A long journey to the NAD T762


I had an NAD T762 delivered last Friday, and I could not be happier with it. I just thought I would post some of my experiences here. You all can take them for what they are worth. But...before I begin, let me warn you that this post will likely be lengthy...so grab a couple of refreshments before you begin reading.

First of all, let me start out by telling you what type of system I had before that made me want to upgrade. I previously had an Onkyo receiver (I am unsure of the model number) that only had 55w per channel and only Dolby Digital (no DTS) and Polk speakers. At the time, I was a college student and it served my needs well. However, once I was married and away from the "college lifestyle", I was watching a lot more movies and I decided I needed an upgrade. The sound quality of the Onkyo was fine, it was just lacking in that "umph" that I was looking for. So, my journey began....

Being the audio novice that I was, I first visited my local Circuit City. They almost had me ready to buy a Sony 110w x 7 receiver (although I doubt it would actually get half of that). Before I pulled the trigger, I decided to do some online research...which brought me to this site...and boy am I glad that I did. After reading nearly every posting that had anything to do with my situation (this is true...I literally read them all), I quickly dismissed the Sony and any other mass market receiver in the same category. After reading so many posts, I then decided I would look at three brands...Pioneer Elite, Denon, and NAD. My friend has an Elite and seems to be very happy with it...so I auditioned them first. The unit that I auditioned was the 55txi. Don't get me wrong...this was a very nice unit. The automatic speaker balance function was appealing, but the sound quality was not what I was looking for. The sound was loud and full, but the detail that I was looking for just wasn't there. That led me to the Denon's. Here, I auditioned the 3803. Once again, very full and loud, but not enough clarity. Everything seemed to be at the same "level" if that makes any sense. The range of sound didn't sound like I thought it should. Also, the sound wasn't very detailed. Certain nuances of the soundtrack that I thought should have been more pronounced were not. So that only left one choice...the NAD.

To tell you the truth, I bought the T762 without ever hearing it. I know some of you guys on here think this is a mortal sin, but based on the recommendations of Hawk and others on this site, I knew that I would be happy with it. Even if I didn't like it...I could always send it back and get something else. Also, I was presented with a deal that I could not pass up. For the past couple of weeks, based on the advice of Hawk, I have been in close contact with the Saturday Audio Exchange (www.saturdayaudio.com). When they received their final shipment of T762's before the introduction of the newer 763 and lowered their price to $899, I knew I had to act fast. By the end of the week...I had orderd the 762. If I may digress for a moment, the people at Saturday Audio were excellent. I send numerous emails to the OWNER of the store, and he always wrote back within a few hours. They were very willing to do anything that it took to make me happy. They even held a 762 for me over a busy weekend without any sort of deposit!! I highly recommend them.

So, I received the 762 on Friday and so far, I am impressed. Set up was very straight forward. The only problems I had was through the use of banana plugs. Space on the back of the 762 is very limited, and it is very difficult to simply plug in stripped speaker wire. Therefore, I used banana plugs. My problems were that the wire kept separating from the banana plug. As soon as I would have one set of speakers plugged in, I would knock the wire loose trying to put another set in. After lots of time and frustration, I finally got all of the speakers attatched. It took me longer to attatch the speakers than it did to set up the whole rest of the system.

Set up and callibration via the On Screen Display (OSD) was a snap. The instruction manual can be a little hard to understand at times, but a little common sense can sufficiently guide you through the set up process. One feature that I love is the ability to assign and name inputs. For example, one of the pre-assigned inputs is for "satellite". I have no satellite, so obviously wouldn't need this input, but I wanted to use the optical input and component vidio output that it provided for my X-Box. So...I was able to rename the "satellite" input "XBox". Makes it a lot less confusing.

And finally, for the most important part...the sound. As I did with all of the other units that I auditioned, I first put in the DVD of Star Wars: Episode 1 and turned it to the podracer scene. Let me tell you, it made my small and mediocre Polk speakers sound a whole lot better than the Onkyo ever did. Tiny nuances that I had never heard before came to life. I am going to upgrade to Paradigm speakers soon and can't wait to hear this combination. It should be lightyears ahead of the Polk combination.

When I put in a music CD, the Jazz compilation of Michael Buble, the speakers sounded EVEN BETTER!!! I could have listened to it all day...defiately no "listener fatigue". As with the movie, certain nuances that I had never heard before really stood out. Like on Track 3, "Kissing a Fool", the background piano sounded like it was right next to me. For this music CD, I was very impressed by the EARS listening mode. It very accurately reproduced the stereo CD into a true 5.1 sound. Nice job NAD! The Dolby Pro Logic II: Music mode also was nice. I am so glad that NAD didn't spend valuable time and money putting worthless sound modes such as "Hall" or "Arena" into this receiver.

Finally, as I have done a few times today, let me get on my soap box again for just a moment. Over the past couple of months there have been a lot of postings that deal with a couple of problems some people have been having with NAD receivers. From what these people have been saying, I am sure a lot of people are starting to wonder if NAD is the right choice. I can only go from my personal experiences and what others on this forum have stated...that is that NAD is a superb receiver at a decent price. I would challenge anyone to find a better sounding receiver for under $1000. I think what we have here with all of these negative reports is a clear example of the old saying "a happy customer will tell 2 of his friends about his experiences...an unhappy customer will tell 10 of his friends about his experiences". These people who are having problems are in the minority...they are just so ticked off about it that they want to let as many people as possible know about it. Trust your ears. If you like the way the NAD sounds, then buy it. There is a slight chance of getting a lemon (in reality...there is very little that you can buy without taking this risk), but for me at least, the chance to have years of listening pleasure far outweighs the potential risk. Thanks again Hawk for all of your help and I hope you are able to get an NAD of your own soon...you won't regret it. HAPPY LISTENING!!!

John A.
It is great to read your report. I once thought all amps/ receivers were pretty much the same, and the source and the speakers were what made the difference. But it is just as you say. Thanks for posting.

Just a little update. When I initially set the speaker levels, I simply did so "by ear". Last night, I went to Radio Shack and bought an SPL meter and used it to set my speaker levels. I didn't think it would make a difference, but boy was I wrong. The sound was so much better after I adjusted the levels using the SPL meter. My ears were off by several dB's on a couple of the speakers. I highly recommend using an SPL meter to calibrate your system...you will be happy with the results.

John A.

You kindly responded to my later thread, and here is the link, which may interest anyone who reads your excellent review, above: Receiver quality and NAD

Anyone interested in the NAD T742 should also consider Smitty's post of Oct 23 under Finally got one!!!

A older thread which I enjoyed is What's the best dvd to test out my new system? and I wonder if the program material makes a difference that affects people's choices.
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