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The Angry Realization

The Whole Truth

Burson Audio Opamp

Building the Burson Opamp

Listening Impression

Will the Discrete Opamp work for you?

Specifications

User Feedback

 

The second generation of Burson opamp was developed in collaboration with some of the world’s most passionate musicians, sound engineers and recording artists.  This project has taken  two years to complete,  with  an end result reaching beyond our greatest expectations of musical reproduction.   Its qualities have been pushed to the very frontier of studio technology.  Like a photographer’s latest  favourite lens, it is being utilized by recording artists around the world, to better capture the moments that last for an eternity

 

Related Articles

 

“Bursonaudio Discrete Op-amp”   reviewed by Nick Whetstone, TNT Audio (English version)

"The naked truth about Opamp"

"Bursonaudio Discrete Op-amp 101"

Glowing Review by Maestro Israel Yinon.


 

BURSON-71484
Dual Discrete Op Amp Modules, pair
pcX Selling Price: $179.95/pr

BURSON-71485
Dual Discrete Op Amp Module, single
pcX Selling Price: $89.95 each.

BURSON-71486
Single Discrete Op Amp Modules, pair
pcX Selling Price: $114.95/pr

Quantity discounts for Modifiers and OEM's

The Angry Realization

The function of Opamps at the output stage is as important as the lens on a cinema projector. Regardless of the analytical capability of the audio gear, an inferior opamp will halve a machine’s performance, and distort every dB of sonic imagery.

For fellow audio enthusiasts, there inevitably comes a time to explore opamp upgrades for their equipment.  After hopping from forumburson to forum, and checking every pricelist, it’s all too easy to become confused with the subsequent findings.  That humble pair of IC opamps in their machine is worth less than a can of coca-cola.   Replacing them with another pair of IC opamps, worth a little less than a McDonalds burger will noticeably improve the overall performance of their mega dollar machines.

One question then burns in the minds of such audio enthusiast;

How could the manufacturer’s, with their respectable brand, history, and self proclaimed team of world leading audio scientists not know that a simple opamp switch could lift the performance of their product?  Why wouldn’t they have adopted “that” opamp initially, when their production costs would be increased by only 1%.     

Then comes the incredibly infuriating realisation that the manufacturers would have known this all along!   Unfortunately however, their focus is solely on profit. Even after pricing the machine with a large profit margin, a profit driven manufacturer will never hesitate to continually lower their production cost at the expense of quality sounding music!  Then, after paying a very high price for what is presumably a respectable piece of equipment, a passionate audio enthusiast still has to risk it all by tweaking their machine with a soldiering iron.     

It may be true that we live in a profit driven world now, but when the promise of a high calibre sound system falls short, and excellent sound quality music is the victim, it still angers us all!

The Whole Truth

 

Unfortunately, that is not the whole truth.  The whole truth about IC opamps is that they are in that machine for one reason and one reason only.  It is simply a cost saving exercise at the expense of high calibre sounding music!  

ICs are cheap and sticking an IC opamp onto a PCB simplifies the entire design, assembly and quality control process.   However,  IC opamps have countless faults that make them unsuitable for audio application. Below are just some of them.

IC Opamps are not designed with a focus on Audio.

IC opamps are highly inconsistent in quality:

IC opamps are poorly conducted and degrades musical signal at all level

ICopamps suffer from EMI noise

For a more in-depth review on this issue please read  “The Naked Truth about Opamp”

Burson Audio Opamp


We at Burson Audio have realised the inferior quality of IC Opamps for quite some time.

We love music and it’s always been our philosophy to enhance sound quality wherever possible. We’re aware that the only way to overcome the IC opamp problem, is to replace them with a well designed discrete circuitry.

Building the Burson Opamp


The team at Burson Audio has been developing the Burson opamp project for a number of years now.  From the first version to the current production, improvement has been made along the way, as part of the quest for perfection.

The foundation of the Burson Opamp is a sophisticated Voltage Differential Amplification network. The entire opamp is constructed from audio graded transistors and resistors. Such a design will ensure minimal colouration and maximum dynamics, but this design feature  also  posed a great challenge to production; without rigid component matching, it would be  easy for sonic imbalance to occur.     

