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Bryston vs Rotel (1 Viewer)

Jason Brent

Second Unit
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Dec 12, 2002
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I know that the pretty much universally accepted notion of these two amplifier makers, is that Bryston is a notch above.

However, I'm wondering what subjective opinions are regarding the Rotel 1090 is vs the 4B-ST????

Both can be had for about the same price used.

Thanks
 

Martin Rendall

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With the Bryston you will assume the remainder of the 20 year warrantee. With the Rotel, I believe you'll be on your own if it breaks.

Martin.
 

Kevin C Brown

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Aug 3, 2000
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I had a 4b-st for a little while. Beautiful, beautiful amp. It's in an entirely different league than the Rotel. It has a 20 yr transferrable warranty for a reason. :)

Lots of reviews over on Bryston's web site. I was surprised by how uniformly positive the reviews are of Bryston amps.
 

Martin Rendall

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Kevin,

So, how does the Proceed compare with the Bryston? I love my 4b-st, and couldn't imagine parting with it!

Martin.
 

Drew_W

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I moved from an RB-1080 to a Bryston 4BSST. How much of an improvement did I expect? Well...a little...you know, diminishing returns and all that once you get to a point.

What did I get?

A MASSIVE improvement in absolutely everything. Forget diminishing returns, this was huge returns...the treble is extremely refined now, the midrange is smooth, and the bass is accurate and well defined (versus the Rotel's "look at me I can produce bass").

My new Martin Logans (:D :D :D) aren't here yet, so I'm still running my Energy Veritas 2.1s (~$500USD used), and even on those there was a HUGE difference.

Don't get me wrong here, Rotel still makes great gear, it's just not at all in the league of Bryston.
 

JohnSmith

Supporting Actor
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Apr 8, 2003
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554
Heh Drew you've got it. The Rotel's are pretty "safe" sounding, with lots of bass but that's about it. I remember using a NAD 912 (only a 30W poweramp but hardly pushing it) and that sounded like I used bass boost, bass to max. Basically bloated. Easy to drive 8Ohm speakers in a 4mx4m room at background level. So poweramps are not all the same.

Arcam Alpha's also a bit dull and whoompy by comparison (and a much higher noise floor)

btw I use Audiolab & Tagmclaren poweramps, and a mate uses Rotels. Unfortunately people like to defend what they own/know and try to put them in the same class as Chord etc.
 

Jason Brent

Second Unit
Joined
Dec 12, 2002
Messages
268
Thanks for the comments guys. I fully expected quite a noticeable quality increase from the 1080, but how do you all think that big 1090 is compared to the other Rotel offerings? It is their "flagship" amp, and am wondering how much of a cut above their other offerings it is.
 

Kevin C Brown

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Aug 3, 2000
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Martin- If I could have found a 5 channel, ~200W/ch amp that I liked, I would have kept the 4b-st. I did try a 5b-st plus an 8b-st, really liked them, but I really wanted a 2 + 5 solution (but I didn't like the form factor of the 3b-st. Long story.). In the big picture, Proceed, Bryston, Bryston, Proceed, very much equivalent, just that Proceed had an easier matching combo for me for 2 plus 5 channels. Really like them. The best way I can describe their sound quality is: smooth. I'll have them for a bunch of years.
 

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