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· Registered
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Good day All.

My NAD T752 crapped out on me about two week ago and I borrowed my parent's Marantz SR7000, both old receivers. As stated numerous times on this and other forums, the NAD produced a warm sound on my NHT M5's mounted on subwoofer bases. The NAD setup sounded clean, but not crisp. The Marantz sounds less warm but it has more pronounced treble which i like and it sounds "crisper".

Both receivers sound fine to me, but i need to return the marantz to my folks and get a new receiver or separates. I want something nicer than what i had.

I will be buying the Oppo 83. I dont need 7.1.

My speakers are:

NHT M5 w/ subs as fronts, Def tech C/R/L w/ active sub, small Def tech for surr.

This is what Im looking at:

NAD T175 + NAD T955

NAD M15 + NAD T955 or refurb M25

Marantz 8003 separates setup

Arcam FMJ AVR-600 or 500

Arcam FMJ AV-9 (B stock) + P-1000 or P7BK

Arcam AVP-700 + P-1000

oh and theres a Sunfire TRG-3 Bstock avail at a great price im considering.

A NYC dealer I was talking to was suggesting i get the Integra 70.1, not any NAD stuff (even though he sells both). He said the speakers I have are not up to the task. (Do I need new speakers? Are they no good?)

Any thoughts? any input would be much appreciated.


· Registered
15,125 Posts
When buying something new, it seems to me that you should be getting something that's better in some way than what you already have. Otherwise your audio environment is going into a downward spiral toward Bose

I can't comment much on your speaker choices, although they aren't what one might call premium brands. What matters most is how they sound to you in your room. If you want to improve the sound, though, you should consider spending some time auditioning other models and brands. You need to be prepared to spend a significant amount of money on them, too. The traditional rule of thumb is that speakers should be about 2/3 of the budget. High priced electronics can't fully compensate for the defects in low cost speakers, although Audyssey tries.

Similarly, you should go over the feature list in the equipment you like as well as auditioning it if you can. Personally, I'm biased toward Marantz, but they tend to lag in the features they provide. They are one of the few who include HDCD decoding, though. (Quite a few CDs are being produced in that format, although it usually isn't advertised since it's transparently compatible with RedBook.)

You're probably aware of it, but a feature comparison matrix of current pre/pros is available at http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=940065

I hope these thoughts help a little.

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682 Posts

If you want to improve the sound, though, you should consider spending some time auditioning other models and brands.

That's what I would do. I suspect that a Cambridge Audio 640R with good quality $3k speakers would give better SQ than an Arcam 600 @ $5k with your existing speakers in most rooms.

Another option to look at if your room has irregular boundaries is to test drive the Sherwood Newcastle 972 with Trinnov.

Have fun ... audition as many choices as your time and budget allows.

· Registered
2,281 Posts
cant go wrong with any of those options. the arcam options are a little retro feature wise--i might combine the nad or marantz prepro with an arcam or nad (or sunfire) amp. Even if you dont need 7.1 you will likely styill want hdmi connectivity for audio--i dont have this currently with my separates system and it would really be a nice option to have although the analog sound I am getting is fantastic. I think your speakers are probably a bit more capable than your dealer is giving them credit for. enjoy!

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219 Posts
The NHT's are great speakers! Don't change them; add more! I'm assuming you have the NHT T5's (M5 w/ 12" woofer pedestal). If so, those are $2500 msrp speakers (if you include the NHT electronics) and quite highly regarded. I would put those speakers up against speakers costing 2X as much. Arcam should be a good match w/ the NHT's. I would choose the Arcam AV-9 and pair it with a B&K 7270 or 200.7. That combo should give you a warmer sound which the NHT's love.



· Registered
4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you very much everyone for your input.

Seldon, I agree the NHT T5 are not premium, far from it, but they will remain in the system as I am not ready to upgrade. They are more than acceptable for the time-being. What speaker brands would you consider premium? It is now difficult to know which brands are premium brands because it seems many manufactures are mainly making 'premium' products along with some lower end. And some normally mid-range manufacturers are trying to make high-end products.

