Frequently Asked Questions
- General Questions
- How did Bryston start?
- Why should buyers come to Bryston instead of the competition?
- What are Bryston´s plans for the future?
- James Tanner
- Who is James Tanner?
- What does James Tanner do?
- Product Questions
- BDP-2 Digital Player
- Model T Loudspeakers
- What is the warranty?
- What size room do you recommend for these speakers?
- What is the recommended amplification?
- Why did you choose to use a base veneer rather than real wood?
- What is the cost of the optional real wood veneer?
- Are the outriggers optional?
- What is your relationship with Axiom?
- Why did you have Axiom create the driver design and how did the Model T come to be?
- How is the cabinet constructed?
- How is the bass driver constructed?
- How is the midrange driver constructed?
- How is the tweeter driver constructed?
- Why use multiple drivers?
- Tell us about the crossovers.
- Are the crossovers built in house?
- Is there anything unique about the porting technology?
- Model T Subwoofer
- How do you obtain accurate measurements?
- Why use a tower over burying the subwoofer?
- SST² Amplifiers
- What is the design philosophy behind the SST² Amplifiers?
- What is the difference in capacitance between the 7B SST² and the 14B SST²?
Bryston was originally a manufacturer of high tech blood analyzers that began business in 1962. In 1976 James Tanner purchased a pair of Dayton Wright electrostatic speakers which his current amplifiers were having a heck of a time driving. So, using high-tech and sophisticated parts, we modified the amplifier and boy it sounded terrific! We then decided to build an amplifier with no holds barred, from scratch, using medical grade parts. Bryston was born!
We believe our customers appreciate our high performance standards, where the cost behind the product design is "no object" but the prices are not beyond the costumers reach. Our motto is “you can spend more money but you can't buy better performance, if ‘linearity of signal’ is what you’re after.”
To continue to do what we do best: provide our customers with as transparent an audio signal path as possible, given current technology.
James is Brystons resident audiophile and part owner. He has been involved in audio since his teens. Originally, he wished to be a professional saxophone player, spending his life in small smoky rooms, but he settled for his current position. He loves what he does and enjoys every minute of it, being involved in a business that brings pleasure to others is, in his view, without pier.
James prefers not to reveal what he does, feeling that if his superiors don't know his responsibilities they can’t fire him. Joking aside, James is the Vice President of Bryston and responsible for marketing and all its aspects.
Speakers carry a 10 year warranty.
Because of the excellent dispersion the Model T is suitable in rooms as small as 13'x17'x8' and as large as 25'x36'x10' with good results.
Given the high efficiency (91dB anechoic) the model T can be driven with moderate power and various types of amplifiers (transistor, Class D, Tubes etc.) Power amplifiers between 100 to 900 watts can be employed depending on room size and listening levels required. The Model T has a benign impedance curve as well so nothing exotic is required.
First and foremost we wanted to build an accurate loudspeaker, not a piece of furniture (not that there’s anything wrong with that). We also wanted to offer our customers an accurate product incorporating state of the art technology at the most competitive price possible. Vinyls are quite cosmetically exceptional and it is tough to tell the difference between real woods and vinyl. An added bonus is that vinyl will typically wear better over time and deal better with spills, etc.
If you want real wood veneers or exotic finishes we can do it at additional cost but it does not provide better performance than the base models. Please contact us for a quote.
Outriggers are optional, the speakers comes standard with spikes and furniture feet.
James Tanner (Vice President of Bryston Sales and Marketing) had known Ian Colquhoun (owner of Axiom) casually for years. Their relationship stretched back to the days of Floyd Toole and the National Research council in Ottawa, where most of the Canadian companies got their start developing their philosophies of speaker design.
James Tanner (Vice President of Bryston Sales and Marketing) was aware that speaker engineer Andrew Welker had moved to Axiom after Canadian speaker company API was purchased. He contacted both Andrew Welker and Ian Colquhoun (owner of Axiom) to see if they would be interested in building a reference loudspeaker for James' personal use to evaluate Bryston electronics. James was aware that Axiom was one of the few companies with an anechoic chamber on site and had sophisticated equipment capable of facilitating complex speaker measurement techniques.
James' initial request was for a fully Active system with no performance compromises. He and Axiom then spent almost 2 years with a variety of versions until James was happy with the results, installing a finished Active system in his personal sound room. Long story short - distributors, dealers and friends heard them and convinced James to offer them commercially. Given the complexity of Active systems we set about to develop Passive versions of the Model T which came very close to the performance level of the Active version.
At that point the project just took on a life of its own as our dealers and distributors said they wanted Centers and Surrounds and Subs to match – so here we are with a complete line of Bryston loudspeakers available to our customers and a way to acquire ‘Predictable Performance' for Bryston customers all the way from the source to the speaker.
The cabinet has a 1.5 inch thick front baffle, a vertical brace from top to bottom in the centre of the cabinet, and 12 interlocking braces front and back of the vertical brace. All the braces are uniquely spaced so as to have no dominant resonance mode.
