Burson Conductor 3 Performance & Conductor 3X Performance
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Swisshead

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No, at this moment anybody has it. Perhabs I Order one direct at Burson.
 
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escalibur

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Vaiet

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Wish these could come out in black too :wink: That matte black Playmate body looks just awesome, but gotta say that ever after I got to see and touch the 3R for 3 days I wanna own one. And now these Perf models are just hitting that sweet spot for me and it's really getting harder not to swap Playmate for 3XP... :D
 
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Swisshead

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Just ordered a 3XP. Now he is embarking on the long journey halfway around the globe to Europe. I look forward to the device very much, as soon as I have it.

I think the price/performance ratio is unique here. Thanks a lot for the great reports here, helped me a lot in the decision making process!
 
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Vaiet

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Just ordered a 3XP. Now he is embarking on the long journey halfway around the globe to Europe. I look forward to the device very much, as soon as I have it.

I think the price/performance ratio is unique here. Thanks a lot for the great reports here, helped me a lot in the decision making process!
From your words I suspect you've ordered it straight from Burson? A good deal or there were no dealers in your country?
 
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Swisshead

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But we have dealers who sell, but everyone has only the 3R in stock. No 3XP. Unfortunately. Hence the order from Burson. Price is good and shipping is 55 USD. That's fair.
 
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Vaiet

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But we have dealers who sell, but everyone has only the 3R in stock. No 3XP. Unfortunately. Hence the order from Burson. Price is good and shipping is 55 USD. That's fair.
Wish I'd know. Polish distributor has 3X Perf in stock.
I envy you, tho :p I'll try to get one for review, but it's gonna take a lot of time for me to get enough money to buy one...
 
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MIR05LAV

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There is a nice promo on Burson website right now :)
" The 2020 Financial year is about to end in Oz and for the next seven days only, we are taking up to 20% off everything including our award-winning Burson Conductors. "
https://www.bursonaudio.com/shop/
 
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Swisshead

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One question in the round. Who has ordered directly from Burson Australia? They definitely don't seem to be the fastest in shipping.

I ordered on the 17.6.20. Nothing came. No confirmation of delivery, nothing at all. Then once I e-mailed. At first there was no answer, then I wrote via yahoo mail, where Alex quickly wrote back:

Hi Christoph,

Thank you for your email.

We are preparing your order right now and will ship it within the next 12 hours. : )

Tracking information will be forwarded to you by email shortly.

Thank you for your support! : )

Best regards,


Well, that was on June 24th, so it was Wednesday. Meanwhile it is Saturday and still no confirmation of dispatch. Is that normal there? Was it the same for others? I hope they'll ship soon. After all, it's paid for.

Or are there big corona problems in Australia?

Thank you very much for your feedback.
 
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C-Bass

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One question in the round. Who has ordered directly from Burson Australia? They definitely don't seem to be the fastest in shipping.

I ordered on the 17.6.20. Nothing came. No confirmation of delivery, nothing at all. Then once I e-mailed. At first there was no answer, then I wrote via yahoo mail, where Alex quickly wrote back:

Hi Christoph,

Thank you for your email.

We are preparing your order right now and will ship it within the next 12 hours. : )

Tracking information will be forwarded to you by email shortly.

Thank you for your support! : )

Best regards,


Well, that was on June 24th, so it was Wednesday. Meanwhile it is Saturday and still no confirmation of dispatch. Is that normal there? Was it the same for others? I hope they'll ship soon. After all, it's paid for.

Or are there big corona problems in Australia?

Thank you very much for your feedback.
I had a similar experience as a pre-order. Emailed and got the same response. Took two weeks then bam notice from fed ex about attempted delivery with signature required. With me being in US West Coast and you in Europe I’d be willing to bet it’s taking longer with your customs as well.

I ordered the version with basic op amps but received one with vivids so wasn’t too broken up about it. I would reach out again. You’re within your right to do so.

The 3xp does sing though. Definite step up from my first gen play.
 
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E8ArmyDiver

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Well I just placed my order for the "P" version from Bloom Audio in NJ..Same price as listed on the Burson direct site + they offer Free UPS Overnight Air Delivery on first orders!
I did a TON of research & for my requirements it came down to the SMSL M9,Topping DX7Pro,Arcam ir-DacII & the Burson,which was the most expensive by several hundred $...As resolving as my main system will be(new amp being built)I hope this is an end game piece of gear,I'm sick of the merry go round...
 
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Swisshead

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Joy reigns! The postman rang twice and left 2 packages here! :blush:

Among other things the beautiful Burson amplifier! Looks very tasty! Processing makes an excellent impression. Everything worked out fine now after all!

Mounted right away, now a few samples with the brand new Atticus! Look forward to it! I'll tell you later how everything sounds like! But thanks to Australia for making it possible to ship it!:beerchug:

PS: does anyone know what the 4 little chips in the transparent box are for?
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PS: does anyone know what the 4 little chips in the transparent box are for?
These are the standard opamps, you can use them instead of the V6 Vivids duals, that are inside :)
 
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E8ArmyDiver

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Hot off the brown truck...Talk about lack of intel on use & set up,omg a newbie would likely end up throwing the amp against the wall in frustration..Gave it a quick 1 minute listen upon first power up,jeez this thing is a MONSTER with the Sundara!
 

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escalibur

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Burson Audio Conductor 3X Performance Review


Main features and specs:
  • DAC (ESS 9038QM)
  • AMP (headphone output impedance 0,5Ohm)
  • 6W per channel (XLR)
  • 3W per channel (single end)
  • All Vivid V6 (Single & Dual) opamps
  • PreAmp
  • Remote control
  • Bluetooth 5.0
  • Price $1,344
  • Release date: Early April 2020

Package and accessories



Conductor 3X Performance came in all white and very minimalistic modern looking box. The first reaction I got after seeing the box for the first time, is that this is a new era of Burson Audio.




