Anyone try the Bryston BDP-2 or the BDA-2 Dac

Anyone try the Bryston BDP-2 digital player or the BDA-2 Dac?
I am very interested in both of these units due to there capabilities.
The BDP-2 player is unique in its ability to play from large external hardrives and the BDA-2 Dac is supposed to mate well with the player.
But, I wonder how they compare in sound qualities to my present modified Touch with linear power supply.

Any supporting experience or opinions with these units would be appreciated.
So far no response.
I have a BDP-1 and absolutely love it. The sound is glorious and it is easy to use. The BDP-2 probably is better with NAS as music storage device. I am using a portable 500gb HD. The BDP-1 can be used with NAS but there is software to be added which I am too lazy to do and I also would have to invest in a NAS.

Go for it. You won't regret it. Have not heard the DAC. I am using a PS Audio MkII which I like a lot.

Nglazer, Thank you so much for your comments. I was beginning to think that I was the only one to have considered these units.
Well I did go ahead on blind faith and ordered both the BDP2 and the BDA2. I'm hoping the learning curve and the sound quality is what I expect.
I own the BDA 2 and couldn't be happier. I use mine with a computer based (usb) source and --once broken in -- there is no glare, ringing or digital artifacts that is usually associated with digital playback. This DAC has really impressed me with its transparency. It reproduces pianos, bass, horns, vibes, cymbals , and acoustic guitars with realism. I like it better than my BAT VK D5 SE. I think you will be pleasantly surprised.
Ozzy, would you mind giving us your impressions of the BDP-2 when you get it? I am torn right now between that or building my own CAPS server. Coming from a Sonos the user interface is very important to me. Based on the Bryston website I am not entirely sure what my interface options are.
I have both BDP-2 and BDA-2. A wonderful combination with lots of finesse. And guts. Very resolving and transparent, although it took some tweaking to bring the full glory of this combo out. They respond dramatically to high caliber cables and power. When I switched to Hi Diamond I sat back in amazement at the presentation. Music seems "honest" not editorialized or doctored. A spectacular recording sounds just that. Massive power, expansive space, delicacy, nuance. Real emotion, real involvement.

I'm feeding it with a 500 G Samsung SSD, connected via one of it's rear USB inputs. I also have 2 128G USB 3 flash drives up front with various collections. Most of my downloads are from HD Tracks, and typically 196/24 if available. There is a significant improvement with higher rez. in well-mastered stuff.

If you check my system, you'll see I've drank the HiDiamond KoolAid. Ozzy, I think you're on that road, so you'll understand. Before anything else, toss those generic computer grade power cords, then move on from there.

In summary, the Bryston combo makes for a fine musically rewarding front end. I'm back to exploring music, and enjoying every minute.

My only peeve - I wish the DAC had a polarity reversal switch. The system's transparency makes the choice of "correct" polarity so readily obvious that it's annoying to hear a track the "wrong" way. And switching both speaker leads is a nuisance, and detracts from the enjoyment

pm me if you need any more details!
Thanks everyone for the comments.

Joman, Thanks for your comments.I am looking forward to trying the combo out.
About how many hours do you think it took for breakin?

I sure will post my impressions. I am expecting alot, hope I'm not disappointed.

Yes, the HiDiamond cables are a fantastic contributor to my overall emjoyment. I have a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2 that I'm planning to use as the remote control. I hope that is not too difficult for this 'ole man' to figure it out.
Break in for me was 350 hrs when periodic glare and digital hash disappeared. After that this dac really opened up. I use the XLR output with Purist Audio interconnects. My BDA 2 plugs into a shunyata hydra 6. The pc -- I made using a Teflon insulated 12 gauge wire with cryo'ed watt gate IEC and male outlet plug. I haven't experimented with any other wire but believe the BDA will respond to the caliber of cable that is used. I would be very interested in your impressions as well. Please share your finding.
Joman, Wow 350 hours! I wonder if I could just leave it on 24/7?

