NAD is an audio company that was founded in the ’70s in England. Perhaps their most famous release was the NAD 3020 in the late ’70s which is an integrated amplifier and they have only got better ever since. Marantz also builds great integrated amplifiers out of Japan lets compare these companies to see which is the right choice for your needs.
NAD vs Marantz – Integrated amplifiers
NAD C 316BEE V2 vs Marantz PM5005
The Marantz PM5005 is the clear choice in terms of features with its A/B speaker selection and auto-off features. However, many listeners do not need these additions and both amps deliver a fantastic sound for their price so it may come down to what you prefer the look of in your home.
On the more budget-friendly end of the scale for these manufacturers, we have the NAD C 316BEE and the Marantz PM5005. These amps are lacking some of the inclusions of more expensive models but still have many features and amazing sound.
NAD integrated amplifiers typically sport a low profile and simple controls and the C 316BEE conforms to this rule. Its simple understated design will appeal to fans of past NAD products and new audio enthusiasts that value candor.
The PM5005 also sticks to its company’s typical design features with rounded edges and bezels in its face.
Both integrated amps are reliably built without cheap-feeling knobs or buttons and look great but depending on your taste one may stand out more to you.
The standout for these amplifiers is digital compatibility. Several NAD amps are designed to be purely analog and in this case, the Marantz amp is also analog only. These amplifiers do have inputs that are compatible with MM phono outputs. This means they are great for vinyl enthusiasts. They both also only use RCA inputs and an RCA output in each system as well.
The Marantz boasts A/B speaker switching which is a feature lacking in the offering from NAD. It also has an auto-off function to save power when it is not in use.
The NAD amplifier delivers an enthusiastic presentation with detail that is honest enough to draw in the listener but it lacks a little subtlety in the dynamics.
The PM5005 delivers a lively sound with nice agility for a budget amp. The soundstage is also broad enough to keep you committed to your listening experience.
NAD D 3045 v2 vs Marantz PM6006
There are more features and connections available on the NAD D 3045, in particular, the digital features of Bluetooth and USB inputs could be particularly strong cases for the NAD being a better amp. The small size could also be appealing to many buyers that are short on space.
The Marantz PM6006 is still an amazing amplifier that brings a lot to the table in its own right and is still a smart buy for someone after a centerpiece amplifier.
The D series from NAD is their most popular and well known integrated amplifier which offers a jump in features and sonic quality to the C 316BEE. The PM6006 is also quite an upgrade from the 5005 but which manufacturer has the best mid-level integrated amplifier on offer?
The Marantz PM6006 is just as solidly built as any other Marantz products and you can expect that classic Marantz charm from its appearance too. The D 3045 on the other hand, breaks the mold a little and comes in an upright casing, and is absolutely tiny compared to most of its competitors. It only has two control knobs and a small screen to navigate compared to the Marantz’s many controls and buttons.
In terms of its build, the D 3045 is well suited for a desktop application to be used with a computer or perhaps in a room with limited space for a more traditional amplifier.
Both of these amplifiers have compatibility for digital inputs and therefore have DACs built into them. They each have two optical inputs and one coaxial. They also have phono stage inputs for your turntable.
The NAD D 3045 also has a USB-B input making more compatible with computer use or perhaps even as a more portable unit. Another advantage the NAD has is its wireless connectivity through Bluetooth. If MQA or DSD streaming is important to you then the NAD is also the contender with compatibility.
The Marantz still offers A/B speaker switching which is still not available on the NAD D 3045 which seems appropriate given its small size.
The timing on the D 3045 is a particularly strong point although, at the same time, it lacks a little agility. It also has great detail accompanied by a brilliant tonal balance that sounds meaty enough to sink your teeth into.
The Marantz amp is a fantastically balanced machine that delivers a neutral tone and is full-bodied for easy listening.