Apart from C3XP the box incudes an external 24V power supply, remote control, set of basic opamps, USB-C cable, USB-to-USB-C adapter, headset adapter, replacement fuse, RCA cables and a hex L-Tool.




The looks and physical impressions



To me Conductor 3X Performance has many design influences. It looks modern and classic at the same time. All metal case looks industrial, but also very, very expensive. Judging C3XP by its looks I could easily say it costs four or five times more compared to its official price. Silver metallic style reminds me a lot of audio devices from the 60’s and 70’s. The actual build quality of C3XP is exceptional. Metal parts are so thick and the device weights so much that it is obviously meant to last forever.


During my three weeks test my wife (who is very passionate about interior design) often said how C3XP looks nice and stylish.



The front panel looks minimalistic and stylish. I’m glad that Burson has decided to keep stickers away (apart from one on the display), connector texts and symbols at the minimum. Even as a technical person I never found them necessary.

The button on the very left is a power switch. Thank you Burson to moving it from back panel to the front. This is much more natural place which does not require extra movement and blind reach for the switch, if your device happens to sit eg. under your monitor.



Front panel’s largest connector is obviously XLR (balanced) connector, followed by single end output and microphone input.

The display is placed in the middle. Although it looks clean and nice, I wish it had a brightness adjustment option. Even 2 or 3 different brightness level options would be enough.

Volume knob feels very solid and expensive. Finishing is exceptional, and it does not wobble at all. The shape is very similar to Playmate’s volume knob.

On the very right is a menu button at the top and remote-control receiver under it.


This picture illustrates the amount of metal Burson has decide to use for C3XP. It really looks and feel like a tank. To my understandings the actual reason behind this surface design, is that the case works as a heat sink. Speaking of heat, C3XP does get a bit hot but to me that is also understandable considering the amount of power ( 6W ! ) it has and all the components that amount power requires.




Rear panel looks also clean and minimalistic. The contrast between white text and silver case is quite low so the text and symbols are quire unnoticeable. The connectors are placed away enough from each other so there should not be any connectivity issues even with some larger cable plugs. Bluetooth antenna uses standard connector so that it is possible to hide it behind the device if you so desire. USB connector has also been upgraded to USB-C which makes connecting cable blindly much easier compared to older A and B connectors.




Sound performance

This is this review’s hardest part to write. It is not because I’m unsure about the sound, but how good Burson’s devices have sounded thought-out the years.


#workfromhome

As headphones I have used Beyerdynamic DT 1990 Pro (A pads) and HiFIMAN Sundara (most likely latest the revision) headphones. The whole test was done by using low gain and LP FAST filter. As music source I have used Tidal HiFi (Master & HiFi (lossless) qualities).

Some of the songs I’ve listened to during my review:

Pearl Jam – Dance of The Clairvoyants
Disturbed – Sound of Silence
Mike Shinoda – Open Door
Wage War – Grave (Stripped)
Xavier Rudd – Follow The Sun
Breaking Benjamin – So Cold (Aurora Version)
Steven Wilson – To the Bone
J.S. Ondara – Master O’Connor

I’ve spent so much time during these three weeks to put my listening experience into words and it really was hard. In short, I would describe the sound next to perfect if not perfect. Really, it is that boring opinion. 😊 The bass is strong and very well controlled, the mids are well separated and the highs stayed in the control without any kind of saturation. In general, the sound is very neutral, balanced, and easy to listen. To me this is the ultimate goal. V6 Vivids are very, very good match with the C3XP. At some point I will test it with other opamps. Mostly out of curiosity.



I have also tested Bluetooth input with my iPhone XS. Apart of spending some time tying to find a guide how to pair the two, I have realized it was simpler than I thought. 😊 (First enable the Bluetooth in C3XP and then pair it with your mobile device). Nevertheless, Bluetooth connection was working well, and the sound is probably the best you can have by using Bluetooth as a source. Even the Bluetooth is not the most common choice within audiophiles, at least you have plenty of choice to choose from.


The build quality doesn't stop at the case. The PCB is exceptionally well built with no messy soderings and compromises regarding the connectors.




End of an era and the beginning of the new one…

Until this review my daily driver for quite some time now was Burson Playmate Everest I reviewed almost a year ago. Since then I was wondering will Burson fill the gap between Playmate and Conductor 3 models by having a bit of both worlds for a fair price. The news about C3X and C3XP models’ release got me excited because that felt like a natural step into the right direction. C3XP feels and looks more polished, more expensive, and more mature in terms of features. I am glad that Burson is taking time with these designs instead of pushing different models out on a constant basis for the sake of having a new release of the same model each year.




Unfortunately, there are very few photos with Playmate Everest and Conductor 3X Performance next to each other, so I wanted to share a few just to illustrate the evolution between the two. You can easily notice the similarities and the freedom Burson got by moving on from 5,25” slot size.







A quote from my Playmate Review:

“If there is something, I could hope for is the casing. Personally, I think it’s a good time to move on from ‘DVD’ cases especially with the models designed with gamers in mind. Being a PC enthusiast and gamer myself I can’t remember when was the last time I saw a relatively new gaming case with the 5,25” slot. My personal preference would be black / silver coloring with a bit shorter and wider case for desktop use.”

In April 2020 Conductor 3 family was expanded by two cheaper models. If anything, I would say that Burson is listening to our feedback and making our wishes a reality. Especially considering the current world we are living in.

Conductor 3X Performance was built to last forever.



Thank you, Burson Audio!
 

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