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  1. #1
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    NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Didn't have much time available over the weekend to listen to my new gear. We were at a bluegrass festival all last week and through the weekend. But I managed to get a few hours of listening in yesterday...And Wow! Just Wow! I'll try and keep the superlatives to a minimum although that could prove to be very difficult. I'm just starting the honeymoon phase but I doubt that's going to wane for a long, long, time.

    First, the NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition amp...
    This combination player/server/streamer and (very) high end headphone amp is nothing short of genuinely amazing (Oops! A superlative slipped out.) But, what if it really is amazing? Could I then use a superlative? I mean, if it's the honest truth why not just say so? If it's truly stellar in every way why not just say so? OK, there it is. I said it. And it's the genuinely certified (by me) truth.

    Too often when a piece of gear serves multiple functions there is a compromise somewhere. But in the short time I've owned it I've not found anything even resembling a compromise. Nothing.

    Everything, and I mean everything about this headphone amp/player oozes and drips quality, including the sound. Just how much of the sound could be attributed to the amp vs the Focal Clear Mg phones that Mike Bovaird sent me, I'm not sure. But the two together are simply pure heaven. The sound is big and robust, yet very warm, with a beautifully balanced frequency spectrum. As you might predict, there is a wide and deep soundstage with each instrument being discrete yet perfectly blended. The bottom end is clear and clean and tight with no hint of mud. The very rich mids are right up front but not in excess at all. The top end is wonderfully crystalline, clear, and clean.

    Listening to big band jazz from Ella and Basie, the brass and woods are incredibly detailed without any tendency toward being strident. Just very finely detailed and nuanced.

    The craftsmanship and esthetics are as good as it gets. Beautifully finished to the last minute detail. First class all the way. I love the BIG volume control.

    There are so many features and streaming options offered on the amp I won't go into all that here. You can see the numerous options and features on the NAIM and Focal websites. But I will say that every one of those options work beautifully and are easily set up. OK, I'll name just a few...all kinds of streaming options including Qobuz, Tidal, Spotify Connect, Apple Music, UP/P, Chromecast and countless internet radio stations, also Bluetooth, WiFi, just to name a few. There are more.

    I haven't forgotten the Focal Clear Mg phones. But wait! Didn't I order the Focal Stellia phones? Yes. Ordered and paid for. But, Mike Bovaird of Suncoast Audio...you know, that really smart guy with a big heart? Well, he took it on his own initiative to send me a brand new in the box set of Focal Clear Mg phones (to go with my NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition amp) as a loaner until my Focal Stellia phones come in. Now, how cool is that?!!! Customer service at it's best!

    As I mentioned above, I'm not sure how much of the gorgeous sound quality the amp or Clear Mg phones are individually responsible for, but the synergy between the two is something you just have to hear to appreciate. It's literally and wondrously shocking, the sound that comes out of these phones and amp. I can't wait to hear the Focal Stellias through my system. And if the Stellias sound as good as (or better than) the Focal Clear Mg phones I will be a very happy camper. Yes, I know the Clear Mgs are open phones and the Focal Stellias are closed phones. I need closed phones so I can listen to music while the wife watches TV. But all the reviews I've read about both phones have been stellar. So I don't think I could go wrong with either headphone. Can't wait. I'll update this review after my Stellias arrive. Stay tuned.

    Well there you have it. What was it...about 8 superlatives or less? My newest toys. And likely the last new toys for awhile. I now have every high end audio component I've dreamed of having for my system. It took me about 2 years. But the wait was well worth it. I've found my audio heaven and..."I've found my thrill, on Blueberry Hill..." OK, OK, I'll stop.
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  2. #2
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Awesome and congratulations on your headphone setup!
    Hattor; NAD; MBL; McIntosh; Rega; Technics; T+A; Woo; Abyss; Focal; KEF; Rythmik; Oppo; Magnum Dynalab

  3. #3
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Awesome! And wait until your headphones arrive!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    My Systems: http://www.audioshark.org/showthread...481#post158481

    "We can hear everything we measure, but we can't measure everything we hear. Let your ears be your guide."

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  4. #4
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    Awesome! And wait until your headphones arrive!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

    Ooooh, baby!!
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  5. #5
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Quote Originally Posted by Randy Myers View Post
    Awesome and congratulations on your headphone setup!

