Integrated Amp ideas for a very young audiophile

My 4yo son really loves listening to music. He routinely takes my phone or iPad and streams his favorite tunes from Spotify to our living room setup (Naim Star—> Sonus Faber Olympica I) or my office (Cambridge CXN—> Creek Evo100–> Kef LS50). He also loves asking Alexa to play music in his baby sister’s nursery and asks to listen to tunes in Mom & Dad’s bedroom (Naim Mu-so 2) before going to bed in his room for the night. As ecstatic as I am to have a budding audiophile, he asked me the other day why his room was the only one that didn’t have any speakers. I told him we could ask Santa to help us set something up in his room for Christmas but am now left with a conundrum of what to get. Originally I was thinking I’d just get him another Alexa style speaker, but he specifically then said the baby’s doesn’t sound as good and he wants “2 speakers like the living room, …but even better than the living room”. So while I have no intention of getting him the Kanta 3s he pointed to as I scrolled for ideas (kid has good but apparently way too expensive tastes), I do have a pair of B&W 685s2 that are barely ever getting used in the garage that I could pair to an integrated amp for his room. I’m in the Naim ecosystem so a Uniti Atom of course comes to mind, but would love some thoughts on how that would compare with Cambridge Evo series, NAD’s numerous all-in-ones, the Rotel S14 or anything else you guys might suggest. In particular I want something very easy to use and with volume and source control for streaming right on the front so he doesn’t NEED a phone or iPad to use it. He said he wants to wake up and be able to listen to music all day so reliability is also important with little hands not always being the most careful. My wife is also not super tech savvy so being able to turn it down or off without an app is definitely a requirement and eliminates things like a sonos amp or Bluesound Powernode/Powernode edge. Am I crazy for even considering a purchase like this for a 4yo?


What's the financial sense of getting him a cheaper 'starter system' only to spend more to upgrade in a few years? (Especially given his ability to hear the differences in audio quality.) IMO the Atom is a strong solution in that it is compact, has the streaming and control features you want while being very musical with great detail. 

I haven't heard Rotel or Cambridge stuff in many years so I can't help with that part.

Good Luck! 


For the sake of your wife and to make it easy for the kid, I would be looking at something entry level but fully competent unit like the Yamaha R-N303.  The Music Cast app is nice.  The system works with Alexa.  It is fully networked so he can play local files or one of the streaming services.  It has decent power. It has a power button and a remote for the wife.

I will second the Vanatoo suggestion.  The Vanatoo Zero is a full system in two powered speakers with Bluetooth for streaming or can be feed by analogue or usb.  I use the Vanatoo One system in my office and the Zero around the house as it is smaller and easily moved.