An easy solution to the above problem would be to add a blue trim pot in our design. This would allow  for adjustments to be made to accommodate for any imperfections in the component matching. But we  weren’t prepared to accept the  signal loss that would  come  with such an approach.

Instead, we employed the BURN and MATCH procedure.  We only use a 1% tolerant resistor.  Before  soldering them onto the PCB, we put them through  a component burn-in module. After 50 hours of burn-in, each resistor  will then be retested and matched before proceeding to our assembly line.  The  result of such a quality control process, is a  further 10% of  component  rejection.   This strict and very expensive BURN and MATCH process ensures the stability of the circuit.  It ensures a perfect balance of sonic imagery across the entire frequency spectrum.  It also guarantees a stable and realistic sound stage between the speakers.

Furthermore we insisted on a top quality lead free solder and temperature controlled soldering process.  This was  the only solution to reducing heat stress on our components, and minimising short circuits caused by a soldering bath used in large-scale  production.  

Cost focused manufacturers would  never adopt such an approach due to the significant increase in production costs. Burson Audio on the other hand knows that only our level of quality control can produce  opamps worthy of our badge.  Only our level of quality control can produce the best Opamp in the market.

Listening Impression

 


To Team Burson, listening to an IC opamp is like listening to a grand concert through a key-hole, or admiring Mona Lisa on a stamp!

The resolution and texture of our Burson Op-amp completely surpasses IC opamps. Compared with any IC opamps, it provides a fuller texture  with more refined detail. At the same time the bass is well controlled and very punchy.  Double bass can now clearly take shape on a very three-dimensional sound stage.  Classical music reproduction becomes much more realistic where the string section becomes a group of individual musicians rather than just a group.  All in all the Burson Discrete Op-amp is a very listenable and engaging performer. It will bring pure music to your soul, without listening fatigue  to your ears.

Will the Discrete Opamp work for you?


It is easy to find out if the Discrete Op-amp will work for you. Just open up your CD player or DAC and locate the analog RCA output (where you plug your interconnection cable). You should see one pair or more of the standard Opamps.

Take down the model number and compare it to our list.  If you find your Opamp on the list, then the Burson Discrete Op-amp will work for you! 

Direct Replacement for the following Opamps

Dual Op-amps

AD712, AD827, C4570, JRC4580, JRC5532, JRC5532D, JRC5534, LF353, LM833N, NE5532, NEC4520, NEC4570, NJM2068D, NJM2114, NJM2214D, NJM4558, NJM4558D, NJM4560,NJM5532, NJM4558P, OP275, OPA2132, OPA2134, OPA2604, RC4558D,RC4558P, TL052, TL07

Single Op-amps

NE5534, LT1122, OPA627, AD811, AD844, etc.

 

How to install the Discrete Op-amp?

  1. Record the direction of the IC-opamp.  (where the half moon chip is pointing)
  2. De-solder the existing Op-amps and replace them with the Burson opamp (same direction).
  3. 100 of burn-in, then enjoy the music!

Specification

 

Working voltage: +/-12-25v DC
Current Draw:
25mA (each module)
THD:
Less than 0.001% Dimensions: 48mm x 22mm x 12mm (single) 48mm x 22mm x 24mm (double)
Weight: 28g

Please Note:  Disclaimer:    Each module is individually tested before dispatch. However, incorrect installation of the product will risk damaging the CD player.  We are not   responsible for any damages incurred from the installation of this module. If you are not confident with

 

User Feedback

Burson Discrete Opamp in professional studio

"I bought your BURSON OP-Discret that I tested with several machines and your components are really good in particular in high and low frequencies ...

I send you a picture of my studio to let you see what I do. The speakers are Kinoshitas' ones with 4 FM acoustics..."

