I don't think AD8397 takes a backseat to any opamp. It is a superb chip with few peers, but needs to be operated in a circuit designed with it in mind.
Being a bipolar opamp with significant input bias current, all resistor values must be kept low (but not too low) and reasonably balanced between the inverting and non-inverting input sides, or you'd have severe DC offset issues.
It's also a cranky chip and could become unstable easily when not in its element. It is more picky about PCB component layout and power supply decoupling than many other opamps, and my experience is that it isn't really unity-gain stable (even though the datasheet implies otherwise). Since it has no output short circuit protection, its high output current capability is both a blessing and a curse. It could be easily damaged, for example, if the headphone plug is partially unplugged while the amp is playing. An output resistor is prudent to provide protection, but the resistor should be wrapped within the feedback loop in order for it not to adversely affect the low output impedance. A ferrite bead should also be used at the output to isolate cable capacitance, because the opamp could also become upset with a capacitive load. High supply voltages (i.e., Two 9V batteries or more) also cause the opamp to run hot, and is apparently a cause of additional instabilities.
Many of these are lessons learned by Morsel and myself during the original Mini³ v1 prototyping phase. Tangent had also encountered a high problem rate with the PINT amp and decided to pull the project as a result.
This is why I don't advocate the use of AD8397 as an opamp-rolling candidate in any amp not designed for it. If you're designing your own amp you should have proper wideband instrumentation to determine whether the chip is performing as it should.