Schiit Gungnir Multibit impressions

Discussion in 'Digital: DACs, USB converters, decrapifiers' started by Bill-P, Oct 7, 2015.

  1. Darren G

    Darren G Friend

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    Both Jason and MIke seem to have really gotten the importance of listening to the gear they are selling. Does it sound good?

    That written sadly I didn't understand your concern with the SE outputs. The outputs will be less than the balanced outs. There is a good explanation here -

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balanced_audio

    "Though the signal level would not be changed due to nominal level standardization, the maximum output from the differential drivers is twice as much, giving 6 dB extra headroom."

    I don't want to make assumptions here, and may have misunderstood your concern.
     
  2. Darren G

    Darren G Friend

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    Ah I see, so you are writing that the balanced output from your Gungnir (one channel) has a low voltage. Yea that is not right.
     
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  3. schiit

    schiit SchiitHead

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    Doubtful that the Gungnir balanced is compromised if the SE works, since the SE is derived from the balanced outputs. So, the balanced HAS to work if the SE works, unless the connectors are bad (Neutrik = Austrian unlikeliness). Have you swapped cables to ensure it isn't a cable issue?
     
  4. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    Interesting. But yes, I swapped cables and amp channels to make sure it was in the DAC. Wiring or soldering problem on the connector? I still have it here, so I can do more troubleshooting if you have any suggestions.
     
  5. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    It isn't with the level -- the amps I'm using have at least 2V sensitivity for full output, and I adjust the levels as necessary when I switch between balanced and unbalanced. But I didn't do a super careful comparison, just noted it and moved on -- others have noticed it here as well.
     
  6. Darren G

    Darren G Friend

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    @Josh358 No worries, sure you will get it sorted out. Schitt is one of the few good companies left that takes care of customers, good old fashion values, and why I am a fan.

    p.s. As I am sure you know, swapping cables, swapping channels, etc., is the first step to trouble shooting.
     
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  7. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    Heh, yes, first thing I did. I'm tempted to open it up and look inside, but don't want to void the warranty or anything -- customer service told me that since it's still in the trial period, I can return it for an exchange, or I can upgrade to an Yggdrasil and because it's malfunctioning they'll waive the restocking fee. So I'm going to do a triple check now and if that pans out and Jason doesn't have any suggestions, I'll have to decide between the exchange and then getting a Yggdrasil to A/B with it, or just getting the Yggdrasil and relying on my memory of the Gungnir for the comparison. I'd really enjoy A/Bing them but it would cost more.

    Reminds me of the Jack Benny sketch in which a mugger says to him, "Your money or your life," and he can't decide. :)
     
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  8. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    OK, I just measured the outputs of the DAC itself and got this:

    Right (the problematic one):
    1-2 .37 V
    1-3 .64
    2-3 .94
    Unbal .52

    Left:
    1-2 .65
    1-3 .64
    2-3 1.29
    Unbal .59
     
  9. Darren G

    Darren G Friend

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    Understood about cost being an issue. I don't much trust my audio memory except that over a period a few weeks I'll know if some gear annoys me or not (but don't trust myself to call out the differences over a short period of time). What I can write is that once Y2 is warmed up, I've not felt annoyed. I have several pet peeves, violins that sound like chainsaws, cymbals that sound like fuzz, sibilant voices, and there are other instruments as well that I find annoying on some gear after listening for a while. Y2 seems to get all of these right or close enough to right that I enjoy how it sounds (once warmed up, because it sounded dead and lifeless cold out of the box).

    Again haven't heard G2 but trusted ears here say it sounds musical. Either way, I doubt you can go wrong with either DAC.
     
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  10. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    I think you read my mind about my own dislikes, and the reason I'm enjoying the Gungnir so much. I hear a bit of harshness in the midrange, a bit of bite on the attacks -- both of which interestingly I also hear with the closed form filters in HQPlayer -- but that's small change compared to the grating high frequency artifacts in the multibit delta-sigma DAC's I've heard. This is a sound that I can actually enjoy.

    Really, my only doubt about Yggdrasil is whether it will have more or less of that euphony. I recall it as being very detailed and the instruments remarkably palpable, but that of course was on an entirely different system. Like you, I'm not sure I can trust my auditory memory. But I suppose if I have doubts I can always order another Gungnir and compare, since they won't be charging the restocking fee for the defective unit (and I got a refund on the shipping costs since Fedex screwed up and missed their delivery date).
     
  11. AdvanTech

    AdvanTech Friend

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    I believe purr1n said Yggdrasil A2 is a touch softer/more 'organic' than Gungnir Multibit A2. I certainly found it that way.
     
