posted on Friday, 28th September 2012 by Steve May
Naim has widened its range of streaming audio products with the UnitiLite all-in-one. A slimline version of the highly rated NaimUniti, it combines CD player and USB media reader with high-resolution 32bit/192kHz network playback and integrated 50w amplifier.
The UnitiLite can be networked via Ethernet or Wi-Fi and is UPnP-enabled to stream audio stored on NAS devices; codec support covers WAV, FLAC, Apple Lossless, AIFF, AAC, WMA, Ogg Vorbis and MP3. Gapless playback is available on all lossless file formats and most lossy formats (with the exception of Ogg and WMA). Naturally, internet radio, via vTuner 5, is also on tap. Integrators have the option of specifying an FM/DAB enabled edition if required. Build quality is high; the unit employs a Burr-Brown PCM 1793 DAC.
In addition to the supplied remote control, the new all-in-one can also be controlled with the free n‑Stream app for iOS. Newly updated, this offers full playlist control with artwork and info metadata support from database leader Rovi. "Information such as biographies, discographies, album reviews and much more are available at the touch of a button or a swipe of the finger," says the company.
The UnitiLite is available from October, with an RRP of £1650 (£1895 with the FM/DAB radio).
There's still life left in disc says Naim
The launch of the UnitiLite follows hot on the heals of a new CD Player. The Naim CD5si relaces the CD5i player, adding a Burr Brown PCM 1793 DAC and higher precision clock to reduce jitter. The player's analogue output filter has also been improved, which according to the company delivers a ten-fold reduction in distortion. The CD5si also boasts a more robust transport mechanism, mounted on Naim's unique swing drawer tray. It retails for £995.
Naim Audio has been making CD players since 1991, but given its enthusiasm for audiophile grade streaming, isn't the introduction of a new high-end CD player contradictory?
"The CD market may be reducing, but it's certainly not dying," says the company. "In some markets sales of CD players - out of the truly budget categories - are growing. In the UK we live in a very 'early adopting market' and sometimes, because of this, have distorted views on the world's markets. Some markets are moving much more slowly towards music streaming than others and for those 'less speedy' markets an improved Naim CD player makes huge sense. Even those more nimble markets have a good deal of customers who are currently very happy with CD and have no intention of moving away - yet."
Steve is a veteran of the UK consumer electronics
industry, having covered it for
various media outlets for more than 20 years.
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