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NAD C 538

Single-disc CD player

Item # 745C538

I've always admired the solid, no-nonsense feel I get from NAD components.

I've always admired the solid, no-nonsense feel I get from NAD components.

Top seller

Item # 745C538

Ships free

Out of stock

About the NAD C 538

No-nonsense musical fidelity

I've always admired the solid, no-nonsense feel I get from NAD components. For instance, the NAD C 538 CD player offers a clean, easy-to-operate front panel with raised buttons, and a vacuum fluorescent display that provides important title, track, and time information.

No-nonsense musical fidelity

I've always admired the solid, no-nonsense feel I get from NAD components. For instance, the NAD C 538 CD player offers a clean, easy-to-operate front panel with raised buttons, and a vacuum fluorescent display that provides important title, track, and time information.

Inside the vibration-resistant chassis, there's a custom-designed power supply, and a 24-bit/192kHz Wolfson digital-to-analog converter that ensures precise, accurate playback of your favorite discs.

A versatile performer

The C 538 is compatible with a variety of discs, ranging from regular CDs to home-burned CD-Rs filled with MP3 and WMA files. The included remote gives you command of the basics like "play" and "stop," plus access to repeat, random, and program modes from the comfort of your favorite chair.


Product highlights:

  • plays CDs, CD-Rs, CD-RWs, and discs with MP3s and WMA files
  • vacuum fluorescent display (VFD) shows settings and disc playback information
  • repeat, random, and program play
  • forward and reverse skip and search functions
  • display dimmer
  • wireless remote
  • detachable power cord
  • regulated active power supply
  • Wolfson 24-bit/192KHz digital-to-analog converter
  • frequency response: 20-20,000 Hz (±0.5 dB)
  • signal-to-noise ratio: 110 dB
  • optical and coaxial digital outputs
  • stereo RCA outputs
Dimensions and Warranty:

What's in the box:

  • Single-disc CD player
  • 6.5' AC power cord
  • Remote control (CD 8)
  • 2 "AA" batteries
  • 5' RCA stereo cable
  • Quick Setup Guide
  • Important Safety Instructions
  • Warranty Information

Customer reviews

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NAD C 538 reviews

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114 reviews

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Crutchfield response

<< >>

More details on the NAD C 538

Stacey B.

Product Research


Disc Compatibility: The NAD C 538 single-disc CD player can play both CD-Audio and finalized CD-R/RW discs, as well as decodes MP3/WMA music files copied onto a CD-R or CD-RW disc.

Wolfson 24-Bit DAC: The 24-bit/192kHz high-resolution Wolfson DAC of the C 538 was chosen for its excellent low-level linearity and detail retrieving capabilities

Stereo RCA Output: The CD player also features a stereo RCA output for analog connection, utilizing the high quality Wolfson 24-bit/192kHz DAC.

Coaxial & Optical Digital Outputs: The coaxial output is buffered and isolated by a transformer from the converter itself, and the output impedance has been carefully tailored to produce a precise 75-ohms impedance to ensure perfect matching. This attention to detail reduces the timing errors (jitter) that could otherwise distort the digital data stream. An optical Toslink output is also provided allowing connection to devices that only provide this option.

Remote Control: In addition the unit's front-panel controls, the player includes a dedicated full-feature IR remote control for easy wireless operation.

Playback & Search Functions: The NAD C 538 single-disc CD player offers a variety of convenient playback & search functions - like Random, Repeat, Program, Direct, Skip, and Scan.

  • Random: Random playback gives the listener a random selection of all tracks on the disc.
  • Repeat: The Repeat feature allows repeat playing of either the entire disc or individual tracks.
  • Program: Up to 20 tracks can be programmed with the ability to delete tracks.
  • Direct: The remote's keypad can be used for direct track access, so you can immediately go to a music track.
  • Skip: Individual tracks can also be quickly accessed using the Skip function (Forward and Back).
  • Scan: The Scan function (Forward and Back) gives listeners the opportunity to reach specific sections of the track. 

VFL Display w/ CD-Text: The C 538's Vacuum Fluorescent (VFL) display provides clear and comprehensive information to the listener. The track number is displayed, along with current time elapsed or remaining time for complete CDs or individual tracks. The CD player will also display CD-Text for song/artist information.

AC Power: The CD player has a C7 non-polarized connection for the included power cord. The unit has a power rating of 120-240V; 50/60Hz (15W).

