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Bryston or Perreaux ? Studio Monitors
Old 16th September 2015
  #1
Gear Addict
 

Bryston or Perreaux ?

I am looking for some amps to drive my old Tannoy 15 DMT mkII and KRK 9000B monitors.

I've been reading a lot about amps lately and I can't help noticing a general massive love towards Bryston amps no matter where I look.
However, a few guys, such as Thrillfactor, praise the older Perreaux amps as being the holy grail of amps.

So, can anyone tell me the actual difference between two similar power rated amps, one being a brand new (and very expensive) Bryston, the other being a Perreaux (PMF 3150 or PMF 1850) from 1986, only costing $400-1000 USD on eBay.. I would have the older Perreaux amp checked and recapped if needed so that it would be up to spec.

What's the difference besides about 4000 bucks in price difference..? I know there are sonical differences between all amps, but what I mean is "quality wise" in terms of use for mixing..
Is an 80's Perreaux amp (serviced) in the same league as a new Bryston, and if not, why?

Thanks for your time
Old 16th September 2015
  #2
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murphythecat87's Avatar
 

bryston is imo totally overpriced.

parasound a21 would be my pick for price/performance ratio.
Old 16th September 2015
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murphythecat87 View Post
bryston is imo totally overpriced.

parasound a21 would be my pick for price/performance ratio.
Alright, thank you, will check that one out.

Yeah, I agree, Bryston amps are super expensive
Old 16th September 2015
  #4
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I'd just like to know if that Bryston price tag is really 'justified', or if indeed a 30 year old high-end hand built (and serviced) amp like Perreaux can deliver equally good results - for 1/5 of the price.

Are there some logical major advantages of buying a new amp that I am missing?
Old 16th September 2015
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sugarman View Post
I'd just like to know if that Bryston price tag is really 'justified', or if indeed a 30 year old high-end hand built (and serviced) amp like Perreaux can deliver equally good results - for 1/5 of the price.

Are there some logical major advantages of buying a new amp that I am missing?
''
If you ask me, you should recap any electronic product after 5 years for electrolytic's, that is the guaranteed shelf life. If you like being more relaxed, choose 10 years. Any longer and performance is reliably degraded.

Often when people are raving how much better their new Amp/Dac etc. is, what is happening they are comparing something that was top notch 10 Years ago, has not aged gracefully and now something cheap knocks the pants of it. Except it does not,if properly maintained.

Bryston stuff is far (and I mean FAR) behind the best the Jap's did in the 80's. The fact they are now "High End" (instead of awful) just shows how much the quality in the market has declined.''


''Look for old high end 80's amp from Sony, Denon, ect. some of them is very high end design (lateral mosfet design). For 1K I'd probably look for some of the late 80's early 90's Japanese integrated a bit below "flagship" level (flagships are overengineered and often do not sound as good as simpler mid-level units, with very simple circuitry. There are good example from many brands, to me Denon, Luxman, Onkyo and Sony stand out. But make sure to get the right models.)''

''An example of a really great Amp is Sony's TA-F707/808ES and relatives (Sony reprised the key parts of this design as late the mid oughties in the TA-F-777ES are pure-bred high-end machines. In "Source Direct" Mode you have just the Volume control and the actual Amp. In the 707/808 you get J-Fet input, Mosfet Voltage Amp and Mosfet Output stages, kind of like the very latest amplifiers Nelson Pass peddles on Diyaudio, By the '90's the japanese majors abandoned the serious HiFi market and focused on other fields, the golden decade is about 1979 to 1989, when they poured huge amounts of money into audio R&D. The Speakers and Amplifiers from this era, if high enough in the model range were uniformly excellent and remain often undervalued. ''
Old 16th September 2015
  #6
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Couldn't disagree more about the Brystons. Yes, they're expensive. They also have a 20 year warranty. Know anything else that does? And there's nothing outmoded about the designs either. Each series (4B, 4B ST, SST, SST squared) is a new design. Don't mistake similar looks for the same guts. The latest series is a worthy sonic competitor to Krell (at about 1/3 the Krell's price), according to many reviewers.

