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NAD 521iBEE, C320 BEE and B&W DM602 S3

 

New member
Username: Kkkl2112

Post Number: 1
Registered: 01-2004
Hi,

I'm going to get my first hifi and was wondering if the NAD 521iBEE, NAD C320 BEE and B&W DM602 S3 goes well. Can the NAD amp drive the B&W speakers ? Or do I need a more powerful amp ? What's the criteria in matching an amp to a speaker ? Do you guys look at the ohms or watts ? Any advice appreciated.
 

New member
Username: Hawk

Post Number: 108
Registered: 12-2003
Kenny:

If this is your first hifi, you have picked a real winner, unlike most of us who have had to go through two or three to get it right. I think your system is a superb system that is well matched and should sound absolutely great.

Congrats!
 

New member
Username: Kkkl2112

Post Number: 2
Registered: 01-2004
Thanks Hawk, really appreciate your input. What about Rotel RA-01 ? Why does What Hifi magazine seem to think that is better than the NAD C320 BEE ? I like the NAD because it comes with a remote control.

What about the B&W DM602 S3 compared to the Quad 11Ls ? I listen to all sorts of music, and I noticed that Quad is strong in midrange but not bass ? Is it right to choose B&Ws then because I heard they have better bass ?

Thanks in advance for all your advice and support...
 

New member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 63
Registered: 12-2003
Kenny Kong,

I have both the C521BEE and C320BEE which I am using with some small Mission speakers (sounds a bit bright). The cd player I have decided to keep as I feel it's about as good as it gets at it's respective pricepoint.

The amp has to go back in a couple of days if I want to take advantage of the 14 day home trial that my retailer has given me but I am seriously considering keeping this amp as I very much like the engaging and uplifting sound I get from it.

I would take Hawk's advice in an instant regarding speaker matching as their is no one better to advise in this respect. If I keep the NAD amp I intend to replace my Mission's with either B&W or AE speakers.

The reason the Quads may sound a little lean in the bass may well be due to the fact that they don't ideally match with NAD amps. I have experianced this with my Missions, which happen to have good bass with my Marantz receiver.

Just my two pence!
 

New member
Username: Sonny

Post Number: 2
Registered: 01-2004
Kenny Kong & Valeem,

I've just bought my first HIFI last October and get NAD C542 (previously C521BEE but I trade in since the sounds was more solid) NAD C320BEE and pair of Monitor Audio Bronze B2.

Thanks to Mr. Hawk advice on these pick.

Sounds terific for me, though recently I find it a little bit bright. Since I have not got the chance to audition lots of speaker before, Only PSB, Mirage and this bronze. Like the sounds of Mirage but it was too late since I have bought the Bronze.

My suggestion would be to spend more time on auditioning on speakers within your budget.

The components you are choosing is a good one as I have experience but you might need to consider C 352 if you happen to choose more demanding speaker.

Valeem, I am very interested in your comments that Quads dont really match with NAD amps, since I just recently thinking of trade in my bronze with Quad 11L/12L. Where do you get this info / comments ?

May be for now I will still stick to the bronze since I have problem with speaker placement also and try to get the best placement for the bronze.

hope this help

 

New member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 65
Registered: 12-2003
Sonny,

I am just going on my experience with my Mission and NAD combo and feel that pairing them gives a leaner bass sound than I get with my Mission/Marantz combo.

I was just trying to give Kenny a possible reason for him saying that Quads are not strong in bass. He may just be going off a review he has read, if so then Quads may well go with NAD amps.
 

New member
Username: Kkkl2112

Post Number: 3
Registered: 01-2004
Sonny,

Why do you mention that I may need the C352 to drive the B&W speakers ? This may be too basic and further I'm new to the hifi world but based on magazines and other articles, I think it should not be a problem for the C320 BEE to drive it since the impedance is 8 ohms for B&W. Only difference is the watt between the B&W and smaller speakers. "What Hifi" recommended the Rotel RA-01 (40 watts per channel) to be paired with the B&W DM602 S3.

The C352 is not as refined based on reviews that's why I'm not considering it. Hawk or Valeem or Sonny or anyone, care to put in a word on this ?

Any opinions appreciated.
 

New member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 67
Registered: 12-2003
Kenny,

I would say the C352 would be ideal if you need the extra power to drive your speakers in a larger environment, especially if you listen at high volume levels.

As far as comparing the Rotel and NAD as to which would better match the B&W speakers I would advise you to go and get an audition as it will be you who will be living with the system and not What Hi-Fi? reviewers. I would not take their comment/advice to mean that one or the other is a better match with those speakers but take it as another alternative for you to consider. It's time for an audition Kenny.
 

New member
Username: Sonny

Post Number: 3
Registered: 01-2004
Kenny,

I do not mean that you should buy C352 to drive your B&W speakers.

But do lots of audition on speakers before making any decision. This is based on my experience where I did not do lots of audition when getting my system and basing more upon the magazines review. Source & amplifier could follow, it would be speaker sonic character that you should consider the most. Once you are happy with the character of the speakers, I think NAD gear with matched power will do well.

As for the source, NAD CD Player is a very good one, I might say I am very happy that I bought NAD CD player & NAD Amplifier BUT I wish I spent more time when finding the right speakers.
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Post Number: 163
Registered: 12-2003
Kenny:

I missed your post of last Tuesday (January 27th), so let me respond now.

