Why is SaturdayAudio giving away the T742 so cheap?
Is there a flaw in its design and they want to unload them as fast as possible? All the rest of the Nad lineup is priced closer to retail. I don't get it.
No. There is no design flaw. But it is a straight forward receiver that doesn't have all of the bells and whistles that the japanese audio cartel (Yamaha, Denon, Onkyo, Pioneer, Panasonic, et al.) puts on their receivers, and the cartel sells their stuff based upon features (would you like to listen to "Lord of the Rings" in "Concert Hall" or "Stadium"?). Now, I never use that stuff. You certainly don't want to be adding reverb to a DVD soundtrack and why would you want to add it to a recording? A good sound engineer is going to give you that ambience. The 742 just provides good clean sound from five channels. And they conservatively rate the 742 at 50 wpc, rather than play the marketing games to fraudulently claim 100 wpc that most other receiver makers do. In fact, the 50 coming from the 742 sounds cleaner, louder and better than any other makers 100 wpc receiver I have heard. So on paper, the 742 doesn't appear to be competitive, hence it is a tougher unit to sell. But when you hear it side by side with other brands, it sounds like a revelation.
They sell the 742 without the nonsense (forum rules preclude the use of the word that would apply here). Instead of sinking alot of money into developing the custom chips to create a lot of reverb, NAD sunk the money into a good power supply (something no japanese audio engineer would appear to understand), high grade output transistors (no IC outputs, here) and very high quality Crystal Sigma brand DACs. Better parts make better sound. It is a simple formula, but totally out of step with the mass market world of the audio cartel. This is why I often say that my experience has been that the 742 and the other NAD receivers sound more like quality separates than receivers--they are built more like quality separates!