Raphaël France

Burson Discrete Opamp in Mhzs 66 / 88 CDP

I played the CD almost for five hours and still running good. And after breaking in the CD and your op amp the sound is getting better by the minute. (For more details on this MOD click here)

Grzegorz USA <

The tda 1540 has the most natural and realistic sound of all the dacs (IMHO) that I have played around with and inside the revox b225 it is a killer.  In my home set up it easily outshines marantz cd94, audionote dac 3.1 balanced,micromega duo, meridian 207,  chord dac64, grundig cd9009,  sony sacd777 etc etc.   My speakers are as relaistic as it gets stacked quad 57's + raven tweeter.

Your op amp, released even more of its potential and I was very taken back by the degree of the increased sense of realism/presence it brought out.  I had thought I had reached the maximum potential that was possible by upgrading its power supply and all dac coupling caps. 

LBurson Discrete Opamp in Audyn Pre-6

I have already installed 1 pair in my pre-amp, the sound is excellent. As you described on your site, I now removed the X10D form musical fidelity. For a photo you can look on my site Ruud Link  button PRE-6 met discrete opamp’s


Burson Discrete Opamp in Shangling CDT80

..."Just installed your opamp upgrade and I am more than impressed with the incrase in fidelity that is completely out of prop portion to the money I paid. Thank you for turning my midprice Shanling CDT80 player into a giant killer that now kicks serious ass. Finally makes my digital sound like a real acoustic event rather than a digital artifact. Excellent upgrade that has THE BEST price to performance ratio I have ever experienced. Every aspect has been improved, detail, resolution, naturalness of sound, dynamics and  smooth as. I will put you on my short list of highest recommendation to anyone who wants to upgrade their CD player. May the force be with you and please don't ever stop doing what you do"...Mark Sydney 

Burson Discrete opamp in Shanling CDA10T 


Very great job with your discrete opamp module. Some pictures here: CLICK HERE (hosted on my home PC, not 100% available as I turn it off before going to sleep...)
P.WEIBE France

Burson Discrete Opamp in Denon CDP

"You can also see the Burson Op Amp replacements using discrete transistors is in the full photo from phase one.
After a quick listen on headphones, it sounds very niece. I will be doing more listening this weekend."

Patrick Australia

Burson Discrete Opamp in Zhaolu 2.5 DAC

"I installed the burson op amps in my Zhaolu 2.5 dac. Still in burning in period, but the sound is already really better. Much space, much definition, more precise bass...."

Denis France

Burson Discrete Opamp in Cayin CDT 17A

"I have recieved my Op-Amps, and the sound is noe more less than stunning!!
I just sat in my chair and smiled through 7 CD`s today, this is one of my best updates ever!
I can discribe the sound like this:
Much darker background, extreme dynamic, better placement between vocal and instruments, the vocal is dead center between the speakers, wonderful analog sound! They are just simply the best Op-Amps there is to find! I am stunned!..."

Ole Norway

Burson Discrete Op-amp in ASR Intergraded Amp

..."I have finally modified one Discrete Op-amp module (/from a dual setup to two singles/), not difficult but still take  1 hour to do the modification.I use this Discrete Op-amp module on my German made ASR Integrated Amplifier, see the diagram. ASR web site,

Yes, sure your Discrete Op-amp module is better than OPA627, hearable improvement. Congrulation, you've done a great job for us poor audiophiles"...

Alex Hong Kong

Burson Discrete Op-Amp in Maratnz CD 72

 

..."Burson Clock and full set of Burson Modules installed in a Marantz CD72. Amazing result!!"...

Mark B Australia

BursonAudio Discrete Opamp + Clock in NAD 521i

Pack just arrived on Friday, I installed Burson clock and in a NAD 521i CD player. The first improvement was using NAD as transport, I own an AUDIOSINTHESYS DAX DAC wich is very sensitive to transport, before installing clock de dac wasn´t able to lock with the nad as transport and some cracks and pops were heard, after installing the clock the dac locked perfect.

Using discrete opamp was a big improvement using NAD as a standalone player, I think this player is not good enough to hear the benefits of Discrete Op-amp.  My Audiosynthesis DAX is better than the moded NAD, but this mod made them closer, Discrete Op-amp was better than OPA627.
I´m sending you some pics of the modified nad, Discrete Op-amp Sclock, ELNA audio caps for analog ps, nichicon muse output caps.You can se in the pic the installation points for clock  (signal orange and  ground orange-white)

I´m also sending you a pic form my system and a pic of my loved Harman Kardon citation II.If you want to know more please let me know.
Best regards.