McNasty, I looked at the sherwood (w/trinnov). Very impressive. Im helping a friend with his setup and he has a weird room configuration. This can be very helpful to him.

Deno, it looks like my discs will be played using analogue; TV will be digital. Like you, I will not have full HDMI switching in the pre/pro, but whatever. Ive had it this way for years anyway. (NAD752 has no HDMI period.)

Antibayi, I regret not getting 2 M5s for the surround spkrs when i had the chance. Instead i got a couple of small bidirectional def techs. The rear M5s would have really made a nice system. The arcam-arcam, arcam-B&K combo would have been great...in the end its the NAD M15 + NAD T955 because i got both of these NIB for under 2200 including shipping with full manufacturer's warranty.

Interestingly, none of you seemed to endorse the dealer's Integra suggestion. It would have all the commercially available HDMI switching capabilities and it sounds decent.

i will report back once i set up the M15.

· Registered
15,125 Posts

I'm the wrong person to ask about which speakers are premium, since I haven't auditioned any for almost a decade. I think I'll be sticking with my current NHT 2.9 speakers
(I got them when I decided that the NHT 3.3 was just a little too expensive for me, and the 2.9 seemed to be a reasonable compromise.)

Auditioning is the only way to be sure.

· Premium Member
412 Posts
I'm running some of the same or similar gear to what you've mentioned in a 50:50 music to movies.

NHT T5's Front, M5 center, L5 Surrounds


Oppo BDP-83

I absolutely love my setup and really see no reason to upgrade the NHT's at this point. They are surely up to the task in both quantity and quality. My only experience with Arcam is with a Solo Music, which has been repaired several times. Others have had some HDMI troubles with the early NAD receivers but my experience has been great so far. It really comes down to your personal preference, but I think you would be happy with your proposed setup. Let us know how you make out.

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4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So...I did some auditioning...

Focal 700s and 800s on NAD T775

Totems (the small floorstanding) on Marantz SR 6004 & Integra 40.1 & 70.1

B&W 704 (i think) on the SR 6004 and 40.1

Paradigm S2 v2 and S6 v2 on some high end solid state separates setup

(oddly enough, i was unable to audition to the M15)

If I were to buy speakers today, I would go for the Paradigm S2. My very close second favorite were the totem. (the S6 were great but in a different category altogether.)

In the end, the NHT T5's remain in the home theater system for three reasons:

The NHTs work just fine.

I was in need of a receiver or amp/ pre-pro only.

I would like for my wife to stay with me a little longer.

On to the original debate, Arcam vs NAD vs. Marantz:

I went to two dealers who sold Arcam, one also sold NAD and the other also sold Marantz. Both dealers mentioned that Arcam has been dealing with problems in their new receivers. They were confident that the problems would be solved, but still. They also mentioned that the Arcam receivers, when they are working, sound amazing. These are pricy machines, though, and I am in no mood to be dealing with servicing.

So it came down to NAD vs Marantz and to price.

The Marantz separates would have cost approx 5K.

The SR 6004 is about 1250.

The NAD receivers range from 1000-4000.

I bought the NAD M15 & T955 for 2.1K, which seemed like a tremendous value compared to the other options.

The OPPO BDP 83 is plugged into the M15 via 5.1 analogue and my cable box is hooked up via toslink.

I like the sound much better than the Marantz SR7000 and much, much better than what i remember the NAD T752 to be.

In fact, I am very happy with the setup and think that $2100 is a great value for the quality of these products.

So my busted receiver problem is solved, but i have another problem...

The sound from the M15/ T955/ NHT T5 setup is so crisp and clear that i can hear my TV buzzing when watching movies at low volumes. I knew this buzzing was always there, but on the old setup (NAD T752) it would get drowned out because I would have to turn the volume up on the T752 to get decent audible sound.

Now i get great sound at low volumes from the M15 etc but I can hear the TV's hum.

Time for a new TV sans hum?

This is how people get roped into spending 15-20 grand on a/v equipment when their original budget was 3000-5000!
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