Are Discrete components better than Opamps ? - diyAudio
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Old 24th October 2006, 12:35 AM   #1
jsa_ind is offline jsa_ind  United States
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Default Are Discrete components better than Opamps ?

Hello Everyone,

Is it true that discrete components would sound better then IC's ?

I mean there is so much of advancement in IC's I thought they would at least would be as good as discretes...am I mistaken to have such a perception ?

Certainly http://www.bursonaudio.com/Why_Burson_HDAM.htm thinks otherwise !

Thanks,

Regards,

Junia.
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Old 24th October 2006, 02:09 AM   #2
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Kind of depends on application. Both have their places, IMO
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Old 24th October 2006, 02:15 AM   #3
paulb is offline paulb  Canada
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Default Re: Are Discrete components better than Opamps ?

No.
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Old 24th October 2006, 03:16 AM   #4
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There are certain type of components that have no IC equivalent. Transformers, for example. It is hard to duplicate or exceed transformer performance with op-amps, and of course, op-amps require power and other components to function.

IC's are good at making circuits that are flexible, and consistent. The matching of transistors in an IC can be very nearly perfect which can lead to better performance than discrete parts which can't be matched as well. The manufacturing techniques used in IC yield parts that behave pretty consistently from one device to the next.

OTOH, you can make a class A power amp with an IC output stage.

Both discrete and ICs have their uses.

I_F
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Old 25th October 2006, 09:22 PM   #5
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Hi,
have a look at Walt Jung's site and you will find that the opamp man even has a discrete buffer in his notes.
Even he recognises that discrete has advantages.
But a plain simple yes would be stretching it a bit.
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Old 26th October 2006, 03:03 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by I_Forgot


OTOH, you can make a class A power amp with an IC output stage.

I_F
That was supposed to say "CAN'T".

I_F
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Old 26th October 2006, 03:09 PM   #7
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But you CAN !
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Old 26th October 2006, 04:20 PM   #8
aerius is offline aerius  Canada
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Depends on what you want to do. For something like a small portable headphone amp for an iPod, opamps are the way to go. For a 800W class A monoblock amp, you pretty much have to use discrete parts for everything except the input stage.
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Old 26th October 2006, 04:38 PM   #9
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Hi,
even for line drivers, ICs are at their limits. Anything more than a few mA and they are into ClassAB.

600ohm and 75ohm driven to 20dbu is hard going and to 24dbu is nearly impossible for a single IC.
That's why composite topology is being used but then the cost doubles.

Discretes can overcome these current/temperature effects with careful design.
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Old 26th October 2006, 05:09 PM   #10
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If there is not much output current demand like higher- order active filters then you must be very good in analog design to beat good op-amps.

Someone once claimed on this forum that he wasn't able to her the difference between a straight wire and a chain of op-amps used as voltage followers (which is even the worst usage of an op-amp anyway).

Regards

Charles
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