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NAD M2 = No need for a DAC


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I have read a review of NAD M2 which is a Direct Dirgital Amplifier in The Absolute Sound edition 198.

 

Below is a quote:

 

"Functionally, the M2 is an “integrated amplifier” that replaces a DAC, preamplifier, and power amplifier. The M2 eliminates from a traditional signal path all the electronics of a DAC as well as the active analog gain stages of a preamplifier and power amplifier. It does this by converting the PCM signal from a digital source directly into a pulse-width modulation (PWM) signal that turns the M2’s output transistors on and off. That’s it—no digital filter, no DACs, no multiple stages of analog amplification, no interconnects, no jacks, no analog volume control, no preamp. The conversion from the digital domain to the analog domain occurs as a by-product of the switching output stage and its analog filter. This is as direct a signal path as one could envision."

 

While this not the first product of it's type (see the the review), it is step forward in computer audio.

 

I am not an expert and I am only summarising what I have read.

 

One computer, one NAD M2 and speakers?

 

No DAC?

 

Keep on Upgrading!!!

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No external DAC used or possible; it takes sampling rates up to 96 kHz. Not bad, not fully meeting my needs, though. At least, not what I perceive my needs to be! ;^)

 

Robert Hartley did a review just recently on this unit, and he was fairly impressed with it- in his mind, it sets a new bar for value in the digital audio chain, ALTHOUGH he still prefers his more traditional and much more expensive separates.

 

NAD reportedly worked on the design of this unit for over 4 years; for someone working primarily with CD or 96 kHz and less sources, it should be on their listening list if they don't want to spend more than $6K for DAC, control center, and 250 watts of power. Sometimes an integrated is a little confining, other times it just very convenient. While there will be those not enamored of this technical approach, it seems NAD very much did their homework on the topic- I suspect based on Hartley's review you'd be hard pressed to match this unit with a separate combo in the same price range, as that would certainly limit the DAC component to about $1K or less.

 

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Reading comments and reviews, it's a step forward.

 

Just as audiophiles resist computer audio, computer audiophiles will want to keep their DACs.

 

I think if they allowed for HDMI and USB, they will be better on accepting digital inputs and retaining the digital chain.

 

It could possibly work for me. Apple uses toslink on their computers.

 

 

 

 

 

Keep on Upgrading!!!

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  • 1 month later...

The simplicity of having one box replace at least three is very intriguing to me. Might have to pop into the local dealer to give a listen.

 

Bill

 

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.

Mac Mini->Roon + Tidal->KEF LS50W

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  • 3 months later...

Dallas,

 

Do you have any jitter issues? This isn't a asynchronous DAC is it? Thanks

 

Keith

 

Furutech GTX-D, GTX Wall Plate,106-D Cover > NCF Clearline >J River 27 > Curious Cable Evolved USB > Chord Hugo TT 2 > Empyrean Copper PCUHD Cable > Meze Empyrean > my ears > audiophile brain

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I don't know the extent to which jitter is messing with the sound. I will find out soon though: I just picked up an M2Tech Hiface from Mike Garner at www.tweekgeek.com. Once i have it installed i will let you know. I anticipate a big sound improvement. I had a Lynx two-B a while back and, when it worked, it put out incredible sound. But the drivers wouldn't play nice with Windows 7, so it went back.

 

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX

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I think the NAD M2 upsamples all inputs to 844kHz (or something frequency like that) before processing, and can handle any digital input up to 24/192.

 

Doesn't it also have 4 amplifier channels? Thus facilitating active crossover options?

 

As a bonus, according to the review it also sounds pretty good!

 

Frank

 

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Frank ... as far as I can see the NAD M2 only has 2-channel capability (no electronic crossover). It does have twin loudspeaker binding posts - but only for Bi-wiring not Bi-amping.

 

Full details here -- http://nadelectronics.com/products/masters-series/M2-Direct-Digital-Amplifier

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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