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  12. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    Thanks, I've read similar comments, but there also seem to be a few who think the opposite so I wasn't sure.
     
  13. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    You need to be a bit careful with some of these terms as well, because people have different interpretations of them.

    To me good sounding ‘organic’ comes down to wet vs dry. That being proper attack and decay. Gungnir Multibit A2 has a bit less organic or ‘natural’ attack and decay in that is it a bit too ‘blunt’ for my taste. IOW, a bit too quick in both aspects than what I consider ‘natural’. Picture a square wave with rounded corners. Some people actually refer to this sound as ‘square’ as well.

    Yggdrasil however is more natural in its attack/decay - it’s ‘wetter’ than Gungnir Multibit A2 in that it has a more natural sounding rise and fall - like a perfect sine wave, with a natural smooth response that sounds more like real instruments (in my brain at least). This should not be mistaken however as overly euphonic or ‘soft’ in a smoothed over, syrupy way. There is no warmpoo here. But if you find a ‘wetter’ sound to be more ‘euphonic’ to your ears, then you’ll probably really like it - I definitely do.

    Ironically, Gungnir Multibit A1 actually sounded very similar in this aspect as Yggdrasil A2. And, although I’ve never heard it, apparently Yggdrasil A1 was more dry sounding than the A2, which is one of the reasons people have said that Yggdrasil and Gungnir Multibit swapped sound signatures going from the A1 to the A2 versions.

    Anyhow, I feel like you’re going to love Yggdrasil, but time will tell. Definitely give it the proper break in and warm up time. I ran music through mine right from the beginning and just turned my amp off when I wasn’t listening to it- I figured it would break in faster that way than just keeping it powered on the entire time.
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2019
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  14. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    I think I know what you mean about the attacks, because that's one of the few criticisms I have of the Gungnir -- the notes seem to have what I would personally call by analogy a "square" attack. Almost a little pop to them. And it's that wet but not syrupy quality that I'm after -- detailed, but not exaggerated or discordant.

    I'd originally read the reviews that compared the A1 versions of the DAC's and was actually a bit surprised to find that they'd traded places in this regard, because I hadn't kept up with the thread. But I've since seen quite a few people say what you have.
     
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  15. ColtMrFire

    ColtMrFire Writes better gear impressions than you

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    "wetter"

    Happily enjoying my A1 Gungnir Multibit for this reason.
     
  16. Jinxy245

    Jinxy245 Vegan Puss

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    This is the whole reason I'm torn between sending my D/S in for an upgrade and hunting down a A1 (and selling the D/S separately).
    It gets so confusing for us that haven't had any real experience with either version.
     
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  17. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    Maybe upgrade the D/S, buy the A1, and then sell the one you don't like as much? And report back here on the comparison.

    It looks like I'll be able to compare the A2 version with Yggdrasil after all, I'm told I have 15 days from today to send the Gungnir back for a refund. Which is great since I was really looking forward to doing a comparison. Now if Schiit would only get the pulldown menu working so I could order a black one . . .
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2019
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  18. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    The Yggdrasil came yesterday. First impression -- it's brighter, cleaner, with more solid, palpable imaging -- it's easy to visualize the location of instruments, which wasn't true of the Gungnir. More detail/plankton. It doesn't have the tubey sound of the Gungnir, it's closer to the transparency of the Exasound e38 but without any trace of Sabre glare. I also don't hear nearly as much grain in the midrange. All on 44.1, haven't tried high res yet.

    It's just amazing.

    Caveats: It's only been powered up since 2PM yesterday, and I haven't yet done a level-matched comparison. I bought an AES16e card on Ebay and that should be here today, so I'll be able to feed both DAC's SPIDIF and AES/EBU simultaneously and A/B switch their unbalanced outputs. (Right now, I'm feeding Yggdrasil SPDIF off my Lynx E22). I'll report back in a few days when I've done a more detailed comparison, but for now -- I could see why people love this DAC from the first metaphorical needle drop. It would seem to be exactly what I've been looking for, neither veiled nor afflicted with digititis.
     
  19. allegro

    allegro Friend

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    @Josh358 take notes, let us know how your new Yggdrasil sounds after being powered up for at least a week.
     
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  20. Josh358

    Josh358 Almost "Made"

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    Will do. I should have my new Neo 8 array in by then, too, and they're cleaner and more revealing than the original drivers -- I'm not sure at this point whether some minor midrange grain I hear is due to the drivers, unstabilized Yggdrasil, or recordings (but there's already much less than there was with the Gungnir MB and IIRC less than I heard during the Aegir demo at AXPONA).
     

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