Perreaux was a very nice amp but had power supply issues and certain parts can be VERY difficult to come by at this point. So be forewarned if you go that route. No surviving company, so no support beyond dedicated users now. The polar opposite of the case with Bryston.
Old 16th September 2015
  #7
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Bryston verses Perreaux

Quote:
Originally Posted by burp182 View Post
Couldn't disagree more about the Brystons. Yes, they're expensive. They also have a 20 year warranty. Know anything else that does? And there's nothing outmoded about the designs either. Each series (4B, 4B ST, SST, SST squared) is a new design. Don't mistake similar looks for the same guts. The latest series is a worthy sonic competitor to Krell (at about 1/3 the Krell's price), according to many reviewers.

Perreaux was a very nice amp but had power supply issues and certain parts can be VERY difficult to come by at this point. So be forewarned if you go that route. No surviving company, so no support beyond dedicated users now. The polar opposite of the case with Bryston.
The Bryston 20 year warranty is nice but they still blow up, there are plenty on the shop floors of LA studios. not so sure about Stuart's redesigns, still with the output inductor in the wrong place, no Zobel network, and that wacky combination of emitter follower and Sziklai topology.
If not implemented carefully, Sziklai sounds harsh which is the predominant characteristic of Brystons. But most recordings of the past 30 years sound harsh, so not a problem, right?

Perreaux amplifier were briefly trendy but quickly fell out of fashion when nobody seemed capable of repairing them. I believe they use vertical mosfets in the output stage, yesterday's thinking. A seldom discussed phenomenon of power mosfets: they fatigue though not as badly as tubes.

To the op, there are better choices, and the "massive love" for Brystons isn't universal.
Old 17th September 2015
  #8
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Plush's Avatar
Bryston is outstanding.

Try 3b or 4 b latest version.

"Quality is remembered long after price is forgotten"

Professionals ONLY need apply.
Old 17th September 2015
  #9
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MIKEHARRIS's Avatar
Chevin took up the mantle after Perreaux...but same story...no US distributor or service.

I would use a 3B on the 9000's and a 4B on the 15 DMT II...a pair of 7's makes the 215 sing.


I loved the hi end Sony stuff..still have my TTS3000..but it was never designed for studio duty cycle.
Old 17th September 2015
  #10
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outUVphaze's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
Bryston is outstanding.

Try 3b or 4 b latest version.

"Quality is remembered long after price is forgotten"

Professionals ONLY need apply.
Agree entirely.

Canadian made.
Old 17th September 2015
  #11
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outUVphaze's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plush View Post
Bryston is outstanding.

Try 3b or 4 b latest version.

"Quality is remembered long after price is forgotten"

Professionals ONLY need apply.
Agree entirely.

Canadian made.
Old 17th September 2015
  #12
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SeanBlack's Avatar
You can buy used Brystons as well. I see 3 and 4Bs on Craig's list sub $1000. If it's home used I'm sure there is still lots of life left in it. Most still have a few year warranty left on them...not many electronics can say that.
Old 17th September 2015
  #13
Gear Addict
 

Yeah, I was gonna say why not a used Bryston?
Old 17th September 2015
  #14
I began ripping out Bryston power amps from LA control rooms back in the late 1980's. They have a hard mid response. Every room that replaced them was happy.

I prefer Nelson Pass's classic bipolar designs like the venerable Adcom GFA 555.
Old 17th September 2015
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Williams View Post
I began ripping out Bryston power amps from LA control rooms back in the late 1980's. They have a hard mid response. Every room that replaced them was happy.

I prefer Nelson Pass's classic bipolar designs like the venerable Adcom GFA 555.
That was another lifetime ago, Jim. New Brystons are a different design now as someone mentioned, no?

By the way, my 535II is getting old and may need recapping soon.
Old 18th September 2015
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aural Endeavors View Post
That was another lifetime ago, Jim. New Brystons are a different design now as someone mentioned, no?