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Customer Q&A

17 questions already asked

Will it play a sacd?
[ Sam  May 03, 2021 ]
5 answers
No, it does not support SACD, otherwise a great CD Player.
[ RAY  May 03, 2021 ]
Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs produces a hybrid SACD so it has a layer any CD player can read. Thank you to everyone who responded. Most CD players cannot read SACD. Those that can are much more expensive.
[ Sam  May 03, 2021 ]
Don't have any sacd's. But I don't think so - sacd players cost enormous amounts of money.
[ Charles  May 03, 2021 ]
No it will not
[ Stephen  May 03, 2021 ]
[ MICHAEL  May 03, 2021 ]
Will the remote also operate the NAD C316BEE integrated amp?
[ Roger  Mar 02, 2021 ]
1 answer
From my experience, NO. You must use the remote from the NAD C316BEE integrated amp. Contact the product Advisors for more information. Enjoy the music!
[ Daniel  Mar 02, 2021 ]
is the line out fixed or variable. Can I control the volume ?
[ Nikki  Mar 01, 2021 ]
2 answers
I have the output connected to a receiver and control the volume via the receiver. There is no volume control on the CD player. Hope this helps.
[ Chris  Mar 01, 2021 ]
You can control the volume just fine if you connect this cd deck to a stereo receiver, as I did This is a very nice cd deck.
[ John  Mar 01, 2021 ]
Could you stack the matching 40 watt NAD amp on top of the CD player safely?
[ Kevin  Feb 28, 2021 ]
3 answers
I do not see a problem as long as there is some space for air movement
[ Thomas  Mar 06, 2021 ]
No. Cd player is a lot smaller
[ Sebastian  Mar 01, 2021 ]
I have had the C316BEE amp on top of mine for a year or so with no problems.
[ PAUL  Feb 28, 2021 ]
How does the NAD C 538 pair with Cambridge Audio's CXN (V2) and CXA81?
[ Daren  Feb 02, 2021 ]
3 answers
I'm not familiar with Cambridges models but i am pleased with the sound quality of the NAD
[ GERARD J  Feb 03, 2021 ]
To my ears, the NAD sounded brighter and responded to the dynamics of the music with more clarity. The Cambridge sounded subdued at times and didn't have the range that the NAD has, especially when listening to live performance recordings.
[ DAVID  Feb 02, 2021 ]
My NAD538 is coupled with a Cambridge CXA60. The setup is three years old and works just fine, better than my previous setup with NAD amps. I imagine the newer Cambridge amps would be at least as good, but I do not have experience with either.
[ Ted  Feb 02, 2021 ]
can we use an auxilary cord for the NAD C538 CD player?
[ Karl  Dec 05, 2020 ]
2 answers
On this particular unit, the only outputs are RCA.
[ Dan  Mar 02, 2021 ]
No. The only connections are optical, coax and RCA. It's a very nice unit btw.
[ Joseph  Dec 06, 2020 ]
can i pair this with sonos 1 speakers ?
[ william  Sep 01, 2020 ]
2 answers
If you have a Receiver, an integrated amp or a pre amp/amp set up yes.The CD player does not have its own power source therefore cannot drive any speakers by itself.
[ jan  Sep 01, 2020 ]
That depends on your tuner/ receiver
[ john  Sep 01, 2020 ]
what are the dimensions of this unit? Thank you.
[ al  Aug 02, 2020 ]
1 answer
About 10 inches deep, 17 wide and 2 3/4 tall
[ Larry  Aug 12, 2020 ]
Can I connect this to external DAC like the Cambridge Magic DAC?
[ Robert  Jan 23, 2020 ]
3 answers
I don't know the answer but the NAD CD player works great. I am sure the NAD website or their customer service could answer your question.
[ David  Jan 23, 2020 ]
I'm guessing that since the signal coming out of the CD player has already been converted to analog, no.
[ Albert  Jan 23, 2020 ]
Yes most definitely! It has digital output for you to do so. But I wouldn't do that since the internal dac on this CD player is excellent and you had to spend on external DACs that cost significantly more to see any improvements.
[ Tammy  Jan 23, 2020 ]
Does this CD player hook to a wireless sound system?
[ Carolyn  Jun 09, 2019 ]
2 answers
It does not have built in Wi Fi if that answers your question
[ Larry  Jun 09, 2019 ]
I have not attempted to hook up to a wireless sound system, so, I'm not prepared to answer your question. SORRY!
[ Charles  Jun 09, 2019 ]
What color is NAD C 538?
[ Rajkumar  May 29, 2019 ]
2 answers
Greyish Black All NAD components I own have the same color
[ R Stephen  May 30, 2019 ]
Dark gray. Very typical of all NAD products.
[ David  May 29, 2019 ]
does this player support gapless playback?
[ Don  Feb 18, 2019 ]
2 answers
Sorry, but I have no idea what gapless playback means.
[ ALLEN  Feb 21, 2019 ]
