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Armchair's picture
Last seen: 4 years 1 week ago
Joined: 01/08/2013 - 16:49
Posts: 9
Denon CEOL Piccolo DRA-N5

Hi all,

I'm new to the forums and I don't consider myself very knowledgeable about Hi-Fis or anything audio related. In fact I'm completely new to this.I have recently purchased an Iphone 5 that now has a fair bit of my music on. I'm  also quite into computers and have a large mp3 collection, therefore streaming music appeals to me. I'm planning on getting into Spotify too.

For this reason I'm planning a purchase of a Denon CEOL Piccolo DRA-N5.

Having read a couple of issues of What Hi*Fi, I'd planned on pairing this with a pair of Q Acoustics 2020i speakers.

I was also going to buy Soundstyle Z2ii Stands for the speakers.


As I don't really know anything and feel a little out of my depth I was seeking a bit of advice before I buy. :help:


My main questions are:

1) Is the Denon DRA-N5 a good choice.

2) Are the speakers overkill and should I be looking to get 2010i speakers instead? I was hoping that the 2020i speakers would give me more scope to upgrade in the future if needed.

3) Will the stands make a difference, as otherwise I will be plonking the speakers straight on the floor.

4) I always thought a speaker cable was a speaker cable - then I started to look on various retailer websites and realised that it is a lot more complicated than that. Am I right to avoid 4 core cables and go for a 2 core (for single wiring) cable with 4mm banana plugs?

Also, I know another silly question but am I right in saying one cable needs 4 banana plugs - 2 at each end? I'd just never imagined a cable would cost so much! 

Also - last cable related question - should I avoid the cable being too long? Is it unreasonable to purchase two 5 metre cables and will that make a significant difference to the sound?


Any help or guidance is greatly appreciated.



chebby's picture
Last seen: 19 hours 34 min ago
Joined: 02/06/2008 - 09:40
Posts: 19950
RE: Denon CEOL Piccolo DRA-N5

If it  were me I would wait a bit longer (and save up a bit more) and wait for the Marantz M-CR610 (and M-CR510) to become available in the shops around October. (£499 and £399 respectively).

I would like to recommend the (soon to be replaced) Marantz M-CR603, but the newer models will do gapless streaming of up to 24/192 FLAC/WAV files and have other refinements like built in Spotify and an extra USB on the back.

Don't worry too much about bi-wiring or fancy 'boutique' cables.  Standard 'dumbell' cross section 2.5mm² OFC, multi-strand, copper cable with soldered banana plugs at both ends will be fine. (The nickel plated banana plugs with black and red plastic covers will suffice unless you live in a salt mine or like everything covered in gold plate for 'bling'.)

5m x2 will be fine too.

Speakers are a more personal thing. If you have heard, and liked, the 2020is then it's a no brainer. There will be plenty of suggestions (my suggestion would be to try out Boston Acoustics A25s or A26s) but only you will know if they are right ... for you.

The stands (or good wall brackets) are vital. Do NOT 'plonk them on the floor' (unless they are floorstanders).

You don't need expensive stands. Just rigid, stable ones that raise the speakers to the correct height (usually 60cm stands).


iPad Mini 3 • iPhone 7 • B&W P3 • Mac Mini • Apple TV3 • Marantz M-CR611 and M-CR603 • Pro-ject Tuner Box S • Audio-Note AX-Two • JPW Sonatas • Quad Vena

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