I have always believed that the AC quality is a crucial element to obtaining the best sound our equipment can produce.

Did you find the sound to be a bit recessed? I think I read that one of the reviewers thought that, yet many other reviews say that it has a deep soundstage, which I guess could mean the same thing.
Sometimes it's hard to actually believe what some of the "paid" reviewers really think about a product.
I guess I will know for myself soon enough.
Thank you for your response.
Ozzy: I don't keep copious notes when listening to a new component. But, it seems to me at about 150 hours , or so, I was listening to Steve Earl, Guy Clark and Townes Van Zant "Together at the Bluebird Cafe" on an old 20 bit Rotel 991 plugged into the BDA 2's SPDIF. I could hear glasses clinking, crowd chatter and the emotion of the show was so palpable I felt I was there. The acoustics, vocals, and performance was horizontally and vertically balanced. There was nothing recessed about that performance and that was when I knew BDA 2 was a great component. I am usually pretty reserved about gear but I feel one would have to spend thousands of dollars more to better this DAC.
I have heard the BDA-2. And I am sort of known as the DAC guy out my way because I have owned and mucked around with a LOT of DAC's.

For the money its OK, but the old saying with Bryston gear is its really Dryston is there to my ears. That saying is a bit hard because it's not that bad - just slightly dry - I have heard a lot worse. I did take it over to someone with a LOT of experience with Bryston and he said it's just their typical house sound - no better or worse than other bits of gear they make. If that's what you like, meaning you generally like Bryston gear, then you will probably like that DAC.

However to my ears, and for a similar amount of money, the Chord Qute HD with an upgraded power supply MURDERS it - but it has a sound that is FAR from the Bryston house sound.

Bottom line is, as in all things audio, you must check it out for yourself.

I also have to say if you are willing to spend more (say about $5k) you will reap the benefits. The difference between DAC's in that price range and the Bryston is quite big. For example, what is likely the best DAC I have ever heard (its needs to be fully run in to totally evaluate), a Phasure DAC, is simply a joke comparison. I have zero doubt that anyone that heard the difference would do everything in their power to find a bit extra money.

Still all of us have budgetary constraints - but I would definitely check out the Chord.

Thanks,Joman and Bhobba for your comments.

Joman, the only Dac I have used thus far has been the Dac inside of my Cary SACD 306 player which I have been very pleased with.

Bhobba, I guess I moved towards trying the Bryston BDA-2 Dac because of the BDP-2 player.
When I read the reviews of the BDP-2 player there seems to be synergy in using both products.
It's all about the "supporting staff" with the Bryston's. I would not consider them "world-class" with stock power cord and fuses. With high caliber PCs, digital cable and IC's, as well as AMR or Synergistic (but not HiFi Tuning or Furutech) fuses, they will SING. Definitely not Bryston-dry (I don't like the "Bryston sound", in fact, and have no other Bryston equipment). Agree with 300+ hours break in, leaving on continuously playing signal.
Tympani, That's very interesting about your comment on the fuses. I have used both HI-FI Tuning and Synergistic fuses. Why do you prefer one over the other?
And can you share with me the fuse sizes and values?
Ozzy, the Hifi Tuning Supreme fuses, althouth nice and airy, give up too much deep bass. This was especially apparent in live recordings with ambient "room rumble" which was lost with the Supremes. It was very noticeable when I switched to the HD P4 power cables, which allow that really deep info to come through. The Furutechs are warm but somewhat thick, and the music gives up some excitement.

The Synergistic fuses are wonderful, but unfortunately every one I've tried in the BDP-2 has "popped" I think the SR's are "over-rated" from a slow-blow standpoint (not soundwise!) because they also pop in my Cary preamp. I suspect their melt time is probably quicker than HiFi Tuning, and can't take the inrush current of the Bryston BDP or Cary.

I would have been stuck putting up with the HiFi's or (God forbid) stock, if I hadn't stumbled on the AMR fuses. At $20 a fuse, these gems are a bargain in this ridiculously priced arena. But the sound is really nice. A bit on the lush side, with full bloom, and wonderful depth. No compromise in detail.

