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NAD D3020 V2 Integrated Amplifier Review & Comments

muljao

Well-known Member
Good review, I nearly bought the first edition, I must say it's much less appealing having lost its usb, I think it would be a better buy if included, I know a phono stage added, but both should (imo) be there
 

Tephnos

Active Member
I have the original 3020 and have used it for many years. I was recently looking to see if this small and aesthetically pleasing class D amp market had moved any in recent years, and it doesn't really seem to do so while staying in the same compact form factor (with the exception of Nuprime stuff which looks great but... where do you get it in the UK?) so I was looking at bumping up the specs a little with the 7050 and so on...

Anyway, saw this today. Pretty disappointing I have to say, removing the most common digital interface is a very strange decision and would put me off buying one.
 

Paul7777x

Distinguished Member
I’ve had many Nad amps since I was small and I enjoyed every one of them. I usually gave them to cousins or nephews when I had more cash to spend, and they continued to use them for years.

Rock solid amps and always seemed entirely unstressed.

So I like the idea of this one. I think it will make a fine desk top amp with some small speakers. And give ‘style’ buyers a chance of some good quality sound.

Daft decision to lose the usb input though. A phono input? ‘Upsurge’ in sales or not... silly.
 

jyhudon

Novice Member
Hello, new to the avforums. I got the D3020 v2 3 weeks ago. Your review is quite accurate but I would substantiate a few more things. The D3020 v2 phono stage is less than stellar, actually sub par so it is very disappointing. The unit is also emitting an humming pulsing sound at 80% volume level. I did many test, even on its own, the hum is present when MM out is selected. No issue with the other outputs. Finally, the D3020 have a hard time to drive my speakers. I tried a set of Focal Tantal 507 (vintage) and my new Totem Accoustic rainmaker. One must run the D3020 at 80% plus capacity to get a little punch. On the good side, the sound is clean, other than the MM stage where it is muffed. Overall, I am disappointed and would not recommend this amplifier.
 

Ed Selley

AVF Reviewer
Hello, new to the avforums. I got the D3020 v2 3 weeks ago. Your review is quite accurate but I would substantiate a few more things. The D3020 v2 phono stage is less than stellar, actually sub par so it is very disappointing. The unit is also emitting an humming pulsing sound at 80% volume level. I did many test, even on its own, the hum is present when MM out is selected. No issue with the other outputs. Finally, the D3020 have a hard time to drive my speakers. I tried a set of Focal Tantal 507 (vintage) and my new Totem Accoustic rainmaker. One must run the D3020 at 80% plus capacity to get a little punch. On the good side, the sound is clean, other than the MM stage where it is muffed. Overall, I am disappointed and would not recommend this amplifier.
You'll note in the negatives, I have put 'Will struggle to drive insensitive speakers.' The two pairs of speakers you list are vastly more expensive than the NAD and neither would be anywhere near any shortlist of designs I would choose to partner with it. The review was written based on tests with slightly more expensive partnering equipment that nonetheless demonstrates characteristics in keeping with equipment it is more likely to be partnered with.
 

jyhudon

Novice Member
Hi Ed, you are correct. I am quite new at this and I might not have matched my speaker really well to the amp. How could you get this right? On paper, it seems that the Rainmaker would work well this the D3020. How could you detect a match by looking at the spec?
 

Ed Selley

AVF Reviewer
Totem speakers are an oddity in that little in the measurements suggests that they are hard to drive but their extremely high power handling should be a clue that they prefer plenty of power. For the 3020v2, you should be looking for a speaker with an impedance of 6 ohms or better and sensitivity in the high eighties. The standard Brit brands- Monitor Audio, KEF etc will pair up well and I suspect that Dali and Canton would also be effective too.
 

dollag

Well-known Member
FWIW, I had the 1st edition D3020 paired with a pair of Kef LS50's and it was not a great pairing at all, mainly down to not so sensitive ls50. In addition, with a tendency to drop their ohm level to sub 4, harshness was very evident in higher volumes. This was a mistake I made when my knowledge base was less than sufficient. Other Kef models may not pose a problem but would not recommend the ls50 with the nad.
 

Ed Selley

AVF Reviewer
I was thinking more along the lines of the new Q Series standmounts which are pretty easy to drive.
 

Adam72

Active Member
Hi Ed, I’ve been reading your review of the Audiolab m one, just wanted to ask if you thought it would pair well with Dali Zensor speakers or do you think it would be to bright. Thanks.
 

KWB1

Well-known Member
No asynchronous usb = crazy
 

jyhudon

Novice Member
Indeed the Yamaha seems a very good value! However, the D3020 v2 still sounds great in a smaller room with the right speakers. The digital output are warm and very well balanced. I coupled it with a bluesound node 2, it's an happy couple. When time comes, I will move it in my small den with a set of audioengine P4.
 

Reginald514

Novice Member
I purchased the D3020 last January to use it as a desktop amp paired with Minx Min 22 speakers and I couldn't be more happy with it. I have it connected over Usb to my PC - but I'm guessing the V2 could still be used in a desktop environment as I can also get sound off my Dell monitor's AUX lineout.
 

BradYoung04

Standard Member
I'm looking for a small room amp to drive some B&W685s. Currently using a Rotel RA06 which is way too powerful for the space it's now in - I adjust the volume like a safecracker - and has a lot of noise on the headphone socket. This seems like it might be worth an audition.

How's the headphone performance?

Thanks!
 

Jamestrab

Novice Member
In my desktop PC audio configuration, I'd like to replace my Asus Xonar D1 + Topping Tp20 with the NAD D3020 V2, to replace both DAC and Amp and get a boost in quality in both aspects.

But, how am I supposed to use the internal DAC of the NAD if I don't have coaxial or optical output on my PC?

Edit: Ok, I was wrong. My Asus Xonar D1 has a SPDIF/OUT enabled on microphone line-in by an adapter, so yes, I can use the NAD with my PC. Now I just need to find a good deal here in Europe.
 
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Kearn

Novice Member
I'm looking for a smaller footprint amp to drive either an old pair of B&W 601s or 602.5s and unsure whether this would be a good match? I've heard it driving a larger pair of 700 series floorstanders and the clarity and tone were great but they needed some more grunt to deliver at the low end - my speakers shouldn't be as demanding, but I don't want to lose all the bass! Thoughts? and what does the EQ / bass button do in the real world? cheers
 

Tephnos

Active Member
I'll be honest: I don't believe in most audiophile crap. This includes 'matching' and the like. A properly built amp/dac that claims to be reference should be transparent - it's not hard to do, and it isn't expensive either.

That being said, volume is power. If your speakers aren't able to get as loud as you want within the room you are in, then the amp isn't powerful enough.
 
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