OPAMP rolling

Discussion in 'DIY' started by JoshMorr, Mar 14, 2016.

  1. JoshMorr

    JoshMorr Friend

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2015
    Likes Received:
    2,743
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Portland, ME
    I know that people look forward to opamp rolling about as much as shaving a cat, but what have you tried out. I have not done any, but am interested as I've seen it mentioned a couple of times. Are cheap opamps put into devices that could potentially benefit from a swap, or does this often result like Purrins recent adventure with his Sutherland Ph3D phono pre, where after rolling you end up right where you started.

    This was all prompted by an ad I saw on DIYAudio for a Burson opamp (link below) that I'm sure is $300 or something ridic. Anyone with any useful experience to share?
    http://www.bursonaudio.com/products/supreme-sound-opamp-v5/
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2016
  2. fraggler

    fraggler A Happy & Busy Life

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2015
    Likes Received:
    1,836
    Dislikes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I'm interested, too. I still want to make a point to point cmoy or other simple op-amp based circuit, and think that sticking a Burson in there might add to the run/ridiculous factor. Really curious if it would actually sound better as well.
     
  3. JoshMorr

    JoshMorr Friend

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2015
    Likes Received:
    2,743
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Portland, ME
    After scrolling down to the bottom of the Burson page it looks like they sell the single opamps as a pair for $70 and the daul opamps for $70 each.

    There are a few specifications that need to be looked at before just throwing random opamps in, and designers may have already taken this into account, but could be an interesting way to play around your amps sound.

    The Burson does look fun / ridiculous for a P to P CMOY.
     
  4. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

    Staff Member Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    7,654
    Dislikes Received:
    23
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Colorado
    Home Page:
    I picked up the v4 opamps a while ago before I knew more about Burson. They did not sound so good in the Gustard H10, so I forgot about them. I recently tried them in the DIY Butte and found them to be agreeable, though not necessarily worth the cost over the stock OPA552 (or 551 if you drop gain below 5).

    Sparkos discrete opamps seem to have some good traits as well. Different flavor than Burson for sure. But they do depend on various circuits to sound good and might require some burn-in.
     
  5. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    43,492
    Dislikes Received:
    70
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Antarctica
    Like tubes, you have to be careful even if the opamp is pin for pin compatible. Swapping opamps in certain circuits may result in oscillation or possibly crack, sizzle, and pop.

    For other discrete opamp choices: http://www.audio-gd.com/Pro/diy/OPA/OPAEN.htm

    The idea of a discrete opamp is kind of dumb once you learn what kinds of circuits are inside the opamps and their intended use.
     
    Jerry, Zampotech, Psalmanazar and 3 others like this.
  6. Hands

    Hands Overzealous Auto Flusher - Measurbator

    Staff Member Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    7,654
    Dislikes Received:
    23
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Colorado
    Home Page:
    Yeah, but, discrete! The 'd' in "discrete" stands for "It has to be better, Duh!"
     
    aamefford and Psalmanazar like this.
  7. MLegend

    MLegend Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2015
    Likes Received:
    91
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Location:
    Northwest Florida
    I've used the Burson V5s in my H10. I have both singles and duals but I only installed the singles to experiment with how much it actually changes the sound. It's VERY subtle, but in the long term I would understand how it would be more enjoyable compared to the stock opamps.

    The only difference I could tell was harder hitting bass and more depth in the soundstage. However if i'm going to be realistic and critical then the depth increase could of just been my imagination. It was kind of hard to tell with the mad dogs which was all I had at the time.

    HOWEVER, after about a month of use the left channel started to pop at random times and the pops were not quiet in the least. I hadn't even put the duals in yet either. This is apparently due to the H10s voltage being higher than the V5s are capable of handling.

    I've sent the V5s back to Burson so they can send me and everyone else who has been having the same issues with the H10 the new hand picked batch of op amps that can handle the 17+/- voltage. The V5s are only able to handle 15+/- V. Just thought I would share my experience so far with rolling opamps.
     
  8. Mr.Sneis

    Mr.Sneis Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2015
    Likes Received:
    793
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Sorry to be so rudimentary but does anyone have a good guide for how to pick and choose opamps for swapping (Explain like I am 5)? Other than reading others' experiences I haven't figured this one out yet :(

    Also a rant: Where does the "cheap" opamp notion even come from? Manufacturers probably use cheap opamps to build to a cost but the ones I see recommended are usually $10 - $25 each and can be needed in pairs or threes sometimes. My Jolida phono pre takes 6 sockets! I couldn't imagine buying 6 opa627's for that thing. Then you also pay more for shipping from a reputable dealer who is not a Chinese ebay seller. The only opamp I've ever bought that I thought was cheap was $3 for an OP275 I bought as a backup just in case I had a bad one in my DAC but the shipping was probably $8.
     
