Burson Audio Supreme Sound Opamp V6 Vivid and Classic

crabdog

Headphoneus Supremus
Tasty Topping
Pros: Muscular, energetic sound
Improved resolution
Holographic 3D soundstage
Increased dynamics and texture
Cons: Pricey
Bulky
Operational amplifiers (op-amps) are often referred to as the workhorse of analogue electronics. In this review, I’m testing the Burson Audio V6 Classic op-amp. The V6 Classic is a discrete op-amp and is the result of 12 years of research by Burson Audio.

Burson Audio official website: https://www.bursonaudio.com/

Disclaimer: This sample was provided for the purpose of an honest review. All observations and opinions here are my own based on my experience with the product.

Burson Audio V6 Classic Op-amp​

Specifications​

  • Op-amp model: V6 Classic
  • Design: fully discrete
  • Min voltage: ±3.5V/ 7 VDC
  • Max voltage: ± 16.5V / 33VDC
  • Current consumption: Single 7mA | Dual 14mA
  • Unity gain stable: Yes
  • Reverse-voltage protection: Yes
V6 Classic enclosure and pins with plastic case

Design​

The Burson V6 op-amps are the 6th generation of their designs, are the smallest discrete op-amps in the world and according to the company, are the only op-amps in the world to have reverse-voltage protection. What does that mean? Basically, it means the op-amps won’t die if you accidentally insert them in reverse.

Burson claims that their op-amps are “specifically designed to optimize audio performance”. We’ll find out soon how that turns out. The company certainly seems to be confident in the quality of its products, since every Burson op-amp is covered by a lifetime warranty.

Close up of the V6 Classic pins

My first impression of the V6 Classic was that it’s big (12.4mm X 14.5mm X 29mm), at least compared to something like the LME49720 or MUSES8920. It has an orange-coloured plastic enclosure that surrounds the 2 parallel printed circuit boards inside for improved temperature tolerance. There’s a groove on one side of the enclosure which helps to indicate the correct alignment for the op-amp.

The pins on the V6 feel much more robust than the ones on the LME49720 that can bend and break easily. I feel much more confident handling the V6 which feels as though it will survive endless swaps and system changes. Overall, the build quality feels reassuring and also goes a long way towards justifying the higher cost.

Topping DX7 Pro front panel with V6 installed

Test Setup​

For this test, I swapped out the Texas Instruments LME49720 op-amps from the headphone path of my Topping DX7 Pro and replaced them with the V6 Classics dual op-amps. The process was simple although there wasn’t much room to move around. Unfortunately, due to the size of the V6 Classics, I need to keep the chassis open but I will most likely get their 35mm Extension Lead x 2 in the near future.


  • Burson Audio V6 Classic op-amp
  • Tighter view of the op-amp

Sound​

To my surprise, the difference in sound is quite dramatic and immediately apparent. Suddenly the DX7 Pro sounds more muscular and slightly warmer with better bass extension. It sounds more analogue, almost akin to a tube amplifier.

Also, the sense of depth is heightened plus the lower frequencies have added texture and body. But it’s not only the depth that improves. The entire soundstage feels more expansive and open. It seems that the treble is also more extended but at the same time slightly warmer.

  • Burson Audio V6 Classic view from front
  • V6 op-amp from front-left
The only negative thing I would say about the V6 Classic is that heavy bass notes sometimes sound a little looser. But for me, that is a perfectly acceptable trade-off for all the other improvements it brings.

Perhaps the most startling change is the increase in overall resolution. Suddenly every sound sounds like it’s floating in its own space. The level of transparency is intensified and instrument separation is improved. With the V6 Classics in place, the imagery intensifies and the soundstage takes on a more holographic nature.

There is a greater sense of layering now too and all these things seem to be in contradiction to the added colour the V6 Classics bring. Normally, an increase in warmth and body will shrink the soundstage and create a more intimate space but with the V6 it’s just the opposite: somehow these little blocks increase the dynamics and resolution while at the same time making the stage more expansive.

  • Closeup of the Burson V6 and DX7 Pro heatsinks
  • DX7 toroidal transformer with V6 in background

Conclusion​

In many cases, upgrading or customizing the sound of your expensive audio gear means buying new components or an entirely new system. But sometimes it’s possible to simply change the op-amps which can bring significant improvements or at the least change the character of your system’s sound. The Burson Audio V6 Classic is a fantastic choice, especially if you want some additional warmth or colour to your sound. I wasn’t sure what to expect at first but I’m a true believer now and the V6 gets my recommendation.

suman134

Headphoneus Supremus
Best Op-Amps for vocals
Pros: Excellent vocal performance, outstanding tonality, imaging and resolution
Cons: Stage is smaller than V6 vivid.
I have reviewed the Burson Audio playmate with their V6 Vivid Super sound Op-amps few weeks ago. It is one of the best op-amps in the market and provides a comprehensive upgrade over the default NE5532 chips that comes pre installed inside the PlayMate. Just like the V6 Vivid, the V6 classics are their top of the line chips with a different type of output. In their words

"The V6 Classic deviates further from its V5 foundation. With an entirely different output stage design, it is intimate, exquisite and very engaging. With the V6 Classic, Norah is asking you to come closer. She wrote the song for you and she is singing it to you. It was time to stop analyzing and start living in the moment."

The V6 classic has a different take on the sound with a different imaging. It delivers a more intimate sound with a cohesive and engaging tonal balance.

Get these OP-amps from here:-

https://www.bursonaudio.com/product/supreme-sound-opamp-v6/

V6-S1.jpg


Installing V6 classic:-


THINGS TO KNOW:-

The Super Sound series of OP-amps have a lot of improvements over the basic NE5532 opamp which are pre installed on the Playmate. These OP-amps from the Super Sound lineup are some of the best aftermarket discrete OP-amps one can find. They can be used in sound cards and a lot other DAC/AMPs.

In their words:-

"Discrete circuits are custom built by Burson for specific applications rather than an op-amp’s jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none specifications. The art of circuit design yields superior sound in every way in comparison to simple plug-a-chip engineering.

A system can only sound as good as its weakest link. All our products use thick, quality, temperature-stable printed circuit boards with high-purity copper traces and gold-plated soldering pads. And extra coating is applied to both sides of the PCB preventing oxidation. The boards are hand-built use high-spec metal-film resistors and other audio-grade parts using as few hand-matched components in the signal path as possible."

"The V6 Vivid and V6 Classic are the results of over 12 years of research and six generations of designs. They are the most refined we have ever created."


Burson is really proud of their OP-amps and if you have bought them, you can get a lifetime warranty on them. All you have to do is register the OP-amps here.
These OP-amps are not huge is size and fit everywhere without much struggle. One of the remarkable features of these V6 is their reverse voltage protection. If you have installed them the wrong way around these will survive without any problem where other opamps will be fried. That's a fantastic thing to be precise.