Everyone has their bias (bias is not necessarily a bad thing--just means you have certain standards and one unit is going to do a better job of meeting those standards) and I think the reviewer for What HiFi prefers the Rotel for whatever reason. There is no question the Rotel looks like more expensive equipment with an aluminum front panel and knobs versus plastic for the NAD (NAD has long said they would invest their money on the inside where it can improve the sound), but that can be a personal preference as to how important that is. Both are very good units. The Rotel is leaner sounding and a bit cooler in its timbre, with a lot less bass information than the NAD. Conversely, the NAD is warmer sounding and is more dynamic. I personally prefer the NAD integrated amp and Stereophile agrees with my assessment. See their review here where they test both units:

http://www.stereophile.com/amplificationreviews/885/index1.html

Frankly, I do not think the Rotel's modest output will be enough to make those B+Ws really sing. The NAD on the other hand, has more than enough power (remember, its dynamic power is 100 wpc) to bring out the best in your speakers. I do not believe you need the C352 to drive those speakers, but more power is always helpful, even if not necessary.

Now, as for the speakers, those Quads are very nice (their finish is absolutely beautiful) and they are a very, very nice speaker. They are a bit smaller than the 602s, but they have a more forward sound and I think they have just as much bass (please note I have not heard these two speakers side by side as they are two different dealers across town from one another). However, I like the Quads, I believe they are a very good value, and I think they would also represent a good speaker for your system. I haven't heard them driven by NAD--just Marantz, but I like the sound, even though I think it is different than the sound of the B+Ws, which are a little more recessed sounding (one is not better than the other--it is all in what you prefer. I am merely pointing out differences that I have heard).

I hope this helps. Ultimately, you should get what sounds the best to your ears. Spend some time with each and decide which one is more enjoyable to listen to. Good luck!
 

kevinduc
Unregistered guest
I've actually got this exact set-up. NAD C521i, NAD C320Bee, and B&W 602 S3's. You're in for a surprize if this is your first system. Absolutely amazing.

The imaging with these components is very tight and focused. I was orginally using a DVD player as a source and felt everything sounded grainy and the bass a tad lean. After getting the 521i, my thoughts that the source doesn't make a difference went out the window. Awsome soundstage and plenty of bass.

The amp can definitely drive these speakers. Only when I'm listening to rock music very loudly can I hear any distortion (what I assume to be the amp clipping-or the recording). A good example of the bass is #2 on the Sigur Ros' white album. The moving baseline sings.

All in all, I'm incredibly pleased. Drum sets sound like drum sets, bass drum hits come out clear, and vocals are pristine. Remember to evaluate this set up with very high quality source material. These speakers will show you every bit of a recording whether good or bad.

If anything, I'll upgrade to a more powerful 2ch amp and use the 320bee as a pre-amp in the future. I listen to rock music quit loudly, and though this system is plenty capable of delivering some serious sound, I want that relaxed loudness that comes with a more powerful amp. But for now, while I'm at college, this system easily suits my needs.

Oh, and a little thing about interconnects. I'm using the RCA cables that came with the cd-player and standard 16 gauge speaker cable. Don't waste your money on expensive interconnects and instead buy some good music. Some decent stands won't hurt though and you'll actually hear a difference in the tightness of the bass. Just some thoughts, and enjoy your system.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 73
Registered: 12-2003
Hawk:

I know this is a little off topic here but I would appreciate your opinion on something.

I recently brought home an NAD C320BEE for an extended audition and was very impressed with the ability of this amp. I very much liked the way this amp engages you in the music and makes the music sound so real (after tweaking my little Mission speakers) but was wondering if you could comment on how this amp compares with the C350.

Is it just a question of extra watts or does the C350 actually perform any better? The reason I ask is that I can get the C350 for just a little bit more over the C320BEE as it's on closeout. Thanks.

 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Post Number: 168
Registered: 12-2003
valeem:

I honestly have not heard the C350, so I can't help you. Sorry. However, I have read reviews in Stereophile for both the 320bee and the 370 and frankly, they can't be effusive enough in their praise (in light of the low cost). I have no doubt that the 350 fits right in there, but I suspect the only real difference is going to be the extra power.
 

Tact
Unregistered guest
Valeem, I'd rather go to NAD 350 any time: its sound is more efortless than 320bee, it has more power, though it's rather sophisticated amp. 320bee is punchy and lively but it could be too much sometimes. 350 is rather grown up version.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 77
Registered: 12-2003
Thanks for the input guys. I don't think I'll be needing the extra power as I don't listen to music very loud and if the the 320bee is more punchy and lively over the 350 I think I'll go with that one if I decide to make the purchase.

I have the Azur 540A at the moment and am enjoying this one too. It does have the soft sound that Hawk mentioned on another post and must say it's a better match with my Mission speakers but does'nt sound as real or as dark as the NAD amp. Still needs a bit longer to run in, as it states 36 hours on the box, before it starts sounding it's best so will know more later. Thanks again.
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Post Number: 171
Registered: 12-2003
Valeem:

Keep us posted on what you are hearing. I really appreciate hearing your thoughts about the Cambridge Azur line.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 79
Registered: 12-2003
Ok. Will look through the stereophile glossary and try to give you a decent review. The amp will be run-in in a couple of days so will post back then.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 84
Registered: 12-2003
Hawk:

Firstly I can confirm that this amp benefits from a little run in period. When I first started using the amp it sounded a touch closed and a bit lifeless but now that's over the sound is more engaging, convincing and lively albeit not dramatically so.

