Burson

Burson Audio from Australia products have garnered a great reputation of delivering sound quality and value well beyond their prices. This is exactly what we look for at Underwood Hifi, great sounding reasonably priced products. Reviews have all been exceptional. Build quality is high and all reviews have been great.




Soloist

Soloist Headphone amp/Preamplifier
 $999.00

The Soloist is the least expensive Musicians series Burson product. It is a superb preamplifier and headphone amplifier. It will drive all headphones and uses a fully discrete Class A symmetrical FET input stage with only 21 parts. This compares to the typical 50 parts used in most of the competition. As a preamp the Soloist is a great value at $999.00 but when you add in the superb headphone amp the value is unsurpassed.

In the new Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity review they summed up with:

"Unfortunately, I missed the boat with the Burson HA-160, but given the feedback it received, I knew I was in for a treat with the new Soloist. Its fit and finish are top notch; going above and beyond what you would normally see in a headphone amplifier. Its Variable Output Stage makes the Soloist a versatile amp as it allows for it to handle highly sensitive headphones as well as load-demanding planar magnetic cans. Even with the power hungry HiFiMAN HE6 the sound was dynamic, full, precise, and, most of all, musical. From its high-end build quality to its sinuous sound and low noise floor, the Burson Soloist delivers on all fronts and it easily fulfilled my expectations from a $999 headphone amp."
Read the entire review at:
Measurements
Input impedance: 36.5 KOhms
Frequency response: ± 1 dB 0 - 50Khz
Signal to noise ratio: >96dB
THD: <0.03% at 30ohm with 1W ouput
Channel separation: >73dB
Output power: 4W at 16 Ohms
Input impedance: >8K Ohm @ 30 Ohm, 1W
Output impedance: <1 Ohm @ 30 Ohm, 1W
Power dissipation: >25W, internal, regulated power supply
Inputs
3 x gold plated RCA (line level input)
Outputs
1 x headphone jacks 6.35mm
1 x RCA Pre Amp output

Package content
1 x Soloist Headphone amp / Pre-Amp
1 x Power cable
1 x RCA pair input cable
1 x User Manual (including 24 months warranty registration information)
General
Weight: app. 4.5 kg
Colour: silver anodized aluminium
Dimensions: 180 mm x 255 mm x 80 mm


Conductor

Conductor Preamp/DAC with headphone amp
$1850.00

The Conductor is Burson's best Preamp/DAC/HP amp. It offers state of the art performance and exceptional value. It uses the exceptional Soloist headphone amp with 4wpc and will drive any headphone that we are aware of. It adds a superb 32 bit/192k DAC featuring the ESS 9018 sabre chip and very high quality preamplifier.The volume control is a precision stepped attenuator for superb inter channel balance and imaging. It has 2 line level inputs as well as 3 digital inputs. This includes a 24 bit/192k asynchronous USB input stage with low jitter clock. Circuitry is fully discrete with a Class A symmetrical FET input stage.

In their Nov. 2013 issue of Hi-Fi +, Chief Editor Alan Sircom had this to say about the Conductor and Timekeeper.

Conductor the head-amp:

"it’s damn fantastic...Those three little settings on the front panel make this headphone amp a more universal design."

"This has to be one of the most honest, natural and deep-down ‘right’ sounding headphone amplifiers out there."

"It has the kind of transparency we all crave, but without the characteristic ‘shiny’ or alternately ‘dark’ sound that most good headphone amps seem to bestow on the music.

Conductor the DAC:

"It has extracted a stunning performance from a well-known digital converter (SABRE32/ESS9018), adding a sense of musical flow and rhythm to its already noted detail and air. There’s an unpretentious sense of insight into the sound and the music that works wonders..."

"meaningless, but in the embrace of the Burson, sounds memorable, moving and makes me wish I spent moretime practicing my guitar."