Read the build and other specifications of the Burson Playmate here.

V6-S2.jpg


SOUND QUALITY:-

The V6 vivid is already an excellent sounding chip with plenty of details and clarity. The stage is huge and provides a well spread instrument distribution. Does it lack something? Maybe the vocals could have been a bit more forward and the huge stage at times is unable to convey more intimate details with conviction.

Steps in the V6 classic. It has the same size, same design but finds a middle ground between the NE5532 and V6 vivid chips. NE5532 is a not the best chip, it has excellent mid range but kills the treble stage and lacks some bass thump too. The V6 classic delivers a well spread stage with better intricate details than the NE5532 without sacrificing anything. It delivers better contrast than both the other two chips. 5532 is brighter and the Vivid is on the slightly darker sides of the spectrum.

I am putting the Fischer M12s to good work here. Being the neutral one, it helps in exposing the changes more vividly than other colored and damp sounding headphones.

BASS :-

The NE5532 was missing a bit of volume and the V6 vivid is missing a bit of mid bass feel. The V6 classic has it all. It has excellent the extension, rumble, mid-bass body and fullness. Notes are juicier and fuller and have better texture now. The lower region doesn't feel clumsy or constrained. Notes express themselves with a lot more freedom. The V6 brings more heft without compromising on accuracy, details, resolution and clarity. The Playmate attains a more natural and neutral status and can be paired with any type of headphone and speakers without worrying about the bass region being unnecessarily analytical or less exciting.

MID RANGE:-

Mid range used to take a huge chunk of the stage size with the NE5532, making the playmate a mid-head DAC/AMP and the V6 vivid took slightly more than desired off the mid range, making it a bit dull and less engaging. The Classic brings the required amount of depth and energy to the mid range. The odd thing is it has more vivid instruments than the Vivid chip. Maybe the more intimate instrumental placement is reason. With the 5532 the notes were sharper with smaller base, the V6 has a bit more notes body with a better depth. The vocals are more agile, textured and crisp than the V6 vivid. The upper mid range has a very good amount of energy with equally good transparency and clarity. It has the right amount of sharpness and attack. Layering and separation of instruments remains excellent. Air between instruments takes hit, not because the notes are thick or fuller but because of the smaller stage size.

TREBLE:-

I complained about the lack of treble stage with the NE5532, which was literally fighting for air. The V6 vivid provided a lot of room to breathe but can feel a bit hollowed at times. The V6 classic strikes a balance between the two with improved stage presence compared to 5532 and exhibiting better instrument density than the Vivid. The treble feels evenly expanded with equally impressive treble extension and vastly improved sonicality and dynamism versus the 5532. There is better energy and sparkle at the lower treble region than the Vivid, the projection is in line with the mid range and is equally emphasized. The only niggle comes at the higher treble region where the classic doesn't maintain similar energy and loses some points.

V6-S31.jpg


COOPARSIONS:-

VS EARMEN TR-AMP ($250):-


NE5532 was more attacking. The V6 vivid is a bit mild and slightly smoother with notes. The V6 classic matches the emotions of the EARMEN dac/amp. Both have the same type of crispiness and contrast.

If you are not paying much attention it is tough to tell these two apart. Both have similar bass volume and quantity but the V6 classic has more resolution and better texture. Both have similar mid range notes presentation but the classic has a bit more forward vocals and more natural and organic tonality. The treble feels similar with notes sharpness but the TR-amp is on the drier side with slightly better energy at higher treble region.

Stage size is a bit smaller on the TR-amp, the instruments are a bit more closed in with similar intimacy. The Classic chip pulls ahead with better emotion and micro details.

COMPARISON TABLE :-

Bass​
Mid range​
Vocals​
Treble​
Stage size​
Tonality​
Accuracy​
V6 vivid​
8.4​
8.2​
8.5​
8.8​
9.2​
8.5​
9.2​
V6 classic​
8.8​
8.8​
8.8​
8.3​
8.5​
9.2​
9.5​
TR-Amp​
8.1​
8.3​
8.3​
8.5​
8.2​
8.2​
9.0​
HUD-100mk2​
8.2​
8.3​
8.3​
8.3​
8.0​
8.2​
8.8​

V6-S4.jpg


CONCLUSION:-

I love the way these chips change the sound signature without breaking the bank. The V6 classic manages to deliver excellent amount of details without being harsh or aggressive. Not a single instrument is missing from the scene or feels suppressed. If the track has it, you are hearing it, with excellent transparency, very good clarity and stupendous amount of texture. The tonality is as real as it is supposed to be. The V6 vivid is excellent but the textured feel is much better with the V6 classic. Both male and female vocals have excellent bite to them.

Notes have the agility and pace, along with good amount of body to them. I am impressed. I though V6 vivid was excellent, the V6 classic is nothing less than that.

If you have burson DAC/AMP or are into op-amp rolling these chips are must have items.



I swapped the V6 vivid with the V6 classic and... I am sticking with it. The classics are just excellent.
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GotNoRice

100+ Head-Fier
Pros: Able to give sound that is smooth while also retaining the texture of the music. Very energetic sound.
Cons: Large case requires adapters or other creative solutions in order to fit within certain devices.
History:

A while back, when deciding which Opamp to use in my Little-Dot I+ Headphone amplifier, I had narrowed down my favorite opamps to the LM4562 (dual opamp) and the OPA627 (two single OPA627 opamps on an adapter board). The LM4562 had a texture to the sound that I enjoyed, but was also just a little bit harsh. The OPA627 was very smooth, but almost too smooth, and lacking texture. I generally preferred the LM4562. The Burson V6 Classic Dual seemed to be the next step up, but I was not actually sure what to expect.

My system:
-Maverick Audio TubeMagic D2 DAC (Sylvania 5654W tube & 3x LM4562 Opamp)
-Little-Dot I+ (Sylvania "Gold Brand" 408A tubes)
-Beyerdynamic DT770-Pro 80ohm / Sony MDR-XB700 24ohm headphones.

First impressions:

The Burson V6 Classic Opamps come in wonderful packaging, also containing an optional riser. The riser was very helpful in keeping the Burson Opamp up above the other components on the circuitry on the Little-Dot I+ (at least with my PCB version).

Case with one Opamp and one riser removed:
Package.jpg

When playing the first song after installing the Burson V6 Classic, what I noticed immediately was that the sound just seemed a bit more energetic, especially vocals, and making for some very punchy midbass. Thinking back to my previous comparison between opamps, this Burson seems to have both the smoothness of the OPA627 while having even more texture than the LM4562; truly a best of both worlds, and more.

