Björn Erik Edvardsen, the legendary NAD engineer and product developer credited with the creation of the iconic NAD 3020 integrated amplifier, as well as many other NAD components, passed away on 16 December last year after a battle with cancer.
Edvardsen joined New Acoustic Design (NAD), then based in London, in 1976, and while the affordable, giant-killing 3020 certainly put the brand on the audio map, Edvardsen’s achievements extended well beyond the little amplifier.
Specifically, his engineering prowess and penchant for innovation led to many of the proprietary technologies still in use by NAD today, including the legendary PowerDrive amplifier circuit design, which continues to endow NAD amplifiers with real-world muscle far exceeding the on-paper specs.
Edvardsen is also said to have been instrumental in persuading NAD to manufacture its products off-shore (first at Proton in Taiwan, and later in China), thus ensuring that NAD’s components not only shone sonically, but were affordable, too.
Today, many of NAD’s amplifiers bear the BEE designation in deference to Edvardsen’s role in their development. However, for many of us, it will be the 3020, and the stepping stone into ‘real’ audio it offered, that will remain his most memorable achievement.