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Bryston Amp Upgrade Studio Amplifiers
Old 25th January 2018
  #1
Bryston Amp Upgrade

I've been on a Bryston 4B Pro (1986 model) for a few years. And now after upgrading my DAC and monitors (RME Babyface/ELT525m Ninja Masters to Crane Song Solaris/ATC SCM 12 Pro)it has been suggested that I should climb the amp ladder a bit.

So at first I thought, I'll just go with a 4B-ST. Then suddenly I'm like, nah maybe SST is a better investment. Then I'm thinking, well it's practically a SST2, I should be looking at that.

Now I'm fighting myself back from immediately ordering a 4B3 Pro.

You know how it goes.

Do I really need to go that high? Is it just diminishing returns after the SST or SST2? Someone talk me down please. My wallet is about to be gutted like a fish.



Any other good pro amp suggestions?
Old 25th January 2018
  #2
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TheBrightSide's Avatar
I was using an older Bryston NRB with SCM20’s, and didn’t like the tone at all, quite brittle sounding.
Ugraded to an Accuphase amp and the difference was incredible, very happy now.

The older Brystons tend to sound fairly sterile, but the later models are said to sound much much nicer.
But looking at the price of the 4B3, you could almost get some active ATC’s for that maybe?

Definitely do some research on recommended amps for ATC’s, I think they might be a bit fussy.

Edit: Forgot to mention the ATC amps, have you looked into those?
Old 25th January 2018
  #3
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I'm a happy ST owner but, if I were looking to make a change, I would likely start my search at Hypex. The dollar/performance ratio seems extremely high in comparison to other elite choices.
Not saying this is your ultimate answer but it would certainly seem worth a look.
Old 27th January 2018
  #4
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Emanuel23's Avatar
 

I custom build class D amps, my Dual-Mono amp goes very well with ATC's.
In terms of power and resolution it's the equivalent of a 14BSST3.
Sounds like overkill, but those ATC scm12 woofers have a relatively big magnet strapped to their back, they need a lot of juice.
Old 27th January 2018
  #5
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Oh and for what it's worth: I've owned 4B-ST and 4B-SST2, drove them together with passive ATC scm50SL's. Especially the ST showed too much character and grit, which the ATC's revealed of course to a minute detail. The SST2 was better, but not that neutral either (bass slightly boosted, sweetened top end). Those same ATC's now sound stunning with the aforementioned Dual Mono amp. More resolution even than ATC's own proprietary amp, as well as more power and more capable of "in your face" dynamics.

Last edited by Emanuel23; 28th January 2018 at 07:25 PM.. Reason: Typo
Old 27th January 2018
  #6
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ponzi's Avatar
Pretty happy with my bryston 3b st. I felt it was a good price/benefit spot for me in the used market. Thing I like about my system now is that it is completely silent when there is nothing playing--not even some barely audible hiss to let me know its on. I am driving it with a motu 1248. To me this all sounds pretty liquid and musical. Is there something better and how much better for the money? Impossible for me to know. My experience as an audiophile starting in the mid 1980s is that for me I spent a lot of money and didn't get a commensurate amount of enjoyment thereof.

I think the bryston stuff is pretty reliable and the canadian broadcasting industry is constantly emitting used ones as they upgrade their equipment.
Old 27th January 2018
  #7
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Emanuel23's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by ponzi View Post
... it is completely silent when there is nothing playing--not even some barely audible hiss to let me know its on.
In my experience the Bryston 4bst and 4bsst2 both emit a slight buzz coming from the amp itself, probably the lineair toroidal power supply. And on the speaker end they do hiss slightly, as most amps do.
Old 27th January 2018
  #8
I replaced many Bryston 3 and 4B's in LA control rooms 20+ years ago. Everyone had similar complaints, the hard @ss midrange and listener fatigue. Adcom, Threshold and Perroux were all popular replacements.
Old 31st January 2018
  #9
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ponzi's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Emanuel23 View Post
In my experience the Bryston 4bst and 4bsst2 both emit a slight buzz coming from the amp itself, probably the lineair toroidal power supply. And on the speaker end they do hiss slightly, as most amps do.
Must be something wrong with mine, then.
Old 2nd February 2018
  #10
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Yannick's Avatar
 

The 3bsst is a much better amp than the older series.

The new b3 (cubed) series is so much better than the sst and sst2, it is not funny anymore.

More so because the 3b3 is twice as expensive as my 3bsst

If you are feeding anything less than eg. a benchmarkmedia dac3, don’t bother about the differnces between them.

My dac2 already puts a handbrake on the new cubed series.

Just my 2 cents.
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