Naim's i-Supply: An Entrance Ramp or a Tollbooth or Something

I don't know nothing about nothing — I don't even own an iPod — but when I opened the attachment and scanned the press release, I was absolutely and immediately impressed.

This might be the thing that lots of people have been waiting for. Very cool.

At last year's Home Entertainment Show, I went back to the Naim room over and over again. Just for fun. Their room was simple and modest, and all about the music. Every time I arrived, I was greeted only by a smile and a nod and a seat. I sat there and listened to entire albums. Their small n-SERIES setup produced lovely music with great emotional impact, and made me believe that I could someday have something similar in my own home.

Indeed, I felt that Naim was inviting me into this hobby. That's why I believe it when I read from their press release:

At Naim Audio, we have always championed those who aspire to collect and enjoy the amazing variety of music, both new and old.... Naim exists because people love music.

Okay, so, Naim Audio's i-Supply ($165) is meant to upgrade the musical performance of any iPod by providing pure, low-noise power. I don't know how or why this stuff works, but I do know enough to know that the idea makes sense.

I like to talk about bridges. If the Naim i-Supply doesn't turn out to be the bridge that connects audiophiles and hipsters, it might at least be an entrance ramp or a tollbooth or something. And, at only $165, it's a relatively inexpensive tollbooth.

Wes Phillips is on the case. Watch for him to bring more news on this.

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COMMENTS
Ward's picture

I don't get it. Isn't battery power supposed to be superior to AC power anwyay?

Colin Robertson's picture

That's freeking retarded.

Clay White's picture

Count me as another who believes that the iPod's own battery power is, itself," silent and steady. If there is any ""purity"" beyond that pertinent to the resultant sound quality", it's news to me. I'm ready to learn something new. Hope someone can come up with what NAIM is up to here. Tried Wes. He's showing nothing yet.

Clay White's picture

Aint Google Great. Turns out it's a sure fire barn burner of a wall wart. The assumption behind it is that the iPod is a source for a first rate system that will be used continuously for a period exceeding the iPod battery life. If that's how you use your iPod, the quality of sound is improved (I suspect it really is) over that possible using the charger arrangement that came with the iPod on a full time basis. Damn. A good company offering a toy that I neither want nor need. Merry Christmas anyway.

claire west's picture

can i just say,...treated.thank you bates for taking the words right out of my mouth

David Cope's picture

Power supplies make a huge difference to sound quality. While a substantial battery, or battery-like power supply would likely sound very good, I don't think the batteries used in various iPods meet that criteria. Portability comes first, followed by battery life. I bought an iPod Photo based on Red Wine Audio's conclusion that it uses the best sounding DAC of any of the iPods. They offer an interesting mod, and I'm contemplating going either that route or with the NAIM just for fun.I don't use the 'Pod as a serious source, (yet), but for long flights and for rehearsing choral material in my '93 Volvo 240 wagon equipped with iPod interface, it's an absolute godsend.Oddly, in the March issue just out, Michael Fremer mentions the i-Supply, then dismisses it out of hand," ""can't bear to plug it in and do an A/B"" and compares it (disparagingly) to CD sprays - a priori. I hope somebody at S'phile tries it!

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