Comparing this amp with NAD C320BEE my first impression is that it sounds a tad soft and a little bit more relaxed paired with my little Mission speakers where as the NAD seems to be more crisp, lively, musical and offers more impact and drive and seems to grab my attention more than the Azur.

The Azur has a clean, detailed and precise soundstage like the NAD unit and I would go as far as saying the Azur has a more precise soundstage than the NAD with it always placing the singer clearly to the fore.

I would say its tonal balance is quite neutral and can see it fitting into many systems. The treble never sounds harsh or bright but always smooth, clear and detailed if not always entirely natural as I think it can sometimes sound a tad too soft. The midband is not as warm as the NAD unit but I think it suits this amps nature to be like this. As far as bass performance is concerned it's on par with the NAD if less controlled but not as deep as my Marantz receiver (Marantz are noted for having more bass than average?).

This amp doesn't display the character and timbre of instruments with as much detail as the NAD can although it's certainly an improvement over what my receiver can offer. In this respect the NAD reigns supreme.

I think this is a refined amp that would suit people looking for a slightly more relaxed sound than what the NAD offers. It has the ability to engage, involve and entertain no matter what kind of music I feed it but from what I've read I feel the 640A would give the C320BEE a better run for its money. I've read it can give more insight into the timbre and character of voices and instruments like the NAD does.

You can laugh now!
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Post Number: 213
Registered: 12-2003
valeem:

I am not laughing--in fact, your observations wholly coincide with my own. I do think the Azur is a very nice integrated amp and it is on my short list of amps I might want for my study. However, I think the 640's competition is not the "bee", but the newer NAD C352. I see the "bee" as competition for the lower Azur model, the 540--they certainly are very close price-wise. The differences in the tonal balance between the NAD and the Cambridge are going to mean that these two lines of integrated amps are going to appeal to different types of listeners. Both represent fair value for their cost and I unhesitatingly would recommend them both as I think they will both be very satisfying. I have been circling the Cambridge, NAD, and Arcam integrateds for about six months now, trying to decide which one is the msot satisfying for me--it is a hard choice as they all have very nice qualities. I also like the Rega integrated amps, but the one I can afford doesn't have a remote, so it is no longer being considered. Still, it has a wonderful tonal balance.

However, comparing a Marantz receiver to these integrateds is a dangerous practice, my friend! I still haven't discovered why, but these large audio companies like Marantz (and some others) can put out a great receiver and their integrated amps just don't cut it. Logically, I would think that they would have a similar sound, but they don't (too bad). As I said in discussing the Marantz PM7000, they sound sterile and lifeless. They obviously aren't designed by the same crack audio engineers that designed the receivers--perhaps they were designed by their summer interns. The last good integrated amp I remember coming out of a Japanese audio conglomerate was about 15 years ago, when both Luxman and Kyocera offered some truly excellent integrated amps. Unfortunately, neither imports into the US any more (in fact, I am not sure Kyocera is even in the business anymore). Instead, the usual suspects are focused on dominating the HT receivers market and putting out an integrated amp is pretty much an afterthought for them.

Thankfully, we have some great integrateds coming from NAD, Cambridge, Arcam, Rotel, Linn, Rega, and Musical Fidelity. I find it interesting that all of these companies began as British audio companies--even if they are now made in China.

Thanks for your thoughts. I value your input, my friend. Cheers!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 89
Registered: 12-2003
Hawk:

Phew! You have a much greater understanding than I of all things audio. I am still a novice!

Marantz integrated amps sound different to their receivers? I always presumed they would sound the same/similar, admittedly with better stereo performance with regards to detail, dynamics, and musicality etc......just more of the same. I had dismissed the PM7200 for this reason as I want to experience a different sound to my HT. Is this true of other brands like NAD, ROTEL, etc? I know these higher end brands pride themselves with good stereo performance.

As far as the PM7000 is concerned it does sound like a bit of a dog! The reviews on ecoustics from TNT (02/01) and Hi-Fi Choice (08/00) are not very flattering but then another review from Hi-Fi Choice (12/03) on the PM7200 rates it as being exceptional for the money as did What Hi-Fi? (06/03).

See here: http://www.marantz.com/hifi/europe/

I realise reviews should be taken with a pinch of salt but they are good indicators when drawing up a shortlist. I have read many opinions from owners of this unit, with them having compared it to other quality integrated amps and they couldn't be more enthusiastic about it.

I hope Marantz start shipping this integrated to the states etc. I think it would go some way to restoring some credibility in their stereo equipment.

Dearg Doom mentioned he will be auditioning this amp and he already has a C320. It will be interesting to hear his opinion.

With regards to British audio companies moving their production to China:

I think we have come to accept this, begrudgingly, as the way forward in order for our firms (some are not our own now) to remain competitive in terms of being able to offer better performing equipment (so they keep telling us) and also give their investors a good return for their money (more likely). We however still like to regard them as British. Also, I do believe they are still mostly designed using British expertise (the key aspect!).

Keep us posted on what you decide and the reasons why. Thanks!
 

gurugu
Unregistered guest
I would like to enter this discussion as I am thinking on buying a NAD C320 bee (50 w). My local dealer offers me Dynaudio Audience 42 or 52 (Max power 150 W, sensibility 86 dB, imp 4 ohmios) to match with. I listened to this combination in the shop with my own music (jazz and clasical mainly), and it sounded well. But I have been reading anyway, and I found that such a low sensitivity and impedance speakers need more power. I wonder if someone has already tried this combination know something about it. Will the 50 watts of the NAD be enough to moove these speakers?
 