I don't know because I don't use it for that.
[ Cheryl  Feb 21, 2019 ]
I'm confused: I thought a CD (or CD-R or CD-RW) disc (which are the formats supported by this player) could only hold 44,100/16 bit data. (If that's true - and apologies if I'm wrong - I'm new to this) how does having a 24/96 DAC help? Or, put differently, will (and how) does this player play hi-res files? And, if it doesn't what advantage does the 24/192 DAC provided on playing standard 16/44 audio CDs?
[ dstodola  Feb 17, 2019 ]
1 answer
You are right, the 24/192 DAC does not make CD higher resolution, and it is still process CD format at 16/44. Some DAC upscale the resolution to the highest resolution possible but I'm not sure if this is the case. The reason why this player has 24/192 is because it can play mp3, which technically can go up to such resolution. But regardless, it is not about the resolution of the DAC, but rather the quality of the digital to analog conversion. From my experience, this CD player does a fine job of that thanks to the advancement in the digital processing technology as of late. You can pay higher for more features, but you'll have to pay significantly more for improved sound quality.
[ Tammy  Feb 19, 2019 ]
Why do CD players need to be "burned in?"
[ Keith  Dec 06, 2018 ]
7 answers
I don't know what that means.
[ John  Dec 22, 2018 ]
There is nothing special that you need to do. Typically a burn in period is described in hours, after which many people find a change in the sound quality. Some people may put some music on and leave on repeat to hasten the burn in. It is a very subjective thing.
[ Peter  Dec 07, 2018 ]
Sorry. I never heard of burning in a CD player.
[ john  Dec 07, 2018 ]
I don't know I bought this on recommendation of great quality and sound.It has not disappointed.
[ DONALD D  Dec 07, 2018 ]
what does burned in mean?
[ PETER  Dec 06, 2018 ]
A drift in response time is an undesirable drawback in high end audio gear, easiest way is to use a cd with a wide dynamic range and put it on repeat, let it run day and night at low volume for 2-5 days
[ ROGER  Dec 06, 2018 ]
Greetings Keith: This is a lower priced machine. The electronics are all surface mount and the only mechanical part is the transport. I play a wide variety of music from classical to black metal including many CD'Rs. It has seemed to improve on playback as it has been used, slightly. I would say that use effects the transport the most as the parts wear in. This is my personal opinion. Speakers in a system are a different matter and do require break in. Hope this helps Larry
[ Larry  Dec 06, 2018 ]
Will this CD player be able to shuffle or randomly play all files for a CD-R MP3 disc with files arranged in folders by artist and album and if so, how is this done?
[ Adam  Oct 05, 2018 ]
4 answers
It will play CD-Rs fine and according to the instruction sheet it will play random, track,, files. I haven't used the random play or other features but it sounds like it will do what you want. It's a great sounding player, and works great.
[ Larry  Oct 05, 2018 ]
My best answer is that the writer needs to ask this question of the manufacturer. I am not the person to ask, given I have little knowledge of the request. The tray has one slot; beyond that, I see no way for the player to accept multiple discs.
[ C  Oct 05, 2018 ]
Adam Good Friday Morning: I am afraid you are asking me about an option I am not presently using. Sorry! I can tell you that this NAD CD Player is OUTSTANDING! it has exceeded my expectations as far as sound and performance.... I hope this helps.
[ Thomas J Mc  Oct 05, 2018 ]
I do not know
[ john  Oct 05, 2018 ]
Which carrier did Crutchfield use to ship it?
[ StevieG  Aug 02, 2018 ]
10 answers
UPS 3-Day delivery
[ Nancy  Aug 10, 2018 ]
Sorry, don't remember but it arrived safe and sound.
[ mike  Aug 09, 2018 ]
I believe it was shipped via UPS Ground, Promptly and without damage. Works great too!
[ William  Aug 08, 2018 ]
UPS 2nd day air !!
[ Silvio  Aug 08, 2018 ]
UPS ground. Arrived safely.
[ John  Aug 08, 2018 ]
Mine came UPS.
[ CB  Aug 08, 2018 ]
[ jisung  Aug 08, 2018 ]
Ups very fast n free!
[ Noel  Aug 08, 2018 ]
[ JEFFREY  Aug 08, 2018 ]
[ Tim  Aug 08, 2018 ]

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Improved power supply and more inputs

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  • toroidal power supply
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  • IR and 12-volt trigger inputs
  • signal-to-noise ratio of 118 dB