And exactly what makes them turkeys. Have you heard one
These amps are NOT turkeys, they are, in my opinion, quite nice. Yes, I have a BHK 250, but I am certainly not alone in that. Are they the world’s best amp? Nope, actually nothing is, you said it yourself; “there are no absolutes in audio and every system is different”.
Not sure how you are quantifying “many”, but I have seen many listings for these amps and a lot (more than than half I’d say) are from dealers selling new. TMR Audio also sells lots of used PS Audio equipment that was traded in to PS Audio. There are quite a few folks who have traded in a BHK 250 to get the 300 monos, so keep that in mind.
Ok,.... in my original post I did not think we’d get stuck here, so for those who own a BHK 250 or 300M; what do you like about them? BHK helped design one of my favorite CJ SS amps, the Premier 350. His designs interest me and I’d rather hear about what you like about them in comparison to ..... whatever you want.
I think @jackd has this mystery mostly solved.
As audiophiles, we are a fickle bunch who are usually trying to squeeze every last drop out of our systems.
The BHK amp(s) have also been around long enough that people may have tried them out and then heard something they liked more over time,
I’d personally love to try a BHK stereo 250. It looks like it could possibly be one of the great Mr. Bascom King’s opus amplifiers, if not the one in his opinion.
BHK 250 definitely sounds better with the BHK Pre.
I'd spent over a year listening to the BHK250 at the factory I worked at, and I actually think it sounds good, certainly not a turkey.
Because they are big turkeys!!!!!- ebm
And to make it not sound good, you'd have to do a lot wrong.
I currently own a Datasat RA2400 (I managed to get it cheaper than a used BHK 250), and I'd like a BHK Pre when I can afford one, and I get spousal approval on such a purchase.
If you're asking because you want an idea of what they sound like, I find them to deliver a clean detailed sound, with a good punch in the bass. Of course the loudspeakers have a very significant role in the final sound. I found the BHK 250 quite a good performer, though we'd had better tested in the system.
A surprising amplifier was the Prima Luna Dialogue Premium HP that had resistors and capacitors in the signal path upgraded, and Prima Luna KT120's.
I count 8 ads presently with either of these amps, and 5 are dealers selling new. Doesn't seem crazy to me, as I think they've sold a lot of them.
I have owned the 300 Mono's for 2½ years, and I have not thought about other amplifiers since. They match just beautifully with my TAD CR-1 speakers, having all the drive needed to get the woofer moving fast enough to keep up with the speedy beryllium mid/tweets, and they sound very musical while revealing more information from the mix than I have experienced before. I have made fine use of the triode tube inputs to tune their flavor to my system and preferences (Amperex 6922 White Labels do it for me!). They present a very 3D stage, they just sound very "natural" to me (I attend a lot of live musical performances every year), and do so across the full spectrum of music, as I listen to most genres (early music to electronica, etc.). I did later add the BHK preamp, and it was a surprisingly strong upgrade, too.
They replaced some fine VAC gear that I had used for some years (Phi 200 amp, and Ren Sig II pre). They are the real deal IME. YMMV.