    Thanks for the kind words, Randy. I wish you could hear this combination. OTOH, you have your own killer gear! Someday I'd like to replace my Neumann recording monitors with the KEF LS50s.
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  6. #6
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    I really like my Focal Clear MG.... I am sure you will be blown away with the Stellia... probably like the differences I hear with my Abyss!

    I am happy with the KEF LS50 Meta, they fit my room well, plus I have always been a big KEF fan. The Meta are a pretty big upgrade from the original LS50. I love the way that KEF put their latest tech in an affordable model and plan on trickling it up to the higher models!
    Hattor; NAD; MBL; McIntosh; Rega; Technics; T+A; Woo; Abyss; Focal; KEF; Rythmik; Oppo; Magnum Dynalab

  7. #7
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    Awesome! And wait until your headphones arrive!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

    If I didn't need the closed phones I would be seriously looking at the Clear Mgs. I read an article that said if you use the Silver Dragon connects the Focal Clear Mgs rival the Focal Utopias at considerable price savings. These Clear Mgs are killer sounding without the high end connects. But, with the Silver Dragons...look out!
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  8. #8
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    I have the Atom HE with Utopias. After trying the Atom HE I kept it and sold my Violectric V281 HP amp. The Atom HE is a joy to use.

    I tried various headphone cables including Nordost Heimdall 2's and finally settled on DanaCable's.

    I just ordered a Naim NAC 250 DR amp to use with the HE. I need to downsize to a two box system and I'm hoping this is going to be the answer. It will replace a Naim 500 level system.

    The Atom Headphone Edition replaces the amplifier in the Atom with a headphone amp. It can also function as a preamp.
    Bud<br>

    NAIM: NAC 552 Preamp w/555PS Power supply, Naim ND555 Streamer/DAC, NAP 300 DR Amplifier, AtomHE Headphone Amp, Superlumina Speaker Cables, Power Cables
    HARBETH: 30.2 40th Anniversary Speakers
    FOCAL:: Utopia Headphones
    ANSUZ: C2 Power Cable, A2 Power Distributor, D2 Ethernet Cables, D2 PowerSwitch, D2 Interconnect
    NORDOST: Heimdall 2 Ethernet Cables
    CHORD:Music Interconnects
    QUADRASPIRE: SVT Equipment Stand
    SKYLAN: Speaker Stands
    UPTONE:Linear Power Supply
    DANACABLE:: Headphone cables

  9. #9
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Bud, I'm just beginning to learn how to use the NAIM Uniti Atom HE amp. There are so many really cool features there is quite a bit to learn. Sure is fun though. And the SQ of the amp and phones is unbelievable. The loaner Focal Clear Mg phones really round out the package. I might just pick up a set of Clear Mg open phones someday to compliment my Stellia closed backs.
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  10. #10
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Quote Originally Posted by bluegrassphile View Post
    Bud, I'm just beginning to learn how to use the NAIM Uniti Atom HE amp. There are so many really cool features there is quite a bit to learn. Sure is fun though. And the SQ of the amp and phones is unbelievable. The loaner Focal Clear Mg phones really round out the package. I might just pick up a set of Clear Mg open phones someday to compliment my Stellia closed backs.
    You have a great system. The HE with Clear cans would make a terrific package.
    I'm hoping the Atom HE will work as a preamp for me. If it does, I can dispose of a lot of assets. Seven boxes to two and more than $10K in cables.
    The HE plus NAP 250 DR would be as convenient to use as my Gen 2 Mu-So.
    Bud<br>

    NAIM: NAC 552 Preamp w/555PS Power supply, Naim ND555 Streamer/DAC, NAP 300 DR Amplifier, AtomHE Headphone Amp, Superlumina Speaker Cables, Power Cables
    HARBETH: 30.2 40th Anniversary Speakers
    FOCAL:: Utopia Headphones
    ANSUZ: C2 Power Cable, A2 Power Distributor, D2 Ethernet Cables, D2 PowerSwitch, D2 Interconnect
    NORDOST: Heimdall 2 Ethernet Cables
    CHORD:Music Interconnects
    QUADRASPIRE: SVT Equipment Stand
    SKYLAN: Speaker Stands
    UPTONE:Linear Power Supply
    DANACABLE:: Headphone cables

  11. #11
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Stellias are in the house!!! And they sound wonderful!! What else can I say? I can't give a comparison/review against anything other than the Focal Clear Mg, which sounds amazing in it's own right. But the Stellia and Clear Mg phones are the only high end phones I've ever listened to. So, I can't compare either phone with anything else. I've done tons of reading and research on headphones and headphone amps. But no auditioning.

