Schiit Ragnarok - aka raggy

Discussion in 'Headphone Amplifiers and Combo (DAC/Amp) Units' started by JoshMorr, May 4, 2016.

  1. JoshMorr

    JoshMorr Friend

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    Hey, I've looked though all the amplifier posts and didn't see anything about Schiit's top of the line amp. I've read Jason say this is more or less the best headphone amp he can build regardless of cost. I have also seen many people love and keep them, while others are quick to sell and pass along.

    Specifically what does this amp sound like - super fast, clean and neutral? Obviously won't have same charastics of tube amps, and from what I gathered it wasn't among the top amps at Tyll's big sound, but is it that far off? Was all of this discussed on Chang and I missed out?
     
  2. Armaegis

    Armaegis Friend

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    It sounds like a really nice typewritter... :cool:
     
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  3. Dr. Higgs

    Dr. Higgs Boson - Member

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    Yeah, that's my favorite part :p

    It's not the best amp I've ever heard (that title would go to an EC 2A3 MKIV), but I like it a ton for it's versatility. It doesn't seem to get any headphones up to 100% potential, but can get anything you throw at it pretty close (assuming you're using the balanced outputs, the SE output is okay but be mindful of the higher output impedance). It is fast, clean, and neutral to my ear, but it seems like it's missing that bit of "air", resolution, and vivid soundstage that good tube amps can offer.
     
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  4. JoshMorr

    JoshMorr Friend

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    I did find this thread on Chang and the first 6 pages had a lot of anticipation and positive first reactions. I Feel a bit like an archaeologist looking back at society thousands of years ago (or 18 months ago). After the 6th page the thread wouldn't load anymore - adds to mystery/suspense, but I was surprised to hear Marv's initial reactions, very favorable. Some of my fav's:

    "Like ice after a zamboni", "This is the most seductive solid-state amp I've ever heard", "There are tube like qualities with Rag. Smoothness, resolution, clarity, plankton", "The Ragnarok is truly an end-game amp", "the beauty of the Rag's treble is its honesty without adding anything"

    I know these are supposed to be taken with a grain of salt as they were early impressions and I am curious how things proceeded after page 6. I also know that it blew away expectations as a earlier pre production model sucked balls.

    I'm intrigued - off to the used market to see what kind of deal I can find. From what I've read here BW and this are neck and neck with BW edging out with better tone and slightly more precise detail.

    P.S. found this gem that I think should be revived:
    BWA_zpsec170f9f.jpg
     
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  5. skank

    skank Friend

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    I think the relay clicks heard during volume changes were a little bothersome to some users.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2016
  6. Malabargold

    Malabargold Flipper

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    Can anyone comment that has used the Rag with HE-6? It can deliver 100 watts through its balanced headphone out, however I can't seem to find any impressions of the combo. Maybe vintage speaker amps in the same price range are that much better?
     
  7. 3X0

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  8. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    I sell everything cheap though. Used stuff should be 40-60% of retail. One thing that took me back on HF was how much people were asking for used stuff. Didn't really want to sell it (because now I need a preamp), but needed funds to pay for a turntable upgrade.
     
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  9. Armaegis

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    I've heard it.
    Sounds good.
    Still prefer my Bryston 2B.
     
  10. Malabargold

    Malabargold Flipper

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    Good to know, that's a pretty large price difference as well.
     
  11. SpaceLaser

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    Heard it a few times with the Yiggy. I found it a bit harsh in the lower treble actually with some headphones (HD600 / 800 especially). Not like Auralic/O2 burn your ears away harsh, but not my first choice for those headphones.
     
  12. Artasia

    Artasia Friend

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    Several people on the HE-6 thread on HF who have heard it through the Rag have said, while great for other planars, the Rag is not an ideal pairing with the HE-6 compared to cheaper or equally priced speaker amps.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2016
  13. Chris F

    Chris F Boyz 4 Now Fanatic - Friend

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    I think what you may have been hearing was USB PHY/power noise affecting the output of Yggdrasil which is then accurately passed on by Ragnarok.

    I base this on two things:
    a) The Intona isolator significantly improved treble quality/smoothness when used with my Yggdrasil
    b) There is no treble harshness when using my turntable

    It's also possible the Yggdrasil was still reaching thermal equilibrium. It takes a long time to get back to best sound from cold and will sound somewhat edgy while doing so.

    Disregard if you weren't using USB input to Yggdrasil of course.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2016
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  14. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Depends.

    I've preferred the Rag to a lot of more expensive integrated speaker amps with the HE-6 including @ohhgourami's old Krell that he had a few years ago. Ideal pairing could mean a lot of things: tonal response, microdetail, dynamics, headstage, etc. and source also plays a crucial role. Randos need to be more specific in terms of how their cheaper or equally priced speaker amps are more "ideal", what sources they are running, and what HE-6 mods they are using.

    With a stock HE-6 and a typical chi-fi DAC, I'd take a fuzzy sounding cheap Class D amp over the Rag too. The other thing I found was that the Rag was super sensitive to quality of AC mains, being glary and bright sounding in bad environments, probably because of its weirdo power transformer with the zillion secondaries for the cybertronian output circuit.
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2016
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  15. Malabargold

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    Really, what source did you use with your Rag? Can you go into more specifics? Asking because I my top choice right now is the Krell 400ix and you saying you preferred the Rag makes me want to rethink everything.
     
  16. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    I don't remember which amp @ohhgourami had before his current Krell behemoth, but suffice to say that this Krell integrated amp was heralded as the "bestest" for the HE-6 on HF and the train sort of took off from there. It was also quite expensive at a few grand. So it might have been the 400. Well, this amp got dusted by a flea powered tube amp (EC 445) during direct comparisons, especially (and embarrassingly enough for solid-state) in the bass department with the HE-6. Basically this lower end Krell made fart fart fart sounds instead of bass on the Daft Punk Random Access Memories test.

    I have used only used Yggdrasil, SFD-1, and turntables with the Rag. The Rag was always plugged into a Belkin power conditioner.
     
  17. Malabargold

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    Interesting, thanks for the info. Im pretty sure he told me that he had the 400xi before he upgraded to his big Krell.
     
  18. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Oh yeah, DO NOT GET the Krell400xi then for the HE-6. Jason asked me to make no mention that it was a POS on CS that it made fart fart sounds, at least not until he sold it off on HF. It does do a few things better than Rag, but fart fart bass on Lose Yourself to Dance is a total showstopper issue.
     
  19. Malabargold

    Malabargold Flipper

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    Well, you just saved me 1.5k+ :p
     
  20. SpaceLaser

    SpaceLaser Friend

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    I don't remember what input it was going through, but I'll keep that in mind mind the next audition. It was also in a meet, so the power may not have been top quality.....
     

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