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NAD D 3020

Integrated amplifier with built-in digital-to-analog converter and Bluetooth®

Item #: 745D3020

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35 Reviews | 7 questions - 24 answers

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A classic audiophile amp reborn for the digital age

Ask old-school audiophiles about the NAD 3020 and, chances are, you'll see a smile form on their face. The 3020 was a simple integrated amplifier that introduced a generation of music lovers to NAD's smooth tone and powerful output that punched harder than bigger, more "spec-heavy" amps. That's just what NAD has re-created with the D 3020 integrated amplifier. With a built-in digital-to-analog converter, Bluetooth streaming, and its array of digital inputs, the D 3020 is poised to introduce a new generation of digital music lovers to high-fidelity sound.

24-bit/96kHz DAC with asynchronous USB input

The original 3020 integrated amp had it easy. About the only source anyone hooked up to it was a turntable. But with so many digital music sources available now, NAD had to outfit the D 3020 with a first-class digital-to-analog converter capable of high-resolution playback. So this amp is ready for CD and Blu-ray players, network streaming devices, and more. There's also an asynchronous USB input for using your computer as a high-fidelity music source. For MacBook® users, the analog minijack input doubles as a mini-optical input — just like the headphone/optical output on your MacBook.

More power than you think

If you think 30 watts doesn't sound like much power, don't be fooled. Not all watts are created equal, and NAD has a long history of designing integrated amps that sound far bigger than their specs might lead you to believe. Highly efficient, this little amp is perfect for powering a pair of bookshelf speakers while delivering warm, detailed sound from digital and analog sources. Need to fill out the bottom end? Connect a powered sub to the D 3020's subwoofer preamp output.

Designed to fit in tight spaces

This isn't your everyday rack-style component. The compact and streamlined D 3020 can stand on its side for placement on a desktop or shelf. Or lay it down flat in your cabinet or rack. You won't find a lot of unnecessary buttons cluttering this amp's front panel. Just an extra-large volume knob and a button for toggling between sources. The display shows which source is selected, as well as the volume level. What more do you need? Maybe Bluetooth? You got it. Stream tunes wirelessly from your smartphone, tablet, or computer for convenient playback. 

Product Highlights:

  • 30 watts x 2 into 8 ohms (20-20,000 Hz) at 0.005% THD
  • compact, low-profile design; vertical or horizontal orientation for placement flexibility
  • built-in 24-bit/96kHz digital-to-analog converter
  • asynchronous USB input for playback of high-resolution digital music files from a connected computer (up to 24-bit/96kHz resolution)
  • Bluetooth wireless connectivity for streaming music from compatible smartphones, tablets, and computers
    • aptX® encoding provide high-quality music streaming from compatible devices
  • 1 pair of analog stereo (RCA) inputs
  • miniplug analog input for connecting an iPod or other portable player
    • can also be used as an optical input for Macbook laptop computers; miniplug-to-Toslink adapter included for use with an optical cable
  • standard Toslink optical digital input
  • coaxial digital input
  • no phono input — to connect a turntable you'll need to add a phono preamp
  • stereo binding-post speaker terminals
  • dedicated mono RCA output for powered subwoofer
  • built-in headphone amplifier with 3.5mm minijack output
  • 12-volt trigger output
  • remote control
  • 2-5/16"W x 7-3/8"H x 8-5/8"D (standing vertically)
  • weight: 3.05 lbs.
  • warranty: 1 year
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Everything you always wanted in a stereo receiver, except the radio

An integrated amplifier is essentially a receiver without a built-in AM/FM tuner. You get power to drive your speakers, audio controls, and inputs for music source components. Connect an iPod, a computer, a network music player, or any other device that can play Internet radio, and you may find you have no need for an AM/FM radio.

NAD D 3020 Reviews

Average Customer Review:

35 Reviews

Nad D 3020

Written by: Nad D 3020 from san francisco, CA on February 11, 2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

excellent combination of features.

Pros: I works flawlessly with an I-phone.

Cons: I wish it would have a subwoofer out.

Very Nice -- Flexible Inputs

Written by: Teckie from Tucson, AZ on January 20, 2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Compact, lots of input choices. Good sound. This amp just works, and it works very well.

Pros: Small, flexible inputs (including normal baseband audio, digital, and bluetooth), good fidelity. Impressive engineering.

Cons: None.

Perfect solution

Written by: AnalogAudio from Massachusetts on January 11, 2016

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This is the perfect solution for my son's dorm room. He was raised on vinyl but doesn't have the room at college for a large system. Regular computer speakers were driving him mad. Thanks to a consult with Buzz at Crutchfield, we ended up pairing this unit with a set of Cambridge Audio bookshelf speakers. My son can now listen to music from multiple sources (ipod, computer streaming, portable cd) and the quality has hugely improved. The d to a converter does far more than we expected to upgrade the sound. This will also be a great portable unit for him as he makes his way into med school and beyond.

Pros: Portable, space saving, improves the digital music sound

Cons: None

Underwhelmed

Written by: Sean L from Raleigh, North Carolina on December 28, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Works as advertised, but the sound isn't as good as reviewed. All functions including Bluetooth work perfectly and reliably. Sound isn't as good as multiple reviews have stated. Have tried it with 3 different speakers. The subwoofer connection requires another connector as an RCA cable won't connect directly.

Overal sound is clear, but the highs are muted compared to a number of different AVRs I own.

Pros: -more than enough power (regardless of power rating) -easy to use remote -reliable -compact form

Cons: -subwoofer connector required -sound is okay, not as great given the price -highs sound muted

The Joy of Stereo

Written by: Bruce from South Carolina on December 7, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

What a joy to have stereo back in my bedroom again! Not wanting to crowd our bedroom with a big stereo system we switched to a Bose blue tooth box and while it got the job done the sound stage of clean, clear high fidelity stereo is not there. The NAD 3020 paired with my compact Polk speakers has put the joy back into my music! It's unobtrusive size and the Bluetooth interface makes it heard and not seen. With the NAD 3020 the music is the star! Love it!!!!

