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NAD ELECTRONICS NAD - M12 Direct Digital Stereo Preamplifier/DAC


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High-Res Digital Hub Has Pure Signal Path, Transparent Resolution, Upgradability: Modular NAD Masters Series M12 Direct Digital DAC/Preamplifier Features Stellar Connectivity, MQA Potential

View the NAD Masters Series M12 Direct Digital DAC and preamplifier as a DAC/preamp in name only. A complete digital hub expressly tailored for high-resolution audio, it boasts NAD's DirectDigital processing – featuring a state-of-the-art 35-bit signal path with 24-bit coefficients and 62-bit accumulation – for lossless resolution, stunning precision, and distortion-free performance. M12 also doubles as a connectivity marvel. An asynchronous 24-bit/192kHz USB input, coaxial and optical inputs, balanced and single-ended line-level inputs, and even a high-grade MM/MC phono preamplifier are on board. Want to customize M12? In addition to modular adaptability, its second-order high-pass and low-pass crossover with selectable frequency welcomes the addition of a subwoofer and comes with fine-tunable filtering options. A pure Class A buffer bolstered with Super Op amps delivers low-impedance connections to power amplifiers or active loudspeakers. 

Another huge benefit to Master Series is future-proof upgradability. M12 touts NAD's Modular Design Construction (MDC), which allows you to add optional modules to suit your individual needs. With three open slots, M12 accommodates several different MDC modules – including DD-BluOS for limitless high-end streaming and instant MQA capability, as well as DD-HMD1, which grants you exceptional video resolution and two-channel cinema sound. Whether you want analog or digital, the choice is yours. M12 makes it all come alive and skirts any concerns over obsolesce. This is what being a master of your domain is all about. 100% Music Direct Guaranteed.

“Its refined sound, classy execution, and cool cutting-edge modernity give it a sensible ‘have-it-your-way’ mentality.”

—Neil Gader, The Absolute Sound, Editors’ Choice Award

NAD DirectDigital Innovation
DirectDigital amplification offers the highest level of performance. The 35-bit data path with 24-bit coefficients and 62-bit accumulation, and dithered truncation back to 35-bits after DSP functions guarantee the overall 24-bit accuracy. With this degree of resolution, all preamp functions can be accomplished with a new level of precision, and all in the digital domain. This eliminates the noise and distortion prone to analogue circuits. Because of the super high resolution, even 24-bit files are processed without truncation or loss of information.

Uncompromising Connectivity
Standard inputs include AES/EBU, Asynchronous 24/192 USB, coaxial and optical digital inputs and balanced and single-ended line level inputs including a high performance MC/MM phono stage. Rounding out the picture, a pure Class-A buffer using the latest generation of Super OP Amps provide low impedance balanced and single-ended connections to power amplifiers or active loudspeakers. A remote controls all functions and IR repeaters, 12V triggers, and a serial port to make integration with advanced control systems a snap.

Fine-Tune Your System
Because of the massive computing power and high-resolution signal path, some interesting features have also been incorporated to further perfect the listening experience. Want to add a subwoofer to your system? The M12 includes a second order high pass and low pass crossover with selectable frequency. You can even select different frequency knees for each filter. This level of flexibility and precision is made possible by NAD's highly perfected DirectDigital architecture.

Future-Forward MDC
One of NAD's most innovative technological advancements, Modular Design Construction (MDC), does away with obsolescence by providing a simple upgrade path to add future features and functionality. M12 owners can add an optional DD HDM-1 HDMI Module with 3 inputs and 1 output (3D video passthrough) and/or the soon to be released network audio module, DD BluOS, with music management software that is controlled with an iOS or Android device. The DD BluOS MDC Module allows streaming of a variety of music services, HD streaming from a NAS device, and TuneIn radio; plus it gives you full control of your music library. Integrated WiFi/Ethernet and aptX Bluetooth connections are also offered with the DD BluOS Module.

Rated Distortion: (THD+N with AES 17 filter) < 0.0005% (0dBFS)
IMD Distortion: 0.0001%
Input Impedance:
    75 ohms (coaxial)
    110 ohms (AES/EBU)
Sample Rate: 32kHz to 192kHz (USB and digital S/PDIF)
Frequency Response: ±0.5dB (ref. 20Hz-22kHz @ sample rate)
Channel Separation: > -115dB (ref. 0dBFS Volume -1dB)
SNR: >-125dB (ref. 0dBFS 2V out)
Output Level: 2V (ref. input 0dBFS)
    S/PDIF Coaxial x 2
    Optical x 2
    USB Class 2 Audio: asynchronous 24/192 support
    DD AP-1 Analogue Phono Module
    IR In
    Trigger In: 12V ±20%
    Trigger Out: 12V ±20%
Idle Power: 26W
Standby Power: < 0.5W
Dimensions (WHD): 17 1/8" x 5 1/4" x 15 1/8"
Weight: 32.0 lbs.

User Manual (PDF, 2.5 MB)

Data Sheet (PDF, 749 KB)

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