NAD Electronics, the highly regarded manufacturer of high-performance audio/video components, announced it is now shipping the M33, a BluOS™ enabled DAC/amplifier that can serve as the heart of a reference whole-home system. In its simplest form, the M33 is an ultra-high-performance streaming amplifier with superb audiophile sound. Or it can be combined with other players in a BluOS ecosystem of wirelessly networked music players throughout the home for an outstanding whole-home audio system.
With the employment of the new Purifi Eigentakt™ (self-clocking) Hybrid Digital amplifier technology, the M33 follows NAD’s long-standing tradition in identifying and developing cutting-edge amplification technology. With a minimum of 200W per channel on tap, the result is lifelike performance, exemplified by ultra-low distortion and noise. The measured performance is remarkable in that it exceeds the capability of even the most sensitive and sophisticated test equipment available. According to Cas Ooostvogel, NAD’s Product Manager, “The NAD Masters M33 has created tremendous excitement since its preview at CES. As the first amplifier to utilize Purifi Eigentakt™ amplifier technology, its performance must be heard to be appreciated. The M33 is a true state-of-the-art audiophile amplifier in the traditional sense yet with a distinct difference: It fully caters to the modern world where the majority of music is delivered over the internet with an entire catalogue of recorded music readily available at your fingertips. This is obviously a wonderful convenience. Then, the M33’s ability to distribute that music in a multi-room audio system just adds that much more enjoyment, simplicity and value.“
Unusual in a class of products often associated with complexity is the M33’s intuitive operation, courtesy of the 7” inch touchscreen colour display combined with BluOS. NAD considers it the most advanced network streaming and multi-room operating system available. Part of a growing ecosystem of compatible products, BluOS tightly integrates hardware and software for exceptional user experience. The only true wireless High-Resolution multi-room system available today, BluOS supports the new standard for High Res streaming, Master Quality Authenticated (MQA). BluOS also supports over 20 free and paid subscription services as well as supporting locally stored music libraries. With BluOS, the M33 retains all the audiophile features and further adds a range of facilities that will expand its capabilities yet simplifies ease-of-use at the same time. Operable with the BluOS app, the supplied remote control or through hands-free control with any Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant device, the M33’s front panel doesn’t actually need to be touched. To expand the multi-room locations, adding additional rooms is both easy and affordable.
Experts agree that room acoustics are the weakest link in most sound systems with room reflections deteriorating tonal balance and dynamics. Dirac, one of the most highly regarded Room Correction systems available, not only adjusts for frequency response but unlike other room correction systems, it also optimises the impulse response. By optimizing the speaker/room interface, music sounds more natural and lifelike. Dirac comes as standard on the M33 with corrections possible up to 500Hz, and an upgrade to the full bandwidth is available for a modest fee. Supplied with the M33 is a precision microphone to measure the room at and around the listening position so your system can be precisely calibrated for optimum performance. Even the most sophisticated loudspeakers can be markedly improved using Dirac calibration. Each of the 5 Dirac memory profiles can store a unique room measurement (think of the different acoustics with curtains open or closed, different listening position, for instance), or different frequency target curves to suit a particular musical taste or genre. The M33 also supports Dirac’s advanced ‘Bass Control’ feature with two independent subwoofer outputs.*
In its standard form, the M33 is very complete with a wide range of in/outputs, BluOS, Dirac, HDMI eARC and more already fully integrated. It will meet the requirements of the most demanding users. To minimize the risk of future obsolescence, the M33 comes with two MDC slots that allow for further expansion. NAD introduced the MDC platform well over a decade ago and allowed updating products with new technologies which didn’t even exist at the time of introduction.
Besides multi-room, another compelling feature of BluOS is its multi-room and high-res streaming capabilities. The latter with full MQA decoding support from a local NAS or shared drive but also from internet streaming audio services which offer high-res content such as Tidal, Deezer, Qobuz and others. Music services such as Spotify, Amazon Music, Slacker, TuneIn, nugs.net and many others are also supported.
Whether looking to connect digital or analogue sources, the M33 comes well equipped to accommodate for all of these: 5 digital inputs and 3 analogue inputs, including XLR Balanced, MM and MC phono. Around back, the rear panel hosts two sets of speaker outputs capable of bi-wiring and a stereo Subwoofer Output with a fully configurable Digital Crossover. Airplay 2 and Bluetooth AptX-HD allow for local wireless streaming from a phone or tablet.
The M33 has a high-quality MM/MC Phono Input that rivals specialized outboard units. Accurate RIAA equalization, a clever phase cancelling infrasonic filter, and a huge overload margin combine to bring out the best in LPs. Furthermore, headphone enthusiasts will delight at the sound of the discrete headphone amplifier, which is able to drive even planar and high impedance studio phones. With high voltage and low output impedance, headphones will sound their best. For those who wish to enjoy their headphones but not be tethered to a cable, the integrated Bluetooth AptX-HD module makes it simple to possible to enjoy wireless headphones. too.
The all-alloy casework is elegant yet practical. The single control knob for volume is supplemented by a colour TFT touchscreen display. Rigid panels with magnetic iso-point feet provide a solid foundation for the multi-layer circuit boards and intricate internal construction. The M33 employs a completely modern and fresh take on the traditional stereo amplifier, with features and performance from the future.
BluOS provides hands-free control with full integration of any Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant device. Through Airplay 2, control is also possible with Siri. Considerable effort has been spent to make the M33 fully compatible with all the leading smart home systems from leading companies like Apple, Crestron, Control4, Lutron, KNX and many others. The M33 is also compatible with the Roon music platform.* This means that along with lighting, shades, HVAC, and security, the integrator or user can seamlessly control the BluOS multi-room music system from a common interface. All integrations are certified for reliable operation. The custom BluOS Apps for iOS and Android tablets and phones, as well as desktop control from Windows and Apple OS are available free-of-charge and are updated regularly.
*Some features will be available via a future software update.