Pros: Small form factor, amazing digital to analog conversion and a huge stereo soundstage. My iTunes library never sounded so good!

Cons: It's so good you'll start downloading whole albums again and run up your Apple iTunes bill!

Big, warm sound.

Written by: Kurt from Michigan on November 3, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Big, warm, balanced sound, I have a pair Bose 301 series IV and they never sounded better, this 30WPC amp keeps up with my Onkyo rated at 130WPC and sounds better doing it!

Pros: great sound, easy set up, compact size!

Cons: none yet!

Nice sound, some quirks, and NAD backs their product

Written by: Nick D from New York on October 14, 2015

I purchased this product almost 2 years ago bc I needed a compact amplifier that didn't use too much power due to short wattage supply to my tiny NYC apt. I also had an affinity for NAD products bc my parents used them. I pair it with PSB bookshelfs with pro-ject carbon DC/pro-ject preamp, CD player. I like the USB mp3 up-conversion & the bluetooth works OK (better on iphone than on mac). Upon setup, I struggled to fit all the plugs in the back at once and the speaker wire butts out every which way, so the unit is sleek but doesn't hide the wires. In fact, I couldn't use the monster speaker wire that Crutchfield recommended bc the wires were too thick. The sound is excellent - I'm not expert so I'll leave it at that. The remote broke and the source selector became glitch, my Crutchfield warrantee was up and had to deal directly with NAD who were very responsive and professional.

Pros: The simple, different design is an eye catcher. Ideal for multiple component usage in compact places with low electricity supply. The sound is warm, crisp and clean. BT works well with iPhone.

Cons: Takes a while to power on. Very tight backside - hard to use all inputs, no way to hide speaker wire, in fact using anything thicker than basic speaker wire is not an option.

Great compact amp!

Written by: PatrickR from Virginia on September 27, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This amp has given me everything I wanted and more. Price may seem a little high but it is well worth it for the features and quality.

Pros: Audio quality is very good through all forms of input, especially impressed by the quality of the bluetooth. The built-in DAC is also a plus.

Cons: I wish the bluetooth would automatically connect to my iPhone when I turn on the iPhone bluetooth connection, instead of having to open the settings and manually choose the amp. Remote could be higher quality/more sensitive.

Fantastic!

Written by: Sharon from Irvine, CA on September 22, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Paired it with a piair of Klipsch RP-160's and heard parts in Good Vibrations if never heard before. Revelatory!

Pros: Everything!

Cons: None!

Ridiculously Good

Written by: GerryS from San Antonio,Tx. on July 10, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Magic sound stage - smooth and believable - felt a smile spread across my face on first song - a rare product that lives up to it's billing - and that was with Bluetooth and an IPhone

Pros: Real

Cons: Remote not as sensitive as I would like

Superb Amp

Written by: Vince from Maryland on July 4, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I use this amp as the centerpiece of a small living room system, with a NAD C 516BEE CD Player (through an optical input), a Music Hall USB 1 Turntable (through the RCA input), a laptop running Apple Lossless files (through the USB input), and a pair of Bowers & Wilkins 686 S2 speakers.

This is a great small home system. It has plenty of power to fill the living room. However, I usually listen to it after the kids are in bed and modest volumes are necessary. I was looking for an amp that could perform well at lower volumes. The NAD D 3020 is perfect. The output is clear, warm and detailed.

It also performs well across its many inputs. CD and Turntable playback through the optical and RCA inputs are top notch. Digital playback through the USB input is also excellent, although I recommend using dedicated media software to get the best performance from the DAC. Playing lossless files through iTunes does not sound as good as CD playback. I was disappointed until I started running my files through Foobar, which is free. That made a huge difference and means that I can play my entire CD collection on my laptop. That convenience is a big reason I chose the NAD D 3020. Also convenient is the amp's Bluetooth feature. It's incredibly easy to connect to your phone, and there too the sound quality is great.

The one shortcoming is the remote. It requires line of sight to the amp, the volume control isn't very responsive, and the buttons are impossible to see in low light.

Pros: Superb sound, versatility and convenience for a great price.

Cons: Poorly-designed remote control.

Great sound with a few minor drawbacks

Written by: Bruce from boston, ma on April 17, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I think the great sound quality has already been covered in other reviews sufficiently. One item to note is that it also supports 320 VBR AAC over bluetooth even though NAD does not advertise this. I was able to verify this with a packet sniffer and it sounds great from an iPhone. I have not tried any uncompress files / hi res files over the USB DAC as a comparison - I'd rather just enjoy what I'm already hearing.

Pros: Bass boost adds "just enough" for small speakers

Cons: Will not wake from standby via bluetooth - only digital inputs according to the manual Does not remember the last volume level after standby - always defaults to -40db - by design ? Not much audible display form -100 to -40 on the display, -40 to 0 is the only useful range Does not reconnect automatically to the last bluetooth devices - by design?

Nice Amp

Written by: DS from Lancaster, PA on March 3, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Nice little AMP. I bought this for a small music only system in my living room. It delivers clean power and only the essential controls. For the small form factor, one can pipe a ton of sources into it. Optical, digital Coax, mini jack, Stereo RCA, bluetooth and USB. The design is well thought out but it gets busy behind the unit after about three inputs plus speakers are landed. Makes for a harder wire management scenario than a traditional stack-able component would encounter. Also, the binding posts are gold plated, as one would expect in this price range, but there are injection moded plastic knobs that shroud the metal threaded nuts. Not uncommon, but it seems the plastic knob may be a bit too flush with the metal nut that is intended to create a large clamped surface area on the speaker wire's spade terminals. I had half a mind to file the plastic back so I was guaranteed to get nothing but metal on metal. May still do it because I can't see if the plastic knob hits before the metal tightening nut. A plated washer would solve this too. (only reason not 5 stars) Anyway, it is a great clean source with versatility of input interfaces in a small package. The DAC has one ready to step up to higher density music files. The mini jack makes it easy to connect an iPhone if you just want some convenient music.