Unfortunately, the V6 Opamp is so large that the bottom of the case for the Little-Dot I+ won’t close with it installed (and the riser only makes it worse). As I have seen in other reviews, some have simply cut a hole in the bottom of the case, others have used custom extensions/adapters to use the Opamp at an angle. I will have to decide which route I want to take, but for now, I will simply use my Little-Dot I+ on its side.

littledotbottom.jpg

Littledotside.jpg

DAClittledot.jpg

Extended listening:

First, I went through some Hard Rock and Metal using my Beyerdynamic DT770-Pro 80ohm headphones. I use many of these songs as my benchmark to test vocals, to see if the vocals can retain their clarity and energy even in the middle of a very “busy” song. The Burson V6 Classic had no problems passing this test. There was no accentuated treble either, and listening fatigue was not an issue even after a long session.

Next, I swapped over to my Sony MDR-XB700 24ohm headphones. These have very large drivers, and at 24 ohms the Little-Dot I+ can put out almost a full watt. I use this for listening to music with very deep bass, including some Pop, Hard Rock, EDM and Dubstep. Bass can have a texture of its own, and I have observed differences between Opamps in this regard before. Using the Burson V6 Classic, I did not notice anything special about the deep bass. But at least, it didn’t seem to be doing anything worse than past Opamps that I have tried, and even bass-heavy songs still have plenty of midrange and midbass that clearly does benefit.

Conclusion:

My experience with this Burson V6 Classic Dual Opamp has been fantastic. Everything about my listening experience was either equal to, or better than, every past opamp that I have tried.

The tall size does make installation in devices such as a Little-Dot I+ a challenge without getting creative, but in my opinion, It’s worth it.

Ultimately, I want to try using these in my DAC also.

fabien32

100+ Head-Fier
The best Op-AMP I`ve heard (so far }
Pros: powerful, energetic, amazing separation. clean of noises, amazing lows, mids and high.
Cons: very big, a little bit smaller soundstage than the vivid
Introduction
I was approached by Burson Audio rep few month ago to review one of Burson product of my choice, I have and love the V5i dual, so i said i'll do it with pleasure, I thought from what I read, that the vivid should be the best, so i asked him for the V6 Vivid. after my review he asked me if I'd like to review another product, so i said sure, why not. he sent me the V6 classic version. And to be honest i wasn't expecting much of it, let along to be better than the vivid. oh boy was i wrong! this op blow my mind! To be perfectly clear, I am in no way affiliated with Burson Audio, all results are my own findings and personal opinions.

The V6 classic Dual Op Amp Test Setup.
Like with the The Vivid, my testing setup I used was with various dac amps and headphones. This time I used a few more amps and Dacs to implement the v6s , the ones I liked the most were the d10s, little bear b4 and the AIYIMA T2 PRO.

comparison

I used on the exact same setting for the comparison on the classic and the vivid and the v5i dual only with the little bear b4 coupled with my phone the k20 pro as a Dac (this time around for obvious reason, i didn't feel the need to compare it with the MUSES02 or the Douk Audio HiFi SA200. if you like you can read my previous review on that at https://www.head-fi.org/showcase/burson-audio-supreme-sound-opamp-v6-vivid.22718/reviews)


As i said before I do things a bit differently than most, but I think that my approach makes things easier to understand.

The way i see it there's two types of sound or Two style of sound, one is Intimate and the other is wide (soundstage). In the two categories I annalise sound with a set of categories that I think are the most important, the way i see it there are 3 aspects that exist in every music(Intimate or soundstage alike):

1. Separation (Imaging)
2. Presence (Body)
3. Bass

after many hours of listening and going back and forth my conclusion is:
On the one hand the Vivid is more open with a bit more of soundstage than the Classic, the Clasic style sound on other hand the way more Intimate (lucky me the d10s, little bear b4 and the AIYIMA T2 PRO are intimate sounding devices, so they are a perfect fit). although, the vivid Imaging is very good, his Presence is excellent, and his bass are spectacular! the classic in all those categories was way way better, even from the spectacular bass of the Vivid! honestly i was left speechless! and the this time around, even on my phone with the little bear b4 it was better on every aspect.


conclusion
I would have never checked the V6 Classic if the representative had not proposed it, but The v6 classic is nothing but a state of the art. that's why it is so important to check and not assume (on everything for that matter). cheers!
WhatsApp Image 2021-01-17 at 12.21.48.jpeg
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trivium911

500+ Head-Fier
Excellent Op-AMP
Pros: Excellent resolving, detailed sound. Deep digging lows, Very dynamic and energetic.
Cons: Expensive, Difficult to differentiate between the V6 and the V5i. Adapter required to fit into Little Dot.
Introduction
I was contacted by Burson Audio to conduct a review on the V5i, after completing this review I was offered the chance to listen to the V6 Vivid. Tube rolling aside as mentioned in my other review I found that the GE JAN-5654W which are the military variant are my favourite tubes for ”ME” at the moment. They have excellent clarity without sounding overly digital while simultaneously not being sloppy in the bass department, as a result these were the tubes I chose to use for this review. I am in no way affiliated with Burson Audio, all results are my own findings and personal opinions.

I started to get into great sounding audio when I 8 years old playing around with mixing tapes and than burning cd’s. I also played classical guitar and was enrolled in the royal conservatory of music. I had such a great appreciation for the guitar so much so that I broadened my musical tastes and bought my fist electric guitar to jam to the solos of pink floyd and van halen. Since than music has always been a big part of my life. When I was 13 I got an iPod mini which is when I started playing with compression only to learn the hard way that it ruined the audio files. When the world moved on to iPods and high compression in favour of convenience I was left behind with my CD’s and portable disc player knowing that this was the best way to listen to music.

I don’t call myself an audiophile but rather a music and gear enthusiast. I have other hobbies and love getting new equipment, tools and gear for each hobby or task, than putting it to good use in my day to day life. If I cant justify a purchase, I wont buy it…simple as that. I’m not interested in high end cables and typically try and find the best value for my money wherever possible. That said, I do like to have certain high end items if I know I will use it daily or often so the definition of ”value” is very subjective. Usually my internal justification entails reading hours of reviews and educating myself on certain products. Specifically how they work and how the engineering principals would apply, aswell as reading between the snake oil marketing gimmicks. In most cases this has served me well over the years.

The V6 Vivid Dual Op Amp
Burson introduces the op amp as a product that a audio enthusiast should never have to compromise on. They mention that like a surgeon doesn’t use a swiss army knife and in the same way an audio enthusiast should not be using a one size fits all generic op amp in their equipment. According to Burson Audio the V6 Classic is ahead of the V6 Vivid with its color and texture, while the V6 vivid is the more dynamic with better detail retrieval and transparency. When I first opened the neat little package upon arrival I was greeted by a huge impressive piece of technology, its amazing how large this is compared to a standard generic OP-AMP. It really makes you think what sort of audio goodness is going through this little device. I purchased a little extender on ebay to reroute the op-amp to the side which fits very well inside the little dot chassis.

