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  1. #1
    Ajani
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    Bryston BDP-1: What is it????

    So I've been scratching my head for several weeks...not dandruff, but trying to figure out just what the Bryston BDP-1 really is and more importantly WHY I'd want to buy one:

    The BDP-1 costs a "mere" $2,100 and can read high resolution files on a USB drive and send a digital output to a DAC... And that's just about all it can do (seriously - read the Bryston press release):

    http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/d.../bryston-bdp-1

    So it runs linux, reads the contents of a USB drive and outputs a (presumably perfect) digital signal to an external DAC (it has no DAC or storage or even the ability to stream music from a network attached computer or other device)...

    OK, so I guess it is basically an expensive digital transport then...

    Anyway I'll be interested to know whether it actually does something that can't be accomplished with a $300 Squeezebox Touch....

  2. #2
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    So I've been scratching my head for several weeks...not dandruff, but trying to figure out just what the Bryston BDP-1 really is and more importantly WHY I'd want to buy one:

    The BDP-1 costs a "mere" $2,100 and can read high resolution files on a USB drive and send a digital output to a DAC... And that's just about all it can do (seriously - read the Bryston press release):

    http://www.audioholics.com/reviews/d.../bryston-bdp-1

    So it runs linux, reads the contents of a USB drive and outputs a (presumably perfect) digital signal to an external DAC (it has no DAC or storage or even the ability to stream music from a network attached computer or other device)...

    OK, so I guess it is basically an expensive digital transport then...

    Anyway I'll be interested to know whether it actually does something that can't be accomplished with a $300 Squeezebox Touch....
    Yeah, peculiar. Devices today have a confusing array of features, or in some cases lack of features.

    This Bryston device apparently has or will have the ability to drive GUI devices but exactly how isn't very clrear from the article. Being Linux based there is the potential to do a lot of things.

    The Squeezebox on the other hand has remote control but limited UI and no ability to access USB or network files. It requires Squeeze Central (or whatever its called these days) on a server. It has a built-in DAC if you choose to use it.

    My Asus O!play is DLNA or UPnP compliant; has remote and no display but diplays a UI via HDIMI and AV receiver or direct to TV; it can read play various audio, video, and still photo formats on USB drive or network computer. If a network compter it must have a server program to access the files, but Windows Media Play, (e.g.), will perform that function. It also has a built-in DAC if you choose to use it instead of HDMI.

    Frankly , for audio I think I just prefer a $250 Netbook running Foobar2000 or J.River Jukebox, connected to a USB DAC, say a $300 Musical Fidelity V-DAC.

  3. #3
    Ajani
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor
    Yeah, peculiar. Devices today have a confusing array of features, or in some cases lack of features.

    This Bryston device apparently has or will have the ability to drive GUI devices but exactly how isn't very clrear from the article. Being Linux based there is the potential to do a lot of things.

    The Squeezebox on the other hand has remote control but limited UI and no ability to access USB or network files. It requires Squeeze Central (or whatever its called these days) on a server. It has a built-in DAC if you choose to use it.

    My Asus O!play is DLNA or UPnP compliant; has remote and no display but diplays a UI via HDIMI and AV receiver or direct to TV; it can read play various audio, video, and still photo formats on USB drive or network computer. If a network compter it must have a server program to access the files, but Windows Media Play, (e.g.), will perform that function. It also has a built-in DAC if you choose to use it instead of HDMI.

    Frankly , for audio I think I just prefer a $250 Netbook running Foobar2000 or J.River Jukebox, connected to a USB DAC.
    Just one correction: the Squeezebox Touch can access USB... the Classic could not...

    I'm just lost as to what advantage the BDP is supposed to have for such a hefty price tag.... Hopefully some future reviews will enlighten me...

  4. #4
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    Just one correction: the Squeezebox Touch can access USB... the Classic could not...
    Along with SD cards.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    I'm just lost as to what advantage the BDP is supposed to have for such a hefty price tag.... Hopefully some future reviews will enlighten me...
    It's positions itself as a high end transport with nothing to spin. Fundamentally no different from any number of others. You can find a nice used EMM Labs transport on 'Agon for around five grand.

    rw

  5. #5
    Ajani
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    It's positions itself as a high end transport with nothing to spin. Fundamentally no different from any number of others. You can find a nice used EMM Labs transport on 'Agon for around five grand.

    rw
    Yep that sounds like what I expected it to be... an expensive transport... But is that market still popular? I know that modern DACs do a much better job of jitter rejection than older ones, so the need for an expensive transport has significantly diminished...

