Variable Volume saying fixed with digital out of Naim ND5 XS 2

Roon Core Machine

Nucleus, Naim Nd5 D’s 2 endpoint

Networking Gear & Setup Details

Connected Audio Devices

Nd5 xs 2 digital BNC out, into Holo Audio May DAC, into Leben CS300x

Number of Tracks in Library

Description of Issue


I am having a volume control issue and am feeling as though it might be a hardware issue with the Naim streamer. Basically, I was using the streamers built-in dac directly to the amp, and was able to control the volume via Roon no issue. Upon bypassing the internal DAC in favor for my new May DAC, Roon now says the volume is fixed. I’ve gone thru many of the settings and have not been able to fix it. Any ideas?

Welcome to the Roon community, @Noah_Dorazio.

BNC coaxial (S/PDIF) is always fixed volume since Roon (or any player for that matter) cannot “see” the DAC, and only the streamer.

In my system I use fixed volume, and use a preamp for volume control. Alternatively, you may use DSD volume control in Roon.

Hi Martin,

Thanks for the response. Just to be clear, there is no way for room to control the streamer to adjust the level before it hits the dac?

Additionally, did you mean dsp to attenuate volume? I have been combing thru the app and have access the dsp page, however I cannot find an option that allows me to use dsp volume.

Thanks in advance

Hardware volume cannot be controlled via S/PDIF, so your only ption is DSP volume.

That’s because it device specific, and found in Device Settings. Go to the speaker icon (bottom-right), then click on the Gear, followed by Device Setup.

The only volume controls available are “fixed” and “device”. Is it safe to surmise there is no option for dsp volume control then?

I am a bit confused as there are options to do automatic volume levels and headroom adjustments via dsp, which in my mind is in the same boat as a slider to control the volume.

Thank you!

Can you share a screenshot of the signal path? I assume the endpoint is the Naim. Have you considered connecting the May DAC directly to the Nucleus using USB?

The end point is Naim. I have considered it, it would not be optimal, setup-wise, but doable.

Can you share a screenshot of the signal path for the Naim (as used with the May DAC) and also the Device Settings screen? Thanks.

You cannot apply dsp volume to a Naim source. DSP volume requires the host device to run it and they don’t allow it. It tends to be only applicable to devices running Roon Bridge which tend to be sbc based products or pcs. The volume controller in the ND5 is also sub par it’s only added to get AirPlay certification, Naim recommend not to use it at all for the best quality streaming but this won’t be available if your using it as a pure streamer and digital out to another DAC, only when it’s own DAC is it active and turned on via the Naim app.

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Thanks for posting. I’m uncertain why the Naim doesn’t include DSP volume, so will have to defer to Roon support or another Naim user.

It may be worthwhile referencing this thread in the #audio-gear-talk:naim category and asking if anyone else has experienced this.

They don’t do it on purpose as they think it degrades the sound.

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