NAD’s C 3050 Integrated Amplifier Goes Back To The Future
In 2022, NAD Electronics introduced a limited edition C 3050 LE integrated amplifier of which only 1972 were made (a tribute to NAD’s founding in 1972) and, as expected, sold out very quickly. Read more in our previous report: NAD celebrates 50 years with the new vintage C 3050 LE amplifier.
As a follow up, NAD has announced the C 3050, which offers a similar sound but without some of the modules that were included with the C 3050 LE.
NAD will showcase the new C 3050 at High-End Munich 2023, May 18-21; for those attending the show, NAD will be in Room D108 in Atrium 3.
Retro and modern product design
Just like the C 3050 LE, NAD draws on classic 1970s industrial design while internally incorporating modern Output stage HybridDigital UcD and a Texas Instruments PCM5242 high-performance differential DAC.
This combination is designed to deliver superb detail, breathtaking 3D and sweeping dynamics. Powered by NAD’s HybridDigital UcD amplifier technology, the C 3050 delivers 100 watts per channel of continuous power and 135 watts per channel of instantaneous peak power.
Dual volume meters, push-button input selectors, a walnut-finished vinyl cabinet, and a dark gray front panel with the original New Acoustic Dimension logo written in 1970s italics seamlessly blend past and present.
The C 3050 also uses the forward-looking NAD MDC2 technology. By installing an additional module at an additional cost in one of the two MDC2 expansion slots on the rear panel, listeners can add additional features such as high-resolution BluOS multi-room streaming and Dirac Live room correction.
Music is everywhere
With dual-band Wi-Fi and Gigabit Ethernet, the BluOS platform provides integrated support for over 20 popular streaming services, including several that offer lossless, high-resolution audio such as
- Amazon Music Ultra HD
- high tide
BluOS supports high-resolution audio up to 24bit/192kHz with MQA decoding and rendering.
The MDC2 BluOS-D module also allows you to play music from your personal library and thousands of Internet radio stations. With the MDC2 module installed, the BluOS-D C 3050 can become part of a 64-zone home music system.
Various music control options are made possible with the BluOS Controller app available for Android, iOS, macOS and Windows.
The MDC2 BluOS-D supports Spotify Connect and Tidal Connect, so users can play music on apps for those services and then stream the playback to the C 3050.
Apple AirPlay 2 support lets you stream to the MDC2 BluOS-D from any app on your iPhone, iPad, or Macintosh.
Voice playback is possible using Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant or Apple Siri.
Advanced aptX HD bi-directional Bluetooth connectivity allows users to stream video directly to the MDC2 BluOS-D from a smart device, or stream audio from the C 3050 to a pair of wireless headphones.
Dirac room correction
An optional (additional purchase required) MDC2 BluOS-D module allows C 3050 owners to perform room correction to optimize speaker performance. Using a series of test signals played through the listeners’ speakers, the Dirac software analyzes the results and creates corrective filters to counteract common acoustic problems such as standing waves and unwanted reflections.
Also read: Melco Announces The N5-H50 Digital Music Library: High-End Munich 2023
Plug and Play
The C 3050 includes several input options. This includes analog and digital inputs, as well as an ultra-low noise MM phono stage for connecting a turntable.
In addition, HDMI eARC is included, which is not always available in two-channel amplifiers.
The C 3050 also includes A/B speaker connection and switching.
The C 3050 also features a dedicated headphone amp and pre/main input jacks for connecting to a more powerful amplifier or for use as a preamp only.
The C 3050 includes an IR remote control and features easy-to-install features such as a 12V trigger and IR input.
Frin Kas Oostwogel, Product Manager, NAD Electronics: “The C 3050 may seem like a throwback to the 70s, and that’s intentional… At the same time, it outshines many modern amplifiers in terms of upgradeability, performance and forward-looking features.”
Summary of Features/Parts
To review, here are the main product features for the NAD C3050.
- Cabinet: Vinyl-wrapped walnut body with dark gray front panel, front panel volume meters, push-button input controls, and 1970s cursive.
- Continuous output power: 100 watts per channel at 8/4 ohms
- Instantaneous power output: 135W per channel
- Expansion module: This allows you to add BluOS high-resolution multi-room music streaming and Dirac Live room correction. The module requires an additional surcharge.
Tip: Limited version of Dirac Live with 500Hz frequency and optional module. A full bandwidth license can be purchased from Dirac.com.
- DAC: TI PCM5242 high performance differential DAC
- Phono input: Ultra-low noise MM phono stage with subsound filtering circuit
- Digital audio inputs: One optical, one coaxial digital input
- Analog audio inputs: One set of analog line-level inputs with low-noise buffer amplifiers
- Audio outputs: Analog preout/main input
- HDMI: HDMI-eARC input enabled
- Connecting speakers: Speaker A/B terminals
- Subwoofer output: Allows you to connect an externally powered subwoofer.
- Headphone output: Dedicated headphone amplifier with ¼” front panel headphone jack.
- Remote control: IR remote control included
- CI control: 12V trigger output, IR input
Availability and prices
NAD 3050 will be available worldwide this month for USD. $1299 at Crutchfield and CAD$1,899 from authorized NAD dealers.
Tip: BluOS MDC2 module adds BluOS and Dirac for $599 in Crutchfield.