Oscar Mexico


 

Thanks for your help below, they are now fully burned in and sound really impressive.

I have been trying different op amps for some time and had settled on BurrBrown OPA 627/637 combination but the Discrete Op-amps just blow these out of the water!

They sound in a different league. Probably the best thing is the texture, but overall every aspect of the sound is improved.

Allan R UK

"The amps arrived yesterday and I installed them today.  They are beautiful! You really have a great design. They worked without any problems and sounded wonderful the first moment I turned them on. The difference between your amps and the OPA627 is not something you have to push your senses to hear - it is a huge difference in audio terms. There is an easy, but well-defined character which is just addictive..."

Bob F

Burson Discrete Opamp in TEAC Esoteric.

..."Also I am sending you some pictures of a modified TEAC esoteric.  They completely transformed this $5000 USD player. Music has much more body, sound is more analytical.  Stereo image was much better, my speakers almost disappeared, never heard details were present, mod also included black gate non polarized caps"...

Oscar Mexico

 

 

BursonAudio Discrete Opamp in Sony SCD777ES


..."The discrete opamp is really well, mainly because the GAIN is louder. Secondly, the sound quality is very natural. I used a thicker silver plated wire this time, the bass turned out excellent. When I listen to a music piece that involves the violin, it sounds flawless as well; pretty much, the sound that my stereo is producing has no trace of any digital sound quality- it is very musical." ...  

T.C.Yao USA

 

 

BursonAudio Discrete Op-amp in Arcam 9

 

Burson Discrete Opamp in Cayin CDT-17

 

"... I receive the 2 Opamp yesterday.
I fix it last night in my Cayin Cdt17, and today I listen all afternoon. They sound very good, much better than my OPA627bp, so great deal !!!
But I need one pair more for a friend (also in Spain)..."

Christophe Spain

Burson Discrete Opamp in Musical Fidelity X-DAC V3

 

Pekka Immonen from Finland has kindly shared his X-DAC V3 modification project with the rest of the world. If you have a X-DAC V3 his web page is not to be missed.( Pekka Immonen ) We love all the caps replacement and blue tag dampings. Great job Pekka :)

Pekka Finland

Burson Discrete Opamp in Hi-End DIY DAC

George from France has installed our discrete opamp into his beautifully built DIY DAC with great result. Here is what he said about our discrete opamp..." I've just receive the AOP yesterday and plug them into my DIY DAC. This is simply incredible !!!..." George from France Link

George France

Burson Discrete Opamp in NAD 542 CD player

My knowledge in electronic is minimal although I am listening to music for more than two decades. I changed many systems and recently was informed about Burson by Tony from Holland. I decided to change discrete opamp and the clock. Without help from two kind people Oscar-Mexico and Manfred-Deutschland probably this project would be unsuccessful.
Firstly I changed discrete opamp which was very easy process. I was surprised how good discrete opamps are. Speakers disappeared, sound become analog, especially cymbals. Space opened in all directions as well.
Than I ordered the clock. To understand installation process took me some time however after that it was again very easy. You can notice that in between pin1 U507 and the clock's power supply is placed R22ohm as kindly recommended by Manfred.  
The rest as Burson's page advising. Sound, improved again, noticeably cymbals and bass too. The only think I disliked was that space constricted slightly with the clock.

Mirza WA Australia

life time replacement warranty is attached to our opamps.* 
Because our opamps, like our passion, stand the test of time….

 

* Obtaining the Life Time Replacement Warranty:
1.  Send us photo/s of the modules after they are successfully installed in your machine. 
2.  Specify your name, machine model, the date of purchase and the date of installation. 

Conditions on life time replacement warranty includes the follow.

1. It does not cover those damaged due to incorrect installation.
2. The warranty does not cover manhandled modules.
3. The defective module must be returned to Burson Audio Melbourne for inspection.
       4. The warranty only extends to the initial purchaser of the module.  It is not transferable.

 

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