NAD Celebrates 50 Years of Truth With Retro Amps

Posted on 18th October, 2022
NAD Celebrates 50 Years of Truth With Retro Amps

NAD is looking to the future while celebrating its illustrious past with vintage-styled integrated amps, and global events leading to Munich High End 2023.

NAD Electronics has made its name over the past half-century by offering award-winning, future-oriented high-performance components. The last fifty years have seen NAD win fans through its amplifiers, source products such as turntables, CD and cassette players and, more recently, streamers and A/V receivers.

The brand arguably became a household name within the hi-fi hobby with the success of its 3020 integrated amplifier, which became the highest-selling budget amplifier in history. Not a bad feat from a 20W per channel amp!

The company hasn't sat still, either. NAD is only too proud to boast about further cap-feathering in the shape of its “ground-breaking work to perfect class A/B and class G amplification, class D digital and hybrid digital amplification, and the introduction of early protocols for network streaming for audio”.

What has remained true is NAD Electronics championing what it terms as “truth in specifications”. The company says it created its own Full Disclosure Power standard that rates amplifier power based on real-world listening scenarios versus laboratory conditions. Unfortunately, this sometimes put it at a “disadvantage” on the retail floor versus competitors who did not share that same commitment to transparency in measurements.

Greg Stidsen, Chief Technology Officer of Lenbrook International, the parent company of NAD Electronics, explained to StereoNET:

It's easy to create an amplifier that performs well in narrow conditions, but we are music lovers designing products for music lovers, so we rate our amplifiers across the whole frequency band and dynamic range to give our consumers a realistic expectation of amplifier performance for all the music they enjoy. That often meant the power rating on paper of NAD's products were lower than what our competitors would publish, but our ratings better reflect the full and rich sound that great recordings contain.

This principled way of designing products was present from the beginning with Founder Marty Borish and legendary amplifier genius Bjorn Erik Edvardsen, who have both sadly passed away.

NAD C 3050 LE

At the upcoming hi-fi shows in Toronto and Paris, NAD will debut a limited-edition numbered anniversary C 3050 LE Stereophonic Amplifier. With only 1972 being manufactured, the retro-look integrated amplifier harkens back to the heyday of hi-fi. It incorporates LED illuminated left and right VU metres and a satin walnut veneer wooden case.

However, under the hood, you will find up-to-date features such as a high-resolution “audiophile-grade DAC”, multi-room streaming, full MQA decoding, Dirac Room Correction via the included BluOS-D MDC2 module, as well as AirPlay 2, two-way aptX HD Bluetooth, and HDMI eARC. Further inputs and outputs include a phono stage and a dedicated headphone amplifier.

Power is supplied by the latest version of NAD's HybridDigital amplifier, rated at 100 watts per channel of Full Disclosure Power. The NAD C 3050 LE will sell for $1,972 USD and will be available at select NAD Electronics retailers worldwide from mid-November 2022.

The brand will follow this next year with the March launch of the NAD C 3050 integrated amplifier - perfect timing for the Munich High End Show, where the idea to create NAD Electronics first germinated back in 1972. Offered at a lower suggested price than the limited-edition version, the C 3050 will retail for $1,299 USD. In addition, you will have the option to upgrade the unit to include BluOS and Dirac via its MDC2 feature for an additional $549 USD. Rated at 100 watts per channel, the C 3050 has line inputs, HDMI eARC, two-way aptX HD Bluetooth, a phono stage, and a dedicated headphone amplifier.


Also in mid-November, the company will premiere a 30 minute documentary titled NAD Electronics: 50 Years of Truth in Power. Produced by 1Project, a Toronto-based media production company, the film covers the brand's early days and its evolution to its position today as a hi-fi innovator. Mixing archival footage and materials with interviews with key personalities associated with the brand.

Finally, a special portal keeps you updated on NAD's 50th Anniversary celebrations.

Visit NAD Electronics for more information

Jay Garrett's avatar

Jay Garrett

StereoNET’s resident rock star, bass player, and gadget junkie. His passion for gadgets and Hi-Fi is second only to being a touring musician.

Posted in:Hi-Fi
Tags: nad  lenbrook 


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