New Schiit / Preamps and Power Amp (was Putting the Schiit Signal Up)

Discussion in 'Preamps' started by purr1n, Oct 6, 2016.

  1. Dino

    Dino Friend

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    Reminds me of some of the inscriptions in the runout groove area of LPs. I find those cool (and sometimes mysterious).
     
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  2. zonto

    zonto Friend

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    Vidar update on HF (from 3/6/17):

    Vidar [prototype] impressions from @ohhgourami:
     
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    Last edited: Mar 19, 2017
  3. Grahad2

    Grahad2 Red eyes from too much anime

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    The Krell is US12.5K MSRP though. It should be better. Putting it in perspective, you can get like ~18 Vidars for one Krell.
     
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  4. Dino

    Dino Friend

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    I wouldn't feel confident judging an amplifier by listening to it through one set of speakers. Unless those speakers are mine and I am shopping for an amplifier for my speakers.
     
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  5. zonto

    zonto Friend

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    Understood. The opinion somewhat lost in the quotes above was that for Vidar prices one may purchase used pro amps like those from Anthem to achieve better performance than Vidar.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2017
  6. winders

    winders Know-it-all boomer, prob racist

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    Well, since no one here has heard the "final" version of the Vidar amps, we don't really know yet what they will sound like. Also, no one has heard them at all in a mono block configuration yet, have they?
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2017
  7. purr1n

    purr1n Super Friend

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    The good Anthems aren't going to be $800, even used. The Vidar prototype was already better than the usual good pro amps from Crest, Crown, etc. This is my impression using my speakers and Gungnir Multibit... Different venues.

    I just another chance with this exact Vidar prototype recently, and FWIW, I don't think the Salk Sing 3 can do justice to the Vidar / Saga stack.

    Exactly. New chassis seems to have more heatsinking, which might allow higher bias.
     
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2017
  8. winders

    winders Know-it-all boomer, prob racist

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  9. Scott Kramer

    Scott Kramer Friend

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    Its getting close, rough video/pics I took at axpona:

     
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  10. winders

    winders Know-it-all boomer, prob racist

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    Scott,

    How did you like the sound of those Salk Song3-A speakers? I am considering buying a pair.
     
  11. zonto

    zonto Friend

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  12. zonto

    zonto Friend

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    Some news, in the absence of a new chapter (I'll try to do this every week, with chapters every other week):

    1. We finally have everything we need to begin Vidar chassis assembly. Good news!
    2. We will supposedly have Vidar first articles next week from the PCB assembly house. Homework for you: find the key word in this sentence. Hint: it starts with an "s".
    3. We actually have a ton of stuff in the pipeline, including, yes, stuff we haven't talked about, but when it ships depends on many factors. However, expect a busy summer and fall.

    And, a happy report from another sourcing expedition.

    If you've read the last chapter, you know about the abject failure of several US manufacturers to give enough of a Schiit about a little inductor, and the subsequent quoting and ordering of the product from China. Fortunately, that's not always the case.

    I thought we were heading for another case of "oh crap, contact China" a couple of weeks ago when we had been sitting for 3 weeks waiting for a quote for a new deep-drawn/machined piece from a supplier we're currently working with in the USA. The capper was that they couldn't supply samples, of any kind, not even something for us to cut to fit for testing. Since this part is a critical piece of another unmentioned/maybe-might-happen/maybe-might-not-happen product, it's kind of hard to figure out if we want to do it if we (a) don't know the price, and (b) don't have anything to test with. The alternative was to literally billet machine a prototype, but that would be costly and not representative of the final product.

    Why wouldn't a current supplier want to work with us? I don't know. Probably simply because we're not a big customer, and also probably since they have a lock-up on "top of mind" for their industry.

    But, in any case, it was time to see if anyone was hungrier. I did the usual dance--sending a drawing out for quote amongst this company's competitors. Competitors in the USA were thin on the ground, but I was able to identify three possible alternate suppliers. I let them know that the drawing was provisional, and that we could use a slightly different size of can if they had something close (the same thing we'd told our current supplier.)

    One responded with a quote for custom tooling, which is fine, but it didn't get us any closer to having something we could use for the prototype--buying $5K in tooling and getting 10,000 pcs is not exactly the most efficient way to get the 1-2 pieces you need.

    One didn't respond.

    And one said, "Yep, we have something like that, we already make tons of them, we could cut it down for your app, and if you wanted a couple of unfinished samples, we could send them right out."

    Holy schiit. Someone who actually read the email.

    Of course, samples are not a quote, and the quote could be astronomical. But that was another matter. First, the samples. I gave them our FedEx number, and I had two samples in a few days. And they were perfect. They fit the need, they could easily be cut down for a prototype, and our problem was solved. By the way, you may soon be seeing this prototype in public--it's a significant enough departure for us that we figured it may be, like, intelligent to show it to you before we commit to some (very expensive) tooling. More on this later.

    So, I told them that the samples were perfect, and please quote us on finished and unfinished pieces. (Finished means, "cut to length, with some holes in it, powder-coated, and screened," whereas Unfinished was simply cut to length.

    They came back in a few days...at eminently fair pricing. We'll be working with these guys.

    To the other US manufacturers: this is how you do it.