By the way, my 535II is getting old and may need recapping soon.
Bryston schematics are online. Same basic design, don't take my word for it, study them.
Old 27th September 2015
  #17
Here for the gear
 

I use a perreaux 6000b with my jbl 4343s. I like them. Lots of power, detailed and warm not top harsh. Built like a tank. Currently have them in the low end of my biamp setup, they put out 300 wpc. I havent heard bryston though so I cant compare. Just keep your eyes open, if a 6000b or similar pops up cheap jump on it and see if you like it. The company Perreaux is actually still operational. I emailed them if I could disable the fan for just listening at home and they said yep.
Old 27th September 2015
  #18
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matt thomas's Avatar
Quote:
Perreaux.. No surviving company, so no support beyond dedicated users now.
Incorrect.

High End Audio Amplifiers for Audiophiles : Perreaux

I have two relatively recent model amps, and have received excellent customer service, even outside of warranty.

Matt
Old 27th September 2015
  #19
270182
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by murphythecat87 View Post
bryston is imo totally overpriced.

parasound a21 would be my pick for price/performance ratio.
Why? Because of the component cost and manufacturing or because it is expensive?
Old 27th September 2015
  #20
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murphythecat87's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASCMe View Post
Why? Because of the component cost and manufacturing or because it is expensive?

they are not bad, but most of their models are terribly overpriced and offer poor performance/price ratio
Old 27th September 2015
  #21
270182
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by murphythecat87 View Post
they are not bad, but most of their models are terribly overpriced and offer poor performance/price ratio
Well, there was a time when Bryston was installed in high end churches I worked for. That was about 30 years ago. They are very, very reliable, built like tanks and still in service, a decade after the 20 year warranty expired. I would say that performance and longevity justifies the price.

Now, contrast that with newer Crown, hipper, amplifiers installed by Clair at a well known mega church/TV ministry. They had so many failures, they were constantly rotating a pallet of amplifiers to Crown service. Eventually, they were replaced. Just about all manufacturers have had their bad times with product failures. Powersoft, QSC, etc, etc. Bryston has not had these times and issues. I would rethink what is important.

Last edited by 270182; 27th September 2015 at 04:19 PM..
Old 27th September 2015
  #22
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murphythecat87's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASCMe View Post
Well, there was a time when Bryston was installed in high end churches I worked for. That was about 30 years ago. They are very, very reliable, built like tanks and still in service, a decade after the 20 year warranty expired. I would say that performance and longevity justifies the price.

Now, contrast that with newer Crown, hipper, amplifiers installed by Clair at a well known mega church/TV ministry. They had so many failures, they were constantly rotating a pallet of amplifiers to Crown service. Eventually, they were replaced. Just about all manufacturers have had their bad times with product failures. Powersoft, QSC, etc, etc. Bryston has not had these times and issues. I would rethink what is important.
I consider bryston performance bad considering the price they ask.
SQ is more important for me then ultimate reliability
Old 27th September 2015
  #23
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Mixing Suite's Avatar
 

Not only does Bryston build great amps, I feel they are the best pro audio company period.

Very helpful support for even their oldest products.

I have an original 2b and a newer 4b sst bought new, never regretted it.

Last edited by Mixing Suite; 27th September 2015 at 05:22 PM.. Reason: typo
Old 27th September 2015
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sugarman View Post
I am looking for some amps to drive my old Tannoy 15 DMT mkII and KRK 9000B monitors.

I've been reading a lot about amps lately and I can't help noticing a general massive love towards Bryston amps no matter where I look.
However, a few guys, such as Thrillfactor, praise the older Perreaux amps as being the holy grail of amps.

So, can anyone tell me the actual difference between two similar power rated amps, one being a brand new (and very expensive) Bryston, the other being a Perreaux (PMF 3150 or PMF 1850) from 1986, only costing $400-1000 USD on eBay.. I would have the older Perreaux amp checked and recapped if needed so that it would be up to spec.

What's the difference besides about 4000 bucks in price difference..? I know there are sonical differences between all amps, but what I mean is "quality wise" in terms of use for mixing..
Is an 80's Perreaux amp (serviced) in the same league as a new Bryston, and if not, why?

