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Old 23rd June 2002, 03:54 PM   #1
Vivek is offline Vivek  India
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Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Bangalore, India
Default OPA 2134 Vs. LM 381

Hi all,
How would you guys compare the OPA 2134 and the LM 381 chips for a pre-amp? The OPA seems to have found favour with many DIYers but the LM 381 has not been talked about much.
Sonically, by how much does a discrete pre-amp like the Zen outperform these chip-based pre-amps?
Any link to the LM 381-based pre-amp would be appreciated and so would any comment on the above.
Regards,
Vivek
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Old 24th June 2002, 05:14 AM   #2
paulb is offline paulb  Canada
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Calgary
Default LM381 - that 70s chip

Ouch! The LM381 was one of the very first audio preamp op-amps available. You can check specs but there's no doubt it is far inferior to the OPA2134.
You can't buy the LM381 anymore. National has far better parts available, maybe check out the LM833.
The Zen is a far different approach. Worse on paper but very popular with the folks here. Most agree the Balanced Line Stage, or Bride of Son of Zen is the best choice. I haven't built one yet but my Zen-like headphone amp sounds pretty darn good.
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Old 24th June 2002, 06:47 AM   #3
Vivek is offline Vivek  India
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Location: Bangalore, India
Hi Paul,
I guess that settles the matter. I will go for the newer chips. Thanks.
Vivek
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