The combination of the HD P4's and the AMR fuses makes the Brystons anything but "dry". I'm not looking to try new gear now, only to listen to more music.

BTW, the resolution of this combo really allows you to hear the difference in fuse orientation. A bit of a pain, but rewarding once you get it right.

The Bryston BDP-2 takes two fuses, a 500mA and 250mA, small size, slow-blow. The BDA-2 takes a single 500mA, small, slow-blow.

Tympani, Thank you again for your response.
I've been told by the Cable company to use a slightly higher fuse value with the Synergistic fuses. Where did you buy the AMR fuses?
I have to agree with your impression of the Synergistic Research Quantum fuses, they are very good. I've placed them In my DAC, linestage and amplifier and they improve what was already very fine sound. They are quite cost effective for what they provide sonically.
Ozzy, the AMR fuses can be purchased from the US distributer, Avatar Acoustics in Georgia. Nice folks.
Tympani, thanks for the info, but I already ordered fuses from Audio Magic.
Just received my BDP-2/BDA-2 combo. Trying to set it up to use my Samsung tablet as the controller was a little difficult, but I kind of got it to work for now. I'll need to continue to play with it. My songs are on a 1TB Hardrive and that took a while to load, I hope that will be the last it will have to load them.
I can tell it needs lots of break-in time. Sounds a little closed in and not as dynamic as I expect it to. But, only after an hour or so it seems to be getting better.
Every new audio equipment I have ever used always needed extended play time to open up.

I ordered the Audio Magic Super nano fuses. I have been impressed with his products.

Be patient on the break-in. It will start to open up after 3-4 days, but quite a bit longer for full bloom. I'd get that P4 in there sooner than later, though.

A good site for info is the Bryston Audiocircle discussion forum.
I have a BDP-2 connected to a Bricasti M1 (latest version with upgraded power supply and DSD capability)via the AES/EBU connection. The sound quality is great. All my files are WAV (sounds better than FLAC to my ears)on a 2TB external HDD. Hi rez 24/192 downloads are excellent. I have upgraded fuses in my Bricasti but I haven't upgraded the BDP-2 fuses. Are BDP-2 users upgrading the fuses. If so, how many are there and what size are they?
Smatsui, see my post from 9/7 re: fuses.
And I agree with you that WAV sounds better than FLAC (at least on my Brystons) More space, deeper soundstage. I know we give up "tagging" and other info with WAV, but ultimately it's about the sound. (And no intent to start a discussion here about all lossless formats sounding the same...)
Hey, what the heck size screws are in the top?
#8 torx
Just found out they are #8 torox what a little pain.

I just installed an Audio Magic Pulse Gen and a PEA inside the BDA-2 Dac and ordered another set for the BDP-2 player. I also installed the Audio Magic Super nano fuses with the Quantum fuse stickers on them.
All of this is so that I can compare this combo with my previous set up. I guess I will need everything to gel together for a while.
And Tympani, yes I am using the HiDiamond P4 and P3 power cords, interconnects, and Digital cable.

I must say that Bryston service is top notch and helped this old Audiogonner with setting up my Samsung Tablet as a remote control.

If you want to operate the BDP-2 from a tablet, MPOD is the player, although I use an iPad or iPhone so cannot speak to Android devices. From a laptop, I highly recommend the Gnome music player (free). Much better than Gnome and in fact it is the best player I have found that operates the BDP.

Note there are several useful BDP forums on AudioCircle under Bryston, and James Tanner at Bryston is very helpful. Good luck. Once you are up and running, it it so-o-o easy.

Nglazer, Thank you for your response. I'm not sure if the MPOD will work with my Samsung Tablet, but I'll check it tonight.
I have the BDP-1 and the BDA-1 and very much like the sound. I am not using exotic cables or fuses. My amplification is Parasound JC1/2.