New member
Username: Sonny

Post Number: 4
Registered: 01-2004
gurugu,

I have seen someone post the his experience with the exact combination at www.audioasylum.com. Just search for "c320bee & audience 42" and you will find others experience & question regarding this issue.

Currently I have NAD C320bee driving Monitor Audio Bronze B2, and was thinking of change the speakers. I was thinking of Dynaudio Audience 42, Quad 11L but finally I decided to stick to my current system while savings for more significant component upgrade in the future.

Hawk,

Have you ever heard of bookshelf speakers called Accoustic Monitor ? My friend just bought this speakers and he said it sounds soft and sweet. It is even better than B&W. It was made by small factory in Danish and it is also has nice weight, 9.5 kg / each..

ANY COMMENTS


 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Post Number: 243
Registered: 12-2003
gurugu:

How big is your room? I am inclined to say yes, I do think the "bee" has enough power, but not if you are going to try and fill a large room. The environment is as important a figure as the amps power and the speaker's sensitivity.

SONNY:

I have not heard of Acoustic Monitor--do you know their web adress?
 

New member
Username: Ocrazor

Post Number: 1
Registered: 02-2004
Has anyone here compared the C320bee to the C740 receiver? The C740 is only about $100 more, but would it sound as good?
 

New member
Username: Sonny

Post Number: 5
Registered: 01-2004
Hawk,

I do not have their web address and been trying to search through the net but nil.

Interestingly, I've seen a post here from someone whose been auditioning this speaker (the exact type is Acoustic Monitor Reference 1)with Paradigm Titan and he said the sound was great and he is also trying to find information on the brand.

Well, maybe this baby worth investigating, I'll think I'll try to make a visit to my friends house and auditioned it my self. I'll keep you update later.



 

Jezz
Unregistered guest
Hey gurugu,
The combo of NAD 320 Bee and Dyn's 52 audience works or not???
HMM....Honestly i have heard the the Nad bee driving floorstanders from JM Lab , Eneregy...to ear spliting levels, in other words Nad has the ability to drive most of the demanding speakers...thats is talking in the range obvioulsy. but thats not what the NAD is famous for ....the thing that amazes most of the ppl who appreciate 320 be is how tranparent and muscial the amp is...comparing them to 350 or 352 ...you would get more power but i tell.you....they are not as musical as the bee.....go try it out....i have...
As far the Dynaudio 42 or 52.....geeez i love the 52 audience....and have been waiting to upgrade to them ......but...cant do it cuz i have a 320 bee.... 320 bee can drive the 42 as i know ppl who have the combo but trying to get run the 52's off the bee would be strechin the limit....as the 52 is 4 ohm and needs a lotta power...i mean you can them run them but you would want a better amp to run your 52's. There is a hidden cost to the 52's you need power. Go and compare them with other speakers in their range. you will realize that the dyn's are in another league!!!...You wuld need a 370 to try and get your dynz to do what they r famous for....
cheers
 

hfx2004
Unregistered guest
I am looking to buy A/V Receiver. i was looking at specs of Denon 3803/5, Yamaha2400, NAD 753 but open to consider others too.
My budget is $1500 and less.

I presently have B&W speakers which i intend to keep.

Appreciate suggestions with regard to models, makes which would be compatible with my B&W speakers.
I thought it would be a good idea to narrow down the models before i go to hear them around.
 

Unregistered guest
This is my first post on ea.com, and I wanted to put my two cents in about my innitial impressions of the BEE integrated... matched with a new set of QUAD 12L's.

Someone mentioned previously about the possibility of upgrading to 11L's from MA. I heard the monitor audio's / dynaudios / BW 6's with the BEE and just thought the Quad's were the best match... The sound was just a tad more refined I felt.

Those of you concerned with the BEE's concervative power needn't be. I have a fair sized room and haven't had to push the BEE past 9 o'clock with the QUAD's (which I don't think are the most sensitive speakers around). Also, I wouldn't get the 11L's despite their high praises in various publications... the 12L has the same characteristics with a greater low end...

So for a first system, I would highly recommend the following system (street prices in Korea in US dollars:-)

521 BEE CD 250.00
and 320 BEE integrated 300.00
QUAD 12L's 450.00

For a 1000's dollars NEW I'd put this system up against anything on the market right now including the Maggie MMG's.

Ryan
 

Ben_00
Unregistered guest
I'm have 2 int amps in mind.
The Cambridge Audio 640A and the NAD C320bee.

Pff, the choice is hard!
I can get the Azur 640A with my dealer for €420.
Can anyone give suggestions?

Thank you!!!

ps: I would match it with a dab tuner from cambridge from the azur range and wharfedale diamond 8.4 speakers.
 

Ben_00
Unregistered guest
Check this review for the NAD C320bee
It has INSIDE pictures !!
darn!

=>http://www.videohifi.com/nad_c320_eng.htm
 

Bronze Member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 92
Registered: 12-2003
Ben:

I agree the choice is hard!

They are both fine amps in their own right and both amps offer plenty of power for an unstressed delivery but the sound they offer is quite different.

The NAD has a more realistic sound whereas the Azur has a fast yet slightly softer sound. Both offer good levels of detail.

I think you will be happy with either and they should both go well with your speakers. You will need to audition them to see which one best suits your tastes.
 