Test Setup.
The testing setup I’m using is the little dot i+ (V6 Vivid Dual op Amp and GE JAN-5654 Tubes) mated to my Hifiman 400i planar magnetic headphones, and my Ibasso DX120 in DAC mode. I’m most familiar with my DX120 since I use it almost daily. I would love to do an A-B comparison however having only one Little dot makes this impossible, so for now as difficult it may be the review will have to be based solely on swapping the op amp. Im currently waiting for the S.M.S.L SK10 DAC from AliExpress to arrive, sporting the AK4493 Chip. I will be doing further testing and reviews on this new DAC and the V6 Vivid/Little Dot Combination. Most of the testing I had with the V6 Vivid has been compared to the Muse 02 knockoff which is what I had settled on prior to OP-AMP rolling again.

Lows
The subtle but deep digging lows of the 400i's draw you in. The V6 Vivid is very tight and keeps things together, slightly quicker than the Muse 02 knockoff. The heavy emotions in Jesse Cook's Beneath your Skin digs deep with a weighty presence. The bass is more organic and less digital with more soul compared to the Muse02 knockoff currently installed in my little dot, the bass also seems to be better controlled throughout the spectrum.


Mids
The mids are where I detect the least notable of difference such as the vocals in Jacob Gurevitsch's Tiden der Forstar, the soundstage seems about the same. Like the V5i reviewed before the energy and dynamic has improved, its hard to describe in words how it draws you in. The closest visual representation I can think of is on an HDR TV where the upgrade allows the colors to pop out a bit more akin to the V6 allowing music to Pop a bit more, the former being more obvious or contrasting which is exactly the same way I described the V5i… hmm that’s interesting.

Highs

Here is where I can detect a small difference compared to the knockoff muse 02 OP-AMP. The former has its highs slightly rolled off and there is not as much air around the instruments here. The V6 Vivid is more energetic and dynamic which complements the 400i's very well. Guitars and symbols dance around the higher octaves as they piece together the track and complete the atmosphere that which the music creates. Simply beautiful, a great finish to the complete musical spectrum.

Performance Closing thoughts:
I talked a lot about the 400i's in the previous review of the v5i and how well the pairing was, that was a great review to check out so I wont go into more detail on that. While its no surprise that the V6 series is the cream of the crop, just look at its size. Its likely no surprise at this point that the V5i was a small leap from a basic OP amp upon reading my previous review on the v5i and not a night and day difference. Jumping to the V6 Vivid from the V5i left me feeling like I'm unable to detect much if any differences from its lower tier sibling, this just means that the v5i is such a great little performing OP-AMP and its also a lot smaller and should be easy to fit without modifications. If anything there may have been a slight bump to the soundstage height but I cant reliably tell the difference. What really surprised me is how well this pairing with the OP-AMP and the rest of the equipment sounded with Metalcore and Death metal and Basic Metal, it was able to keep up with the complex sounds in these genres and extend the highs without sounding fatiguing. The 400i's are very revealing but unforgiving, the listener can get fatigue when paired incorrectly.

Value closing thoughts
Its hard for me to recommend the V6 Vivid, when I cant tell the difference between it and the V5i. This could be from a variety of different factors such as the little dot itself, or the DAC. Perhaps in my future review with my new AK4493 DAC I might detect a difference. Its also extremely difficult to compare OP-AMPS without an AB splitter and a second identical amp which I imagine most people do not generally have. Bottom line, if you are looking for the best bang for your buck go with the V5i, if you want the pinnacle of the audio proverbial cream than go with the V6. Still though for a few extra bucks you might consider the V6 since there is only one required in the little dot to have the "best", however I can imagine as you start needing a few more in your amp that it can start to add up really quickly.




Test Tracks
Jesse Cook-Bombay Slam
Jesse Cook-Beneath your Skin
Jacob Gurevitsch-Lovers in Paradise
Jacob Gurevitsch-Tiden der Forstar
Andrea Bocelli-Italia (Live. Feat Chris Botti)
Andrea Bocelli-Love in Portofino
Andrea Bocelli-Las Hojas Muertas (Feat. Veronica Berti)
Lawson Rollins-Ghost of Alcazar
____________________________________

Novelists-Somebody else
Novelist-Voyager
Avenged Sevenfold-The Stage
Parkway Drive-Vice Grip
Oceans Apart-Divide
Polaris-Vegabond

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dosley01

500+ Head-Fier
Pros: Greater detail retrieval
Larger Soundstage
Balanced Sound
Cons: Value ratio, the retail price is about 1/3 of DAC MSRP.
I just received some V6 Classics from Carlos at Burson/Supreme Sound. I reached out after seeing a thread on DiyAudio about offering samples and wanting to step my Music Hall 25.2 DAC up a notch or two. Big Thank You!

My Music Hall 25.2 DAC and ph25.2 Headphone Amp have been my daily companions while I work from home during the pandemic so they have been getting 6-8 hours of use daily and I feel I've become very accustomed to how they sound. Everything is stock aside from replacing the stock Electro-Harmonix tube on the 25.2 DAC with a Gold Lion.

Tube swapping was a great cheap and easy inexpensive upgrade for this DAC. The Electro-Harmoni stock tube is what I consider to be on the neutral and dry side. The Gold Lion adds a touch more warmth and romance and an additional sense of spaciousness.

So far I have about +- 20 hours of listening to the V6 Classics which replaced 2 X OPA2134 and 1X OPA2604.

One of the criticisms of this DAC is that it can sound a little rolled off and isn't the most revealing. For me, it's one of the reasons I like it. Prior to the Pandemic, I was mostly a vinyl/analog listener and really only used digital to search out new music on streaming services or on my daily commute to work. Since buying this DAC, I've pulled my CD collection out of mothballs and picked up a decent transport.

While this isn't a review of the DAC, the description of its character it is important because the biggest change I noticed right off the bat is the V6 Classic opamps brought so much more detail retrieval and openness to the sound that I was very surprised what I had been missing all along. I've been mostly listening with AudioQuest NightHawks and NightOwls and I find them to be a great example of the differences between the stock opamps and the Bursons. The V6 Classic is similar to the NightHawks in the sense that it's more open sounding with a bigger soundstage and a bit more even bass response, where the stock opamps are more like the NightOwls being more intimate and more bass-heavy.

Overall, I would easily recommend this upgrade for users of the 25.2 or 25.3 DAC. While it may seem like a steep investment for a $599 piece of equipment, it really takes what is already an overachieving product up to a new level. You can spend allot more and get allot less as they say!

Since swapping is so easy with this equipment, I'm going to give the V6 Classics some more listening time and then reinstall the stock opamps and report back.