    Also, I wonder if there is a market for a high end (disc-less) transport...

    I actually like the idea of a simple transport that reads from a USB drive (I have 2 drives that I would love to free from the network connection), but I'd still want to know specifically what advantage a high-end (disc-less) transport has over a Squeezebox Touch (or any device that outputs a bit perfect digital signal)...

  6. #6
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    ...but I'd still want to know specifically what advantage a high-end (disc-less) transport has over a Squeezebox Touch (or any device that outputs a bit perfect digital signal)...
    For starters, the cheap switching power supply. Bolder makes a $975 linear replacement coupled with a $325 cord.

    rw

  7. #7
    Vinyl Fundamentalist Forums Moderator poppachubby's Avatar
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    We are assuming that the price reflects value. This is Bryston, there's no way you're buying into that club for under $2K, regardless of the product.

    There's this whole "movement" against transports right now. I think it's more of a rationalization for those not interested in spending on one. A high end transport will have much better performance than the transport in a $100 DVD player, no matter how much people don't wish to believe so.

    That said, I think it's all relative. If your external DAC is "average", than so should your transport. For the $1K+ club, a high end transport could be a consideration.

    Zanden make this little baby, my personal fave. The Model 2000 was built to pair with the incredible Model 5000 DAC. A DAC which I might add that only outputs in 16/44.1...


  8. #8
    Ajani
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    For starters, the cheap switching power supply. Bolder makes a $975 linear replacement coupled with a $325 cord.

    rw
    Hmmm... I'd more likely try the Channel Islands Audio Power Supply $260:

    http://www.musicdirect.com/product/80596

  9. #9
    Ajani
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    Quote Originally Posted by poppachubby
    We are assuming that the price reflects value. This is Bryston, there's no way you're buying into that club for under $2K, regardless of the product.

    There's this whole "movement" against transports right now. I think it's more of a rationalization for those not interested in spending on one. A high end transport will have much better performance than the transport in a $100 DVD player, no matter how much people don't wish to believe so.

    That said, I think it's all relative. If your external DAC is "average", than so should your transport. For the $1K+ club, a high end transport could be a consideration.

    Zanden make this little baby, my personal fave. The Model 2000 was built to pair with the incredible Model 5000 DAC. A DAC which I might add that only outputs in 16/44.1...

    You have some good points:

    Chances are that you pay a premium for the Bryston name and 20 year warranties in addition to some improvements in build quality and performance...

    Also, only part of the move away from expensive transports is about people trying to rationalize not spending the cash... A lot of that comes from reviews from HIFI mags (Stereophile for example) which show that cheap transports such as the Squeezebox and apple airport express produce bit perfect digital signals... And reviews from those mags which show that most modern DACs have excellent jitter rejection.... So there is a sound basis for persons questioning whether an expensive transport is really necessary anymore...

  10. #10
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    Hmmm... I'd more likely try the Channel Islands Audio Power Supply $260:

    http://www.musicdirect.com/product/80596
    I would put that money towards a better external DAC.

  11. #11
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    ...

    Also, only part of the move away from expensive transports is about people trying to rationalize not spending the cash... A lot of that comes from reviews from HIFI mags (Stereophile for example) which show that cheap transports such as the Squeezebox and apple airport express produce bit perfect digital signals... And reviews from those mags which show that most modern DACs have excellent jitter rejection.... So there is a sound basis for persons questioning whether an expensive transport is really necessary anymore...
    Indeed!

    A generalization maybe but expensive transports, for as much difference as they make, are low value items. The money you could spend there would almost invariably be better spent somewhere else in your system.

  12. #12
    Ajani
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor
    I would put that money towards a better external DAC.
    LOL... I actually did that... I bought a DAC instead of a power supply....

    The only reason I'd consider a power supply for the Squeezebox is because I've heard that switching power supplies tend to dump all kind of nasties into the electrical socket... So I wonder if those "nasties" could impact the performance of my DAC....

  13. #13
    Vinyl Fundamentalist Forums Moderator poppachubby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    I wonder if those "nasties" could impact the performance of my DAC....
    Yes, they would. And anything else drawing from that circuit, like your amp perhaps. AC will smear low level detail. If you feel your system is at it's maximum transparency, it could be time to consider power as a means of squeezing out the last bit of music.

  14. #14
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    LOL... I actually did that... I bought a DAC instead of a power supply....

