Friday, July 4, 2008

NAD 3020A

The NAD 3020A is the second generation of the acclaimed 3020 integrated amplifier. The Orion Blue Book indicates this model sold from '82 to '84 which agrees with the date codes on the 52 capacitors that were replaced. Here are the gutty works:



Build quality is uneven. The front panel is plastic and prone to damage. Four small screws attach it to the chassis (two are seen above) and bumps to the corners crack the very thin plastic at the screw holes. The chassis itself is a bit flimsy and is built with 3 rails, two of which are visible at the ends. The third runs underneath the middle of the unit and is secured by 4 screws, two of which are visible above between the output transistor pairs and just north of the 4 main filter caps. The middle rail must be removed to access the caps. Despite some cheesiness in the overall build quality the solder work was decent and the traces were stout enough to stay put during desoldering.

There was no indication of prior work on this unit, and the amp was functional although a bit muzzy sounding with the usual pot grunge evident. All capacitors were replaced with Panasonic FCs with the exception of a pair of small, low voltage 1000 mfd caps adjacent to the main filters. My higher voltage FCs were too large to fit so lower voltage Sanyos were used. The 4 main power supply caps were modestly upgraded from 2200 mfd to 3300 mfd. Pots and switches were cleaned with Deoxit Gold and Blue Stuff as appropriate.

The results of the refurb were very positive. This is a great sounding amplifier with excellent bang for the buck. Despite the 20 watts per side it rocked the test bench Boston A40s with 'Enter Sandman' and barely lit the 5 watt LED on the display. One last pic for posterity:

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nice Article, I have the same amplifier. Do you have a manual?
I searched the Internet but cannot find it. If possible, can you please send me a copy ?

thanx,
Piet
pim.werk@zonnet.nl

Anonymous said...

I also have the same amp in it's original state plus the tuner. I've had to do a clean up repair on the pots but other than that, very nice amp for the money i paid for it. I would recommend this little beauty to anyone that likes a warmer listening environment. If you can't find the circuit diagram, post the reasons for looking for it and maybe i can help.

Anonymous said...

just found one no sound comes out any ideas ?it was left outside IS IT WORTH REPAIRING FROM S
LCMPBELL@ORANGE.NET ANY REPLIES WOULD BE APPRECIATED

JoeD said...

Best of luck with the repair. Let it dry thoroughly before turning it on.

I recall listening sessions with the 3020 back in the early 80's. It sounded grat for the price. A firend of mine had it hooked up with his high end turntable and a Mark Levinson Moving Coil amp. It sounded great, but we ended up using my Linsley Hood for power amp.

I "sourced" a NAD 3020A from the local garbage recycling center a few days ago. Now I look forward to getting the time to test it.

Ziyad el tawil said...

hi i am a collage student and i just got one of these and the capacitors are bleeding. i was going to replace all of them. i was about to get started and get all the capacitors, but i realized that some of them did not have any values on them and were broken to i couldn't measure them. i have a NDA 3020 a. i was wondering if you could post all the capacitor values you had. if you could that would be a great help and i would greatly appreciate it.
thank you vary much.
-z

David Robert said...

Check this out, the A is same as the B, apparantly http://www.hifi-manuals.com/Download/NAD/3020-B-service-manual