Conductor the Preamp:

"The sound is full and detailed, putting the music slightly in front of the loudspeakers in imaging terms, but never is it an ‘upfront’ sound. It’s just good. If sheer laziness puts you off though...a real revelation. "

Conductor Features

  • Fully discrete circuitry
  • Fully symmetrical FET input stage
  • Pure Class A operation
  • Quality components
    • ELNA Slimic 2
    • DALE military graded resistors
    • Low noise toroidal transformers
  • 3 levels VOS output stage
    • Pre Amp: 7 - 18db
    • Headphone Amp: 0.18W - 4W
  • Perfect control for any headphone and speaker system
  • 24bit 192K USB Asynchronous Transfer USB Receiver
    • Tenor TE8802 chipset with dedicated low noise
    • Power supply
    • Low jitter clock
  • 32bit ESS SABRE32 Reference DAC
    • Tailored FET Output Stage
    • Low Jitter Clock
  • Full Function Pre Amp & DAC
    • 2 x line level RCA inputs
    • 3 x digital inputs
    • Direct DAC line cout
    • Variable Pre Amp out


Conductor Specifications

  • Measurement
    • Input impedance: 36.5 KOhms
    • Frequency response: ± 1 dB 0 - 50Khz
    • Signal to noise ratio: >96dB
    • THD: <0.03% at 30ohm with 1W ouput
    • Channel separation: >73dB
    • Output power: 4W at 16 Ohms
    • Input impedance: >8K Ohm @ 30 Ohm, 1W
    • Output impedance: <1 Ohm @ 30 Ohm, 1W
    • Power dissipation: >45W, internal, regulated power supply
  • DAC Specification
    • Channel Separation: 140 dB @ 1KHz, 130 dB @ 20KHz
    • THD+N: 0.0005% @ 1KHz, 0dBFS
    • COAX & Toslink / SPDIF : 32 bits / 44.1K, 48K, 88.2K, 96K, 176.4K, 192KHz
  • USB Specification
    • OS Requirement: Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Mac OS X
    • USB : 24 bits / 44.1K, 48K, 88.2K, 96K, 176.4K, 192KHz
    • Support up to 24bit @ 96Khz with 10ppm low jitter clock
    • Asynchronous Transfer Mode
  • Inputs
    • 1 x USB Connection
    • 1 x Coaxial RCA (Support up to 24bit @ 192Khz)
    • 1 x Toslink / SPDIF (Support up to 24bit @ 192Khz)
    • 2 x RCA line level input
  • Outputs
    • 1 x headphone jacks 6.35mm
    • 1 x RCA Pre Amp output
    • 1 x RCA DAC direct line out
  • General
    • Weight: app. 14lbs
    • Color: silver anodized aluminum
    • Dimensions: 265 mm x 255 mm x 80 mm

Timekeeper 80wpc stereo/mono power amplifier

$2,595.00

The new Burson Timekeeper power amplifier is an 80 watts per channel stereo amp that does 240 watts in mono. It is a fully discrete Class A/B design with minimal devices as is the Burson philosophy. Consistent with their our less is more philosophy, the Timekeeper employs a new symmetrical bipolar transistor voltage gain stage. It is powered by a customized 300W transformer delivering 80W RMS PC. With its 40,000uF of power reserve, the Timekeeper is capable of achieving 300W of peak power which ensures absolute control with the finest micro details audible at all times.

Apart from working as a stereo power amp the Timekeeper also works in mono block configuration delivering up to 240W RMS of power.In this mode, when a standard line level signal comes into the Timekeeper, a FET input stage splits the signal into two halves. (+ and -). One of the Timekeeper channels then amplifies just the + signal while the other channel amplifies just the - signal. After amplification the two halves are recombined at the output. In this mode, the Timekeeper doubles in voltage swing. It not only improves macro-dynamics, but also micro-dynamics through its extra power reserve. In this mode, the Timekeeper will have even the most demanding speakers under its absolute control.
Furthermore, the Timekeeper accepts both RCA and XLR input signals when operating in Bridge Mode. This ensures that any source component and not just those with XLR output can take advantage of this configuration.

THD: (1khz @ 8 Ohm) 0.03%
Frequency response: 0hz - 50Khz (+/-3Db)
Signal to noise ratio: >98dB (CD , Line level)
Input Sensitivity / Impedance: 240 mV / 20K
Power Consumption: 300W (peak)
Stereo Mode: Output power: 80W @ 8 Ohm
Bridge Mode (RCA & XLR): Output power: 240W @ 8 Ohm
Operation Class AB
Power Consumption: 300W Peak
Power Requirement: 240V / 110V AC

Conductor SL1793- Headphone amp with DAC

$1250.00

Based on what was learned from the Conductor project, Burson has developed a new FET input stage specifically for the PCM1793 DAC chi that is used in the Conductor SL. It has significantly less components on the signal path. This resulted in an even more transparent sound.