    (source)

    Snippet: "We actually have a ton of stuff in the pipeline, including, yes, stuff we haven't talked about, but when it ships depends on many factors. However, expect a busy summer and fall."
     
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  13. cskippy

    cskippy Creamy warmpoo

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    This is me right now

    [​IMG]
     
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  14. zonto

    zonto Friend

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    Freya/Vidar were demoed at the LA Audio Show last weekend, with a Bifrost Multibit, per user "slefty" on HF. His profile says he's an editor at Positive Feedback.
    • Post one. Snippet: "The Freya/Vidar combo was rockin it big time with both the Maggie .7 and the Tekton Double Impact speakers, whether we were streaming from Tidal, playing Hi Res files (yes, even DSD) from a PC or spinning records."
    • (source: response to asking how Vidar played with Tekton Double Impact speakers)

      A really good combo. Though the Double Impact is very high efficiency, it also has very high power handling capability. The Vidar really controlled the bass well and whole system was shockingly dynamic. In spite of how 14 tweeters look, they system was not bright at all, extremely smooth extended top end.

      What was equally impressive was how well the Vidar handled the Maggies. They are far more demanding and power hungry, but the Vidar seemed to be great match. The folks from Magnepan were a little concerned at first, but came by to check our setup before the show opened and were very impressed by how the system sounded. They did not expect an amp at this price point to drive them so transparently.

      Only kicked the Vidar's protection circuit on once. Someone played with the volume control on the Freya while I was changing from Tidal to JRiver on our PC, and when I hit play it was running at full volume into the Maggies. After a couple tenths of a second of painfully loud noise the amp shut off. Powering the amp down and restarting it was all it took. The speakers survived.

      I'll have more to say later. I'll be setting the Tektons up at home this weekend and hope I get to hold on to the Vidar for an extra week or so. It will be interesting comparing it to the other three 100 wpc amps I have here (Burson Timekeeper Virtuoso, B&K ST140 and a tubed Jolida JD1000P).
    • more user posts follow
    @schiit also shared their next advertisement (source). Potential $100 price increase for Yggdrasil?

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. zonto

    zonto Friend

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    I set a calendar reminder to check the HF thread every Friday to minimize thread noise here. Below are this week's updates:

    I was hoping to have a chapter for you this week, but as I was writing it last night, it didn't seem to gel.

    And this is OK. If it doesn't work, best not to force it. Beyond chapters, we've had products that never came out right, so we decided to abandon them. I'll probably give you a chapter on that relatively soon, once I know that one product is well and truly dead.

    This chapter was about the differences between a start-up and an established business, and it, well, didn't seem to be very interesting or useful. I think I can sum up the entire thing in a single sentence:

    "A (manufacturing) startup is all about finding parts on the shelf in relatively small quantities so you can get shipping fast without spending a lot of money, then rapidly iterating your designs, while an established (manufacturing) business is about designing custom parts that maximize quality, efficiency, and value, and buying as many of them as you can."

    Yeah, pretty boring. But it comes about as we are starting up the line for Vidar, specifically the chassis prep. While we were starting up the line yesterday, I realized that we could significantly simplify assembly with a new custom part--specifically, a stamped piece to hold the transformer, rather than the "standoff/sorbothane-washer x 4" arrangement we're using. We're not going to stop the line for this new part, but I'm sure we'll end up rolling it in sometime in the future. It doesn't affect the look or performance of the Vidar...it's simply a production shortcut. Not very interesting, but indicative of the "under the hood" changes we've been doing at Schiit this year. Expect to see a whole lot more custom parts in the future--parts that help us increase performance, reduce price, enhance quality, or all 3.

    So that's the update: the Vidar chassis prep line is running. The Vidar first articles are supposed to come in on Friday. The Vidar heatsinks are supposed to come in on the 13th. It's all (still) lining up for June shipment. We'll stream the intro from the Schiitr when it happens, in this year's first SchiitShow.

    Then, on to some other announcements!

    Other Vidar notes:
    • The video stream of the Vidar intro will be available after it has ended. (source)
    • Vidar weighs about 25 pounds. (source)

    Other non-Vidar, non-substantive posts from Jason:
    • one (mentions a nondescript "prototype," not sure of what)
    • two (discussion of Schiit tube amp operating point being set with CCS)
    • three (musings on engineering and mistakes)
     
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    Last edited: Jun 9, 2017
  16. Merrick

    Merrick A lidless ear

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    If there's a $100 price increase on the Yggdrasil it's due to some included upgrade.
     
  17. sfoclt

    sfoclt Friend

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    Hopefully a cup holder.
     
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  18. Pyruvate

    Pyruvate Friend

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    Probably a typo, I've seen Jason mistakenly write Yggdrasil's price as $2399 before. Maybe because that was their original plan long ago.
     
  19. DigitalMaven

    DigitalMaven Acquaintance

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    Is there a finite delivery date or are we going to be tortured by you tube videos indefinitely until delivered. It's worse than a Heinz commercial...
     
  20. SSL

    SSL Friend

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    To save you the apparent trouble of reading the posts above yours, I gather that there is no set launch date. We can also conclude that it will launch no sooner than the 13th as the heatsinks are supposed to arrive that day.
     
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