  9. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

    Staff Member Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2015
    Likes Received:
    43,492
    Dislikes Received:
    70
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Antarctica
    Best to start with measuring voltage of the rails. Next is to read the datasheet of the opamp you plan on replacing it with, making sure the opamp in question will take the voltage. Also look at the circuit board and figure out what the gain of the circuit is, and what compensations it has with capacitors in the feedback loop, etc. Also check the circuit board to make sure what bypass caps are on the rails. Some opamps like caps at certain places in the feedback loop and on the power rails for them to work correctly. Also make sure the circuit doesn't do anything funky like biasing the opamp into Class A, and how it does that and how much current. Double check the opamp's circuit in the datasheet to make sure the approach will be OK and how much output current you will have left over for the opamp to drive the next stage.

    The other approach is to just say fuck it and plug in whatever random opamp you find, cross fingers, and hope no snap, crackle, and pop.

    Just read the datasheets and make sure the opamps are compatible and have similar characteristics.
     
    trl and Zampotech like this.
  10. fraggler

    fraggler A Happy & Busy Life

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2015
    Likes Received:
    1,836
    Dislikes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    This general approach to DIY has killed a B22, a Bottlehead SEX, and a pair of D2000 for me over the years. This is why I stick to just doing cables and maybe a little casework now. Though this might change with my point to point cmoy project.
     
    taisserroots, Jh4db536, OJneg and 2 others like this.
  11. bazelio

    bazelio Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2015
    Likes Received:
    3,135
    Dislikes Received:
    22
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Skeptism warranted, though discrete should achieve lower noise levels than monolithic by a fair margin, even at higher gain levels I would think? That said, I am not up on the off-the-shelf pricing for these things....
     
  12. Jh4db536

    Jh4db536 Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    May 25, 2016
    Likes Received:
    518
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Just rolled ADA-4627's into the MCubed based on some research on the SWA builds; nothing exotic 10 a piece. Soic8 form factor only so I had to buy adapters to dip8. No more loose bass compared to the 627's and natural tonality without the grain in the treble from the AD843's. :D
    Increased the bias a little bit higher too, but i really need to cut cooling vents into this enclosure because i think it's still holding back performance.

    Bass performance is still not as good as the Torpedo III though (doesn't have the weight or punch). In fact it's a little bit on the light and polite side, but not out of control. The Torp III has bass punch and control at the level of a beta22.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2016
    Mr.Sneis and AustinValentine like this.
  13. Mr.Sneis

    Mr.Sneis Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2015
    Likes Received:
    793
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    93
    When I had it, the AD-4627's were the ticket in the m^3!
     
  14. Cspirou

    Cspirou They call me Sparky

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    4,230
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Northwest France
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018
  15. Armaegis

    Armaegis Friend

    Friend BWC
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    3,332
    Dislikes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    So... it's an opamp with a power supply bypass cap built in and possibly a resistor-bias to "class A"?

    I guess if it's cheap enough off massdrop (I can't see the price) then it's not a terrible value, assuming the chip is a decent one to begin with.
     
  16. Cspirou

    Cspirou They call me Sparky

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    4,230
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Northwest France
    Okay, so basically pre-biased opamps. Probably wouldn't be an upgrade to a Millett Butte

    $25 for a dual
    $40 for matched pair single opamps
    $45 for matched pair dual opamps
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018
  17. Mr.Sneis

    Mr.Sneis Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2015
    Likes Received:
    793
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    93
    I heavily considered it but now I wish md was offering the v5 ss ones.

    I cant handle opa627s anymore but the alternatives seem to be muses or burson discrete types.
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018
  18. Cspirou

    Cspirou They call me Sparky

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    4,230
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Northwest France
    V5 is available. I think today is the last day

    https://www.massdrop.com/buy/burson-audio-v5-opamps
     
  19. Cspirou

    Cspirou They call me Sparky

    Friend
    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2015
    Likes Received:
    4,230
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Northwest France
  20. AllanMarcus

    AllanMarcus Friend

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2015
    Likes Received:
    1,884
    Dislikes Received:
    20
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Los Alamos, NM
    Home Page:
    I will be rolling op amps on my WHAMMY when I get the case (shipping on Ali - slow boat from China - literally!)

    I have an LM833 ($0.60) in there now. I also have:
    RC4580 ($1.10) (this is the op amp that comes with the "kit" from diyAudioStore)
    AD823 ($9.07)
    sitting in bags ready to try.

    Models I'm looking at, trying to determine if they are worth it or would work:
    LM4562 ($3.11)
    OP275 ($3.23)

    Some have tried this interesting "DUAL Channels HDAM Full Discrete Op Amp Module replace OPA2604 LME49720" in the WHAMMY, but haven't really reported on long term sound characteristics.
    [​IMG]

    And, of course, @highflyin9 has tried a the Burson V5, and he liked it in his WAMMY.
     

Share This Page