Unregistered guest
I just found this thread and am most impressed with how knowledgeable and pleasant everyone seems to be. I hope one or more of you may have an opinion on the decision I am trying to reach.
I need a new amplifier and CD player for my Paradigm Monitor 11 v.3 floorstanding speakers (two - I only use stereo). I have been researching the NAD line but have gotten conflicting advice. I have been considering the C320BEE, C352, C370, and C372 integrated amplifiers, and the C521i, C541i, and C542 CD players. I can afford any of them but cannot afford a mistake - I simply want the best possible sound. Unfortunately, none is demoed in any store in my area, so I must buy by specs and advice.
I listen mostly to classical music - opera, symphony, chamber music, Lieder - and shows at moderate volumes in a rather live room 18' v 16'. I might add that, largely due to age, I do not hear much above 7500 Hz.
Any opinions would be most appreciated.
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 410
Registered: Dec-03
George:

I am really glad you found a place where you felt free to ask your questions. I do think we have a really good group of people on this board and we have made every effort to provide quality information, as well as opinions, and without being "snooty" about it. I personally enjoy this board because I have learned a lot (and not just about hifi equipment!) and someday I hope to share a pint or two with some of the good friends I have made through this board.

You certainly have zeroed in on what I think are the best amps to drive a pair of Paradigm Monitor speakers. I never ceased to be amazed at how good the combination of NAD electronics and Paradigm speakers is.

Although your Monitor 11s are very efficient speakers, the fact that they have three separate bass drivers causes me to believe that more power is better, especially in your large sized room. Not so much because an amp like the 320bee cannot drive them--I believe it can. But given the fact that you say you cannot afford a mistake leads me to believe that you should go with a C370 as providing a margin for error yet without a large increase in price over the "bee." The C370 is being closed out for anywhere from $449 to $499 most places I know that still has them. It has significantly more power, yet you would not have to spend a lot more to get it over the 320bee. Besides, I have heard it, along with the "bee" and I think they are both superb sounding amps, worthy of driving some of the finest sounding speakers I know of. I have not heard the newer C352, however, and I do not endorse products I haven't heard for myself, so I cannot give an opinion of that model.

Additionally, the 370 was very favorably reviewed in "Stereophile", which is loathe to give a good review to electronics that are priced below $2K, so I know it is a very good amp. The 370 also has a better "feel" to it, IMO. I know that comment may not be very illuminating, but from the 370's aluminum faceplate to the tuning of it's volume knob, the 370 just feels more like a high quality amp. The "bee" feels great--the 370 just feels better.

As for the CD player, I would recommend the new C542. Again, I have listened to each of these players and would gladly have any one of them in my system, but the 542 is the best of the lot, IMO. My own impression is that with each new model, NAD seems to get just a little more detail out of their player's sound. The newest is the 542 and I think it is the best you can get without spending upwards of $1K to do it. I was recently able to compare the 542 directly to the current model Rotel CD player and I felt the NAD was far superior in providing a deep soundstage and very precise imaging. Just a bit warmer sounding, too, which I appreciated. Now, you should be able to find this player at about 20% off, or ~$400, so it won't break the bank and it will sound better than almost any other CD player I know of for under $1K. However, if you don't want to spend that much, either the 521i or the 541i will do a very good job, as well. I don't think you can go wrong with any NAD CD player.

Good luck!
 

George
Unregistered guest
Hawk, thank you so much for your comments. I really wish I could audition these units, then I would know for sure which I preferred. But that is simply not possible where I live (Tucson, Arizona).
What perplexes me is the comments I have seen, from both professional and consumer sources, referring to the C320BEE as more "refined." To me, that suggests differences in levels of distortion, but the published specs show identical figures for distortion in all the NAD integrated amplifiers. Someone on this board (Jezz) refers to the C320BEE as more "musical" than the others. Well, musical is surely what I am looking for; isn't everybody?
Impressive bass is fine, as long as it isn't disproportional to whatever else is going on. But I am more concerned with definition: I want to be able to hear the difference between a violin and a viola, between an oboe and an English horn, between a modern piano and a fortepiano. That's what makes me wonder whether the C320BEE might be the best of the lot. As I said before, at these levels cost is not a problem. I hope to be amortizing these units over many years - a few hundred dollars one way or the other doesn't signifiy. So if the C370 is a superior unit, that's the one I want. But is it?
By the way, do any of these units use a fan?
Thanks again.
 

George
Unregistered guest
Addendum to the last: I note one other spec which might relate to "refinement": Signal/noise ratio. On the C320BEE, the S/N ratio at 1W is 100dB, at rated power 117dB; on the C370, the S/N ratio at 1w is 94dB, at rated power 105 dB. Isn't that a significant difference? I realize that many specs are more interesting to the measuring instruments than to human ears, but I would think that S/N ratio is actually meaningful and audible. Am I wrong?
Thanks again.
 

George
Unregistered guest
Addendum 2: The S/N ratio of the C352 is 100dB at 1W, 120 dB at rated power, so that may be the best of all.
 

Unregistered guest
Hi there, I've enjoyed reading your posts and now I have a question for you guys. I've just bought a new integrated amplifier and cd player. I got the Nad c350 used but mint on eBay and plumped for the c542 cdp brand new as it got some stonking reviews and I particularly liked the fact it was supposed to handle the lower registers better. Well I'm disappointed! I've got Kef Q5 speakers and I find the system really weak on the bass front now. Anybody got any ideas and if there's some incompatibility along the line somewhere, can you recommend the cheapest item to replace to restore full and deep bass to my system? I'm gutted! For your information, I'm using Cambridge Audio Studio Reference interconnects and Gale bi-wire XL 315-2. Many thanks.
 

