Schiit Fulla 2 AIO DAC/Headamp Quick Impressions and Review

Discussion in 'Portable and Other Gear Measurements' started by purr1n, Jun 29, 2017.

  1. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Schiit Fulla 2 AIO DAC/Headamp Quick Impressions and Measurements
    fulla-front-1920.jpg

    The Fulla 2 actually sounds a lot like the Magni / Modi 2 stack. Maybe 5% less slam. 5% less micro-stuff. 5% less attack. 5% smaller stage. 5% less clarity. You get the idea.

    Also feel free to catch up here for more subjective impressions (might have to skip a few pages): https://www.superbestaudiofriends.org/index.php?threads/schiit-fulla-2-released.3439/

    I am actually kind of curious what others said about it. I have not read anything in that thread past the point where folks started to talk about its sound.

    A worthy competitor might be this: http://www.superbestaudiofriends.or...mpressions-and-measurements.4649/#post-147430

    Like the Douk, the Fulla 2 has provisions for extra power from a USB phone charger. Both connectors (to computer USB port and power) on the back are micro USB. The Fulla 2 and Douk sound alike, both exhibiting a bit of warmth. Going back and forth, it was initially difficult to tell them apart. I had to take about an hour listening to each to accustomize myself to their sound. The Fulla 2 seems a tad clearer, moderately more incisive, and less glossed over. Also, unlike the Douk, plugging in the extra power connector made a small but very notable improvement in sound quality when using the HD650: less strain, smoother treble, and more lively - better microdynamics.

    The volume knob is a godsend. Thank you @schiit! Trying to set volume on Windows UI sliders with a mouse is like steering the Enterprise-E with touch screen panel. The fact is, when the Enterprise-E is in deep doo doo, like in an asteroid field with hundreds of lives at stake, Commander Riker is going to use a fricking joystick to get them out of trouble.
    insurrection0801.jpg

    Measurements below. Taken at 0.525Vrms into 330ohms so they can be comparable to the Douk DSD.

    1kHz

    Fulla 1k.png

    600Hz and 1700Hz

    Fulla 600-1700.png

    The measurements are 20db worse then the Douk's, but at 70-80db below the fundamental, not likely to be audible.
     
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  2. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    P.S.

    I would have liked some LEDs to know it was plugged in and working. The Fulla 2 does need a little bit of time to warm up, otherwise it sounds lean and scratchy. Once warmed up, the sound is warmer and more full bodied. Might be difficult with stock HD800 or other headphones with treble timbre issues.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2017
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  3. Armaegis

    Armaegis Friend

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    Well I had to google that stupid joystick because for the life of me I couldn't remember what episode it came from... of course it turns out to be from one of the movies. Bleh. But then that also led to a two hour Star Trek binge on youtube... good thing I don't have work tomorrow morning.
     
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  4. Deep Funk

    Deep Funk Deep thoughts - Friend

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    Reminds me of this. Enjoy the binge!

    [​IMG]
     
  5. kitantisune

    kitantisune Acquaintance

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    @Marvey, not sure if you're aware of this, but you can adjust Windows volume by scrolling on the mouse while hovering over the volume slider. Much easier to control – an increment of 2 volume steps is a notch on the scroll wheel, or a single pixel on the screen... pick your poison.

    If it's almost as good as the MM2 stack, then I'll probably grab one of these instead of a GOv2 or Modi Multibit, and save the difference for a transducer upgrade.
     
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  6. a44100Hz

    a44100Hz Friend

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    The Fulla 2 really is decent. I've used one with an HD650, without the second power source, and was pleasantly surprised by how good it sounded. For non critical listening it was pretty easy to forget how inexpensive it is. No drivers to fuss with, works with Windows or Mac equally well. I think you'd have to go up to a Modi Multibit + Vali stack to get appreciable gains in musicality, transients, decay, and the other little easter eggs of live sound reproduction that grip your soul. They make good gifts or traveling units. The Fulla + HD598Cs makes for a great stack for modern music.
     
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  7. Deep Funk

    Deep Funk Deep thoughts - Friend

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    If you want to spare some cash, the Fulla 2 is a good budget option. Headphone out, aux input, power supply options and stack expansion options in one device for less than 200 Dollars/Euros where you need two cables max. That is a pro-audio kind of deal for a budget HiFi product.

    This is almost a steal...
     
  8. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Well, there is also the Douk (see thread on it).
     
  9. zerodeefex

    zerodeefex Grumpiest admin

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    The douk is the KG recommendation, too. That gives it an additional 11ty billion points of awesome.
     
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  10. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    LOL. When did he ever recommend the Douk?
     