Pros: versatile compact

Cons: Binding posts not my favorite

ideal little amp

Written by: mikeA from Austin Tx on February 25, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This is an amazing little amp. True quality design, and very stylish and heavy/stable for its size. I use it stand-up style next to Nad CD player. I'm driving a pair of Polk A3s each on left and right channel. Each pair wired in parallel for 4 ohms at the amp, using 12 gauge Monster cable. The amp has no trouble at all driving this. I listen from medium background level to a good loud foreground level, and I never get outside of -60db to -40db range on their "-100db to 0db" volume scale, and this is at 4ohms. Getting up to -20db volume would be blasting. By the way, I firmly believe you really want an amp in it's mid range to really get the sweet spot of the amp. Running a 100w amp at 10-20% volume for everyday listening is not not going to compare to this Nad amp. It has a slight base boost option that I always have on (tiny button in the back). And lots of connectivity in the back. Note, the subwoofer output is a 2-conductor mini-headphone jack that you need a "mini-headphone to RCA" adapter for. Of all places, a very high quality adapter is at Radio Shack! (Crutchfield - stock up on those and include one with each sale!) I saw a lower quality looking one too at Fry's too in case Radio Shake disappears. Note, it is a straight amp with just a slight base boost option. For some music, I would have liked a little more sound processing control. I have no problem at all with the remote as others have commented.

Pros: very stylish, great connectivity, very high power for its apparent 25W rating.

Cons: none

NAD D 3020

Written by: majed from Massachusetts on February 22, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

A very tiny and great amplifier for use with your computer or with your various Hi-Fi equipment such as CD player or minidisc or cassette player and your wireless devices If you work several hours on your computer and want a quality listening rather than the nasty sound typical of a computer, then that is the amplifier you need. Very easy set up and very versatile with multiple inputs. It is a great equipment

Pros: I use it to play high resolution (24/96) recorded files from my IMac, and I also use it to play music from various sources using the inputs and also from my iphone. All work great. Paired with two PSB imagine mini and a sub series 125 from PSB, I get a great sound

Cons: A bit pricy

3020 Stick of Dynomite

Written by: Muziknutt from Nashville Tn on January 18, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

A stick of dynamite weighs a half a pound. The 2030 is the same weight as 6 sticks. 3 pounds. But it's just about as powerful. John McVies bass on The Chain actually rattled the windows in my den. Absolutely no distortion. Joni Mitchell's acoustic and electric guitars - so sweet. Yo Yo Ma's cello on his live duet of Sayuris theme with John Williams on piano, all tones deep and natural. Hugh Lauries piano on "St. Louis Blues", I've never heard a piano played (recorded) with such power. The NAD 3020 captures and delivers the depth and richness of the recording with profound and graceful ease. The soundstage spread across my 20 ft den with clear separation of instruments; dobro, wood blocks, clarinets, bass clarinets and a cacophony of trombones and drums each in their prospective place. Then the voices come in with perfect tone. Amazing! Switching the music delivery to my phone is nearly a breeze with the small but almost unreadable remote. Braille instructions would have been helpful, but maneuvering soon is second nature.

Headphones next. plugged them in and the headphone amp gives them an a cleaner sound with a nice dollop of extra richness.

The 3020 was built for most things digital. So no phono amp. But this seems to be as good as it gets in this price range. There is a big brother if you want your system to fill up your local auditorium with the Black Keys.

Pros: Great power Great clarity Great separation Great connectivity Great mobility

Cons: remote visually impaired

Fills a Big Room

Written by: Larry - New Bern from North Carolina on January 14, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This book sized amp/digital to analog converter puts out a big sound in a small package. The professional reviews of this were great and the product lives up to them. I have it powering PSB Imagine X1Ts in an 18x18 room with wood floors and almost 10 foot ceilings. It rarely needs to go about -40db to make them fill this lively room. If you are wondering if it can drive such speakers, my test so far say a big yes and with ease. I can always as a subwoofer with the dedicated output but don't think I will need it.

Pros: Powerful and clean sound using digital input via a 16' USB cable from my iMac. So far I have just used iTune purchases and my iTunes Match collection and I am amazed and how good it sounds. I couldn't hear any difference using audiophile software like Pure Music. I am using audiophile 12 gauge cable to hook these up with nothing other than bare wire as connection and it is very clean. The sound from this package is effortless sounding. No straining anywhere. I am loving music again !

Cons: A small point, but it would be nice if the screen on the amp turned when the amp turns but that is just a tiny design item. This is a great little amp/dac for use with an all digital system and I don't see any real flaws. Some have complained about the remote but it is fine and intuitive. Get this if you want hi quality well under $500.