Unregistered guest
I'm interested in the NAD C352 amp how does it rate with my mission 774?
 

Anonymous
 
Hi there, i have just been reading these messages, havent seen this site before, i have B&W DM602 S2 speakers (bi wired), NAD T752 (upgraded the C350), NAD T531 DVD player and a Whise profunder 119A active sub (made in Melb,Aust) and in that price range, the sound that is delivered is amazing, the sub was the most costly ($2000) but it has really given new depth to the whole set up. I think personally, B&W's and NAD work quite well together, especially if you dont want to spend a fortune..
I have one question though, would running the B&W's thru a C270 (then into the T752)give a greater sound stage than just running them thru the T752??
 

Unregistered guest
To Hawk, Kyocera is a pretty large ceramics company in Japan, their logic for entering the hifi market in the 80's was the isolation properties of their ceramic bases on their flagship models. They still produce product for the aerospace industry, the semiconductor folks and one of the best set of kitchen knives available. If you buy their knifes or scissors they will stay sharp almost indefinitely since they are much harder than steel. Kyocera's claim is the only thing harder than their ceramics is a diamond. For any chefs out there, try taking your kitchen knives after you have sharpened them on a stone and run them over the back of a dinner plate where the glazing is not covering the ceramic plate rim. Very lightly run the knife over this area several times on each side and then finish with a few strokes on a steel or better yet a "ceramic steel" and you should have a much better edge on your knife. Anyway Kyocera is stil very much in business and can be found with a google search.

For Kenny, please read my reply to "Harman Kardon" and see if it offers any answers.
 

Silver Member
Username: Hawk

Highlands Ranch, CO USA

Post Number: 450
Registered: Dec-03
Jan:

Thank you for the update about Kyoto Ceramics (aka Kyocera), but I guess I did not make myself clear. I realize that Kyocera is still in business (witness their pooling of their North American copier business with Mita), but I wondered if Kyocera is still in the audio equipment business. I do not know if they exited the audio business or if they merely stopped selling in North America like Luxman. I suppose I could do a Google search to find out if they still do hifi, but it isn't real high on my list of priorities, so I rarely think about it. It is still very unfortunate, as I said earlier, that both Kyocera and Luxman both left the North American market about 15 years ago. Both made excellent equipment and failed in the market more because of marketing mistakes than any product related reason. I am dreading the day my Kyocera CD player dies (and it will die as all things mechanical eventually wear out, especially as much as I am using mine) and I have to replace it. While I cannot say that my Kyocera's superb sound is the result of its acoustic isolation, I can say it sounds very good and better than almost any CD player I have heard. I have taken home a new CD player about a dozen times now and always end up returning it as it doesn't sound as good as the Kyocera I already have. It isn't McIntosh, but it sounds PDG!
 

Unregistered guest
Hi
Am just on the verge of buying either the NAD C320BEE amp ($450 CDN i.e 330 US) or the Azur 640A (700CDN i.e $550US). I will also likely purchase the Cambridge T500 tuner and D500 E CD player. I'm open to suggestions on the Tuner and CD player from NAD. I currently have PSB 5T speakers. The Three pieces should come in under $1500CDN (1200USD)
I listen to all types of music. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated as I am spending more time making this decision than when I bought my house! StevenP
 

Bronze Member
Username: Sun_king

Leeds, West Yorkshire UK

Post Number: 57
Registered: Mar-04
Hi Steve, sounds familiar! I researched the hell out of my hi-fi. The research is definitely more enjoyable than buying a house though. The Azur 640A is a price bracket up from the Nad C320BEE so it's a little unfair to pit these two together. You should be considering the C352 as a worthy adversary to the Cambridge unit. That said, the C320BEE is still a lovely amp and in no way does the Azur slay it. The Azur is more laid-back and doesn't convey the extreme highs and lows as well as the Nad but then the midrange is smoother. I'd say the Azur is better for rock, definitely, but the Nad gear would be my choice for classical and jazz.
 

Unregistered guest
HAWK, Just an update on previous statement regarding Accoustic Monitor speaker. I have auditioned just last week and it is realy a good speaker. It is made in Denmark and the wood veneer finishing is just nice. The dimension is quite big for bookshelf, almost like B&W 602S3 but 10cm higher.

My friend said that he has compare this baby with B&W 602S3 directly and this baby outrun the B&W in sound quality not to mentioned in term of price.

If I have not yet bought my MA B2, I will definitely take this baby. The cabinet design is quite unique, just like KEF Q series.

There is also another item I would like to share, I just recently bouth DIY interconnect based on Van Den Hull cable (I forgot which type) and try this cable to replace the copper connector from Pre Out to Main In at my NAD C320BEE and what I've read in one of the review on the net is true. The sound quality does improve with more open and clear mid range, soft hi freq and deeper low end. It is really a worth tweaking tips.


 

beginner
Unregistered guest
hello everyone, what a exciting place. I think listening music is very subjective; but as an audiophile, a most beautiful sound at a reasonable is my goal and I think this is also many others thinking. I am a beginner and have read many reports and find that different report would suggest differnt components and this make me confusing. I have been auditioned to azur 640r and nad c320 bee and find that the nad seems more ontstanding. For me, to make a decision on the amp is not as difficult as to make a dicision on speaker. I have been searching for months which speakers most fit the nad. Quad 11L, Dynaudio 52 and B&W, all these are very good speakers; but some of my friend suggest the Paradigm monitor 5 v3 and I only know little about this speaker. Can anyone give commnet?

