Amp for Neat Motive Sx2

Gonepostal

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Apr 26, 2014
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Hi, I currently have a quad Vena driving these speakers. I'm enjoying the sound and I have to say that there isn't anything that I'm not enjoying. I do however have the funds to upgrade the amp, I reckon I can go to about £1000 buying used isn't a problem.

My first question is, would it be worth it. How much would I need to spend to get an improvement, I've read that Naim gels well with Neat but haven't heard them together. I was also considering the Rega Elex r but again haven't heard them. I wouldn't want to spend 1k for hardly any improvement.

My second question is, does the Vena have enough to drive these speakers to their best. I'm unsure how to work out what speakers need power wise to be driven etc. I've had the speakers for a couple of years and have often wondered if I'm doing them justice with the Vena.

My source is a project classic TT and Apple music connected by usb to the Vena.

Thanks for any input
 

insider9

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Going from Quad to Naim would be like going from having your bits tickled with a feather to having them connected to a car battery. I'd want to make sure I like the latter before I spend any money.

However, I'd be more concerned with the source as Apple Music via USB doesn't give you any platform to realise how good your system is, or how much it is lacking. If a fair amount of your listening is from streaming then digital source and a subscription to CD quality service would be my priority. Amp upgrade... sure but once that's addressed.
 

Gonepostal

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So streaming is something I'm starting to use more and more, it doesn't sound as good as the turntable but that's to be expected. I'm currently connecting my iPad to the Vena by usb to play Apple music, is there a better way to do this?
 

insider9

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Apple Music is 256 kbps AAC. Compared to CD quality FLAC being 1,411 kbps. I'd start from a trial of one of Tidal/Qobuz/Deezer Hifi/Amazon Music HD. Make sure the quality is at least CD quality. See if you can hear a difference. Connect as you would so far.
 
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muljao

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Maybe a dedicated streamer would be a way to get better functionality. Quality in equals quality out. If your files from iPad are good, you should get good sound out of the quad
However for convenience you could looks at a dedicated streamer, blusound node 2i is an example, or Yamaha wxad-10
 

nopiano

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Is the £1,000 available as well as the px value of your Quad? That would give some scope to consider a used Naim SuperUniti with a built in streamer. That would be significantly better for streaming paired with, say, Tidal or Qobuz. Otherwise, the best Naim amplifier will be quite different to your Quad, as you’ve had explained in a vivid metaphor above. A Naim streamer can always be added at a later date, or any other brand you fancy.

I can’t recall hearing a Neat not powered by Naim, so it’s definitely a popular pairing. But whether you’ll like it, I can’t know. Bear in mind that some models don’t have a phono stage built in, and you may need different connectors on your cables. And some Naims need 3.5 metres of their own brand cable! They don’t make things universal.
 

Gonepostal

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Maybe a dedicated streamer would be a way to get better functionality. Quality in equals quality out. If your files from iPad are good, you should get good sound out of the quad
However for convenience you could looks at a dedicated streamer, blusound node 2i is an example, or Yamaha wxad-10
To be fair I don't have any problems with convenience, it's very easy to plug the iPad into the Vena and just press play, it's easy to change track so a streamer isn't necessary.
 
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muljao

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To be fair I don't have any problems with convenience, it's very easy to plug the iPad into the Vena and just press play, it's easy to change track so a streamer isn't necessary.
That's great.

I'm guessing so you may need some type of better file if your turntable sounds better. If you have food quality files you should be able to there or thereabouts get as good quality as your records.
 
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Deleted member 116933

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So streaming is something I'm starting to use more and more, it doesn't sound as good as the turntable but that's to be expected. I'm currently connecting my iPad to the Vena by usb to play Apple music, is there a better way to do this?
A properly implemented streaming platform should sound every bit as good if not better than vinyl. Signing up to something like Qobuz would go some to sorting it rather than Apple Music.

But it could also be the case that the dac isnt the equal of the of the turntable cart and phono amp. Not a bad thing just not where you placed your priorities regarding the dac
 

djh1697

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Nov 27, 2008
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Spend your money on a Roon server (NUC), Qobuz is a good route, as is Tidal, both have good interfaces, but Roon has a superb User Interface, I think a lifetime subscription is around $800, the USB socket on the Quad would connect quite easily to a NUC. I would seriously go for that if you are looking at digital music. *IF* you have a vast LP collection, I'd look at upgrading perhaps to a Rega or speak to Peter Swain @ #Cymbiosis about a used LP12
 

Gonepostal

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Apr 26, 2014
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Thanks for all those that replied. The general consensus seems to be to upgrade from Spotify or Apple music to Tidal or Quboz etc.

I'm pretty happy with my vinyl playback so probably won't be changing that, although the Clearaudio Concept does look really nice. The Vena ticks all the boxes so will probably stick with that, I think I might start ripping my CDs to the iPad and see where that takes me.

Simple question, what is the best way to rip CDs to an iPad. Should I use Apple music or something else etc. And what format do I Rip them too, Alac etc.

Thanks.
 

Gonepostal

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Try to find as used Naim XS or XS2. It will be a much better match to your Neats than the Quad.
Space is a premium on the table that I use. The trouble with your suggestions us that it has neither a phono pre or a DAC, any amp would need 1 or the other to free up some space. The XS3 would be a good shout but that's a bit too expensive right now.
 

Gonepostal

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Apr 26, 2014
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Have just read that Apple will be introducing lossless streaming from the 21st of June at no extra costs, gives me a good opportunity to listen, maybe I won't need to go through the time consuming ripping of my CDs.
 

Gonepostal

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Apr 26, 2014
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Just curious, what's everyone's going from a Vena to a Creek Evo 50. Would you consider that a sideways move? And do you think it would gel well with the Neats?
 
Just curious, what's everyone's going from a Vena to a Creek Evo 50. Would you consider that a sideways move? And do you think it would gel well with the Neats?
might be a sideways move but I would take the Creek if it has all the facilities you need, it certainly will not have Bluetooth for example but this can easily be added, even more so if it were the Evo 100
 
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