IMG_6955.jpeg




Part Two of my Burson Review:

Thanks to Burson, a set of V6 Vivids have arrived to compare the V6 Classics I've been listening to now for a couple of months.

IMG_7045.jpeg

First off, they do sound remarkably different than the V6 Classics, it's not subtle.

Right off the bat, the bass is more impactful and they treble is more extended. So many comparisons come to mind, HD6xx vs HE4xx, Sonus Faber vs Klipsch, and on and on.

Bass: I'm not going to saw there is more bass but it seems to hit a little harder, but not quite as low/deep as the Classics with more mid-bass presence and kick.

Midrange: It actually seems pretty darn neutral compared to the Classics. It's not shouty or pronounced but just not as inviting and rich. Really no complaints, it's Goldilocks.

Treble: I was expecting these to sound bright in my setup but they really don't, they sounded extended comparted to the Classics but not aggressive or harsh at all. Similar to the Midrange, probably closer to the neutral line. I think the Classics might sound a bit rolled off in comparison.

Soundstage: Even using closed headphones, I felt the Vivids offer a wider and deeper soundstage presentation. I felt the Classics offer a more intimate performance. For anyone who's owned the HD58x and the He4xx, this is about the same difference I find with the comparison.

In the end, I have my own personal favorite but I have to say they both offer a substantial improvement over the stock opamps in my DAC.

For certain genres especially Rock and specifically the Grateful Dead, I preferred the Vivids. But as my overall preference, I really enjoy the presentation of the Classics.

Looking at my listening notes, they really align with what Burson has in the comparison chart on their website.

Stay tuned for part three, when I mix and match the Classics and Vivids for what could be the best configuration.
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Blotto80

100+ Head-Fier
Pros: A very noticeable improvement in sound.
Cons: Plastic casing adds bulk that can affect fitment in some gear.
So after quite an adventure with Canada Post due to COVID19 and the closure of my office where I had these shipped, I managed to get my hands on my Burson V6 Vivid OpAmp set for my Soundblaster AE-9 (2x Single and 2x Dual). Full disclosure, these were provided free in return for an honest review.

So with the difficulty in getting things shipped into the country right now, my extension cables are nowhere to be found and I really don’t expect to see them anytime soon, so I’ve had to improvise a bit. With the spacing of the sockets on the AE-9 you really should use a pair of extenders for the Dual Op-Amps in the Op-Amp 2 position, what I’ve done is install both singles without the included risers and then doubled up the risers for both of the duals. That gave me enough room to give them a slight bend and everything fits. It ain’t pretty but it works.

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My current setup is simply the Focal Clear plugged directly into the AE-9 direct via the ACM, even at stock I preferred it to the Liquid Carbon X/Topping D10 combo it replaced.

To get an idea of my tastes and experience, some of the other headphones I’ve owned and loved are the HD650, LCD2.1 and 2.2, HD800S, Andromeda S, IMR-R1, CA Jupiter. There’s been plenty of others but these are my favs.

I’ve been using the AE-9 with Burson V5i-D in the Op-Amp 2 sockets (I/V stage) since I got it, I swapped back to the stock NJM2114D and acclimated to that prior to installing the V6’s. I found that with the stock, everything was a bit duller than the V5i but not too different other than that.

I chose some songs that I have had plenty of listening time with recently and took some notes while listening:

Tidal Masters:

Dua Lipa – Don’t Start Now. I like this song for the clean punchy bass under the verses. With the V6 the bass had a more pronounced edge and sounded a bit crisper. The cowbell-ish sound in the choruses had a much more defined place in space.

Peter Gabriel – Sledgehammer. The sense of space between the layers of instruments was greatly improved. Everything was there but individually pin-pointable (is that a word?).

Stone Temple Pilots – Kitchenware & Candybars. During the quiet intro the vocals are at a perfect level to the guitar and sound very balanced. The sense of dynamics are huge when the full band kicks in. The Cello in the last verse has a definite space and I can see where they are sitting in the studio.

Flac files:

Beck – Paper Tigers. Low key intro has perfect bass. The guitar licks are extremely crisp and defined.

Dr Dre – Still D.R.E. The keys take the stage here and push the vocals a bit back. Snoop’s voice is very holographic and Present while Dre’s hide a bit.

M83 – Walkway Blues. Bass is tight and well defined, the very busy chorus gets a bit more coherent.

Nine Inch Nails – Piggy. Zero bloat in the bass hits in the first verse. Great transition between the solid hit and the drawn out note with natural decay. The tambourine in the first chorus has way more air and once it goes wild with the drum break after the second chorus the soundstage is huge for the remainder.

Muddy Waters – Good Morning Little School Girl. This song can get too bright very quick but there is a restraint here that while the snare and vocals have edge they don’t get shrill. The guitar has a very metallic sheen to it that reminds me a bit of the sharp edge my old beat up Martin had due to poor fretwork. I’ve never noticed it before and I’ve listened to this song tons.

Thrice – The Weight. The vocals over the intro sound further away. Once it kicks, in the vocals have a perfect balance. The bass is tight and controlled. There’s a slight fuzz effect on the bass that I’ve not noticed before.

All in all, these are a noticeable upgrade to the stock AE-9 and also a level above the V5i. The biggest improvement for me has been in the soundstage/imaging department, the sense of space has improved and the location of instruments feels more defined.
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nadtom
nadtom
I have tested in my Asus STX II the vivid and the classic dual V6 opamp, but the original opamp was better in both cases. The Burson only color the sound but you lose the natural sound.
D
deviedevie
@nadtom which one is the brightest? Vivid or classic?

Peddler

1000+ Head-Fier
Pros: Immediately noticeable improvement in sound quality. Pretty easy to fit - took considerably longer to remove the lid.
Cons: Expensive. Not a sexy upgrade (but worth it nonetheless).
I feel its important to put my cards on the table up-front with this review. The following points should give you a clearer idea of my thoughts and opinions regarding headphones:-

Much of my listening is done using headphones designed for portability.
I like wireless - much of my listening is done with wireless headphones and iems. Whilst I'm always looking for the best possible sound quality, I'm perfectly OK with the limitations of Bluetooth over wired.
My usual sources are my mobile phone and Google Play Music via my excellent Chromecast Audio. I don't tend to listen to many 'high-res' files.

The reason why I wanted to make those points was to illustrate that I don't really consider myself an audiophile - rather someone who likes good sound quality at an affordable price. In addition to my portable kit I do have a loudspeaker-based system which comprises of the following:-

Burson Audio Fun headphone amplifier
Burson Audio Swing DAC/Pre-Amp
Burson Audio Bang power amp.
Google Chrome cast Audio (connected to the Swing optically).