Also from the nad spec. they quote: IHF dynamic Power at 8 Ohm is 110W and at 4 Ohm is 160W. What do they mean?

thanks in advance
 

Quadstar
Unregistered guest
beginner,

I'm also looking at about the same speakers to match my NAD integrated amp at the moment. I have heard of the B&W 601, 602 s3 series, the paradigm monitor 3 and the dynaudio 42. Side by side comparison of the paradigm and dyna, I think the dyna is my choice here. The B&W is not my type of speaker but I may have to do some more listening on 600 series. In my opinion, the dyna and quad or maybe higher end B&W speakers would be your in your final list. I have heard that the paradigm studio series worth considering at.

Can somebody give us some advice?

ps: Currently, the dyna 42 is on my top list.
 

Silver Member
Username: Valeem

Post Number: 105
Registered: Dec-03
sonny,

Which van den hul's are you using and are you using two pairs? One for the cd to amp connection and one for the jumpers. I've tried this with two different type's of vdh's and noticed the sound never lifted above the lesser one (will get round to getting another). I think using two of the same would give maximum benefit. What do you think?
 

sonny
Unregistered guest
Valeem,

I will get back to you on the type of VDH (will look at the text on the cable) since it a DIY based cable.

But I am using the same type of cable for both pair. One from CD to Amp and the other from Pre Out to Main In. The length of the cable is 50cm

Keep updating on the progress

 

Silver Member
Username: Soccer

Post Number: 162
Registered: Apr-04
Hi, folks, I've been reading these posts and would like (if I may) to input my own experience, concerning NAD and Rotel Power amps. I know Rotel basically uses the same AB class design in their amps, so as NAD (I believe), with the difference that NAD puts some extra protection circuits. So, we can assume whatever the power announced by them, the topology will remain the same, independent of price. And my experience comes from the day I went to buy a preamp Aura CA-200, and took the power amp (Rotel RB990BX - 2 x 200W RMS). When I got to the shop (I don't believe in buying by specs or without listening), they had a set of ProAC Response 2.5 powered by the Aura and a NAD 218 THX (2 x 200W RMS), and they said the NAD was capable of some astonishing 70 amps peak (In fact the NAD was way bigger than my Rotel), and would overrun my Rotel... Well, I didn't know Nad so I kept my mouse shut! As we listened to "Friday night in San Francisco - Paco de Lucia, Al diMeola..." we gradually rised the volume until the 66 number on the Aura, where the Nad started to clip! They said it was because ProAC were very current demanding speakers, something like 85 Dbm... Then we tried my "little" Rotel, and guess what? We gradually come up to 99, no fuss, big sound, cleaner, better in every way...! So, from that day on, every time I compare (by listening, not by seing the specs) 2 equal powered power amps from Rotel and NAD, NAD has always been overruned by the Rotel, and may I say, the only amps I've seen taking on Rotel were either high end ones, or very much above Rotel's price, something like Classé Audio, SOME Marantz and Denon top amps (for instance, these were no match for the MICHI line of Rotel), and of course if you go Pass Aleph, Plinius, Krell, Mark Levinson, some Jeff Rowland, yes you'll get more current than Rotel, but never NAD... Hope i've been of some help
Enjoy
 

anonymous joe
Unregistered guest
"I have one question though, would running the B&W's thru a C270 (then into the T752)give a greater sound stage than just running them thru the T752?"

Not much if any at all...only if the C270 was hooked to a good preamp, then it would outperform your 752 - NAD is one receiver with a good amp section that does not need to be upgraded


 

Silver Member
Username: Soccer

Post Number: 183
Registered: Apr-04
What about the Rotel RC-1070/1090 preamp feeding the power amp RB993 (3 x 150W RMS) with the Quads for highs/mids and a sub feeded by the RB993's third channell? I think you could get the best of two worlds...
 

Erry
Unregistered guest
Hi guys. Everyone is matching the nad combos either with the bw or the quad speakers. I recently purchased the kef q1 for a reasonable price (appr. US$ 275). Any comments on how they match with the c542 and c320bee? And also which cable and interconnect speakers (analog or coaxial) should I consider? Most of the time I listen to jazz and r&b. Since my budget is not more than $1000, (you know, the dollar doesn't come cheap here in Indonesia!) I want to have the perfect match at my first buy. Or should I consider another combination of cd player and integrated amplifier?
 

sonny
Unregistered guest
Erry,

Yeap dollar doesn't come cheap here in Indonesia especially with the current rate!!!.

You might also consider Cambridge Audio Azur Series 640 or 540 for the range of your budget. I will definitely auditioned them if I haven't got my current system (NAD C542 + NAD C320 BEE + MA B2)

Haven't heard KEF Q series only KEF Coda 70 driven by Marantz AVR 4300. But I think it will work well with NAD or CA Azur just give audition first to find out which one more to your taste.

For local discussion you might try auvi-milis@yahoogroups.com
 

Bronze Member
Username: Sun_king

Leeds, West Yorkshire UK

Post Number: 91
Registered: Mar-04
I use nad amplification (and C542 cdp) along with Kef Q5 speakers and the sound is terrific. Very warm yet detailed. I don't think you can get a better speaker than the Q range without spending twice the cash. With regard to interconnects, I don't know which brands you have over there but go for a screened cable with gold phonos if you can - don't spend the earth! For speaker wire I'd recommend a thick run of copper wire and to bi-wire your Kefs as they sound better that way (I've experimented) - copper wire will give you a warmer bassier sound but if you prefer a slightly edgier sound but less bass then get some silver wire like QED.
 

