Sparko Labs Discrete Op-Amps...


Have you guys tried these? I am in love. If you've got a device with swappable op-amps, these are a very worthwhile upgrade. Much better than even the best IC op-amps.

I was first turned onto them by Bill of Eastern Electric. I was asking him about what op-amps he would recommend for his MiniMax Jr. DAC and he suggested Sparkos. So, I hit them up. First, the folks at Sparko Labs are very cool and very patient in answering even the most silly or elementary questions I had. So, I buy a pair of their single discrete op-amps and WOW. A big difference! The first thing I noticed was a large increase in the speed and detail of the sound. It also presents a wider and more life-like image with a darker background and tighter, more defined bass. An improvement in almost every way! No need to buy a better DAC now!

So, with that success, I wanted to see if I could swap the op-amps in my Vista Audio Phono 2. This Phono Pre is a solid little performer and is very versatile. The sound is pretty good, but definitely doesn't hold up to my much more expensive Tube4Hifi PH16. That being said, I still love how many great options are built into this compact unit so I was hoping an op-amp upgrade would bring it from "good" to "great." First, the Phono 2 does not have op-amp sockets. They a soldered directly to the board. But, the board gives you plenty of room the play with so, I had a much more experienced neighbor remove the existing op-amps and replace them with sockets. NOTE: Vista Audio does NOT support this modification. You mess it up, you're on your own! Next, I bought 3 Sparko Dual Discrete Op Amps and placed them in the three sockets. Buttoned it up, plugged it in and put on one of my favorite record. This upgrade blew me away! The presentation was so much faster, more detailed, quieter and BIGGER too! The Sparkos brought this modest little phono pre pretty darn close to my $900 tube phono pre! While the tube pre still sounds larger and more life-like, the Phono 2 sounds faster and has more detail. I absolutely LOVE what Sparko Op-Amps do for my gear! Highly recommended!
Some pictures of my modified Phono 2https://photos.app.goo.gl/yEZe8QJ7Cx1koio86
https://photos.app.goo.gl/TPXdPjui8chYfezh9


medium_grade
Andrew Sparks, is a very nice guy. Easy to work with and has a really good product.

His voltage regulators are very highly regarded also. Helped a lot of  the Class D amp manufactures with buffer board design/upgrade issues.

I've been using his STUFF around 3 years or so.. Great product when coupled with a couple other goodies. Mine were in Nord One Up Nc500,
A headphone preamp, and a Mcintosh C2500.

His class A op Amps add quite a twinkle to small planars, that just weren't there before. I use a 2590 Pro, even more so..  I've have his smaller footprint in single and dual.  I'm really happy with all his products, and his product support, just top notch.

Regards