Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Can a crooner get a gig? dean_martin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Lower AL
    Posts
    2,838

    Unhappy CA vs. NAD update

    In responding to Topspeed's "integrated amp recommendations" I suggested that he might look for a Cambridge Audio A500 integrated demo model to meet his $300 or so budget. I had just ordered one from audioadvisor.com for my son. My son had $300 at his disposal when the amp section of his old NAD 25wpc stereo receiver died. So, being the anal retentive, penny-pinching electronics freak that I am, I tried to find an upgrade for him at a bargain price. The Cambridge fit the bill as a neat Brit integrated at a great price - already reduced because it's an old model and reduced further based on its demo status. So, it arrived on Wed. It sounded great but I was concerned about a popping noise at power on and power off. Then, my son called me into his room when I got in from work on Thurs. The amp was sending a humming sound to both speakers. This wasn't the normal hum like when you power up an active subwoofer. It sounds almost exactly like the sound you get when you engage the record calibration button on an old tuner. (It's an electronic tone generated to allow you to set the levels on your tape deck.) I tried unplugging the amp from the surge protector and plugging it directly into different wall sockets with the same result. That's my trouble-shooting limit.

    I'm not really worried about dealing with audio advisor. They have always treated me right. I haven't called them yet because this was the only A500 they had. If we get another integrated from them we will probably exceed my son's budget. If we make a warranty claim we will be inconvenienced for a while.

    In comparing the reliability factor between CA and NAD integrateds I can say that neither of my NAD integrateds has failed nor needed repair. The old NAD receiver that my son blew is 15 years old. It would probably still be working fine with my listening habits, but my son had a habit of using the bass boost and turning up the bass control even at high volumes. I can say that this is the second CA product that I've had trouble with. The first was my D300 cd player. After about 4 months, its display went dim and it locked up. I had it too long to get a replacement without attempting repairs under warranty first. I bought it from audiolab.com. They sent for it, got it repaired under warranty and shipped it back in a reasonable amount of time. It has functioned perfectly for a couple of years now and I really like its sound.

    Based on all of the above, I'm changing my recommendation of the A500 to "conditional" and I'm adding the following question: What should I do to get my son's tunes going again? Some options I'm considering now are a new stereo receiver from Onkyo or Denon in the $200 (Onkyo) to $250 (Denon) range, or a small 50 to 60 wpc amp to mate with the NAD receiver. I've checked the preamp section of the receiver and it works fine plus it has a decent tuner built in (probably better than the Onkyo or Denon) and a decent phono section. The NAD has pre-out and main-in connections so functionality won't be a problem. What do you think?

  2. #2
    Suspended topspeed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    California
    Posts
    3,717

    So much for CA

    Thanks for your frankness Dean. This may not be fair, but at this point I think I'll take a pass on the CA. There is one caveat however: Try using a cheater plug (three prong to two prong) to remove the ground from the amp's plug (if it has one) and see if that does anything. Let me know because if it doesn't, it's safe to say I'll be looking elsewhere.

    Good luck.

  3. #3
    Can a crooner get a gig? dean_martin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Lower AL
    Posts
    2,838
    We tried the "cheater plug" with the same result. The CA is going back. We just need to decide whether we want to try to deal for a CA Azur 540A in exchange or try something else altogether.

    BTW, Yawaaonline.com has NAD 320BEE refurbs. w/one year manuf. warranty for $279. If I hadn't already been burned on the CA demo unit, I might try it. I've used Yawaa in the past and their customer support is excellent. If you're wondering, I live in the sticks so I have to use the web quite often. However, I did drive 3 1/2 hrs to hear a Jolida tube integrated recently and liked what I heard. Geez, if it weren't for the wife and kids I'd be into tubes already!

  4. #4
    RGA
    RGA is offline
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    5,539
    Two questions...was this hum evident the entire time? And, does your son have cable television in the room?

  5. #5
    Can a crooner get a gig? dean_martin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Lower AL
    Posts
    2,838

    Rga...

    Quote Originally Posted by RGA
    Two questions...was this hum evident the entire time? And, does your son have cable television in the room?
    The hum was not evident on the first day, but the amp did produce a "pop" sound in the left channel when powered on and a pop in the right channel when powered down. This concerned me because I thought it was a symptom of a bigger problem even though it sounded and behaved fine while playing music (between turning it on and off). The hum became evident on the next day and actually it sounds more like a test tone than a hum.

    Yes. He has cable tv in his room. We have cable everywhere!

    Any thoughts?

    If all else fails, read the manual. That's what I'll do tonight before calling for a return authorization #.

  6. #6
    RGA
    RGA is offline
    Forum Regular
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    5,539
    Sounds like something has gone...return it and get them to send you another one or your money back. The amp has a good reputaion...but alas nobodies perfect. you say it was a demo model which means it should be working. Unless it was playing too loud with improper connections with a speaker beyond its load driving capability

    Or it just plain gave up the ghost OR soemthing came loose in shipping Or a whole pile of other things. Send it back.

  7. #7
    Suspended topspeed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    California
    Posts
    3,717
    Quote Originally Posted by dean_martin
    We tried the "cheater plug" with the same result. The CA is going back. We just need to decide whether we want to try to deal for a CA Azur 540A in exchange or try something else altogether.

    BTW, Yawaaonline.com has NAD 320BEE refurbs. w/one year manuf. warranty for $279. If I hadn't already been burned on the CA demo unit, I might try it. I've used Yawaa in the past and their customer support is excellent. If you're wondering, I live in the sticks so I have to use the web quite often. However, I did drive 3 1/2 hrs to hear a Jolida tube integrated recently and liked what I heard. Geez, if it weren't for the wife and kids I'd be into tubes already!
    Thanks. I'll look on Yawaaonline over the weekend.

    Happy Easter!

  8. #8
    Can a crooner get a gig? dean_martin's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Lower AL
    Posts
    2,838
    I noticed I added an extra "a" - it's yawaonline.com

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Please update the site!!!!!!!
    By smokehouse in forum Site Feedback/Discussion
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 01-29-2005, 05:55 AM
  2. my system update (focus on speakers)
    By nusiclover in forum Speakers
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 03-19-2004, 06:44 AM
  3. DIY Subwoofer Update
    By poneal in forum Speakers
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 02-12-2004, 04:31 PM
  4. How come number of views doesn't update?
    By Davey. in forum Rave Recordings
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-27-2003, 03:48 PM
  5. e-mail update
    By skewiff in forum Rave Recordings
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-21-2003, 07:57 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •