Inside the Naim UnitiQute is a preamplifier, which is a ‘distilled’ version of the pre-amp found inside the NaimUniti, plus a Wolfson digital-to-analogue converter with five 24bit/192kHz-capable digital inputs and a 2 x 30W power amplifier, which borrows its design from Naim’s NAIT 5i.
As mentioned, the UnitiQute boasts built-in Wi-Fi, which means you can wirelessly access content stored on uPnP devices (laptops, tablets etc) on your home network. It’ll stream WAV, MP3, WMA, AAC, FLAC, and it’ll play WAV, AAC, MP3 and Apple Lossless from an iPod. You can also use the Wi-Fi connection to stream internet radio (vTuner 5), but the DAB and FM tuners provide more conventional radio options. If you can’t connect via Wi-Fi, the Ethernet port provides a wired alternative.
When using the internet radio feature, the menu allows you to browse new and most popular stations or podcasts, browse by genre or location and stations you’ve added. There’s no search mode that would allow you to jump straight to your desired station, which is a shame.
There’s also a bass management system for use with sub/sat systems and switchable bass contour control for low-volume listening.
Operating the UnitiQute is a joy. The remote is thoughtfully laid out with menu controls bang in the middle, and other keys separated into black and white groups to make certain sections easier to find. Most of the labels use full words as opposed to cryptic icons, which helps useability. You can toggle through the inputs using the up and down keys, or jump straight to the one you want using the dedicated buttons at the bottom.
The front panel is dominated by a bright, crisp OLED display that shows crucial info like the selected input and volume, but defaults to the date and time when idle. All of the setup and media streaming menus are displayed here and it uses the space well, laying out the options in a clear, logical list without making it feel cluttered.
Wireless setup is nice and easy – it scans for access points automatically and password entry is simplified by the alphanumeric keys.