The woofers use a ceramic-coated composite aluminum cone, large diameter voice coil on a high temperature fibreglass former, die cast aluminum frames, and FEA optimized motor system.
The midranges use a ceramic-coated composite aluminum cone, die cast aluminum frames, and FEA optimized motor system.
The tweeters use a 1 inch pure titanium dome, Ferro-fluid damping/cooling, temperature stable ferrite magnets, and FEA optimized motor system.
The dominant advantage to multiple drivers is the increased power handling and sheer SPL achievable before compression occurs; this is a big deal as even at modest levels the dynamic peaks can be very demanding. There is also an advantage that can be achieved in the soundstage presentation if the design is done carefully. The disadvantage would be it is much more complex to design as the interaction between all the drivers means many more on and off axis listening window and power response curves need to be looked at and worked with.
The crossover points for the Model T are 160 Hz and 2.3 kHz. All of the components used have been carefully selected for ultra-low distortion and the high power handling requirements of the Model T. The Model T Signature provides an outboard ‘Passive’ crossover to allow for tri-wiring applications as well as an easy transition to a fully Active system using an external active crossover in the future.
Yes, all the crossovers are built in house.
The air in a port is traveling faster in the center, relative to the sides due to friction. All ports have some level of noise. The concave/convex port walls add surface area to the port wall, thereby minimizing friction thereby reducing port noise. The ports also have curved edges at both the entrance and exit of the port, further reducing port noise.
One of the limitations of an anechoic chamber comes from measuring very low frequencies. Even very large anechoic chambers have limited accuracy below approximately 85 Hz. In order to obtain completely accurate measurements of the very long sound waves that come from low notes, we utilize a 90 foot tower upon which we hoist subwoofer prototypes. To obtain 4-pi 360-degree measurements, the tower must be used in early morning or evening, when the wind is still.
We could bury the subwoofer in the ground and get a true 2-pi measurement or we could use the more widely utilized gated near-field technique. However, we don’t because we ‘have the ability’ to make a true 4-pi measurement. It is the 'purest' and most direct and correct way. It is also very consistent, something that cannot be said for ground plane or near-field methods, unless an identical environment is used and the subwoofer position is not changed.
We also need this 4-pi ability to make the appropriate low frequency correction curves for our anechoic chamber and this must be done for each subwoofer model. Finally, near-field computer techniques are fine for response at low volume levels, but impossible when trying to characterize subwoofer performance at high levels. It’s simply a matter of microphone overload levels when measuring near-field. We also use the tower to confirm the low frequency response of our larger speakers like the Model T and Middle T.
A significant part of the design criteria for the new SST² was to develop
amplifiers that would maintain an ideal power curve through the 'first and last watt'. Most
amplifiers exhibit a power curve whereby the best noise floor, drive capability and
distortion are maintained from about 1/3 power and up. The new Bryston SST²
series maintain their ideal power curve right from the first watt to the last watt.
Think of it like a torque curve in a car. The sweet spot or the torque curve has been
Achieving this 'First-to-last-Watt' fidelity and clarity has to do with a number of design approaches:
First is complete freedom from low-level crossover, or zero-crossing, artifacts. This is not as easy as it sounds. Most class-AB amplifiers have sufficient bias to prevent primary crossover distortion, but there is another type of crossover artifact called 'secondary crossover distortion', caused by insufficient speed in the driver transistors. We use very fast drivers to prevent this, but more important is Bryston's proprietary Quad Complementary Output design vastly reduces the capacitance 'seen' by the driver transistors, virtually eliminating storage delay in the output stage that could contribute to nonlinearities in the zero-crossing region.
Second is Bryston's continuing efforts to reduce low-level noise. The clarity of Bryston's designs is enhanced at low listening levels by pushing the noise floor far below the signal level, improving the 'silence between the notes' and enhancing the clarity of the music at low power levels.
Third is Bryston's concentration on reducing distortion at all levels, and most especially at high frequencies. Bryston amplifiers are perhaps the only designs to concentrate as much effort at reducing HF distortion artifacts as we do, and the results are remarkably 'flat' THD-with-frequency curves, showing almost no tendency to increase distortion as frequency rises. This has the effect of reducing overall 'haze', helping to pull the quietest passages out of the background.
There are other small contributors to this low-level clarity, some having to do with power supply design for extreme stability, (and in Stereo or multi-channel amps, separated for each channel), which very notably improves the placement-in-space and focus of the sonic 'image'. We think the overall result is an unprecedented degree of clarity and freedom from artificiality, especially noticeable at lower levels in comparison with other designs, but continuing to even the highest outputs.
The 7B SST² has eight 10,000uF capacitors per module, for a total of 160,000uF per channel. The 14B has four 22,000uF capacitors per channel, for a total of 88,000uF per channel.