Bryston BP-20 Preamplifiers

4.75/5 (16 Reviews) MSRP : $1495.00


Product Description



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Reviews 1 - 5 (16 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by It's all about the sound a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: August 5, 2013

Bottom Line:   
The Bryston BP 20 is excellent , !!! I've been blessed w/the opportunity , over a period of years, to own two of these. I must say , of the many preamps I have owned or used , through it all , the BP20 has and will always be my go to reference . When used with other high end gear ,such as, Bryston mono locks, Velodyne,LegacyAudio,vintage JBL , vintage Klipsch,SAE, etc. the beauty and build ,not to mention outstanding audiophile quality sound reproduction truly come into view the rugged build , it's. Simple yet functional layout , and out of body power supply help add to its sound and value ! Though the BP20 was fairly expensive ,they do seem to hold their value through the years . In addition, the 20yr. Warranty set an industry standard back in the day, should repair ever be needed ! To sum up , I've only scratched the surface of sharing the many attributes Bryston designed into this high quality audio component .put it all together and you have bang for the buck ! This common phrase may be over used , but it's the only one I need !!! Highly recommended.

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   1999



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by JCsix a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: September 14, 2004

Bottom Line:   
Hi,

I was just reading reviews on here and thought I would post one - and somewhat in response to a poor review of this pre-amp that I read earlier.

I currently use a Rega Cursa pre-amp in my system driving a Bryston 4b st and a pair of Acoustic Energy AE2 reference.

Overall I was happy enough with my setup but started having problems with the Rega pre-amp in terms of reliability and I had also been told that there were much better preamps out there.

therefore I decided to audition a Bryston BP-20 - a dealer demo (somewhat broken in) which I had for a few weeks.

I noticed a signficant change in my system while I had it - much more transparent, detailed and punchier and very silent!! felt like I was in a vacuum listening to the music.

I would say the Rega may have sounded a bit warmer but lacked much of the characteristic and accuracy that the Bryston preamp gave me.

Undoubtedly when I have money I will upgrade and probably get the BP-20 or 25 although I may try other pre-amps out in case.

In terms of giving this a bad review... I am glad to hear those reviews were honest vs bashing. But I suspect surrounding equipment may have been part of the deception. Bryston gear is very detailed and revealing - I know their amps are almost to a fault when surrounded with a piece of gear that may not be up to par or not well matched to it. And the pre-amp gave me the same impression - very reveiling - so if you didn`t like it - you may want to try something else around it to see what it does...

of course we all like a type of sound and perhaps this isn`t for some. In my view it is a great value for the price... and my local dealer who sells an incredibly wide variety of high end equipment considers this the best value pre amp he has available. but he also warns about surrounding equipment...

hope this helps!!

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2001

Purchased At:   just auditioned it



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by langejo a AudioPhile

Date Reviewed: December 21, 2002

Bottom Line:   
I've owned my Bryston BP-20 for almost two years at this point. It was purchased more out of frustration than anything else. Up until that time, I was using an Audible Illusions L-1 for a little over a year, when it began to fail. The sound of the L-1 was not bad, in fact it was very neutral. It sounded more like a solid state preamp than a tubed preamp. Planning on adding LP playback to my system, I swapped the L-1 for the Audible Illusions 3A - read some incredible reviews about this preamp and auditioned it before ultimately deciding to give it a go. As the line stage of the L-1 was said to be used in the 3A, the character of the music was essentially identical. Very neutral, transparent and clinical across the spectrum - definitely not harking back to tubed designs of days gone by. The L-1 and 3A were not meaty and fleshy in the way the Audible 2-D or Conrad Johnson PV-2 or PV-5 were. If you ever get a chance to hear one of these babies (Audible 2-d) jump on it! Very ballsy preamp indeed. Romantic,without a doubt but, it is very musical and seductive and the weight of the music rendered through this preamp is outstanding.

Not too long after installing the 3A into my system, did it also begin to fail (blown resistor - had to go back to the factory for 8 weeks). I had had enough of Art and Audible Illusions at that point. I took the 3A back to my dealer and told him I needed a preamp that was "plug and play". I have been a tubed preamp guy for most of my audio journey, so when he suggested I check out the Bryston solid state preamp, my nautral reaction was "oooh nooo". Much to my surprise however, the character of this preamp was extremely relaxed, but in a way that kept me very involved with the music. Unbelievable midrange, with tremendous inner detail. Check out track 7 on Lyle Lovett's Joshua Judges Ruth and listen to Lyle breathing queues to the back-up singers before the Chorus of "hallelujh". Very subtle detail that I had never heard before inserting the BP-20 was into the chain. Startling detail in some cases and delivered through Vandy 2ces - not the last word in transparency and resolution.

Like others have already commented, this is one of the quietest, if not the quietest preamp I've ever had in my system. There is a weight and punch to the music that I don't remember getting with the L-1 or 3A. Never etched, bright or fatiguing, unless however, the recording is etched, bright or fatiguing.

A wonderful preamp that gets the music right and solidly built to boot. These guys don't leave out any details - separate power supply, balanced ins/outs, polarity switch, you name it. I guess the best indication of how good a product is is whether or not you would buy it again. And to that I answer, most assuredly so. Highly recommended!

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Used product for:   More than 1 year

Duration Product Used:   AudioPhile

Product model year:   2001



Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Raymond Wong a Audio Enthusiast

Date Reviewed: November 26, 2001

Bottom Line:   
Love this pre-amp. Great improvement when replaced my Caztech SPA-1 tube preamp with the BP-20. Perfect match with my Bryston 4BST power amp. Great resolution, low noise, good sound stage and very musical with my ARCAM 7SE CD player. My next upgrade would be a DAC. I think the Bryston will stay in my system for a long while.

At one point, I was debating whether I should get the Musical Fidelity A3cr pre-amp. Love that pair of big toroidal transformers and the chokes. But finally decided on the BP-20. Never regretted it. It fits my principle of "Biggest bang for the buck".



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Used product for:   3 months to 1 year

Duration Product Used:   Audio Enthusiast

Product model year:   2001



Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Xav a Audiophile

Date Reviewed: July 22, 2001

Bottom Line:   
I was bitterly disapointed with this preamp. Having read the reviews here, and being in need of a preamp, i decided to give this a whirl.

I had this unit for a 15 day demo. Hooked it up to my Odyssey Stratos amp and my Wadia 861. Was expecting transparent and wide soundstage. All i got was wrinkled tiny sound, as if it the music had been thrown into a small box and just couldnt get out. The sound was very 2D, with slow dynamics and a tendancy to be very lazy with the bass. My audience speakers just weren't stretched to their limit. I removed the Bryston just to be sure, and the Wadia direct into the Odyssey absolutely blew it away.

Alltogether a very bad experience. Dont know why i got this when there are so many positive reviews, but i just have to relate the experience the way it happened.

Equipment used :

Odyssey Stratos
TMC yellow interconnects
Fadel XLR 15 C
Wadia 861
Audience Speakers

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Used product for:   Less than 1 month

Duration Product Used:   Audiophile

Product model year:   2000




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