For non-portable headphone listening, I use the excellent Sennheiser HD598SR full-sized headphones. I consider these headphones to be a nice balance between relaxed listening (thanks to their extremely comfortable design) and capable of excellent analytical listening thanks to their extremely flat sound profile.

Swapping out the original Op-Amps for the Vivid's was a fairly simple process. I'm certainly not comfortable 'fiddling' around with the insides of my devices - I effectively have zero working knowledge of electronics. I basically just took my time, gently levered off the original chips using a flat bladed small screwdriver and inserted the Vivid's - making sure to get them in straight and not bending any of the legs. Although these are not quite 'zero insertion force' they're pretty easy to seat them onto the board with gentle downward pressure. The whole process really took less time than it did to get the lid off the amp.

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Sound Quality

This is what it's all about. As I mentioned earlier I tend to listen mostly to streamed content but even with the use of compressed audio the differences are really quite remarkable. Whilst I was perfectly happy with the sound quality of the stock Fun headphone amp, the Vivid's have definitely taken the amp to the next level.

The first thing I noticed was the increased details in the high-end. Whilst I'm very sensitive to overly 'bright' sounding systems, the Vivid's offered this additional detail without making the sound harsh. Cymbals have a more 'metallic' sheen to them, percussion is more 'percussive' and the overall sound character became 'faster' and more exciting.

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Another characteristic to come through after the swap out was imagery. Whilst headphones will always come second place to loudspeakers when it comes to stereo imagery in my opinion, the sense of depth, width and height to the soundstage was noticeably improved. The differences are certainly more than just minor adjustments to eq - the differences are more like the differences between a 128k and a 320k MP3 track. The sense of ambience - albeit artificial on many non-classical recordings is quite profound and certainly most welcome.

The overall sound character could be described as effortless - you can listen to your music at any volume you're comfortable with, clearly hear every detail in your recordings - be able to follow any instrument in the mix without having to concentrate - everything is presented to you without any apparent limitations. You can relax with the music and still maintain focus on what you like without having to make a conscious effort. Whilst this effect was present with the original Burson Play configuration, the addition of these op-amps makes a significant difference.

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I've often thought about trying out a tube amp and experimenting with 'tube rolling' but I also lack the patience that is often needed to nurture and tweak these types of amps - years ago I would happily spend hours fiddling around with my hifi system in order to get the slightest improvement in sound quality - I really can't be bothered to do things like this now - I'm more comfortable in accepting limitations. The combination of Fun and Vivid's really feels like there's no real limitations - the overall system really feels like it's working at its very best. This is such an easy upgrade - no soldering, no worries thanks to Burson's excellent protection against incorrect insertion - easy peasy lemon squeezy.

In conclusion, those who have appropriate equipment would definitely do well to investigate Burson's excellent upgrade option. Whilst this isn't necessarily cheap, it's certainly has a profound effect on the sound quality and is therefore highly recommended.
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Baten

Headphoneus Supremus
Pros: The perfect replacement for the stock NE5534
Cons: Still pricy for an opamp, but worth it if you feel the need for that upgrade!
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I received these as a loaner to try out in the Burson Swing, so thanks Burson, really really nice to have to opportunity to try these out. I had a set of various other op-amps and will compare these as good as I can, in no particular order:

NE5534 (stock): had to mention these first. I honestly think the Swing sounds stellar in its stock configuration. Bass is tight, sound is very controlled and balanced. Noise levels are good until the highest of volumes. So really, not too bad.

LME49720: I had the 'HA' metal can version of these to try out. They are very low noise with very impressive specs, but honestly did not feel there was a big improvement over stock, perhaps actually slightly less musical. I'm sure these can be quite good sounding, but not really my jam in this particular amp. I'd say pass on these, I expected more.

AD797: the venerable BB 797 opamp is definitely in my favorite opamp list. They are basically the 5534 but better. Not super cheap for an opamp and perhaps really not 'worth' spending a lot of money on for a pre-soldered set on DIP switches, but if you like the stock sound and want that tiny improvement, I would recommend trying these.

And finally, Burson V6 Classic Duals: these... if you want that maximum feel of musicality, these are the opamps to get. They are very punchy sounding and just a breath of fresh air next to the typical discrete opamps. I'm really wondering if the Vivids sounds markedly different, because the Classics already made the biggest difference to me. They just match well with the Burson sound. From what I've seen they measure well too and are pretty noise free, and they definitely sound great. They are pricy, but worth saving up for if you want to max out your Burson amp.

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Joong

1000+ Head-Fier
Pros: Dynamic and Smooth sounding
Cons: Only upright shape making difficulties for fitting in small-sized amps.
Testing audio devices: Windows 10 -> ifi usb nano 3.0 -> Gemini dual head usb cable -> Singxer f1-> Burson audio Swing that has Burson audio V6 classic dual x2 and single x2 - Fun with V6 vivid opamps -> HD800s. The same chain of gears but Topping Dx7s / Yulong A18 for comparison.
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Introduction: Burson provided me with opamps for free in exchange of honest review. I am familiar with Burson audio's original full size conductor and the soloist. According to my memory they have liquidy and gentle sound signature in those old Bursons but they were sounding too polite and lacking in dynamical nature, which forced me to sell them all and I got Krell ksa 5 that had 8 watt per channel.

Also I had a Gustard h10 that has the same weaknesses in that regards. Simply there are some people who think that liquidity or buttery is not enough.
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Now my Burson gears have come long way to address those lacking spots in their product line. Those crops are Swing and Fun whose name represent what they have tried to achieve: Dynamism in the Swing and Tempos in the Fun which have shared the same essential engines that are V6 Classic opamps.
In those opamps have good muscles to support the dynamism but they need the supporting devices too which I thinks MCPS (maximum current power supply), and their minimalist approach has been changed to the main stream engineering of modern days which has full use of excellent electronics that justify in large margin to support high fidelity devices: The solution is feed back where opamps are really playing out their power.


From minimalist to mainstream:

Having return back to mainstream, my Swing redefines the sonic qualities of fullness, rhythmic, and energy across all the audio spectrum while maintaining the old liquidity. The improved quality was obvious when I changed from stock opamps to ad797 to V6 Classics. During the changing I felt repeating the same history of Burson's old to new transformation: The stock and ad797 gave me the improvement, whereas V6Classics impressed me in big way with way more dynamism and energy with the same old liquidity of smooth quality.
Also I found more detail.
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In Comparison: My Topping DX7s / Yulong A18 have been now with my new Silver Xlr cables upgraded sound signature in another level. Swing / Fun pair was toe to toe or superior in many areas. With Fidelio X2 or He-560V3 there are almost no difference between them. Finally HD800s were need to get difference between two sets of gears. Now Swing / Fun pair has more fullness and more energy with more extension to sub-bass.

