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NAD Adds Products For 3-Series Strategy

1/23/2012 12:01:00 AM Eastern
LAS VEGAS — NAD Electronics built on its threeseries product strategy at International CES with new products in its Classic series and top-end Master series.

The brand’s third series is the Viso series of tabletop audio products, the first of which was the biamplified $700-suggested Viso 1 iPod/iPhone-docking speaker that also streams stereo Bluetooth. It shipped in the fourth quarter.

All series are designed to leverage computer audio, or what NAD calls Smart Music, whether stored on a PC or in a mobile device. All series have separate franchise agreements, and Viso is intended to expand NAD distribution beyond A/V specialists to such outlets as luxury-goods retailers.

To its Master series, NAD is adding its Digital Suite of components, which are designed to eliminate all analog circuitry from the signal path. The components store and play back digital music, including 192kHz/24-bit HD music downloads, and use NAD’s Direct Digital amplifier technology, which directly accepts a digital PCM signal and uses pulse width modulation (PWM) to amplify the signal.

The first products in the series include the $2,500-suggested M50 Digital Music Player and $2,000 M52 Digital Music Vault, which can be paired with the current $6,000 M2 DAC/amplifier to reproduce 24-bit/96kHz music. The M50 and M52 were shown at the CEDIA Expo and will ship early this year.

The M50 Digital Music Player is a networked CD player/ripper that sends ripped content to the M52 Vault with 3TB RAID 5 hard-drive array. The M50 also streams music from a networked PC and streams Internet radio through a networked broadband modem.

Also for the Master series but not in the series’ Digital Suite, NAD is launching the M15 HD2 preamp/processor, shipping in January at a suggested $4,500. Compared to the model it replaces, the HD2 adds HDMI 1.4a ins and outs, HDMI audio return channel, new video boards and Ethernet for network control, and it expands the number of HDMI inputs to six from four and the number of HDMI outputs to two.

Owners of the current M15 HD can get an upgrade to all of the HD2’s new features for $950, thanks to the component’s modular design construction (MDC).

In the Classic series, which includes stereo and hometheater products such as A/V receivers, the brand is adding the $2,600 C 390DD DAC/amplifier with builtin 2x150-watt Direct Digital amp and 35-bit/844kHz up-sampling digital conversion. It comes standard with a USB input capable of streaming 24-bit/96kHz USB audio, but two modular upgrades are also available. One is a $300 HDMI module with three HDMI 1.4a ins and one out. It’s capable of passing through video twochannel digital audio up to 24-bit/192kHz. The second module is the $300 phono amp with built-in 24/192 analog-to-digital converter.
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