NAD 514 CD Players

4.3/5 (23 Reviews) MSRP : $499.00


Product Description

1-bit dual mash converter


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Reviews 1 - 5 (23 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Vasily a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: September 13, 2010

Bottom Line:   
Overall -a fantastic player. Get it while you can.
I plan to keep mine forever, it uses SONY KSS210 pickup that is available.

Neutral sounding, but very dynamic and open.
They have really made a miracle with the MASH chip - the 514 sounds nowhere near the japanese Techics cr@p
This and the 512 model are very similar, I have both and cannot decide between them sometimes.

I have compared it to an expensive Burr-Brown based Tandberg toploader. The NAD is more alive, more involving. The BB multibit sound is more "polished". I like life in my music, personally )

Would be nice if someone here did an actual comparison to the newer NAD offerings. Because if you compare the datasheets (THD, dynamic range), it looks like the 514 is still the best they have ever made.

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Used product for:   3 Months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1996



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by --D-- a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: November 6, 2004

Bottom Line:   
I've been in this hobby for several years now and this is one of the components that hasn't left my shelf over those years. Though I have only used it in my secondary (music only system), it has been VERY reliable. Before I bought this player, I returned 2 Sony XA1-ES CD players (Stereophile recommended component). The sound was so-so from them. The only thing I remember it having going for them was a detailed and fairly delicate top end. Midrange seemed accurate, but with no life. Bass was non-existant. CDs kept getting stuck between the disc drawer and the inside roof of the unit (on both of them). I asked the sales people if they had a NAD 515 (also Stereophile recommended component), but they were out and weren't getting anymore because newer models were on the way. They then pointed me to the 514. They said it had similar electronics to the 515, but was actually even more tuned toward the audiophile. Being that it is a single disc unit, it is probably more stable, than the multi-disc 515. While I'm not sure that the DAC in the 514 is better than the highly regarded Bit-Stream DAC in the 515, the 514 has a true 75 ohm coaxial digital output, further suggesting it be used as a transport feeding to an outboard DAC. While I highly enjoyed the sound of the unit by itself for a long time (leaps and bounds better than the SONY units), I later attached it to an MSB Link DAC 1, and that's when things really came together. Every aspect of the sound had improved. Of course, this is attributed much to the DAC, but a good transport is necessary to feed the signal in the first place and the NAD did a GREAT job. I read some old Sound Stage reviews recently and one of the reviewers was using a 514 as his CD transport (probably his budget reference system). Kind of solidifies my perceptions of it being a good transport as well. It's now almost 2005 and my CD player still works like the day I brought it home. Though I baby all my equipment, I've moved 4 times with it and sold many of it's accompanying components along with those moves. If this isn't a testament to how good this product is, then I don't know what is.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   1998

Price Paid:    $400.00

Purchased At:   Local AV Store



Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Jeff M a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: September 8, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I have been very disappointed in this CD player. Two trips to the repair shop (both under warranty) and I am told nearly the entire "guts" of the unit have been replaced. My next CD player will NOT be NAD!

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1999

Price Paid:    $300.00



Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:1
Submitted by E. J. a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: January 1, 2002

Bottom Line:   
Am I wrong to expect a $500 (Can) single CD player to last more than 3 years???? At these prices I would hope that longevity would be a part of the unit's "features". I have heard that the same problem I'm having (dead laser) is also occuring with other owners. I treat my gear with the utmost care, in fact I don't think ever moved the unit since I bought it... so why does it just break for no apparent reason? Really now... I've had mass market low-low end equipment last much longer... and given that it's a problem across many of these units... I find this unacceptable. NAD - Never again.

The rest of my gear:

Sony DISCMAN D-121
Bryston 3BST - now there's build quality!
PSB Stratus Silver
Kimber 8TC
Kimber Hero

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1998

Price Paid:    $400.00

Purchased At:   Great Metropolitan Sound



Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Alex B a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: September 29, 2001

Bottom Line:   
I've been using it for more than 5 years, repaired it twice, and now it is developing some problems with it's laser. So, some words before saying farewell to my old friend I used to listen to for so long. Oveall it is a very good machine for the money since it almost stood up for much more expensive gear I used it with, such as Exposure amp and B&W P4 speakers. Try it if you like accoustic, strings, cool jazz and vocals. But be ready to put aside your collection of good old hard rock, as this player is too soft for strong bass lines and does not reproduce drums correctly enough. You simply won't be enthrilled with that kind of music. This NAD won't deliver the slam and drive even when helped by such a hard-driving amp as Exposure XX. NAD 514 is a good introduction into real Hi Fi (or even Hi End, if you please) but it gives you only a glimpse of it, since it honestly tries to bite more than it is capable of. But for that money, who dares to criticise? Use it with hard hitting amp and lean sounding speakers, put some Nina Simone and enjoy.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   1995

Price Paid:    $450.00

Purchased At:   S.Petersburg




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