Can someone explain OP-Amp Rolling?

Hey guys, as the title might suggest I’m a bit of a noob in the audio world. I came across a cheap balanced amp called the E-600 that has been rebranded by several companies including Nobsound. It offers 3 different opamps which makes the price change dramatically. Can someone tell me in plain, simple English what the difference an OP-amp change can do? For example: will different OP-amps change the output impedance; will they change the THD at any point, etc. I heard some burson opamps can dramatically help the budget Topping amps and could never find out why or how. The three opamp choices are: NE5534, MUSE8920 and the MUSE02. Thanks for any help, this hobby has more layers than I ever thought possible!

The v5i op amp is really good imo, like it is really analytical. Is it worth the cost, sure if you like to tinker. Again it will make whatever you use,more resolving, but at a cost. Also it is more power hungry in my experience so expect less output. Soundstage is good, but highs can be sharper compared to a stock op amp.

Thank you for that reply, that helps a bit for sure. Could you tell me if the impedance can or is changed by changing to a different op amp, and are opamps usually soldered or are they hot-swappable?

I looks like you came across one like this one used by @FireLion44 which as you can see is a boss when it comes to this.

They aren’t soldered, but I would probably power off the unit before swapping op amps, so I would not say they are hot-swappable either.

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Most are soldered but ones that talk about rolling are using a socket the op amp is installed in like a tube for a tube amp etc. No impedance change as far as I’m aware, could be wrong though. They are not universal as well too so try to research since others have likely experimented with a given unit.

That’s the exact one I saw. I figured I would roll the dice too and ordered it with the MUSE02 opamp. It didn’t seem a bad deal for roughly $185 shipped. Thanks for the help. If it doesnt beat my magni 3 in all respects I think I’ll die a little inside…

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That is great to know. It hate to buy a $70 chip that wouldn’t fit lol. Thanks buddy!

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Well not just fit, electrically too. Operating ranges of the op amps dual or single etc. If you look up the original op amp you can make sure your replacement falls in the same general operating ranges etc. Happy to help as well, for me the V5i worked great, only my dt1990 was a bit too much for my liking in the highs.

Ohhhhh that probably saved me some time and money in the future. This hobby is scary lol.

Yep i am rolling right now, you’ll get different results and I found the OPA2604 to be super clear on this amp. I have v5i-d’s on the way as I had success with then previously. I think a V5i-d forces the IC chip it uses into class A mode. I have OPA1692’s on the way too.

If you’re getting it just get the Muses02 as it’s supposed to be decent. I would be happy with the 2604’s but will report back on the burson, 1692 and I might get these…

I love this amp!

Op-Amp rolling = changing op amps that are somewhere within the correct specs of the original. In the case of the E600 it will take most of the popular dual opamps like NE5532, OPA2606, OPA2134, LM48960 etc. Each op amp can change how the music sounds and may be due to distortion levels or lack of. You’ll get some that might sound grainy, clear or warmer or emphasize the low end or treble. There are different types of connectors and in this case the above are an 8 contact DIP, 8 pin DIP or DIP8. Some may work better in one amp than another as the specs might mesh with the circuit better than others. Not sure the exact changes to THD but each one would have varying levels, not sure if changes the impdeance.

I am not really an expert on it myself but have rolled them in a few devices. I usually google and check out stuff on diyaudio. In the case of the E600 the OPA2604 (on E600) is the most neutral and clearest I have found.

Thank you for both replies! I am stoked for it now! That explanation helped a lot. It was definitely a shot in the dark purchase, but it may pay off. Please lemme know how the burson OP amp works out, it may be worth it later to buy an expensive opamp instead of a new amp.

Op Amp rolling always seemed like a 9th level audiophile kind of thing. Like afer you audition dozens of headphones, lots of amps and DACs, power filters and then roll tubes… then you can crack your device open and start swapping chips.

That said I can see the allure- and I’m probably not even a 4th level audiophile.