Bryston's BP-26 vs 17 cubed


I’m curious if anyone has done a serious comparison of Bryston’s BP-26 and the 17 cubed? I have been demoing the 17 cubed for approx. 40 hours now. Previous preamp was Classe’ Sigma SSP. My other gear consists of Joseph Audio Pearl 20/20, Classe’ CAM-600, PS Audio Memory player and Directstream Senior. I like the 17 and will be demoing the 26 towards the end of the month. The 17 has a nice warmth to it without sounding too syrupy. From what I have gathered the 26 will have more punch towards the base mid-range, and perhaps more detail? I have narrowed it down to either of these two units, not interested in other preamp suggestions. If anyone can shed some insight into this it will be greatly appreciated.
jakesnak
Would anyone be kind enough to tell me what "cubed" really stands for?
I owned the Bryston BP6 for years. I spoke to James Tanner at Bryston as I was contemplating the BP26, and he said the circuit topology and parts are very similar as is their sonic performance, the main difference being the BP26 has balanced connections and the outboard power supply.  I didn’t need the balanced connections at the time, so given the price difference and similar sonic signature I went with the BP6 and was not disappointed in the least. 

Id categorize the BP6’s sound as the ultimate straight wire with gain. The clarity and overall transparency is outstanding, and it has a very quiet yet airy backdrop that produces an amazing 3D holographic soundstage. What it absolutely does not do is add or subtract anything, including warmth, so if you like the slight warmth you’re getting from the cubed pre (Bryston seems to be going more in this direction as their models progress) you ain’t gonna get that with the BP26. It’s the penultimate truth teller. Hope this helps at least somewhat.
Its a type of circuitry, in this case Salomie. The mans name with the patent was Alexandru Salomie. He since died. The BP-26 is different circuitry than the BP-17 3, which is referred to as cubed. I wish someone could chime in here in regards to a comparison to the 26 vs the 17...
Thank You Soix. Your input is very helpful. I can't get my hands (or ears in this case) on a 26 until the end of Jan. It will be very interesting to compare these units. I have a very revealing system, as mentioned my current gear, dedicated circuits, Furutech Power Cables, Cardas Clear Reflection speaker cables. I might overlook the lack of warmth aspect if the detail is such as you explained. Detail is not such a bad thing! As you well know until you hear the piece in your own system one never really knows. Its interesting the Canada folks use the 26 in the audio shows, the American sales guy uses the 17? Thanks Again! If you think of anything else please let me know...
I had a BP -25 for 5 years until I upgraded 18 months ago to a BP-17. Less noise (shrillness) and surprisingly better bass. 
Thanks man, I'm still going to demo the 26 and compare it to the 17 cubed. From the input I have received it sounds as though the 17 is more refined. However until I hear it within my system I really won't be able to know. Kind of a cool experiment! Thanks...John
The salesman from Audioadvisor said he would get the BP-17. I got mine closer to home
I spoke with AudioAdviser, not many dealers have the 26 in stock, they have to be made. I'm liking what I hear with this 17 I'm demoing. Just want to make sure, hence, this is why I'm demoing a 26 at the end of the month. Everyone who I have spoke with who knows the 26 say very upfront, and detailed. My system is extremely revealing, so it will be fun to hear both pieces of gear. What speakers are you using? Also what is your power source with the 17? Thanks for your input...John
Dedicated line with a good power cable.
I have a used BP-26 and MPS-2 and really like them.  Sorry no comparison to the 17 cubed but I paid 2300 for the pair and are 10 years old with another 10 to go.  I don't want warmth in my gear I can put on a sweater if cold. 
Thanks Gammonit, I'm looking forward in comparing the 2 units. I don't like an overly warm sound either. It sounds as though the 26 has incredible detail and transparency, which isn't such a bad thing. I won't have the 26 here for another few weeks, its being made at Bryston. I'll chime back when I can share the difference.What amp are you using with your 26? I have about 50 hours of listening so far on the 17 so I'll be able give both units a fair audition...John
I am using the 7BSST2 monoblocks about 10 years old.  Previously I had the BP20 and 4BSST which sounded a little darker than the current set up.  My Infinity Kappa 8 speakers are very hard to drive so the more juice the better.  You may want to check out the DH Labs Air matrix interconnects.  I just love all their cables but those have been real winners with the locking phono plugs and open literally airy sound. 

Anyhoo as they say it will be interesting to hear your comparisons.  I'm sure the 17 is wonderful too I do wonder if the MPS2 is an improvement though over the 17 power supply.  Also the 17 can have an apparently nice phono stage added which is a plus depending on how proud Bryston is.  Their separate phono preamp is a bit pricey.
Also kind of off topic, but I found it interesting that Gary @ Bryston suggested longer interconnects than speaker cable.
Thanks Gammonit, For sure I'll post after I audition both units. I'm using Cardas Clear Reflection, and Cardas Jumpers  with my JA  Pearl 20/20. I'm using the Classe' Cam-600's, very good monoblocks. I was using the Classe' Sigma SSP for only 2 channel in Bypass, berfore I got this new preamp virus! I'm using Audioguest xlr for now, trying to spend where I can get the best sonic improvement. After the preamp, I need to get a grip! Talk about OCD! The 17 cubed that I have now has no phono stage, nor will the 26 that is coming. So eventually I will start in the vinyl direction. External phono stage, thinking Planar 8 with Alphetta 3 cartridge. What advice do you have with external phono pre's? John
The new MPS-2 is a big improvement over the 17. I talked with a few guys who have listened to both...John
I don't understand longer interconnects than speaker cables??? My Cardas Clear Reflections are 3m? My xlr are 2m...John
jakesnak, I'm looking forward to hearing your comparsion. Especially being able to compare using polarity invert switch on the BP-26. I've owned (and loved) my BP-25 for years and always use the phase button for best sound. Only listen to CD's.
Thanks for the tip on the polarity invert switch. Have you ever heard the 17 cubed? I think its going to boil down to if the detail and transparency on the 26 is greater than the refinement of the 17cubed? Your 25 is pretty close to the 26... Details can certainly captivate a set of ears. Although listening as I write, 17 sounding pretty damn good! Really looking forward to the experiment, as indicated earlier, I have a good rapport with my dealer here in NC (Goldprint Audio). He's pretty much a straight shooter. (rare in the audio world) Their isn't many 26's available so he ordered one to be made at Bryston so I can do the comparison...Will post the results for sure...John
Sorry, no I've not heard the 17 cubed. If I upgrade it would be to the BP-26 for the phase switch that to me makes a noticeable improvement on many recordings.