Conclusion:
I think V6 Classic opamps produce more energetic and rhythmic sound while they maintain the same old smooth sound signature by Burson's experties across all subsystem level technologies to fill those missing holes, which are now solved with V6 classic opamps.
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Onik

100+ Head-Fier
Pros: micro/hidden details well presented, sounds more revealing. Huge Soundstage! Neutralish! With Everest sounds more Musical and Airy.
Cons: sounds dried when you first try them.( Not after burn-in time complete )
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Burson V6 Classic OP AMPS Yes they are not new anymore but still one of the best known discreet op amp in our Audiophile scene.

Playmate (Noir) V6 Classic:

After receiving 4 samples of burson classic duals from Burson Audio I decided to try them without mixing with any other op amps on the new burson PlayMate headphone amp.

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After a day or two the V6 classic sounded pure Analog to me.


Instruments sounded a bit dried less fuller than Vivids but vocal sounded clean but not too musical like vivids.


Soundstage was more or less same like vivids yes it was huge.


Instrument separation felt same but bit more revealing than complete Vivids mod and I also heard more micro details with Classic.


Even though playmate is not a revealing headphone amp the V6 classic still did it's job.

After few weeks of trying V6 classic I had a feeling that V6 Classic OPAs are especially made for music producers who need to hear everything.


I don't know what on bursons website says about this op amps but after trying them on playmate I can say that they have flat and neutral sound signature and less musical than vivids but this opinion is only valid for PlayMate(complete V6 Classic).


Playmate (Everest) V6 fused:

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let's talk about how the sound signature changes when you use 2 dual Classics only in I/V stage and 2 dual Vivids in LP Stage.




Everything I said before no longer valid with this mod.


I felt like instruments had bit more depth and sounded fuller than Complete Classic mod.


Bass sounded original and deep also had bit more extension.


Treble had sweetness and didn't sound flat and harsh.


Vocal sounded warm and smooth and felt someone actually singing.



Soundstage didn't change but the micro details felt like more revealing and well presented like they are part of the song and not hidden details.



Everything felt truly Analog and Musical and Airy with this setup, I think I couldn't find anything to complain about this setup.



Conclusion:

This is a quick review that I wrote for V6 Classic and remember whoever reading this must remember that this is my personal and own impression and it's not valid for every Amps.The V6 Classic might sound different in other amps especially in class D Amps.

If you like flat and neutral sound and more revealing then Playmate (Noir) V6 Classic is best choice.

But if you like more musical and only for music listening then you should go for Playmate (Everest) V6.


This was my review for now, Thank you for reading...:slight_smile:
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theoutsider

100+ Head-Fier
Pros: The sound quality is as good as it gets!
Cons: Size, that’s something you should already know.
First of all, I would like to apologize to Mr. Charles of Burson for late delivery of this long overdue review. I guess I will blame it on my penchant for procrastination and drinking. I am sure many of you can relate to that.

I will start with a bit of my history with Burson Supreme Sound. This review is very much a continuation of the review I wrote on Burson V5i months ago. In that review, I mentioned that V5i is a bit of a half-measure.

V5i is a partial discrete opamp, the sound is not a total departure from a conventional IC opamp. I compared V5i with some of the opamps I have then and I think V5i performed very well as an opamp but it is not a game changer that delivers the ‘other-worldliness‘ in sound. So I ended that review voicing my keen interest to check out Burson Supreme Sound V6, the pure discrete opamp!

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Fast forward a month or two, I was granted my wish and another few weeks later I received two pieces of V6s in my mailbox, a vivid V6 (red) and a classic V6 (orange). Hurray, I rode off into the sunset and have since lived happily ever after…

Hahaha, not really. It ain’t all sunshine and rainbows, at least not in my point of view, I still see myself grinding through this humdrum existence.


The Sound Test

I usually numb my pessimism by listening to music and I treat opamp rolling and appreciation as a sorta sacred ritual because it takes up a lot of attention and time. I don’t always roll my opamps, but when I do, I do it ceremonially, like it is some kinda Chado.

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At the time of writing this review I have already upgraded my sources, DAC, amplifier and what have you. A third of my desktop real estate is now occupied by audio gears and gizmos. For this comparison, I scribbled down how I felt and perceived, what I subconsciously heard listening to my various setups.

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On any given day, I listen to a variety of music but for this discrete opamp connoisseur exercise, I made myself loop through selected songs and albums below:

Another Day in Paradise - Phil Collins
Like a Rolling Stone - Bob Dylan
Rosanna - Toto
The Chain - Fleetwood Mac
Diana Krall’s Wallflower album

and some of those songs by Norah Jones

Ya, I know, give me that mackerel eyes and call me cliche.

Straight from my Dell Laptop (DAC Conexant ccx20672 21z) = The sound is sad and muffled, I had never listened through the laptop jack ever since getting my first lossless player.

Straight from Sabaj Da2(unbalanced) = Edgy sound with some spiky high but it is quite a bit better than listening straight from my laptop.

Straight from Sabaj Da2(balanced) = Crystal clear sound but it is still a little anemic. It is not bad overall, at least the mid sounded fuller now.

Straight from Zishan Z2 (with V6 Vivid)
= Vocal sounded very “human” with the red tower. V6 Vivid is obviously less fatigue sounding than listening straight from Sabaj Da2. It sounded “rounded off” and perhaps a little colored compared to listening straight from Sabaj Da2.

Straight from Zishan Z2 (with V6 Classic) =
Vocal sounded more in the face compared to V6 Vivid, V6 Classic is a tad more aggressive sounding than the red V6. Music sounded very engaging through V6 Classic and there is a sense of intimacy in the sound.

Zishan Z2 (as DAC) with Nobsound NS-02E (with V6) = The mid sounded too thick for my liking, I didn’t like it.

Dell laptop with Nobsound NS-02E (with both V6) = Did not sound very refined, the sound has a bit of character but is slightly grainy. Some details were lost somewhere.

italic = with Burson Supreme Sound V6 attached

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After some comparisons, I quickly realized the benefits of a good discreet opamp. Overall Burson Supreme Sound V6 delivers a denser, fuller sound with a perceptibly wider soundstage. That confirmed Burson’s claim of V6 as offering a live concert experience.

Discrete opamps have a dozen of benefits but none is more important than the higher output power. The off-the-shelf integrated circuit (IC) opamps can only run at about half a watt (0.5w) because there’s no way to squeeze huge individual electronic components into an IC opamp. Discrete opamps by nature do not have such limitation, they are capable of delivering tighter sound with wider and more realistic soundstage.

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If you own Burson Supreme Sound V6, I recommend you to listen to Baker street by Gerry Rafferty. With a pair of full size open back headphones, I was able to enjoy the song like I had never before. Playing the song through V6 Vivid, I don't think the soprano saxophone line can sound any better.