Erry
Unregistered guest
Ok, thanks Sonny and Sun King for your inputs. Seems like I'm going straight to the dealers this weekend. Hopefully next week I can tell you guys, for which combination I have decided.
 

Daniel G
Unregistered guest
I've been researching speakers for the last few weeks and recently came upon the NHT SB3's. In another audio forum, I was told that the SB3's, which I found for just $400 ( http://www.acousticsounddesign.com/core/view_BigProduct.cfm?pid=958 ) instead of their usual $600, were the best I could do for that amount of money. They were described as having very tight bass and a smoother top-end than some other speakers I had looked at (i.e. Polks). Now I am desperately trying to find an amplifier that will do these speakers justice so I can finally order my first real hi-fi system. At the same time, I don't want to rush this and make a mistake.

Of the NAD C320 BEE and Cambridge Audio 540A, which is "better"? (I listen to pop, rock, trance, etc.) Unfortunately I cannot find a place to demo any of this equipment, so my decision will be based entirely on reviews and forums like this one. The NAD, although ugly, seems to get higher ratings than the Cambridge - crisper, more dynamic, more musical - what else could it be?! It is also within my budget of $300, since the refurbished model sells for 280. Any opinions?
 

Unregistered guest
Feel free to e-mail me, by the way (danielagordon -AT- mac -DOT- com)
 

Klipschguy
Unregistered guest
Hi guys!

Just wanted to add that I'm using a NAD C320 BEE with very demanding high sensitivity horn speakers.
Those speakers (heavily modified Klipsch LaScala) don't need much power, at 104dB/W but they DO need extreme amp quality, if you don't want them to sound horrible.

Well, I must point out that previously to the NAD I have tried many different amps, all of them more high-end, from Marantz, Musical Fidelity, Aura, and others, and so far the NAD is the best all-rounder.

And with sensitive speakers, it's as powerful as a nuclear bomb!
The guy who sold it to me said that the C320BEE was actually more musical than its more powerful brothers (C352, C370) so if you don't need the power go for the 320...

Also, don't forget to use good interconnects and speaker cables. It is good enough for it and you'll hear the difference. I even replaced the pre-main amp jumpers at the back with Nordost Solar Wind interconnects, with amazing results!
 

New member
Username: Spl

Post Number: 10
Registered: Aug-04
I usually go to ecoustics to read reveiws but I only found out recently that it has a forum. I found this thread to be informative and honest so I'll add my discoveries as well...

For almost 2 years, I was satisfied with my Pioneer Elite DV37A, Marantz SR7200, and B&W 601 S3s. A few months ago, I decided to spend some hard earned cash so I researched, auditioined, etc. I ended up upgrading my speakers to Dynaudio Audience 42s and it was a quantum leap over my 601s. The imaging was better, I didn't have to toe-in my speakers to get the perfect focus. The bass was solid and not boxy or woofy. But the thing that strike me the most is the mid-range and upper frequencies. Male and female voices sounded more real. Cymbals and percussion instruments were lifelike and it really made the hair on my neck stand. The most lifelike cymbals I've heard in my life is when I played an AIX DVD-Audio of Laurence Juber - Guitar Noir. I was unemployed when I upgraded my speakers so I spent a great deal of my day with these. :-) Break-in time with the Audience 42s were longer than the 601s. The 42s begun singing after 2 weeks of heavy use.

After that initial experience (I originally wrote o-r-g-a-s-m but the board disallowed it, hehe), I decided to search for a CD player and see if it will further improve my system. I had my doubts since the DAC of the Marantz was unbeatable for me. I tried a Nakamichi cd player before but I still preferred the DAC of the Marantz so I sold that at a loss. A few weeks ago, I bought the NAD C542 cd player and I was surprised at what I heard.

On my first listening test at home with the C542, I immediately noticed that the voice became smaller than what I was accustomed to. I said, why? I then realized that the voice became more focused, more centered, and more lifelike in size. Before, the voice was very detailed but it was big and quite forward like it was a giant singing it at 6 feet away. With the C542, it sounded like a human being singing 12 feet away from me. The next thing I noticed was the additional detail that I heard for the first time. In general, the music is more involving now than before.

And again... just recently, I passed by the shop where I bought the Audience 42s, and I jokingly told the owner if I could swap my 42s for the bigger 52s. He said sure! I just have to pay for the difference! And he even game me a 20% discount! So I did!

My experience with the Audience 42 and 52 is what is already commonly known. The 52's hasn't broken-in yet buy my initial impression is that the 42 was better in imaging since the image was solid regardless of speaker positioning. It never sounded out of focus. With the 52's, I had to find the perfect spot for it to get the great imaging of the 42s. But once you have that spot, they would pretty much image the same. The 52's also gave a lot better bass output. I don't understand why the low freq. response of the 42 and 52 differ only by 1 db since I really feel more bass presence with the 52s. Also, with the 52s, I found the voice to have more weight, or more character than the 42s. BUT, I also discovered that at low night-time listening levels, the 42s sounded better. The 52s has to be listened to at medium or loud levels. With my Marantz SR7200, I need to listen to the 52s at -30db volume setting at least. With the 42s, even at -35db at night, I get to here the complete music.

I'm now looking at a NAD Integrated Amp or a NAD 2-channel amp.... :-) I'll let you know how that goes.
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