Pretty good

Written by: BostonTech from Boston on October 28, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I'm a lifelong audiophile. For me the ideal is music that feels like 'I was there'. That is off-course an almost-impossible dream. So all systems feel like you're listening to music from behind a few layers of curtains. The better the system the fewer the layers of curtains separating you from the music. By that standard, the 3020 is a solid product. Stepping-up from my Sonic Impact TA2024, to the more expensive 3020, the sound went from cartoonish etched to much more detailed and believable. 2 layers of curtains were removed. But an unknown number of layers remain. I think I can now hear the limits of MP3 audio and all the music information they throw-away to make the file size smaller. A solid point in the 3020's favor is 'jitter resolution'. Digital music sounds 'etched, harsh and fatiguing'. Recent breakthroughs have helped music sound like top-end cassette players, or mid-level turntables of years gone by, without their mechanical limitations. The 3020 sound is not etched or fatiguing at all, though the top-end sounds soft. Sad to say my fellow audiophiles as a group are a bunch of breathless optimists. That's why after 30+ years of stunning, breathtaking audio breakthroughs, we're only modestly ahead in our quest for believable music for the masses. So a dose of realism is necessary when buying even a top-rated amp. It won't help you find your lost kitty or do the dishes, but for your money, you're unlikely to have buyers remorse.

Pros: 1] Smooth sound. No fatiguing 'etchiness' you hear almost universally in digital music. 2] Well built and heavy. This amp will probably last a long time. 3] Compact size--about the size of two stacked personal pizza boxes. Designed to be used standing on edge, so takes very little desk space.

Cons: 1] Soft high-end 2] Useless, disappointing remote (black-on-black markings and cryptic symbols). Just press the buttons at random and see what happens. 3] Unresponsive power touchbutton. You have to press it 3-5 times to get the amp to wake-up. 4] Sluggish volume control. You turn it 5+ times to go from lowest to highest volume setting. Takes tons of turns to turn the volume up or down.

NAD D3020

Written by: rich.s from Chicago,Il. on October 12, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

The NAD D3020 is probably the most remarkable sound per square inch I've had. For listening in my home office the overall range and depth of music is excellent, solid bass, good mids, clear highs. Maybe you cant push the amp to high sound levels, but for my modest needs its perfect. The things I dont like: the pre out is a3.5mm, so I need an adapter for the regular sub. The remote is pretty basic, and the functions do not have any color contrast, its black on black...strange. But for me its a keeper.

Pros:

Cons:

Little Powerhouse

Written by: JWUC from Austin, TX on September 5, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I have this hooked up to some DIY bookshelf speakers based off of the Midnight Sensations MTM design and hooked up to my Computer. I can say that it's a pretty good little amp/DAC and it drives my speakers well. I do love the amount of inputs that it has and especially the blutooth connectivity. It was because of the number of inputs and the DAC that it won out over my other Choice: The Emotiva mini-X a-100

Pros:

Cons:

Excellent Integrated Amp

Written by: Stephen A from Hollywood, FL on August 18, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Excellent and very cool looking product. Design is space saving, with enough inputs to make this a worthwhile investment. Pumps out great sound driving Boston Acoustics VR M60 Lynnfield bookshelf speakers. DAC makes computer streaming sound great.

Pros: Great design. Puts out much more sound than 30 watts per channel would suggest. Excellent built-in DAC and headphone amp.

Cons: None.

Excellent Amplifier

Written by: Brien B from Charlotte, NC on May 26, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Bought this to power some NHT SB2 Loudspeakers in a bedroom setup. They are perfect for the task.

Pros: Compact Unit, Excellent Sound Quality, Simple to Use, Digital Inputs

Cons: None really. It would be nice if it had slightly more power because my speakers are not the most efficient pair, but it is more than adequate for the current task.

Good but annoying

Written by: rick422 from northbrook, il. on May 11, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

The NAD d 3020 is definitely compact, very good sound as a step up from computer audio, and usable in a basic audiophile system like I tried in my home office. But the functional aspects are among the most annoying I have ever used. The touch sensitive mode selector is on a different side than the volume, which can work based on set up., but on the side its inconvenient. Vertical its prone to tip over at the slightest bump. The remote is ridiculous... small black unit with functions in recessed black.. had to hold it at an angle in the light to see the functions... how much can a dab of color cost? or embossing? makes no sense. Now for the sound, its pretty good. I sold a peachtree nova due to size, and the NAD is not quite as full sounding. Then I tredi a Teac 501 integrated amp and its a big step up in bass, sound stage, detail, and overall sonic capabilities. The Teac is new and perhaps a bit brighter than the NAD, but immensely more musical.

Pros: compact, pretty good sound

Cons: configuration and layout inconvenient

Great Sound in a Small Space

Written by: MikeJ from Columbia, MO on May 2, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I needed a small receiver that balanced quality sound with a small footprint. I wanted it to blend into a small living room but still pack a pretty good punch when needed. I was also looking for receiver that had enough inputs that (1) it would not get quickly dated, and (2) would work well if I eventually wanted to use it with an AV setup instead of as a strictly audio receiver.

The NAD D 3020 has been the perfect choice so far. It's connected to a pair of Wharfedale Diamond 10.2 speakers, and the combination makes for an incredible audio experience for less than $1,000 (and using only about 2 square feet of table space). I use it with Bluetooth when I want convenience, and I use the USB input with a Surface Pro when I want top-quality sound. I've had no problems with either connection. I assumed the USB would be tricky, put it just meant downloading a driver.

Overall it's a great system that sounds incredible, looks cool, seems well built, and has the inputs to last for years to come.

Pros: Small footprint Great sound Plenty of inputs (both digital and analog)

Cons: I'm not a real fan of the display. I'd prefer a real power button and a more precise idea of the volume. These aren't exactly problems, but if I were designing the next model, I'd change these.

NAD D 3020

Written by: Anonymous from Tacoma, WA on March 23, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This little amp is amazing. It fits in my little space with great connectivity to all the latest digital inputs as well an an analog input. It meets all my needs and sounds great to boot

Pros: See above.

Cons: Wish it had a second analog input.

