To add to Richard's answer:
I also was interested in the size and found somewhere else on the forum the dimensions he stated:
No air space around them required in either BMU or BBPSU.
Cm 35w 30d 15h"
Hope this helps.
Tubes and Vinyl rule, Music rocks!
Well, how to start:
After having listened 1 to 2 hours a day for about 10 days now to my phono 2 / BBPSU in my system, I’d like to share my impressions about my vinyl listening experiences with you.
My system is mainly non-NVA - with the exception of my newly delivered TSCS and the phono2 /BBPSU - and consists of:
Vinyl front-end: Perpetuum Ebner PE33 Studio with Schröder CB-Arm and Lyra Skala, 1980s Linn LP12+Lingo, Ekos, MusicMaker III mi cartridge; pimped Lenco L75 with Schick 12” tone arm currently not in use
Phono: Graham Slee Era Gold and Graham Slee Revelation with PSU1 and/or DIY power supplies, EAR 834P (with some part upgrades)
Preamp: LFD Anniversary
PowerAmps: DIY 2A3 monos and DIY First Watt M2 Clone
LS: Pair of Haigner 3-way horn ls (with 15” Altec 416 bass drivers and BMS compression drivers for mids and tweeter horns)
The first thing I noticed when connecting the BBPSU / Phono 2 to my mains in my music room, was a tiny bit of hum you could hear from the bass section of the speakers when the phono input was selected but the volume down. The hum wasn't audible from the listening position some 2.5m away, but it was audible when standing next to the speakers. As my speakers are 98dB efficiency this resulting hum is more a minor issue, though. The 2x 1000 VA transformers in the BBPSU have been dead silent from start. In the meantime, I realized that floating the BBPSU helped to reduce the hum to close to inaudible levels.
When I started my listening sessions during the first evening with my PE33 Studio and mc cartridge, the 1st thing I noticed was that the gain level (with the tube amps as well as with the First Watt M2 clone) was really low. A phone call with Richard revealed that he had built me an MM stage and I had ordered an MC stage. This was unfortunate but we immediately agreed that I try the MM stage and decide later if I send the unit back to him to be updated to an MC stage or keep the MM version or return the phono2 plus BBPSU in the unlikely case I didn’t like the sound of the NVA phono stage.
As I also own a very good step up a Berlin friend of mine made (1:15 ratio with nano crystalline cores) I mainly listened to my MC front-end with the phono 2 / BBPSU combo.
Well, if you are still reading this review, thanks a lot for your patience. I reward you now with my findings regarding how the phono 2 plus BBPSU musically performed in my system. All findings below are with my new pair of NVA TSCS connecting amp and horn speakers. (I will write about them in comparison with my LS6 pair, once the TSCS has a bit more hours burn-in time).
Well, I listened to various music from Mozart piano concertos, classical symphonies and guitar recordings to intimate Jazz trio recordings and some blues, US folk & blue grass as well as rock music.
All I can say is that the NVA phono 2 / BBPSU has superb musicality and this is one of the most important things I’m looking for in a piece of audio equipment! To my ears this phono stage lets the musicians express what - as it seems to me - they intended to record live or in the studio to the vinyl in the first place. What I haven’t heard with my other phono stages is this musical flow, emotion and especially “silence / breathing space” (I don’t know how to describe it) between notes. This makes a lot of a difference for me on how a musical performance is perceived via an LP (or CD or digital file in general). It is this kind of flow, emotion and “silence” between notes which makes a reproduction “more realistic” to my ears. For example, I often listen later in the evening at lower levels and also tend to read a book or news paper besides listening to music. Well, with the phono2 this isn’t really possible, as the music delivered feels often so reaI and engaging that one has to focus on the music played!
I have had the chance to audition quite a number of phono stages up to now (tube and solid state ones, some of them also “crazy” expensive) but only a few of them have delivered such a realistic reproduction of music (and these were unfortunately either expensive ones I don’t have the funds to own or DIY tube ones I currently don’t have the ability to build).
Another strength of the NVA phono 2 is the dynamic performance of reproduced music. For example, the shadings of natural instruments (bass and violin) are reproduced in an exemplary way (LP of Norman Blake / Tut Taylor / Sam Bush… song: Sauerkraut n’ Solar Energy, Sonet Productions Ltd, London, 1976). This is really exceptional and in my opinion is most likely also a result of Richards’s “big power supply”-philosophy. The BBPSU with 2 times 1000 VA transformers is definitely overkill spec-wise for a phono stage but such a device then has plenty of reserves driving the phono 2 and is also a very low resistance supply. Both things seem to be a big plus when it comes to the musical outcome!
Overall, I am very impressed with the music the phono 2 plus BBPSU reproduces from vinyl. I can’t compare it to the phone 2 with one or two standard psu but I’m sure both versions are capable of similar musical performance.
Is there something to criticize? No, there is nothing in my book. This is an exceptional phono stage for sure. A real keeper!
The only thing I’d like to mention is the following:
The BBPSU is quite a heavy beast – about 20 kg – and has no on / off switch. It is important to separate it as far as possible from the TT and phono stage or other sensitive equipment.
And plugging it into the mains the first time, could trigger the circuit breaker. Thankfully, it didn’t do it in my case. According to Richard it’s the best thing to leave it on constantly as in idle mode power consumption is minimal. Only when one goes on a trip, it is a good idea to take it from the mains. Well, fine with me!
I didn’t explain this to my wonderful wife, who is very supporting and understanding when it comes to my audio and music hobby! Thanks, Sweety! I know, she would not be happy about “electrical appliances” without a power-on/-off switch, though or at least it wouldn’t be an easy task to convince her about why such a switch isn’t standard with a BBPSU. So, WAF most likely isn’t as high as mine, I would assume! As the unit is sitting in my dedicated music room, everything is fine, though!
Happy New Year to all of you!
Tubes and Vinyl rule, Music rocks!
do you have any recommendations for similar music?