The driving power of its headphone amplifier has been increased from its original 0.25 Watts er channel
(@ 8 ohms) in the older 160 model to over 2 Watts per channel. With such power, the Conductor SL can drive most if not all headphones to their full potential. Coupled with a 2 level gain switch, it offers infinite flexibility.

The Conductor SL (1793) is housed in a refined and precision folded 3 mm aluminum casing that is unmistakably Burson. This case also works as a singular heat-sink for the entire machine ensuring stable and optimized performance at all times.



Conductor SL 9018

$1475.00

The Conductor SL (9018) is a concentrated version of the Burson benchmark, the Conductor.It uses the same 9018 Sabre DAC as the full Conductor. The SL 9018  leaves out the preamp and is a DAC and headphone amp only. Its DNA is identical to the Conductor and it exists for one purpose only. That is to be one of the best DAC/headphone amplifiers in the world.

Just like the Conductor, the Conductor SL(9018) is completely discrete in design. (IC free). It features the same 21 component Field Effect Transistor input stage and the same discrete power supply network which brought popularity to the original. Assembled with the same high end components and operating in pure Class-A, the Conductor SL(9018) carries the same sonic signature which has been described as the utmost in organic and transparency.

With 2 Watts per channel into 8ohm, the Conductor SL (9018) is one of the most powerful headphone amp in the world. It is capable of driving most if not all headphones to their full potential. Coupled with a 2 level gain switch, it offers infinite flexibility.

The Conductor SL (9018) is housed in a refined and precision folded 2 mm aluminium casing that is unmistakably Burson. This case also works as a singular heat-sink for the entire machine ensuring stable and optimized performance at all times.

The Conductor SL (9018) features a new Variable Output Stage (VOS). It enables the Conductor to match well with any type of headphone. Be it easy to drive high sensitivity in ear monitors or open back moving-coil designs. It can drive anything including the latest planar magnetic headphones with ease.
With the VOS, volume control is always smooth and synergy is always perfect.

 Soloist SL Headphone amp

Soloist SL Headphone amp 
$599.00

The new Soloist SL headphone amp is a concentrated headphone only version of their award winning Soloist headphone amp/Preamp. Its DNA is identical to the Soloist and it exists for one purpose only. That is to be one of the best headphone amplifiers in the world. The Soloist SL is a dedicated 2wpc version of the Soloist (The Soloist has 4wpc) without the separate preamp stage. If you want a great headphone amp at a very good price this is the answer.
Just like the Soloist, the Soloist SL is completely discrete in design. It uses no IC's. It features the same 21 component Field Effect Transistor input stage and the same discrete power supply network which brought popularity to the original. Assembled with the same high end components and operating in pure Class-A, the Soloist SL carries the same sonic signature which has been described as the utmost in organic and transparent.
The Soloist SL is housed in a refined and precision folded 3 mm aluminum casing that is unmistakably Burson. This case also works as a singular heat-sink for the entire machine ensuring stable and optimized performance at all times. This case really puts the conventional 1 mm folded steel case and generic heat fins found on most of the competition in the price range to shame.
The Soloist SL sits elegantly on any desktop or in an audio rack. But with 2 Watts per channel into 16ohm, the Soloist SL is one of the most powerful headphone amps in the world. It is capable of driving most if not all headphones to their full potential. Coupled with a 2 level gain switch, it offers infinite flexibility.
Max Output Power @ 8 Ohm: 2W
VOS Output Stage: 2 Levels
Volume Control: 24 Stepped Attenuator with ALPS Pots
Enclosure: 4mm Folded Aluminum

Measurements
Input impedance: 36.5 KOhms
Frequency response: ± 1 dB 0 - 50Khz
Signal to noise ratio: >96dB
THD: 73dB
Output power: 2W at 16 Ohms
Input impedance: >8K Ohm @ 30 Ohm, 1W
Output impedance: 20W, internal, regulated power supply
Inputs: 2 x gold plated RCA (line level input)
Outputs: 1 x headphone jacks 6.35mm
Weight: app. 5.5lbs
Color: silver anodized aluminum
Dimensions: 140 mm x 80 mm x 210 mm


HA-160DS Headphone amp with DAC
$999.00 Sale $690.00

Basically the same as the HA-160D above without the preamp in a 16% smaller box for $300.00 less. The 160DS is designed for the headphone listener who does not need a preamp as well. It has a coaxial (24/192K), USB (24/96k) and analog input. It uses a fully discrete analog output stage and drives most headphones with ease.