Amp questions: Sherbourn, Bryston and B&K - which at the same price point?

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by DanielG, Dec 8, 2003.

  1. DanielG

    DanielG Agent

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    Its been quite difficult, but after I lot of consideration, I've narrowed the field to these multi-channel amps: Sherbourn 7/2100, B&K 200.7 and Bryston 9B SST (used, while the others would be new). Given time and audition related contraints, I'd like to only audition 2 at home and would appreciate any thoughts. Basically they can be had for around the same price point give or take. I am looking at either the Anthem AVM-20 or B&K Ref 50 as the processor.

    Is there any reason to buy the Sherbourn or B&K at the same price point at the Bryston?

    Given the my room's characteristics I need to make sure I get electronics without brightness or edge and so would be curious to get opinions on the character of these brands.

    --Dan
     
  2. MikeTz

    MikeTz Stunt Coordinator

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    There are a couple obvious questions before I could give informed advice. What kind of speakers do you intend using with the new amp and what are your room dimensions?

    I assume you know the Bryston is a 5 channel amp with 125w/ch into 8 ohms and the others are 7 channel with around 200w/ch. If you use the Bryston what amp do you intend to use for channels 6 and 7?

    One easy suggestion would be to compare the Bryston to either one of the others and decide if the amplifier power difference is significant in your theater.

    MT
     
  3. DanielG

    DanielG Agent

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    Mike,

    Thanks for chiming in. I didn't necessarily want to get into my specifics but rather hear what people had to say about the brands more generally so I didn't give a lot of details.

    My room dimensions are: 15 by 48 for the whole room and really 15 by 24 for the listening area (8 ft ceilings). The front wall (where the speakers are) and the right wall are floor to ceiling glass, the back wall is a wall and left portion of listening area is open to the rest of the 48ft. Wood floors with area rug in listening area.

    I don't really need the 6/7 channels and would use them for the kitchen - if I go with a 5 channel I would use an old 2-channel Denon receiver that I have.

    I haven't yet decided on my speakers but have so far narrowed it down to either the Dynaudio Special 25 (soft tweeter) or Red Rose Rosebuds (ribbon tweeter) (still want to listen to particular JM Lab and Focus Audio if I can find dealers in Chicago, and relisten to some B&Ws), with either a Rel Storm III or Velodyne DD-10 (absolutely loved the Rel with the Rosebuds for 2-channel but fear I may not quite be satisfied with HT, because of size/appearance can't do the SVS). Unfortunately, I am getting everything at once and need to narrow down things before I do home auditions or I will go crazy. I've found the best choices for processor are the Anthem and B&K in my price range so I'm not really looking too much further on those - first choice is the Anthem, but need to rethink that given the now much lower price of the B&K - couldn't go wrong with either, just as I imagine I can't really go wrong with any of the amps I am looking at. I also need to select a line conditioner, cables, etc....lots of choices for everything.

    --Dan
     
  4. MikeTz

    MikeTz Stunt Coordinator

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    Dan:

    Your room is pretty big and lively with glass walls and wood floors. As a 9B-SST owner I'm biased, but in your case with a large room the B&K with more power might be better (especially with the B&K processor). I'd audition the Bryston and the B&K since the Bryston really will put out >150w/ch into 8 ohms and >250w/ch into 4 ohms. Those Dynaudio speakers are 4 ohms nominal so the Bryston might be OK. Rosebuds, JM Labs, and B&W speakers are 8 ohms so the B&K might be better for those.

    Happy hunting.

    MT
     
  5. dpippel

    dpippel HTF Premium Member
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    I'll chime in with a vote for the Sherbourn Dan. I've got a 5/1500A (200wx5 channel) and couldn't be happier with the amp. I auditioned it in my home against an Acurus 200Five and a Parasound HCA-2205AT and the Sherbourn clearly had more authority and punch than either of them in my setup. In my opinion their amplifiers give you a lot for the money. If you do a Forum search on Sherbourn you'll find a number of people here who feel the same way. They are very well regarded amps.

    On the other hand, that Bryston warranty is very attractive. [​IMG]
     
  6. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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    I am voting for B&K esp if you are planning on using B&W or JM Labs and if you have hard reflecting surfaces. On a more lively room like yours a warm amp like B&K or Parasound will give you more long term listening pleasure.

    My 2 cents.
     
  7. DanielG

    DanielG Agent

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    Yogi,

    I've heard that B&K can be somewhat warm, but does that come at the expense of clarity and detail of the highs?

    I've heard that B&Ws can be a bit bright, which I noticed with the Nat 805s. I'm going today to listen to the Sig 805s which some have commented aren't quite as bright. They just may not be a good match for my room.

    Also, in suggesting the B&K over the Sherbourn or Bryston, are you suggesting that those are bright/edgy in the abstract or just brighter than the B&K?

    Thanks for your input!

    Dan
     
  8. Ricky T

    Ricky T Supporting Actor

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    I would think the Bryston SST (which is even better than the ST) is superior to the other two. And no, I don't own Bryston.

    If the used Bryston is the same price as the other two new, I would take the SST and 19+ transferable years, non-frills, great service warranty over both the other two new warranties combined [​IMG]

    However, if you compare used prices for other amps like Sherbourn, B&K, Parasound, they are about 50% of a used Bryston on a per channel basis. Then, one must decide on the right price/performance ratio for oneself.

    Spending the same dollars, Bryston all the way for me....
     
  9. Dan Driscoll

    Dan Driscoll Supporting Actor

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  10. John-Tompkins

    John-Tompkins Second Unit

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    BRYSTON !!!
    Same price ? ..BRYSTON!!!
     
  11. DanielG

    DanielG Agent

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    On the Bryston, I think it may only be the 9B ST and not the 9B SST.....what is the difference? should I care?

    Thanks,
    --Dan
     
  12. Yogi

    Yogi Screenwriter

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  13. Rich Wenzel

    Rich Wenzel Supporting Actor

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    if it were me,

    if i was going to go with the B&K Ref 50, I would get the B&K, otherwise, I would get the Bryston...

    If you get the Anthem, time to go all canadian, Bryston & Anthem...

    Rich
     

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