My go to track for accessing the smoothness of sound is All Along the Watch Tower by Bob Dylan. It is not a song I typically listen to with my earphones. All Along the Watch Tower is a harmonica-rich track, the harmonica section sounded extremely harsh straight from analytical DAC such as Sabaj Da2. The same track sounded fine through V6 Vivid and better with V6 Classic.

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Overall I think the two V6s sounded more ‘emotional’ compared to the IC opamps that I own. They are still no way as sophisticated sounding as a tube amplifier but unlike a tube amplifier, V6s retain a higher level of clarity and details in a song. The tube amplifier (at least the one I own) tend to filter off some of the minute details in a song.

I have also compared V6 to V5i, V6 is obviously a step up. V6 Vivid is a direct upgrade of all aspects from V5 while V6 Classic is a variant with a different sound. Personally I prefer the red V6 Vivid for contemporary and rock songs because the sound signature is more accentuated. Classic V6 works great if you listen to folk, country, concerto or other audiophile engineered medias.


Packaging

V6 came nicely packed and sealed in a small plastic snap case. The case is actually very handy for storing Burson opamps. If you have plenty of opamps and you suck at housekeeping then you will understand what I am saying.


Physical

Burson Supreme Sound V6 looks tall and massive in pictures. It stands at 29mm and the footprint is 12.4mm x 14.5mm. It is one of the largest if not tallest opamp in the market, maybe the coolest looking as well.


Don’t expect V6 to fit inside Zishan Z2 because they simply won’t. Actually I should take my words back. If you are comfortable with soldering and tinkering, you can actually shift the capacitor to another location and have V6 laying flat inside Z2 housing. Also, when I am using XuanZu XZ-U303 with the two V6s, I have to keep the lid off.

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Burson Supreme Sound V6 looks like a Lego brick and it is color coded. The bright red plastic tower is V6 vivid and the one with orange housing is V6 Classic. I am not able to inspect the parts inside because the whole construction is sealed off with black epoxy at the bottom. However I am able to peep through the vent holes at the top and I can spot two pieces of printed circuit boards (PCBs) suspended inside, held apart by the external plastic. Yes, I believe the vents are there for heat dissipation because V6 does heat up when it is operating.

On the outside, V6 looks minimalist. There isn’t a lot to talk about the physical design. Apart from the taper for mold release, V6 is very much a square column. The front is pad-printed with Burson’s kangaroo logo, suggesting that Burson is an Aussie company.

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The pins at the bottom of V6 are plated with gold (or so it seems). I have swapped the two V6s in and out of my amplifiers many times and the pins are holding up alright. Compare that to my other IC opamps with crooked pins, I have to say that V6 screams quality.

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It is amazing how Burson discrete opamp had evolved and reduced in size. They switched from using bulkier electronic components to smaller components, hence also achieving lower power consumption and a reduced minimal working voltage. V6 looks a million time sturdier (a figure of speech) than the bare-naked V4. Also for your information, V6 is now backed by Burson lifetime warranty, so worry no more.

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Most naked or bare discrete opamps do not have intuitive marking for installation. For orientation, Burson designed in a groove on one side of V6 for matching with the notch on a DIP8 socket. I read that if an opamp is plugged in reverse, it will get destroyed. That will no longer be the case for V6 as it is probably the first and only opamp in the world to be equipped with reverse voltage protection. In simple English, it means you will not fry V6 even if you install them reversely in the dip8 slots.


Technical

V6 is the sixth iteration of the Supreme Sound discrete opamp and the result of over 12 years of research and development. It is the most refined opamp that to roll out off Burson's factory today.

It is not altogether surprising that discrete opamps consume more current than the conventional IC opamp due to larger and separated components. That said, the efficiency of V6 is quite a leap from V4, a dual V6 opamp consumes about 14mA (mili Ampere) compared to 40mA of a dual V4. Most people will not have a problem with the power consumption because in most cases, V6 can only be used in stationary amplifiers. The reduced minimum operating voltage also means V6 is compatible with more amplifiers.

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V6 Classic and V6 Vivid have different PCB layouts and they produce slightly different sound. V6 Vivid should have similar sound signature to its predecessor V5 while V6 Classic that has an entirely different output stage design is intended to sound different.

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I figured that a single discrete opamp almost always has a single PCB to hold the electronic components. Dual discrete opamps tend to have two identical PCBs and the PCBs should be similar to that of the single discrete version of the same opamp. The PCBs in V6 stand vertically with both PCBs facing back-to-back in the housing. SparkosLabs (another discrete opamp maker) had another approach, they arranged their dual opamp PCBs horizontally.

I have seen some adapters that converts two single opamps into a dual opamp. I have also heard people telling me that the best sound can only be achieved by pairing two single opamps with an adapter but now that I look at it in detail, I think that’s bogus. If you need a dual opamp, save yourself the trouble, just go ahead and purchase a dual opamp.


Compatibility and Pairing

The sample I received are dual op amps so I am not able to use them in VE Runabout Plus but they work fine with Zishan Z2 and XuanZu XZ-U303/ Nobsound NS-02E.

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I have tried to pair Burson Supreme Sound V5i with XZ-U303 with very little success, it hissed beyond acceptable level. However I do not have a problem fitting V6s into the same tube amplifier, it works flawlessly! I really didn’t expect XZ-U303 to work with V6 seeing that it didn’t work with V5i.


Some Word of Advice:

A single opamp can only replace another single opamp and a dual with a dual. The two are not compatible and cannot be used interchangeably.

Do not try to hot-swap your opamps, you will get a loud noise that will potentially destroy your eardrums and earphones.

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If you did not manage to fit V6 into your amplifier due to constrained space, consider getting DIP8 extension sockets or risers. I am currently using DIP8 extension sockets for XuanZu XZ-U303.

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There’s a saying that PCB is part of the opamp design. If you wish to reduce the noise level of your audio setup, you can try out this mod by wrapping V6 with a piece of copper foil and have it grounded. I have not gotten around to do the mod but in theory it should work like a Faraday cage and cut down on external electromagnetic interference.

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Last but not least, be warned that opamp rolling is an addictive activity so do it responsibly. Make sure you have enough time to burn before going down the rabbit hole.


Conclusion

Burson Supreme Sound V6 is the best opamp money can buy and the sound quality is as good as it gets.

If you already spent a fortune on headphones, earphones, DACs and amplifiers, don’t settle for mediocrity, go the distance and try out Burson Supreme Sound V6.
numon
numon
great review but please say for which v6 version (vivid or classic) you wrote
below comment.thanks.
' Zishan Z2 (as DAC) with Nobsound NS-02E (with V6) = The mid sounded too thick for my liking....
MKAJ
MKAJ
Probably the V6 classic
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