man's poison and all that - some folk love Cyrus

       
    16. mainaman

      mainaman
      Member

      Joined:
      Jul 27, 2005
      Messages:
      1,842
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      63
      Location:
      london
      Ratings:
      +207
      I havent heard the Unity range yet,but the owners and the reviewer's consensus seem to be very positive.The cons are that the entry-level separates are still better(at least in the more resolving systems) and the analogue inputs are not that good(digitise at CD resolution).

      I have heard little from Cyrus,so i cant comment.

      There are Naim users,who have replaced their gear with Devialet.There are lots of posts on the Naim forums.

      Class A,class AB,class D and so on...My take is that all sounds good,if done right AND the source is good enough.
       
    17. russraff

      russraff
      Active Member

      Joined:
      Aug 1, 2000
      Messages:
      2,444
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      51
      Location:
      Newcastle
      Ratings:
      +69
      To this question I would say a provisional 'very favourably' with he provision being how the different products handle volume.
      The Cyrus I had has what appears to be a fairly high gain with the Denon 4400 autosetup setting the Cyrus at - 11.5db. This may give the impression that relatively low amounts of volume knob, if you will.. , will give higher levels of sound pressure. In fact I've found that bot naim and linn offer higher dynamic volume. The star has a 0 to 100 range that's fairly linear. I was lintening at 38 with the Cyrus at - 31db for the sam spl. Linn is absolutely linear and 60/80 was the setting but not a bit of stress.
      So yeah, don't worry about the volume that can be attained

       
    18. tony @ suffolk

      tony @ suffolk
      Active Member

      Joined:
      Aug 9, 2004
      Messages:
      782
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      31
      Location:
      stowmarket
      Ratings:
      +75
      There are Devialet users, who have replaced their gear with Naim. I did try a Devialet in our second system, but it was rather dull, a bit lifeless. Depends what you like of course.
       
    19. Karmachochi

      Karmachochi
      Novice Member

      Joined:
      Jan 11, 2016
      Messages:
      2
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      1
      Location:
      Tetbury
      Ratings:
      +1
      I suspect you'll be thinking about the old school "classic" Naim boxes, Ozzy, which (especially together with Naim speakers) were voiced to be distinctly on the lean side, focusing on Pace, Rhythm and Timing (PRaT). The second generation "Olive" boxes were a voiced a bit less aggressively, to my ears anyway, though still require careful speaker choice. The previous Uniti range (now discontinued) were voiced to work with a wide range of kit, and the new Uniti range continues in that direction. There have been firmware changes recently affecting the recently discontinued Uniti range (and some of the separates) that in the view of many tilts the voicing towards a slightly less mid-range focused presentation.
       
    20. ozzzy189

      ozzzy189
      Well-known Member

      Joined:
      Jun 1, 2006
      Messages:
      7,578
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      136
      Location:
      North Lincolnshire
      Ratings:
      +1,122
      Thank you for insightful post, that's probably it !
       
    21. the little audio company

      the little audio company
      Previously davidf AVForums Sponsor

      Joined:
      Nov 2, 2016
      Messages:
      1,410
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      116
      Location:
      birmingham
      Ratings:
      +752
      It’s usually down to dealers pairing Naim amps with speakers that are out of their capabilities. They end up struggling, and hardening up.

      Naim and Cyrus are quite different. I think moving to Naim you’re going to lose a certain amount of bass control, and and weight/presence in the bass region. I’ve done this demo many times, and the choic usually comes down to the type of music you listen to.

      Not sure why the dealer would demo that combination - I could’ve described how that would’ve sounded without even hearing it. The Reference Ones need to be treated like floorstanders, and partnered with clean sounding amplification with plenty of grip on the speaker it’s partnered with. A superNait would be better suited to R Series.
       
    22. dollag

      dollag
      Well-known Member

      Joined:
      May 30, 2015
      Messages:
      1,436
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      116
      Location:
      Kent
      Ratings:
      +612
      The ref ones I auditioned were with a supernait 2. To my ears there was a loss of control on the lower end and imo did not pair well at all.

      Edit I completely misread your post :blush:

      I totally agree the R's with the atom sounded nice, I was impressed and can only imagine that the supernait would only improve the experience.
       
    23. fizzgog

      fizzgog
      Active Member

      Joined:
      Feb 6, 2006
      Messages:
      1,290
      Products Owned:
      0
      Products Wanted:
      2
      Trophy Points:
      63
      Location:
      wirral
      Ratings:
      +110
      Thanks for the informative reply.
      It looks like I am set for a disappointment as I listen to a lot of bass intensive music (hip hop, electronic etc).
      There is no going back now tho as half my Cyrus system has sold and been sent.
      Thanks again. Pete
       
    24. the little audio company

      the little audio company
      Previously davidf AVForums Sponsor

      Joined:
      Nov 2, 2016
      Messages:
      1,410
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      116
      Location:
      birmingham
      Ratings:
      +752
      You can look at other manufacturers, but I just don’t think Naim will be the right one.
       
    25. ozzzy189

      ozzzy189
      Well-known Member

      Joined:
      Jun 1, 2006
      Messages:
      7,578
      Products Owned:
      1
      Products Wanted:
      0
      Trophy Points:
      136
      Location:
      North Lincolnshire
      Ratings:
      +1,122
      Try a Lejonklou boazu, integrated. It's absolutely blinding but it is a no-frills job. Just add a streamer or use a laptop as your source, you'll not get better sound for the money anywhere. You can get more volume but the musicality and its ability to play a tune is without question. Chris frankland reviewed it, links on the Lejonklou website, I got my kit from HiddenSystems.
       
      Last edited: Jun 26, 2018

    Share This Page

    Loading...
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice