I bought my C565BEE to complete a headphone-based system consisting of the excellent Graham Slee Novo amplifier and Sennheiser HD650s. Having intended to audition several players, I was offered an ex-demo C565 at near the price of a new C545 and couldn't resist.
A great beauty it is not, but it's reassuringly solid and sleek in its soft-edged, matt black casework. The remote is perhaps a little lightweight but looks good and works well. The various digital filters and upsampling are fun to play with, and I'm hoping the USB port and digital input will future-proof it to some extent.
Although I've not had the luxury of comparison I can only describe the overall effect as astounding - a wonderfully fluid, articulate sound with great 'around the head' staging and amazing bass depth. It even manages to be relatively kind to poor recordings.
Before I tell you the results of my purchase of the superlative C565BEE, I was so impressed with the review of the NAD C545BEE (Yes, the C545!) That I auditioned it with my ageing but beloved Denon 685 and the top-of-line Technics SL-PS7 in the shop, and found the review to be very accurate when I heard the C545.
I'm a very demanding and hypercritical listener and demand (in principle) a very natural and transparently open sound.
And since I purchased both units ( not on the same day or the same shop), I can cut to the chase and say (after a suitable burning-in period) let the battle begin.
My equipment includes the amplifier NAD C350 ( after auditioning many amps this was the only one that produced a truly natural open sound without that background texture or latticing); Sennheiser HD 600s (Yes, I have the 650s too, but No, they're not as good as the upper-end transparency) rendition of the 600s. After auditioning several inter-connects (some expensive) I discovered that the relatively cheap £20 QED Gold connects preserved my beloved transparency while omitting the Prozac-like effects of the more expensive connects.
This comes from two sources: classical baroque music on period instruments-especially brass, and my own binaurally recorded natural-sounds such as the sea, streams, thunderstorms, and the sound of the forest in a breeze.
Four CD-players were assessed repeatedly, and it became quite clear that both the C545 and C565 trounced my two beloved CD players. How did the two new NADS do this? Both had a wider and clearly-defined sound stage with depth. Both produced a sweet and open sound with an unmistakable "you-are-there feel to the ambiance.
THE BATTLE OF THE NADS
I love both of the new NAD CD-players, and use them both for variety. The C545 for its smooth full-bodied effervescent sweet sound, and the C565 for its precise detailed you-are-there acoustics.
If I had a gun to my head and had to choose between one or the other (irrespective of price)then it would have to be the NAD C565BEE for its greater detail.
Got it recently. Looks solid and simple. Works on a Alchemist Forsetti coupled with SD Accoustics 5s. Excellent result. Very detailed it is indeed but still manages to keep clarity and space. Safe bet. Will try USB.
I have just returned to the store NAD C565 purchased two days earlier. This is not becasue of the sound which is absolutely fantastic. I have found very frustrating habbit of this cd to add a one second gap where it shouldn't have to be - for instance on "Dark Side of the Moon" it makes the gap between the last two songs which break continuity of record and frustrates listener. I have been so irritated that packing the stuff scratched upper panel which cost me 30GBP on return. Finally returned to old good c542. I wonder how NAD is going to solve the problem which concerns also C545.
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