Power amplifiers

In Bryston they have managed to refine their amplifiers to the degree that can be considered a state-of-the-art for solid-state amplification. I mentioned that lesser amps of Bryston are all bargains and for reasonable money one gets the taste of elite. The 28B-SST2 is the elite. If you consider its capability to drive anything on the planet and extended 20 years warranty it could be as well the last amp you’ll ever need.

Function and form

Ease of use

With the 28B-SST the input stage has been redesigned – instead of a single differential op-amp there are two differential op-amps that copy the out-of-phase architecture of the output stage; both signal paths are therefore totally symmetrical. The other important element of the 28B-SST’s construction is elimination of most internal wiring in favor of direct soldered contacts on PCBs. Finally there is a new oversized power transformer with 2000VA rating that lends the 28B-SST the ability to deliver unbelievable 1300W into 8 ohms for monophonic channel. The most other building blocks are inherit from the 7B-SST including its bipolar nature but excluding a new ON-OFF button with very smooth operation. There is nothing to mention on the Bryston’s faceplate except this button and a small green diode that goes orange in case of overheating or red if the amp is overloaded or clips.

On the 28B-SST rear panel you would find a circuit breaker switch, a power-up mode switch and the gain (23dB/29dB) selector. Also present are the single-ended and balanced inputs and two pairs of bi-wirable speaker terminals that accept bare wires, small-sized lugs or bananas. Yes, and there are also two handles on the rear panel that greatly facilitate any manipulation with the amp – a feature that is often missing with competitors and which is quite essential if you want to avoid damages to your health or equipment.

Apart from the impressive 1,3kW output into 8 ohms (Bryston does not specify the output into 4 ohms but theoretically it should reach values around 2kW) the monoblocks boast of not less impressive signal-to-noise ratio that exceeds 110dB, at least on paper. Considering the overdimensioned power handling one cannot expect the 28B-SST to be environmentally very friendly: it consumes 215W at idle without playing a single note. This is a minor issue as high-end audio is not a green hobby at all.

Bass management


What the Class-A and the 28B-SST do not have in common is the shuddering power of the Bryston’s deep bass as well as huge macrodynamic sweeps that make anything like The Dallas Wind Symphony and Vaclav Nelhybel’s Trittico (Frederic Fennell, Reference Recordings) an exhilarating experience. The way the 28B-SST handles the sound of brass is almost brutal in its sincerity, yet colorful and full of inner details. In dynamic crescendos you would feel no strain and listening at realistic volumes (I can afford it as my house is quite remoted from the nearest neighborhood) only makes the Bryston even better. I cannot imagine that the power of the Bryston would be insufficient in any home set-up.

Clarity & delicacy


Recently we have reviewed Bryston's 7B-SST2. Switching to the pair of 28B-SSTs was a sonic ressurrection. The mechanical feel was gone and the Rachel Podger´s violin suddenly materialized in space, acquiring body and dimensionality. Suddenly I listened to real strings caressed by a real bow. The 28B-SSTs delivered both attack and textural detail, their sound was richer and more focused in more precisely drawn soundstage. Though it was not an ultimate holographic experience I’m used to get from the best tubed or Class-A amplifiers it was definitely the best sound I have ever heard from any Bryston.

Tonal accuracy

Temporal resolution

What the Class-A amps and the 28B-SST do have in common is the midrange fluidity. The mids are very smooth with no sense of grittiness which is the best witnessed on vocal performances like on XRCD Best Audiophile Voices (JVC). What you hear is absolutely seamless sound with palpable images that reminded me of the good old analog days, this time with better dynamics and higher clarity.

Spatial resolution

Soundstage width
Soundstage depth

Bryston has earned a favorable reputation in professional audio and some of their finest products found their homes in famous recording studios, for instance Polygram and Abbey Road studios, or are endorsed by Telarc of James newton Howard (this is the gentleman who composes some of the finest movie scores today). If you plan to use a Bryston in a studio you will most likely prefer black finish with optional rack-mounting capabilities. Both are available.

Price as reviewed:435 000,- Kč

Recommended resellers

Hifi Store, Praha

Associated components

  • Sources: Accuphase DP-78, Linn Unidisk 1.1
  • Amplifiers: Bryston 7B-SST2, Bryston 28B-SST2, Spectral DMA-150
  • Interconnects and speaker cables: Accuphase, MIT Ultralinear 750
  • Loudspeakers: Wilson Audio WATT/Puppy 8
  • Power conditioning: Furutech Daytona E303E



The A-65 has a better bottom-end control and though it does not equal to the solidness of, let's say, Bryston or Plinius, the improvement has moved the new amp in the right direction. Overall, the Accuphase A-65 is more refined, ...

Recommended resellers

Nisel SK, Bratislava, tel. +421 905 203 078



Eigentakt is the current last word in Class D amplifier technology. It marries Class D efficiency and clean output power, low impedance rating, and compact design to vanishingly low harmonic and intermodulation distortion, and ...

Recommended resellers

Apollon Audio direct webshop


ASR Emitter II Exclusive Blue

When mankind is eliminated by a gigantic volcano eruption, a tsunami or Godzilla, most parts of the Emitter will remain to exist as this amplifier is dustproof, waterproof and heatproof. The ASR's catalogue is far from complicated - ...

Recommended resellers

Audiostudio s.r.o., Olomouc, tel. +420 608 752 475



Audio Research is an amplifier legend. The brand had been expected to get a boost when it was acquired by Fine Sounds Group (now transformed into McIntosh Group), however, the lift off did not happen. Recently the brand has been ...

Recommended resellers

HI-FI studio TYKON, Ostrava, tel. +420 723 449 894



Bass is essential. Music is no fun without good fundaments, unless one prefers listening to flute recitals only. In a recording studio the bass, that is the drums and the bass guitar, are the first thing that has to be gotten right ...

Recommended resellers

Horn Distribution, Praha, +420 272 656 485



Philosophically speaking, how it is possible that the Audiomat listeners say that the voice of Frank Sinatra in Nice & Easy is perfectly realistic, undistorted and tonally correct? None of them have ever had a chance to hear ...

Recommended resellers

Interaudio SK, Komárno, tel. +421 905 884 677


BEL CANTO M300 monoblocks

It was as if the recording venue had new air filters installed and an extra dose of oxygen was pumped in during a performance – the sense of vertigo was very strong and I did not want to return back to the ´dusty´sound of everything ...

Recommended resellers

Hanzel Audio, Komárno, tel. +421 905 400 770

Back to category