The core of our circuitry research and development, our evolving design DNA, is an output stage which aims to reduce distortion across the audio frequency spectrum. It is the reason behind our unique Burson sound which many believe to be supreme.
In 2006 we were the first company in the world to convert our design DNA into special purpose audio opamps. Audio designers and recording engineers simply plugged them into their equipment to further realise the potential of their projects.
The forth generation Supreme Sound Opamp was again developed in collaboration with some of the world’s most passionate musicians, sound engineers and recording artists 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’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 forum to forum, and checking every price list, 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 degrade the musical signal at all levels
- IC opamps suffer from EMI noise
For a more in-depth review on this issue please read “IC Chip Not Good for Audio”
Burson Supreme Sound Opamps
Burson Audio have realised the inferior quality of general-purpose 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 Of Supreme Sound Opamp
Burson Audio has been developing the Supreme Sound 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 Supreme Sound 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.
We only use 1% tolerant resistors. 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.
To 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 the Supreme Sound Opamps 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 SS Opamp is a very listenable and engaging performer. It will bring pure music to your soul, without listening fatigue to your ears.
Will SS Opamp Work For You?
3 simple steps to find out if the Supreme Sound Opamp (SS Opamp) works for you:
- Identify the opamp inside your equipment. It is the 8 pin IC chip like the one shown below (Highlighted in Red)
- Take note of 2 pieces of information: Model number of that opamp (Highlighted in Yellow) and the Pin 1 indicator with a half cut circle (Highlighted in Blue)
- Find out if you need a dual SS opamp or a single SS opamp.
The SS Opamp is directly replaceable with the following opamps
Dual Op-amps: AD8066, AD8620, AD712, AD827, C4570, JRC4580, JRC5532, JRC5532D, JRC5534, LF353, LM4562, LM833N, NE5532, NEC4520, NEC4570, NJM2068D, NJM2114, NJM2214D, NJM4558, NJM4558D, NJM4560, NJM5532, NJM4558P, OP275, OPA2132, OPA2134, OPA2604, RC4558D, RC4558P, TL052, TL072