    Having said all that, I can at least say my ears really like the Stellias...a lot. About every review I've read on the Stellias spoke of the detail they reproduce. They were right. Detail by the ton. But there is so much more to the Stellias. Balance, clarity, open-ness, airy-ness, warmth, wide and deep soundstage, and, detail, detail, detail. That's what my ears hear anyway. I can't put them down. I LOVE the SQ of these phones. It doesn't seem to matter that the Stellia is closed back. They sound as much open as they do closed. I think that's why so many audiophiles use them as their main phones.

    I already posted above on my new NAIM Uniti Atom HE headphone amp/player/streamer. The sound coming out of that amp and the Stellias is absolutely sublime.

    Anyway, can you tell I really like the Stellias? Who knows, I might find something I like better in the future. But I think it's going to take some doin' to design something I like better than the Stellias. Something different sounding...maybe. Perhaps like the ZMF Verite closed. But something truly and significantly better, good luck. I think these Stellias will be a part of my system for a long time. Maybe I'll buy phones in the future that will add something new to the sound? We'll see, I guess. But for now, I'm very contented with the Stellias.
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  12. #12
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Congrats on this great combo. Enjoy the music!
    _______________

    Mike

  13. #13
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Enjoy
    2chl : Pass Xa-30.5, W4S STP, Kef 201/2, KEF 140, Vapor Breeze, Lumin, VPI Classic, Manley Chinook, Bryston CD, BHA-1, HD650, HD800s, HD820's, Dan Clark 1.1, OPPO 203, 105.

  14. #14
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    After reading and reading and reading sometimes you just have to close your eyes and take the plunge. Glad I did. At least in this instance. I know there are other top notch phones out there. But "better?" Perhaps, in some aspects. I don't honestly know. But I'm sure loving the Stellias. And the NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition with all it's features and streaming options, is about as amazing as they come. The SQ of the amp is as good as it gets. Yup. Happy camper.
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  15. #15
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Congrats.

    I remember when you first joined you were concerned about budget and final system etc. and now it's headphone set up, talk of future purchases etc. you got the disease, LOL
    Aurender ACS10 w/Audioquest Diamond USB,
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    Parasound P6, Coda CSX, Artisan speakers

  16. #16
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Thank you, Mr. Peabody and all for the kind words. Yeah, about a year ago I was a complete newb. Still am in so many ways. I've made a lot of really dumb posts, embarrassed myself a few times, but learned a LOT. What a hobby, this?
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

  17. #17
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Congratz... very happy for you and very much enjoy your enthusiasm towards your new Focals!
    Hattor; NAD; MBL; McIntosh; Rega; Technics; T+A; Woo; Abyss; Focal; KEF; Rythmik; Oppo; Magnum Dynalab

  18. #18
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    Re: NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition Amp And Focal Clear Mg Phones In The House!

    Quote Originally Posted by Leatherneck View Post
    I have the Atom HE with Utopias. After trying the Atom HE I kept it and sold my Violectric V281 HP amp. The Atom HE is a joy to use.

    I tried various headphone cables including Nordost Heimdall 2's and finally settled on DanaCable's.

    I just ordered a Naim NAC 250 DR amp to use with the HE. I need to downsize to a two box system and I'm hoping this is going to be the answer. It will replace a Naim 500 level system.

    The Atom Headphone Edition replaces the amplifier in the Atom with a headphone amp. It can also function as a preamp.
    It truly is an amazing piece of gear.
    Amplifier: Pass Labs INT 250 integrated.

    DAC/Streamer: MSB Discrete Dual Power Supply.

    Server: Roon Nucleus with lifetime subscription.

    Speakers: Harbeth Super HL 5+ 40th Anniversary
    Model.

    Headphones/Amp: Focal Stellia phones, NAIM Uniti Atom Headphone Edition headphone amp/music player/server/streamer.

    Cables: AudioQuest Rocket 88 speaker cables,
    Mackenzie interconnects.

    Speaker Stands: HiFi Man.

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