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Nad c320bee vs. denon dra685 vs. Marantz

 

New member
Username: Nates

Post Number: 1
Registered: Dec-04
I'm looking to buy my first amp and speaker combo and I heard good things about denon and was centering on the DRA685 when i read about the NAD c320bee. I was also just in Cambridge Sound and the guy was recommending the Marantz amp for around the same price (not sure which model). I don't care about the tuner so going with an amp is fine. However, I haven't been able to find any stores that sell both so I'm not sure how to compare. I've found reviews that prefer each one so I'm not sure how to compare. Does anyone have any advice? How do you even compare these types of systems or decide one one? Any help would be greatly appreciated.


 

New member
Username: Nates

Post Number: 2
Registered: Dec-04
Just to add to this, should I assume that a pure amp (with no receiver) is always going to be better than a Stereo Receiver. Basically, is the NAD going to sound better by nature of being just an amp even though it has half the power (50 vs 100W) of the Denon?
 

nout
Unregistered guest
I think the guy meant the Marantz PM 7200.
Nice amp (I own one), so is the NAD C 320BEE.

In general a basic amp is better than a receiver in the same pricerange.
For a receiver to compete with a $500 amp you'll have to pay at least double that amount: $1000.

There will be exceptions to the rule I guess, but I don't know which receiver...

How much do you want to spend?
$400 or $500?

The Marantz costs $500, but you can find it for $400, more or less.
The NAD costs $400 and it will be sold somewhere for $350 or less.
It's bigger brother is even better: NAD C 352. $500

There's a new Denon out the Denon PMA 1500 MKII (everywhere in Europe it costs €500, in the UK however £400) which appears to be a very good amp. A German mag "Stereo" rates this amp higher than rivals in the same pricerange (NAD, Marantz, Cambridge, Rotel and Harman Kardon).

I'd listen to some. Before that: try to make up your mind about what you're looking for, what kinda sound you like and so on, it will make listening sessions a lot easier.

Good luck!
 

New member
Username: Nates

Post Number: 3
Registered: Dec-04
thanks. that's very helpful.
 

Pang
Unregistered guest
I have matched DENON PMA1500MKII with BW 602S3. They sounded not realy good.
Has anybody compared NAD C320BEE, DENON PMA1500MKII paired with BW
Any suggestion are welcome
 

Silver Member
Username: Danman

QUEBEC CANADA

Post Number: 499
Registered: Apr-04
I would get the 352 if you could swing it. You would have better dynamics and almost double the dynamic power output.

The less you have in an amp the better. Look at many (including NAD) AV receivers and all their problems. Too much stuff in one box!
 

Silver Member
Username: Sun_king

Leeds, West Yorkshire UK

Post Number: 283
Registered: Mar-04
Unless you're really into your movies I would just get a stereo amp and then play your dvd's through that. For music it will be better than an AV amp - depends where your priorities lie. Regarding stereo amps, I prefer the Marantz PM7200 to the Nad C320BEE - if you can get one for more or less the same price then it's a steal. The C352 and C372 are nicer still but cost more.
 

Silver Member
Username: Sun_king

Leeds, West Yorkshire UK

Post Number: 284
Registered: Mar-04
Sorry, my mistake. I thought we were discussing the merits of AV v stereo, didn't realise it was receivers. Amps with a built-in tuner are an old fashioned idea but there's nothing to say that the amplifier in there is low quality, it's usually the tuner that suffers in the quality stakes. I remember some of the old Nad receivers having exactly the same pre & power sections as their integrated brothers but also the 'benefit' of a budget tuner contained in the same box. If space is an issue and you need a radio in your rack then it's a good option. Not one for the radio loving 'audiophile' though.
 

nout
Unregistered guest
You're discussing nothing right now :-) the original question is from December 2004 and has been answered.

The new question is from Pang
I have matched DENON PMA1500MKII with BW 602S3. They sounded not realy good.
Has anybody compared NAD C320BEE, DENON PMA1500MKII paired with BW
Any suggestion are welcome


Okidoki, (a copy/pasted post by me from https://www.ecoustics.com/electronics/forum/home-audio/17853.html)

These amps have a pretty similair sound balance, a bit dark, strong upper bass (bit loudness-like) and smooth highs.
The Denon has the tendency to sound a bit bigger than life, in my small room, for instance, vocals will sound bigger than my own voice will ever sound, Gillian Welch's voice (played on this amp) could only come from a giant or a woman with an abnormal big mouth and chest.
The NAD is more natural and will reproduce vocals in more realistic proportions.
That big sound Denon produces can be very pleasing, escaping reality and be totally locked behind a huge soundwall.
Both amps aren't known for their great dynamics, in fact both are a bit bland. (not Denon PMA 1500R's successor: the PMA1500MKII, which appears to have very good dynamics - according to audio magazines, I haven't heard this amp)

Listen for yourself, ofcourse
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