  11. landroni

    landroni Friend

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    For this purpose, does the HD598C offer performance above and beyond a PortaPro? Price-wise either would work just fine for a gift basket...
     
  12. a44100Hz

    a44100Hz Friend

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    Never heard one. But the 598Cs has some extra bass compared to the other Senns that's fun for EDM and other modern production.
     
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  13. kitantisune

    kitantisune Acquaintance

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    Having used these for the past month or so, I suppose I can now provide a few impressions with cheap gear (ATH-M50x, Sony MDR-7506, CA Orion, and preamp out to Yamaha HS7s). I don't have anything fancier, so take these with a grain of salt.

    To begin with: I thought that using a digital volume slider was an acceptable workflow. I was wrong. The real volume control dial is mostly* life-changing.
    • excellent for the price: more punchy and better sustain than any of the other transportable gear I've heard at this price point (FiiO's X3, X3ii, CEntrance DACPort Slim, Creative SoundBlaster E5)
    • also moar bass than the above, with the exception of the DACPort Slim (which uses the same Velvet Sound AKM4490, but through which I hear less detail according to my notes when I tried it)
    • I was lucky and received a unit without any USB plug issues
    • the unit functions as a DAC/[pre]amp, amp _and_ preamp, which honestly seems pretty amazing. No idea if this is transparent as a Sys, but @Deep Funk was right, this is a bargain. No more fussing around with the HS7 volume!
    • the volume control dial makes audible scratching noises in the right channel of the headphone out if the equipment is sensitive enough, even when there is no music playing, or even if only the power cable is connected. Given that there is no visual indication of Fulla 2 being powered on, this doubles as a "poor man's power test" in desperate circumstances...
    • *the pot is imbalanced up to about 9-o'clock on my unit, although only slightly between 8 and 9.
    • this little box has more than enough power to throw at the efficient devices I've used it with. I believe I'm a low-volume listener (need to measure my devices), so for portable use with Orion an IEMatch helps with the volume and hiss reduction. Digital volume control helps as well; at this point though I've accepted that I'm losing some SQ at this volume anyway. HD6XXs will be coming at the end of the year.

    @Marvey , when you used the extra power connector, was this via a "super-crazy linear supply" (as per the schiit website) or just a switching iPhone charger or the like?
     
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  14. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Phone charger... Oh crap. I guess I could use a super crazy power supply.
     
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  15. Luckbad

    Luckbad Traded in a unicorn for a Corolla

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    I have a buddy at work who got in on the Sennheiser HD6xx drop and decided he was willing to spend about $100 on an amp/dac to see what all the fuss was about. He's a big DIY/maker guy and always comments on my various tubes and audio contraptions I have on my desk.

    Anyway, I gave him a couple of suggestions and he ended up picking up the Schiit Fulla 2.

    Now he's an audiophile.

    Comments like, "I was expecting different, but I've never heard sound like this." Even Fulla 2 is enough to knock the socks off a skeptic/

    I've now also turned him onto lossless, well-recorded music and he is beginning the long fall down the rabbit hole.

    If he doesn't build his own amp or dac within a year I'll be surprised. He facilitates and participates building robots and such and is a technical designer by trade.
     
  16. Luckbad

    Luckbad Traded in a unicorn for a Corolla

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    Another work buddy who makes fun of me for my expensive tastes, particularly in audio gear, bought a Fulla 2 after talking to the aforementioned work friend.

    Now he's a convert.

    This Schiit is the best gateway drug ever.
     
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  17. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    Any opinions of Fulla 2 vs. Mojo? I just picked up my first pair of decent headphones (used HD650) in like 15 years (been spending time the last couple years on my 2-channel rig). Haven't even listened to them yet, but I have a Chord Mojo I was using as a "backup" 2-channel dac that I was planning to use them with, but I don't really need the portability of the Mojo, and might be able to gain a few bucks for other things if I went with Fulla 2.
     
  18. zerodeefex

    zerodeefex Grumpiest admin

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    If you don’t need the portability, sell the mojo, buy modi mb and magni 3
     
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  19. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    That was my other potential option for sure - Modi multi with M3 or Vali 2 - folks seem to flip flop over which amp is better (comes down to preference I suspect). My goal however was to start minimal and maybe save a bit of cash for something else, but I might just say screw it and just go for the stack.

    But was I was curious if folks thought Fulla could compare to Mojo (sounds like perhaps not?).
     
  20. fraggler

    fraggler A Happy & Busy Life

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    I can't help you with the Mojo comparison, but as much as I think the Fulla 2 is a stellar device for $99 (lived with it as my only option for most of a year), the step up with the Modi Multibit and Vali 2 was huge and worth the money to me. This is with an HD650M. I
     

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