Op amps review.

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al newall
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Op amps review.

Post by al newall » Wed Feb 20, 2008 8:17 pm

An enthusiastic Ebay seller sent me his rather comprehensive views of various op amps. Might be of interest to some.


The following op-amps produce the poorest results; NE5534, NJM2114, NE5532, NJM4558, NJM4560, AD711, AD712, LM833.
The performance of op-amps from different manufacturers varies considerably. Therefore, selecting a single type of op-amp to meet the parameters required for the analogue output stage involved analysing data sheets and conducting many listening tests.
The important parameters for sound quality are high speed (or bandwidth) low THD, fast settling, and low input noise. The most natural and musical sounding were FET-Input types as opposed to bipolar.
Burr Brown OPA 627 BP(single, ceramic) on Browndog adaptor
Price: US$28 each (Total US$56 for 2 singles) Browndog adaptor $5 Total: $61
Comment: Two words sum this chip up........ "absolute class" This is single chip and it was necessary to fit two single channel 627's onto a single to dual Browndog adaptor which Adapts two single-channel DIP-8 op-amps to a dual DIP-8 pinout. These 2 single channel op amps absolutely trounced anything that had gone before them ..... the width of the soundstage, the clarity and the sheer presence make this my choice of op amp for use in the Chiarra without a shadow of a doubt. The sound is just so "clean", so "natural", so "musical" and so "detailed" with the 627's on board. The Burr Brown 627 "is" headphone heaven....... absolute class act.

LM4562(dual, ceramic)
Price: US$30.
Comment : A "Very" revealing chip, sound similar to the OPA627 but puncher around the edges. I found this chip gave out "way" too much information for my liking. It is analytical to the point that certain pieces of music can become impossible to listen to, especially bad recordings, it reproduces every last detail / imperfection with microscopic accuracy which, at times, can be detrimental to the overall enjoyment of the music. For those that love a warts and all insight into the music then this is the star of the show but it may not be to everyone liking. It may be an op amp which can beat OPA627.
Burr Brown OPA2604 (dual, ceramic)
Price: US$10.
Comment: OPA2604 sounded very warm, very laid back and very easy to listen to but slightly veiled in the detail department. "Chocolaty" and "syrupy" though a good easy to listen to Op amp., This may just be what the doctor ordered for those who like a laid back, thick, chocolaty, easy going and easy to listen to sound.

Linear techonolgy LT1057(dual, ceramic)
Price: US$20,
Comment: Without a shadow of a doubt this op amp is the star of the the centry. Easy to listen to, easy to pick out every last detail and ever so natural. There was an ethereal quality to the sound that only ever heard on high quality loudspeaker based systems. It's hard to put what this op amp does into words but listening to the sound with it on board is as close to headphone heaven. Very analytical.
Linear techonolgy LT1028(single, ceramic) on Browndog adaptor
Price: US$15 each (Total US$30 for 2 singles) Browndog adaptor $5 Total: $35
Comment: It provided very similar results to the LT-1057 but each component of the sound was treated to an additional air of realism and effortless delivery that was immediately evident.
Linear techonolgy LT1028(single, metal) on Browndog adaptor
Price: US$25 each (Total US$50 for 2 singles) Browndog adaptor $5 Total: $52
Comment: It provided very similar results to the LT-1028 but the sound is ten times better LT-1028 with their punch , detail , range of frequency ….. especially the naturality.

Analog device AD797 (single, metal)
Price: US$25 each (Total US$50 for 2 singles) Browndog adaptor $5 Total: $52
Comment : Smooth, highly analytical, warm, uncoloured, laid back yet all detail is present (and then some) Very electrostatic quality to the sound with that super solid state bass underpinning the proceedings without overwhelming them. Start and stops are followed by an inky black silence and the timbre of the drums is very realistic indeed. Something that is very evident with this op amp is it's inherent ability to provide accurate timing which I really do like! There is no bass overhang, the drums start and stop as they should and, as a result, the timing is pretty much spot on. This is like listening to music with a stethoscope with the metronome ticking away in the background but it also adds a touch of valium to make the experience very bearable and extremely enjoyable.
Analog device DY2000 (dual, ceramic)
Price: US$20
Comment : These chips makes the sound more valve like than the tube sound ever did if that can possibly make any sense! Melodious, slightly laid back and warm yet it brings out every last bit of detail from a recording. Overall a very nice sound. A kind of hybrid valve and solid state mix which gives the best of both worlds. Nice smooth valve like mids and highs with lovely solid state bass oomph . This is the Op amp for those who prefer a valve like sound but would also like a solid state bottom end delivery. With this Op amp you can have your cake and eat it. Smooth as silk.
Analog device DY2000 (dual, metal)
Price: US$35.
Comment : It provided very similar results to the DY2000 ceramic but the sound is ten times better with their punch , detail , range of frequency ….. especially the naturality.
Much to learn there is.