    The only reason I'd consider a power supply for the Squeezebox is because I've heard that switching power supplies tend to dump all kind of nasties into the electrical socket... So I wonder if those "nasties" could impact the performance of my DAC....
    If it's RFI/EMI you're worried about, get yourself a Tripp Lite Isobar which as multiple, mutually isolated outlets, (Cdn $75) ...


  15. #15
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Cool

    It does what a 300 dollar power cord does...
    ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.
    And if 300 dollar power cords weren't proof of the total contempt audio companies have
    for the intelligence of their customers....
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  16. #16
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    LOL... I actually did that... I bought a DAC instead of a power supply....

    The only reason I'd consider a power supply for the Squeezebox is because I've heard that switching power supplies tend to dump all kind of nasties into the electrical socket... So I wonder if those "nasties" could impact the performance of my DAC....
    In a word...no.
    You're DAC is digital, get it? THE ONLY THING that gets through it is music.
    That is the fundamental reason digital beats analog.
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  17. #17
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor
    If it's RFI/EMI you're worried about, get yourself a Tripp Lite Isobar which as multiple, mutually isolated outlets
    Such would have no effect upstream, however, when a switching wall wart is connected to the DAC.

    "So I wonder if those "nasties" could impact the performance of my DAC....

    Yes, they can and do. Which is why virtually all exceptional audio products using linear power supplies. Even some switching amps like the Gilmore Raptor using linear supplies.

    rw

  18. #18
    Music Junkie E-Stat's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feanor
    I would put that money towards a better external DAC.
    Even with an external DAC as he and I both use, the issue is the effect of the cheap ps on the transport component. I found a $55 linear power supply for mine that I may have modified by the Bolder guy for considerably lower cost.

    rw

  19. #19
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by E-Stat
    Even with an external DAC as he and I both use, the issue is the effect of the cheap ps on the transport component. I found a $55 linear power supply for mine that I may have modified by the Bolder guy for considerably lower cost.

    rw
    I'm not denying that a regulated, linear power supply is a good idea. But as you suggest, $260 is more than you need to pay for that.

  20. #20
    Ajani
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    Not exactly a powerful recommendation for changing the Touch's power supply:

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalman Rubinson's Stereophile Review
    because the Touch's AC supply is a switching wall wart, which are well known to be electrically noisy, several companies now offer linear power supplies to replace it. I couldn't discern any significant change in the Touch's performance with such a supply that I had built some years before, but I felt happier without another switching module in close proximity to the rest of my audio equipment.
    http://www.stereophile.com/computera...yer/index.html

  21. #21
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    Several years ago a lightening strike took out the Tripplite Isobar Ultra my low signal level gear was plugged into. The inside of the Tripplite was a melted fused mess. Not one single piece of my gear was harmed in the slightest. Tripplite sent me a new one as a free replacement. It did what it was supposed to do. It protected my gear.

    Once again "Pixie" has no idea what he's talking about.
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  22. #22
    Forum Regular blackraven's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Ajani]So I've been scratching my head for several weeks...not dandruff, but trying to figure out just what the Bryston BDP-1 really is and more importantly WHY I'd want to buy one:

    QUOTE]

    Here's the answer direct from the horse's mouth-

    http://www.hifizine.com/2010/09/the-...-james-tanner/
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  23. #23
    Shostakovich fan Feanor's Avatar
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    [quote=blackraven]
    Quote Originally Posted by Ajani
    So I've been scratching my head for several weeks...not dandruff, but trying to figure out just what the Bryston BDP-1 really is and more importantly WHY I'd want to buy one:

    QUOTE]

    Here's the answer direct from the horse's mouth-

    http://www.hifizine.com/2010/09/the-...-james-tanner/
    It's aburd that that this US$2100 can only read directly attached USB devices and not wireless or even wired networked computers. This features are available on numerous sub $100 devices.

  24. #24
    Phila combat zone JoeE SP9's Avatar
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    The device I'm using to write this post does that. Plus I can play games where I get to blow up stuff.
    ARC SP9 MKIII preamp,VPI HW19jr, Rega RB300
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    Accuphase T101 tuner,Nakamichi LX-5, ZX-7 Teac V-7010
    Lexicon MC8 surround processor
    2 Adcom GFA-545,2 radically modified Dynaco MK3's,2 bridged Crown XLS-402, Paradigm X-30, Behringer CX2310, DSP1124P
    2 12" Transmission Line Subs (PASS DIY El-Pipe-O), Acoustat Spectra 22 ESL's (fronts), Acoustat Model 1 ESL's/SPW-1 Woofer (rears)

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