NAD Electronics Introduces M33 Masters Flagship
The NAD M33 is a BluOS enabled DAC/amplifier that will be the brand's first product to feature Purifi Audio's new amplification technology. The ultra-high-performance amplifier aims to become the heart of your whole-home reference system. A lofty claim, perhaps, but the M33 is the brand's new flagship model.
You get BluOS multiroom streaming, full-colour touchscreen controls protected by Gorilla Glass, a 32-bit ESS Sabre DAC, full MQA decoding, and Dirac Room Correction all in one rather attractive all-aluminium box.
The new M33 (€4999/£3999) will be available in March 2020 and so becomes the very first commercially available product to market offering HybridDigital Purifi Eigentakt amplifier technology. We are told that, with a minimum of 200W per channel on tap, the result is “lifelike performance, exemplified by ultra-low distortion and noise.” Also that the measured performance is remarkable in that it nears the limits of even the most sensitive and sophisticated test equipment available.
The M33 sports a wide range of in/outputs. Digital connections include HDMI eARC, Gigabit Ethernet, AES/EBU XLR, and USB. Rounding things off is a trio of analogue inputs, including MM/MC phono, that should satisfy most users. According to NAD, the phono stage rivals specialised outboard units. Also, it offers accurate RIAA equalisation as well as a clever phase cancelling infrasonic filter, and huge overload margin.
Head-fi lovers get a discrete headphone amplifier that will drive your favourite cans - even planar and high impedance studio headphones. NAD proudly states that, with high voltage and low output impedance, headphones will sound their best. If you prefer your personal audio wireless, the integrated Bluetooth aptX HD module makes that simple as well.
The rear panel hosts two sets of speaker outputs enabling bi-wiring and two subwoofer outputs with a fully configurable digital crossover. Dual-Band Wi-Fi 5 a/c/n, Apple Airplay 2 and Bluetooth aptX HD allow for local wireless streaming from a phone or tablet. Finally, through Airplay 2, control is also possible with Siri.
Network Streaming Made Easy
If you have been put-off from multiroom streaming, or networked streaming in general, due to the complexity of set up and operation, NAD is confident that the M33's intuitive operation, courtesy of the 7-inch touchscreen colour display combined with BluOS, will have you up and running in no time. In fact, you don't even need to use the touchscreen display as the M33 is operable via the BluOS app, the supplied remote control or through hands-free control with any Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant device. The manufacturer considers it the most advanced network streaming and multi-room operating system available.
Furthermore, as well as its multi-room skills, another compelling feature of BluOS is its high-res streaming capabilities, with full MQA decoding support (pending certification) from NAS or a shared drive and Internet streaming audio services. Tidal, Deezer, Qobuz, Amazon HD are just a few examples among the long list of services supported that offer high-res content. Additional music services such as Spotify, Amazon Music, Slacker, TuneIn, nugs.net and many others are also supported.
Dirac Live Room Correction
The NAD M33 is also packing Dirac Live Room Correction that not only adjusts for frequency response but, unlike some other room correction systems, it also optimises the impulse response and the full speaker/ room interface. Each of the 5 Dirac memory profiles can store a unique room measurement (for different acoustics with curtains open or closed, different listening positions, etc.), or alternative frequency target curves to suit a particular musical taste or genre. The M33 also supports independent subwoofer outputs, compatible with Dirac's advanced Bass Management. The M33 is supplied with a precision microphone for your Dirac Live Room Correction measurements.
Finally, the M33 comes with two MDC slots that allow for further expansion, and it is fully compatible with all the leading smart home systems from leading companies such as Crestron, Control4, Lutron, KNX and many others.
Pricing and availability for Australia and New Zealand have not yet been confirmed, but stay tuned for StereoNET's exclusive Australian review.
For more information, head to NAD.