NAD D 3020

Written by: Eliseo from Puerto Rico on March 20, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Compré el NAD 3020 por todos los accesorios que trae pero al probarlo con mis bocinas torres Energy RF 500 noto que el sonido era muy opaco para la calidad de un amplificador de renombre como éste. Lo devuelvo y pido un Yamaha A-S500 y las bocinas me suenan igual, entendí que no era el NAD si no que mis bocinas estaban defectuosas. Exelente servicio de Crutchfield entrega rápida incluso a devolver el nad y recibir el Yamaha todo fue super rápido. Exelente servicio de Crutchfield y muy buena orientación de su equipo de apoyo.

I bought the NAD 3020 because of all the accessories it had included but after trying it out with my Energy RF 500 I noticed the sound to be very opaque for the quality of an amplifier of such high marks like this one. I returned it and ordered the Yamaha A-S500 and the speakers sound the same, I figured out that it was the speakers that were defective and not the receiver. Crutchfield's service was excellent and the delivery was fast even with the return of the NAD and the delivery of the Yamaha, everything was super-fast. Crutchfield's service was excellent as well as good orientation from their support team.

Pros: Todo los accesorios como wifi, DAC, Bluetooth. All the accessories like wifi, DAC and Bluetooth.

Cons: Precio. Price.

Crutchfield response on March 25, 2014 Translation provided by Crutchfield's Spanish Sales & Support team. Visit our new Spanish-language site at www.crutchfieldenespanol.com.

Great amp

Written by: Anonymous from Savannah, Georgia on March 17, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Great little amp. It was perfect for my needs, I use my tv as a switcher now and this little guy powers my nht speakers plenty strong for good clean sound. Only one analog input, but who needs them with all the digital sources today. Couldn't ask for a better product from NAD, they did it again.

Pros:

Cons:

NAD D 3020

Written by: JVB from Massachusetts on January 21, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This is my first NAD product and it sounds great. I have it hooked up to Triad Silver Omni in-room speakers. I really like the size and the fact that I can stream my music from my Nexus 7 or Moto X using BlueTooth. Why three stars? It appears I have a faulty unit. The display lights up all/random icons. I never know what source is selected or volume level. I tried to contact NAD directly but have not heard anything from them. I was wondering if a firmware fix would solve the issue. Who knows! I finally contacted Crutchfield and they are sending out an exchange. Kudos for the Crutchfield support. No hassle and responded back quickly.

Pros: Size an sound. Love being able to stream via BT.

Cons: Faulty unit and NAD support no existent!

Excellent!

Written by: AlanG from Memphis, TN on January 21, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

The D3020 is replacing a 12 year old 40 pound Marantz Reference Integrated (100 wpc) amp.This little amp is fantastic! It drives my 4 - ohm Martin Logan towers with authority, bass is very tight and well defined. I use the Bluetooth feature from my phone and ipod, the digital input from my BluRay / CD player and the analog input is connected to my turntable (i have a phono pre-amp). Its quite small and build quality seems to be very good, overall it made me very happy.

Pros: sound quality * sub-woofer out * small / light weight * 2 ohm stable

Cons: I wish the volume display scale was adjusted, it doesn't put out much sound until i get to -40 and lower. It starts at -100 and goes down from there

Great Little Amp

Written by: Dave from Upstate New York on January 16, 2014

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This amp replaced a Pioneer VSX-819 5.1 amp that was about 5 years old. I wanted to upgrade my equipment and I only use 2 floor-standing JBL's and a sub so the 5.1 AV was not needed. When connecting my components the first this I noticed was the bass was much louder. This little NAD pushed way more bass to my floor-standing speaker. To the point that I know longer need to use my JBL Sub. This was surprising to me especially because I listen to a lot of Electronic and Hip Hop music. I also use this amp for tv and movies. I was heals back at first purchasing this amp because of the lack of Dolby digital. I do not seem to hear much of a difference in sound as far as movies go.

Pros: Small size.

Cons: Volume is really low until -40. -20 makes big jumps in loudness.

Excellent !

Written by: cwbidaho from Moscow ID on December 1, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This is clearly an amplifier for the digital age, but sound quality is excellent - clean, detailed, and very smooth. It easily drives less-efficient speakers (my vintage Advent), as well as my very efficient JBL studio monitors. I am totally pleased!

Pros: Very simple to use, and is small enough to fit anywhere. Very clean styling; though a bit unconventional.

Cons: If you like to fiddle with controls (tone, balance, etc.) this unit may not be for you - there aren't any. The display is vertical only; looks strange if amp is placed horizontally.

Great Desktop Amp

Written by: Tom from Rochester NY on November 25, 2013

Had completed the latest round of system upgrades throughout the house & patio, heavily anchored by NAD/PSB/Bluesound -- but no changes to PC/office for a long time. Still had NuForce uDac feeding Bose Companion IIs, a far cry from what I was hearing in other rooms. Speakers were the obvious start, and considered PSB powered Alphas, but really didn't want to mess with a sub in that room (they NEED a sub). Considered the NAD D1050 DAC, but in the end knew I'd really prefer an amp with passive speakers. Looked at several amps in the same price range as the D3020, liked the NAD sound as always, so got it -- then agonized for several weeks over the best speakers to go along with it. Not a lot out there that can go fairly low (enough to not really NEED a sub) and yet small enough to not be overbearing on my desk. I already had PSB Minis as surrounds in the living room, so tried those, and it is a perfect pairing. I play FLAC files ranging from ripped CDs to 24/192 HDTracks files via JRiver (yes, it plays 24/192 just fine over USB, although it's technically a 24/96 input -- that was a concern for me initially). The remote is good enough, while the headphone amp is very good. I'm using Audioquest cables, USB Cinnamon and Type 4 speaker cable w/banana plugs, speakers on trimmed-down Auralex Speaker Dudes. Will be upgrading the USB cable soon, just can't help myself :) The D3020/Mini combination is actually more than I'd ever need in that room, but it sounds SO good!!