Thanks for your time
I love the Tannoy 15 DMT II speakers! It is a shame that Tannoy stopped making that series and now make mostly really expensive dual concentric speaker enclosures like their "Kingdom Royal", or much cheaper ones that are not dual concentric, and I'm not interested in those. The 15 DMT IIs come up on eBay sometimes and I think are a great value used. However, Tannoy still makes the 15 inch drivers for these speakers last I checked so you could replace the speaker cone if needed. The Tannoy 15 DMT II speakers are still being used at Capitol Records Studios in their Mastering Suites and sounded really great the last time I was in there.

Now about Bryston, they are great amps and their latest Sst2 series is phenomenal in my opinion. But all you need to look at is who is currently using the Bryston stuff. Last I checked, wasn't The PMC company was using Bryston amps in their active speakers? Besides the Tannoy 15 DMT, or B&W, I would be using PMC speakers if I couldn't for some reason use the Tannoys. To me it says a lot if they are in the PMCs. The active PMCs get a lot of praise, and if they are amped internally by Bryston, that should speak volumes.

Last edited by SharpKillerCable; 27th September 2015 at 05:31 PM..
Old 27th September 2015
  #25
270182
Guest
If you can find them, Lexicon literally rebadged Bryston amplifiers in the 90s. They aren't as common, but are out there.
Old 27th September 2015
  #26
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And if you can find a pair of Tannoy 15 DMT IIs in good condition on eBay, grab them!
Old 27th September 2015
  #27
270182
Guest
Quote:
Originally Posted by SharpKillerCable View Post
And if you can find a pair of Tannoy 15 DMT IIs in good condition on eBay, grab them!
I agree. They are excellent speakers. I wish Uli would have Tannoy reissue those speakers. One second thought, maybe they will...with Chinese drivers and components. :/
Old 9th December 2015
  #28
Gear Nut
 

FWIW I am another happy Tannoy DMT 15II / Bryston 4BSST2 owner. I also have a Bryston 4B SST which now powers my Harbeth P3ESRs. Both Brystons sound pretty similar but I do think the latest iteration is even smoother, sweeter and more refined.

The Tannoys really need power to control the drivers and bass response. I briefly tried a Rogue high powered KT120 tube amp and a pair of Shindo KT88 based monoblocks - but neither were a good match for the Tannoys. The only other amp I'd consider would be the Parasound JC-1s or maybe Pass Labs.
Old 9th December 2015
  #29
Gear Addict
 

There is nothing inheritably wrong with Perreaux power amplifiers, not their circuit design nor their built quality. I have serviced many of them in yesteryears when they started to show up in the states. They use very simple circuit, much simpler than that of Bryston. They used Hitachi MOSFET as output devices. Those Hitachi MOSFET are very reliable and are widely used in all Hafler amplifiers. Two most common problems I ran into Perreaux amplifiers are power switches and chassis mechanical damage. The power switches fail a lot because they didn’t install In-Rush current limiter in the AC circuit which can be easily remedied. The chassis uses a lot of aluminum material which is not very strong so if you drop those heavy amps the inside guts would get all bent out of shape. That could be very hard to repair. I am not fond of Bryston amplifiers because they are a pain to service. Bryston 4Bs use modular design so you can’t test each individual section without having to put everything back together at which point it becomes very hard to take measurement at circuit level. Granted, if you have all the service rigs from Bryston it would be just as easy to service those amps but most likely as a field technician you won’t have one. I remember I had to make myself pass-through cable extender in order to service Bryston amplifiers. By comparison, Perreaux amps are a piece of cake to work on.

In terms of electrolytic capacitors, all electrolytic capacitors die sooner or later. None of amplifier manufactures make their own caps so you can’t blame them for the cap failure.

Sonically, both Perreaux and Bryston are fine. You audition them both and decide which one you like more. Perreaux has wider bandwidth because of MOSFET output devices which may or may not mean anything to you.



Best regards,

Da-Hong
Old 10th December 2015
  #30
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JSilver's Avatar
 

I used to have a Bryston 4b sst but I sold it after I built 4 amps with the Anaview amp500. One for Amphion One18 and 3 for my PMC MB2s.
Anaview it's simply faboulous

I also have an Anaview amp500 for sale here
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