To Doug Schneider,
Both the NAD D 3045 and the NAD C 338 are very similar and are only $50 difference in price. The D 3045 is 10Wpc more powerful and has two-way Bluetooth with aptX. The C 338 has Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Chromecast Built-in. What do you think is the future of amplifiers with Chromecast Built-in now that Google has discontinued Chromecast Audio? I’ve been thinking of getting the C 338, but now I’m more inclined to purchase the D 3045.
As far as I know, Google isn’t abandoning their Chromecast technology -- they only abandoned the Chromecast Audio streaming device, which originally sold for $35, but they blew out for $15-$20 a few weeks ago and have now officially discontinued. It’s unfortunate. With the addition of the optional TosLink cable, the Chromecast Audio dongle was a godsend for streaming bit-perfect digital audio at resolutions up to 24-bit/96kHz to any component with a TosLink input. It was also an inexpensive way to set up multiroom audio in a home. In fact, it’s in use in my system that forms the “System One” column on this site. Shortly after the announcement, I went shopping to buy additional Chromecast Audio streamers, but they seem to be sold out everywhere. Google now only sells the Chromecast and Chromecast Ultra devices, which, with their HDMI connectors, are meant mainly for video streaming.
Looking at the D 3045’s and C 338’s spec sheets, the inclusion of Chromecast Built-in on the C 338 is the only upside to that component. Admittedly, that’s a nice upside, too. As far as everything else goes, the D 3045 has it all over the C 338 -- it delivers more power and has more features. Unless having Chromecast technology built right into the C 338 is mandatory for what you’re setting up, the D 3045 is definitely what I’d recommend purchasing. Perhaps you’ll also get lucky and find some store that has those little Chromecast Audio streamers still in stock -- if so, buy a few, and also let me know where you found them so I can buy more. . . . Doug Schneider