Pros: Size on desktop, rich sound, plenty of power for small room, flexible inputs, huge bang for the buck

Cons: hold on, I'm thinking...nope, none, considering the price range

Amazing Little Amp

Written by: Undrgnd40 from Minnesota on November 3, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

This amp kicks out some unreal sound for its size and power rating! I have Wharfedale Diamond 10.1 speakers and a 20 yr old pair of Infinity Modulus mini monitors that both sound fantastic driven with this amp. Highly recommended for those who value excellent musical sound quality.

Pros: Great sound, small size.

Cons: I dislike the power and source buttons.

NAD Does It Again

Written by: kirkaw from Sugar Land, TX on October 31, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Extraordinary value! Using as my desktop amp in my home office. Very musical. Detail and soundstage at this price is exceptional. Surprisingly comparable to my audiophile main system costing over 10 times as much! Paired with Wharfedale Diamond 10.1's. Perfect match. I was blown away! Forgiving of poor quality CD rips, yet handles the hi-def from HDTracks, SACD's and DVD-A with ease. Worthy of it's namesake from what I have read. Bonus - Not a bad little HP amp. Highly recommended!

Pros: Price Quality sound Size - perfect for desktop Nice remote Cool looking - great design Very high WAF (wife acceptance factor) - She thinks it is cool and is amazed by the sound. Asks why I spent so much on the other "big system."

Cons: On Off switch annoying until you get use to. Same with source selection.

Sweeeet !!!

Written by: Don from Connecticut on October 18, 2013

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

I have tried several USB DAC/Amps and Asynchronous USB DAC with separate Amp combinations. This beats them all !!! Sounds great with my Audioengine P4 Speakers. I can't detect any jitter at all.

Yes, this Hybrid DAC/Amp is a bit expensive, but if you want clean sounding music when listening to iTunes on your PC, then you can go wrong with the NAD D 3020. I couldn't find any lower cost alternatives that provided clean, jitter-less sound.

Pros: - Very clean sound when listening to Jazz Sax and Acoustic Guitar music which I love. I can play all my music in iTunes without any EQ settings. - Compact unit that can be placed on its side or standing upright. - Remote to control device from a distance. - Lots of different inputs - USB, RCA, Optical, etc.

Cons: - Remote lettering and symbols the same color as the remote (black). You have to squint to see the icons for the controls. Once you get used to them, it doesn't really matter.

Hands-on research

What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Hybrid digital amplifier
  • 6' AC power cord
  • Remote control
  • CR2025 3V battery
  • Toslink-to-3.5mm adapter
  • 8 Self-adhesive rubber feet
  • Quick Setup Guide
  • Warranty Card

Features and Specs

Performance Specs
Watts RMS per Channel (8-ohms) 30
Watts RMS per Channel (6-ohms) Not given
Watts RMS per Channel (4-ohms) Not given
Frequency Bandwidth 20-20k
THD 0.005%
Minimum Impedance 4 ohms
Signal to Noise Ratio 90
Digital Music Features
Built-in DAC (Digital to Analog Converter) Yes
High-resolution Audio Playback FLAC, WAV
Bluetooth Yes
Wi-Fi No
Connections
Total Analog Inputs 2
Phono Input No
Optical Digital Inputs 1
Coaxial Digital Inputs 1
USB Input Type-B
Preamp Outputs Sub
Headphone Output 3.5mm
Dimensions and Warranty
Width (inches) 2-5/16
Height (inches) 7-3/8
Depth (inches) 9-3/4
Weight (pounds) 3.05
Parts Warranty 2 Years
Labor Warranty 2 Years

Product Research

Features

Hybrid Digital Amplifier: The NAD D 3020 is a hybrid digital amplifier which incorporates NAD's PowerDrive and Soft Clipping technology for dynamic power, low distortion and noise, and minimal power consumption. Even at 30 watts x 2 channel, the D 3020 has the ability to drive difficult loudspeakers to satisfying levels without adding noise or distortion.

  • NAD PowerDrive Circuit: The D 3020 use NAD's proprietary PowerDrive amplifier technology that provides high dynamic power and low impedance drive capability. This uniquely efficient power supply topology provides the real world benefits of high dynamic power that remains uncompromised by low impedance speakers.
  • Soft Clipping: NAD's Soft Clipping circuit gently limits the output of the D 3020 to minimize audible distortion when the amplifier is over-driven.
  • NAD's Full Disclosure Power Ratings: NAD uses Full Disclosure Power (FDP), the most demanding criterion for performance measurement. FDP specifies distortion under the most extreme conditions of low impedance loads and frequency extremes, rather than the simple and easy 1kHz @ 8 ohms test quoted by many of other manufactures. NAD uses this stricter performance criterion because it more closely matches the demands of real music and real loudspeakers. Maintaining specified distortion at 4 ohms and at 20Hz to 20kHz is a much more difficult achievement. The NAD D 3020 is rated at 30 watts x 2 channel (@ 20-20kHz, in 8-ohms, with 0.005% THD).
Note: The D 3020's highly efficient design wastes less energy resulting in cooler running and longer life; standby power consumption is <0.5W.

Bass EQ Circuit: An innovative Bass EQ circuit helps small speakers sound bigger without overdriving or damaging drivers.

24-Bit/192kHz DAC: The NAD D 3020 hybrid digital amplifier incorporates an excellent quality 24-bit/192kHz DAC with 8 channels mixed to 2 channels for playback of your high-resolution digital music.

Asynchronous USB Input: The NAD D 3020 features an asynchronous USB (type-B) input to insure the lowest possible jitter (timing errors) from your connected Windows or Mac computer. The D 3020's USB input supports up to 24-bit/96kHz high-resolution music files on your computer. The D 3020 is compatible with Mac OS X Snow Leopard (version 10.6) or later version. No additional USB driver required. It is also compatible with Windows (XP SP2 or higher and 7) with an additional USB driver download required from NAD website.