I have been amazed at the detail and sonic information that the Bryston combo has restored from my CDs, particularly mid 80's pressings I had pretty much given up on with prior CD players (Cambridge Audio 840 and PS Audio PWT). In fact, I used the BDA-1 with both the CA 840 and the PWT, so much of the improvement is related to the BDP-1. It has restored detail that I thought was gone forever, particularly when recalling comparisons to vinyl of the same recording.

I bought the BDP-1 prior to selling my PWT, so I had a chance to directly compare them with identical CD sources. I used dBpoweramp for ripping to flac, and then set both the BDP-1 (playing the ripped flac file) and the PWT (playing the source CD) to coax digital inputs on the BDA-1. I thought I would get a very close to "can't tell" type comparison, but was very surprised to find the BDP-1 significantly better than the PWT in most sonic respects.

The product is not perfect, however, but the problems are usage/software related and not sonic in nature. I have had the BDP-1 lock up at times, where the playback menu freezes and does not update back to my laptop. Refreshing the browser screen usually restores function, but not always. I have had one case where one specific album (React by The Fix) where the menu gets corrupted and the current playback cannot be controlled once started. The user technical information is not up to date and the info in the user manual is not correct for current operation.

All this might be a real negative if it were not for Bryston's superb customer support. Cris has been fantastic at helping me resolve most of these issues, and there are very few companies where you can speak with the main product designer on a tech support phone line. He is helping me, for example, get a firmware update for the Fix album problem by file download to a memory card (since my system is not internet connected). I am also impressed by Bryston's willingness to listen to my "bug" discovery and react positively to get things resolved.

Much better than my experience with PS Audio when I was having operational issues with the PWT.

I have replaced the HIFI Supreme inside my BDP2/BDA2 units with the Super Audio magic fuses. To my surprise the Audio Magic fuses were just so-so.
So, I then replaced those fuses with Synergistic fuses with the Quantum fuse dots.
The secret to using the Synergistic fuses is to use a slightly higher value than specified because they pop so easily. Instead of a 500MA I used a 1A Synergistic. The sound is much better.

But, I just got some of the AMR fuses you liked so much. I replaced the HIFI Supreme inside my BSG QOL with one of the AMR gold fuses and oh my did it really change the sound of my system. Such better performance especially in the bass.

I am very happy with the sound coming from the Bryston units. But, I also purchased some of the smaller AMR fuses with the intention of trying them later on in the Bryston units.

Did you compare the Synergistic with the AMR in your Bryston?
I found both the Synergistic and the AMR fuses sounded very nice in the Brystons, each with its own strengths. The AMR fuses definitely were fuller in the mid-bass and a tad softer up high, in a very pleasing manner in my system. Sweet but not sugary, natural detail. The SR fuses were downright musical, and added that classic SR air. Unfortunately, they were a bit more hair-triggered at the OEM rating. I have settled on the AMRs, and enjoying them - at $20 vs. $60 a "pop"
How many fuses and value for tha BDA-1 and BDP-1?
I was seriously considering the BDP until I read the user's manual. It appears it has no WiFi capability and therefore only connect to you LAN via an ethernet cable. Hard to imagine in this day and age. Can any of you owners confirm this?


That is correct, Duddley, although it can be controlled wirelessly via laptop, iPAD or iPod.. I don't find the requirement for an Ethernet connection to be any big deal. Connect once and forget it.


I saw that you have the PS Audio Direct Stream DAC. I have one on order, to replace my PS Audio PWD II. Await it with eager anticipation.


Neal, Congrats on the Direct Stream. My first impressions was it was sort of closed in, but be patient and give it time.
I have had both the units for almost a year now and they are fabulous sounding. I've saved a large percentage of my cd collection to a hard drive and never play a cd any more.. I have about 40 HD downloads. I wish there was more genuine 24 bit content available but most of what I have is very good. The BDP-2 for me is the greatest device invented in my lifetime and I am almost 60 years old. It's completely changed my music listening enjoyment