Bricasti Design M28 monoblock power amplifier Manufacturers' Comment

Manufacturers' Comment

Editor: It is, of course, disappointing to receive an unfavorable review. A product designed and voiced at this level is inherently an opinion carefully stated. Michael's review is as well, and we differ. As Michael says, "that's hi-fi." We strive for fast transient ability and very low distortion. These are the qualities that we feel bring the ability to "hear the room," the 3D character of the recording space, the soundstage that removes the speakers' locations from the listener's perception. For us, this is the challenge. It is how we design and voice our systems. We feel that if this can be achieved, then the honesty of the primary musical elements comes along as a matter of course.

When looking at the measured squarewave, it is, in fact, superior to the reference system. There is no question regarding the M28's ability to cleanly and quickly reproduce transients. So what accounts for Michael's perception that aspects of the M28's sonic character lack excitement? To us, the answer is the same that we often give, regarding both our M1 and the M28. When a listener is presented with a sound that contains an order of magnitude less distortion than their reference system, it takes time to hear that as a positive aspect of the sound. Distortion masks the honesty of the recording, but it also adds high-frequency excitement. The additional harmonics add volume, particularly to transient elements and elements that already have a bit of distortion in the recording. But this distortion is not honest, and over time and across different sources, the greater honesty of lower distortion becomes evident and desirable.—Brian Zolner, Casey Dowdell
Bricasti Design

Bricasti Design, Ltd.
2 Shaker Road
Building J100
Shirley, MA 01464
(978) 425-5199

c1ferrari's picture

on some fora -- it's been reported that Stereophile panned the M28...that is not my inference after reading the review proper.

iosiP's picture

...or did the Bricasti sound just like the old crop of Mark Levinson gear?
Where did I hear the slightly subdued treble, the overall dark sound and the longish and somewhat less controlled bass? Well in older ML designs, of course!
While some may love it and some may like to go back to it, I certainly prefer the sound of the new ML gear... so sorry for ML (the man) but enthusiastic about ML (the company).

bpw's picture

The print magazine has the manufacturer's response, which is interesting and relevant although not included above. Since it has been posted on some audio forum websites it's probably fair to post a link to it.

John Atkinson's picture
bpw wrote:
The print magazine has the manufacturer's response, which is interesting and relevant although not included above.

I have added it to this Web reprint.

John Atkinson
Editor, Stereophile

bpw's picture

Thank you, John.

It's even handed and honorable of you to do so.

dmusoke's picture

Though I've never heard or listened to the M28, I have to agree with the manufacturer's response and logic. The M28 has much lower distortion and precise reproduction of high frequency signals like the 10kHz square wave. Michael's reference system has much higher distortion and slower in its electrical transient response so maybe that's what he's used to and prefers obviously. Nothing wrong with that but to slam the M28 as of "hi-fi" quality based on its measured performance is definitely wrong.

RaimondAudio's picture

".....darTZeel NHB-18NS preamplifier, I didn't feel the M28s' performance would be in any way compromised...." . Maybe you listening the darTZeel character(distortions), not the M28's.

MrForty's picture

Is the bass softness character caused by the transformer coupled balanced preamp? I reckon transformer coupled balance has rather narrow bandwidth that may cause compatibility issue. It is not a good idea to use transformer coupled balance preamp for evaluating downstream equipment, particular the downstream balance is designed around typical electronic based balance circuit.

bengal_finch's picture

Matching of components is very important and so do the cables as well. i am a Bricasti M1 user for last two years and Sim 650D with 820S is my another DAC, transport is MBL1621A. i always prefer 650D for detail but the comparatively with higher noise floored M1 is very involving with rock based music. sometimes its made me paranoid which one to play, yes it sometime destroying my pleasure of listening when it comes in terms of choosing DAC. NOW .. very recently i ordered MBL6010D with 5011 pree trade in. so i force to use my old Restek Concence pree, and Bricasti playing like a topnotch compare with sim 650D with it. So i simply demand using M28 with some other pree and setup and ofcorse with different speaker and please don't pick Dynaaudio. its hard to except M28 is slow player. but it could be, yet its too early to comment.