Digital Optical/Coaxial Inputs: The NAD D3020 is fitted with one digital coaxial (RCA) input and one optical (toslink) digital input for connection of your digital audio sources like CD and DVD players, satellite/cable boxes, or Apple TV. The unit will accept 2-channel PCM audio signals from the Optical or Coaxial inputs.

Dual Analog Inputs: The D3020 offers two analog inputs; a stereo RCA input and a 3.5mm Aux input. Use the stereo RCA input for older non-digital audio components, like your AM/FM tuner. Use the 3.5mm Aux input to connect your portable digital music player. The 3.5mm input can also be used as an optical input for Macbook laptop computers (miniplug-to-Toslink adapter included for use with an optical cable).

Bluetooth aptX Music Streaming: The NAD D 3020 offers built-in Bluetooth aptX technology. Via Bluetooth, you can wirelessly stream music from your smartphone, tablet, or laptop to the hybrid digital amplifier. The D 3020 even supports aptX audio coding which delivers CD-quality sound wirelessly over Bluetooth. The D 3020 is compatible with most Bluetooth devices (such as Apple, Android, and Blackberry). However, due to the differences in Bluetooth technology, some Bluetooth enabled devices may be incompatible, function improperly, or may not support all features.

Binding Post Speaker Terminals: The NAD D 3020 hybrid digital amplifier is equipped with four binding post terminals to connect your loudspeakers. The binding post speaker terminals will accept bar wire (up to 10AWG), banana plugs (dual or single), pin-connectors, and spade-connectors.

Subwoofer Output: The NAD hybrid digital amplifier features a mono mini-jack (3.5mm) subwoofer output for connecting an external powered subwoofer to your system.

Built-in Headphone Amp: The D 3020 features an integrated headphone amp with a 3.5mm headphone output jack to connect a pair of headphones for private listening. A specially designed low noise headphone circuitry accommodates a wide range of headphones, even 600-ohm studio models. Once headphones are connected to the D 3020, your connected speakers will be turned off.

IR Remote Control: The NAD D 3020 comes with an IR remote for wireless operation of the hybrid digital amplifier. You can turn amplifier on/off, raise/lower volume, and switch sources from the remote. The playback controls on the remote are not functional.

+12V Trigger Input: The +12V trigger input (3.5mm) lets you turn on/off the D 3020 from another device with a +12V trigger output.

Vertical or Horizontal Mounting: The NAD D 3020 can be installed vertically or horizontally. Eight self-adhesive rubber feet are included.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Product reviews from the Crutchfield Labs

With a built-in digital-to-analog converter, Bluetooth streaming, and its array of digital inputs, the NAD D 3020 is poised to introduce a new generation of digital music lovers to high-fidelity...

What are the Labs?

Customer Q&A

Crutchfield asked  
Why did you buy this?

Perfect for use. Good reviews. [ Steven  Feb 08, 2016 ]
Love the NAD amps and due to its past history on its fantastic performance and reviews. [ AMIT  Jan 24, 2016 ]
Best bang-for-the-buck among higher-end DACs. [ Loren  Jan 18, 2016 ]
Small footprint. [ E  Dec 23, 2015 ]
audio quality and feature set [ Joshua  Dec 19, 2015 ]