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peranders
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Post by peranders » Tue May 13, 2008 5:16 pm

Such opinions has less importance if not the specific opamp is designed in properly. Using Brown Dog adaptors is not "properly". If you only have a socket and just change opamps you will get a result but the opamp will hardly work optimally. If a test should be done each opamp will have it's own parts and chosen with taste. As you might know, JFET opamps will have an increased distortion if the impedances on each input not are matched. Therefore it's really important that the opamp is designed in.

Regardless I will try these opamps in my new RIAA amp: AD743, AD745, LT0128, LT1115, LME49710, AD797 and NE5534. Possibly a few more.
/Per-Anders (my first name)

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peranders
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Post by peranders » Sat Aug 15, 2009 4:52 pm

Here is something to dig in: Samuel Groener and especially here http://www.sg-acoustics.ch/analogue_aud ... ortion.pdf
/Per-Anders (my first name)

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Post by theoldtrout » Sat Aug 06, 2011 10:52 pm

Interesting link and comment. I agree with peranders, horses for courses: how the whole amp is designed and what comes before and after is very important. Just swapping op-amps [even if it is done in a lot of different set-ups] is a bit vague. I accept that newer and possibly 'better sounding' op-amps are made post older designs, but to have any meaning an experiment would have to be set up so that for example, op-amps 1 to 99 would have to fitted in configurations A to Z and the whole lot subjected to lab and listening tests -ouch!

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Post by fatmarley » Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:28 pm

The NE55xx opamps with a low noise power supply sound great to my ears.

I tried some LM45xx (can't remember the exact model number) and they had bugger all bass in my system and the extra detail didn't sound natural to me. Tried decoupling them with the caps soldered direct to the opamp legs, but nothing worked.

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Greg
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Re: Op amps review.

Post by Greg » Fri Jan 27, 2017 9:01 pm

Hmmm, Nick, apart from their irrelevance, you might want to bin these last four posts. Tramadol is now listed in this country as a controlled drug, as of June 2014.

vinylspinner
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Re: Op amps review.

Post by vinylspinner » Fri Jan 27, 2017 9:18 pm

Greg wrote:Hmmm, Nick, apart from their irrelevance, you might want to bin these last four posts. Tramadol is now listed in this country as a controlled drug, as of June 2014.

Oh bugger, was about to order some....just been listening to Goldfrapp :cry:

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Greg
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Re: Op amps review.

Post by Greg » Fri Jan 27, 2017 10:57 pm

vinylspinner wrote:Oh bugger, was about to order some....just been listening to Goldfrapp :cry:
Ah, I see you're on the Gin again. What's wrong with Goldfrapp especially when you've been offered tickets. So ungrateful, so condescending, oh so square :lol: :lol: That's it, I'm now after those tickets. You can just stew :wink:

vinylspinner
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Re: Op amps review.

Post by vinylspinner » Sat Jan 28, 2017 12:01 am

Greg wrote:
vinylspinner wrote:Oh bugger, was about to order some....just been listening to Goldfrapp :cry:
Ah, I see you're on the Gin again. What's wrong with Goldfrapp especially when you've been offered tickets. So ungrateful, so condescending, oh so square :lol: :lol: That's it, I'm now after those tickets. You can just stew :wink:
Ok, ok, I will take the tickets and save some other poor wretched soul from the pain, just force feed me several pints of Old Rosie cider before the gig (and some more after).

peperoni
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Re: Op amps review.

Post by peperoni » Sat Jan 28, 2017 10:23 am

vinylspinner wrote:
Greg wrote:
vinylspinner wrote:Oh bugger, was about to order some....just been listening to Goldfrapp :cry:
Ah, I see you're on the Gin again. What's wrong with Goldfrapp especially when you've been offered tickets. So ungrateful, so condescending, oh so square :lol: :lol: That's it, I'm now after those tickets. You can just stew :wink:
Ok, ok, I will take the tickets and save some other poor wretched soul from the pain, just force feed me several pints of Old Rosie cider before the gig (and some more after).
Such a mixed up individual. Great taste in Cider, no taste in music !!

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