7 questions already asked

No it doesn't. You have to turn it on manually, using either the remote or the touch-sensitive power light on the top;. [ Israel  Jan 27, 2016 ]
It doesn't on a digital coaxial connection. I highly doubt it does on optical. [ Jonathan  Jan 27, 2016 ]
Speaker sound is very subjective, and each brand/design has a characteristic sound. I have used JBL (my preference), Bose, Klipsch, and Infinity with my NAD amplifier, and the audio characteristics were exactly as I expected from each speaker. Therefore I would recommend that you audition speakers and find what you like, but before purchase is final listen using the NAD amplifier. Keep in mind that the amplifier is relatively low power, so you should concentrate your search on relatively efficient speakers. Also note that it is frequently recommended that the speakers should cost about the same or a bit more than the amplifier. Thus $1500 speakers with a $400 amplifier is unbalanced quality unless you are planning to upgrade the amplifier. [ CHESTER W  Aug 16, 2015 ]
That's a tough question. It depends on so many factors. But, for what it is worth, I use my NAD D3020 in a sub/satellite configuration with a pair of Focal Chorus 705s and a Definitive Technology 10" powered sub. Works great! [ Maynard  Aug 14, 2015 ]
I've paired mine with a set of Axiom bookshelves and a Velodyne sub. [ Patrick  Aug 14, 2015 ]
Paradigm Studio 20s sound great. [ CRAIG D  Aug 14, 2015 ]
Kef LS50 Wonderful. [ Lawrence  Aug 14, 2015 ]
You can connect through a standard 3.5 mm AUX cable. [ Viswanath  Apr 22, 2015 ]
I forwarded your question to an Advisor and they responded with the following: The USB input on the NAD D3020 integrated amp will just be for connection of a computer. It is a type B USB connection which will not be compatible with any iDevices. If you would like to discuss further you can contact an Advisor directly by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. [ Krissy  Apr 22, 2015 ]  Staff
I don't have an APTX device. But standard Bluetooth on an iPhone connects fine. It's not the best method, but it does work through the speaker outputs. I assume the headphone would be the same. Sorry couldn't help more. [ Maynard  Dec 04, 2014 ]
I have iMac, iPad, iPod, and iPhone devices and they all "pair" with the D3020 via bluetooth no problem. Since bluetooth is only another input to the amp, the signal appears at the headphone jack too. [ CHESTER W  Dec 03, 2014 ]
sorry i only wired it to the speaker so don't know how it works for your case. [ fan  Dec 03, 2014 ]
To my knowledge, there's no indication on the D 3020 that a bluetooth connection is aptx or not. That's probably because aptx is a compression codec that allows for higher bitrate audio to be transmitted over bluetooth's limited bandwidth, not necessarily a different kind of bluetooth connection. If the transmitting and receiving devices both support aptx, then I believe it just defaults to that codec. Both the main and the headphone DACs support aptx. Wouldn't make sense for the hardware not to support the software. [ JOHN  Dec 03, 2014 ]
Chris: Unfortunately it does not have a low freq cut-off. I love this thing. It sound awesome for a little amp. [ Lawrence  Sep 18, 2014 ]
I contacted NAD about this. I was told that when the sub-out is engaged, its pre-set at 100hz for the sub out (low pass) and the speaker-out crossover (high pass) is also 100hz [ JAMES  Sep 18, 2014 ]
No, it is fixed. [ Maynard  Sep 18, 2014 ]
Yes, as a matter of fact im using a sub-woofer with the D3020. For most and in my case it requires a converter/adapter cable (mini-jack to RCA). It works and sounds great with my Polk Sub-woofer! [ JAMES  Jan 13, 2014 ]
The D 3020 supports 24/192 via optical/coaxial inputs; the USB is limited to 24/96. If you go to NAD website and download the "DATA SHEET" it states: "> Reinventing an Icon By adapting to today's media sources and using state-of-the-art digital technology for the new world of digital music, the D 3020 puts a completely modern spin on an old icon. The original designer of the 3020, NAD's Director of Advanced Technology, Bjorn Erik Edvardsen, has been pivotal in developing the D 3020 for the new digital generation. Offering an excellent quality 24/192 DAC with 8 channels mixed to 2 for improved resolution, the D 3020 represents the same kind of value-bending innovation that gave the original 3020 its legendary overachieving phono stage." [ PAUL D  Jan 12, 2014 ]
The key thing on the D 3020 is that NAD is following on the original 1970s 3020 by providing outstanding sound with basic features at attractive price. A manufacturer can always add more features and increase the price. As it is, the D 3020 sounds excellent in my study with MacPro source and JBL Studio Monitor speakers. If you peruse any technical articles or reviews, you will find that there is much more to the sound of a DAC than bit/sample rate number. Of course there are cheapie DACs, as well as good ones at $500 and $5000. And there is a difference; you get what you pay for. If you want to experience the full effect of studio-quality uncompressed data files at 24/192 you should probably buy a good DAC, quality amplifier, and appropriate speakers. You won't hear any benefit on a "budget" system. If you need the small physical footprint of the NAD, you should perhaps consider the D 7050. Though it is twice the price, it has the more sophisticated DAC, and a bit more power in the same vertical case as the D 3020. [ CHESTER W  Jan 07, 2014 ]
Hello, As I don't work for NAD, I can't answer your questions definitively, but I'll do my best. I would imagine that NAD neglected to put a 24/192 DAC in the d3020 for two reasons. One, doing so would have eliminated any reason for someone to buy the DAC-only device in this lineup (the d1050 I think, can't remember). Two, including a 24/192 DAC in the d3020 would have pushed its price point up too high, or at least higher than that which NAD was aiming for. As to whether having a 24/192 capable DAC will degrade your listening experience or not, I suppose that depends on what you'll be listening to. It is VERY rare to come across music in true 24/192 form. For the most part, the only reason any music exists in the 192kHz format is for studio editing. So, if you're planning on using this unit to playback audio you've been editing, to listen for minute changes you've made in the range above 96kHz, then yes, I suppose you'd be better off with a unit that can handle that format. In any other scenario, the lack of 24/192 ability will almost definitely not make a difference. It's somewhat common for audiophiles like us to get caught up in having the absolute best, newest, highly-capable everything. Some of that, however, just isn't worth the price of admission. There's a reason why this unit is $500. That reason is because it's free of a lot of that kind of stuff. Finally, let me just say that I received one of the very first D 3020s to ship, and have been living with it for several months now. It's an absolutely excellent digital amp, and I could not be happier with it. I've read several of the reviews for it, and they're all spot on. This is, without a doubt, the best $500 you can spend on a digital amp, no problem. Before buying my D 3020, I did extensive research into competing products, only to discover that there weren't any really. [ JOHN  Jan 07, 2014 ]
Don't know, I have it on Hi fi system. [ HARVEY  Jan 06, 2014 ]
From a marketing perspective, having a 24/192 DAC would be a good thing. But, NAD has never been a company to get caught up in specifications. Amplifier power, for example, is always conservatively rated from NAD. In the end, it is a solid product that delivers great sound at a great price . IMO, the DAC rate is a non-issue. Very little source material is available at 24/192 anyway - only from HDTracks (or similar) and certainly not iTunes/Amazon. I'm not sure it is even possible to hear the difference between 24/96 and 24/192. Don't let the specifications alone drive your decision. [ Maynard  Jan 06, 2014 ]
I doubt very much that there is anything that can be heard or felt above 96Khz. I think that the 192 stuff is another audiophile red herring. My two cents. [ James  Jan 06, 2014 ]
sorry this is my first amplifier and i only used it for a CD player. i don't have much idea how it performs for the desktop system. [ fan  Jan 06, 2014 ]

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NAD D7050

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Add Wi-Fi and AirPlay capability

The NAD D 7050 offers these features:

built-in Wi-Fi for easy connection to a wireless home network

Apple AirPlay for wireless music streaming with an iPhone®, iPad®, or computer running iTunes®

NAD's direct digital circuit reduces noise for cleaner audio performance