Schiit Yggdrasil Less is More (and MIL and OG) Impressions + Measurements

Discussion in 'Digital: DACs, USB converters, decrapifiers' started by purr1n, Sep 9, 2021.

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Should SBAF get a loaner Yggdrasil Less Is More?

  1. Yes, please!

    73.0%
  2. Only if there isn't anything else more interesting

    14.0%
  3. No, I would prefer for a loaner an overpriced planar that looks like it's from House Harkonnen

    7.0%
  4. Save up for something better

    6.0%
  1. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    @purr1n wouldn’t these aspects make it dynamite for solo piano though?
    Also, not sure I’m clear on soundstaging (on speakers) compared to the A2. Are you saying the A2 stages better than the LIM? If so, that could be a dealbreaker for me.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2021
  2. Riotvan

    Riotvan Got lost for three weeks at Delft City Hall

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    Can these new boards drive all outputs at the same time? My A1 does not like that at all, xlr output becomes limp dick. I know A2 had some fixes for it so it's probably fine.

    It's for use with a digital pre where xlr goes to active mains and the 4 rca's go to subs.
     
  3. Cellist88

    Cellist88 Friend

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    @rlow no because piano has limited dynamic range in macrodynamics compared to say a pop song with slam. Also noise floor for the recordings dont help that much with blackground because there is always a noise floor. Yggdrasil is the only dac where i can reliably hear the size of the piano being played. You cant on the soekris, convert, or ifi idsdpro. Youll probably lose all the little vibrations and palpations of the strings and harmonic interactions/resonance, action of the hammer, the pedaling, the touch of the keystroke, the decay of the sound, room sound air palpatations.... These are all very micro things that fall under resolution. They all add up to make the Yggdrasil, the Yggdrasil for me. Take that away and replace with "correct" timbre but more one note and it just wont do. I like the soekris dacs but it was never close in detail.
     
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  4. soekris

    soekris MOT - Soekris Engineering

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    Wonder how a Yggdrasil would be like, with a 24 bit Sign Magnitude discrete R-2R DAC module, shouldn't be a big job if I could get the original module's hardware specs.....
     
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    Last edited: Sep 9, 2021
  5. Beefy

    Beefy Almost "Made"

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    Love the idea. Do you think your FIFO buffered I2S input would translate over to SPI input?
     
  6. soekris

    soekris MOT - Soekris Engineering

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    The Yggdrasil's DSP/Base board already do clock management and jitter reduction. Just take the I2S/SPI signals and process in the FPGA before feeding the resistors networks....
     
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  7. purr1n

    purr1n Super Friend

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    Let's look at filter response.

    Schiit Yggdrasil LESS IS MORE
    White noise -4dbFS 44.1kHz
    upload_2021-9-9_21-9-49.png

    Yggdrasil LESS IS MORE
    Impulse Response 44.1kHz
    upload_2021-9-9_21-16-9.png

    Not unexpected. Schiit has been consistent in favoring steep linear phase filters with narrow passbands. There isn't any slow rolloff that starts early in the audio band.

    Yggdrasil LESS IS MORE
    Frequency Response
    44.1, 48, 88.2, 96, 176.4 and 192kHz
    upload_2021-9-9_21-24-3.png
     
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  8. Psalmanazar

    Psalmanazar Most improved member; A+

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    Agreed on all points. Burl rules. Most people just run it too hot imo.

    Convert 2 still suffers from old school TI/BB lack of detail. OPA2134 and runs the THAT buffers unbalanced. Kinda gross but sounds great. Lacks top end detail.

    Crane Song is the polar opposite.

    Apogee Symphony II SE and the Desktop are cool. The other recent stuff like the discontinued Elements are are still better than MOTU. They make the best ESS DACs imo. They've been going bedroom since the og DUET, that sucked vs the Minis and Rosettas.

    Prism is fun. High detail. Definitely colored. I like it. A lot of audiophiles would kill themselves.
     
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  9. purr1n

    purr1n Super Friend

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    Yggdrasil LESS IS MORE
    -90.31dbFS 1kHz 24-bits 44.1kHz 20kHz bandwidth
    upload_2021-9-9_21-54-54.png

    Note linear scale
    upload_2021-9-9_21-55-42.png


    Yggdrasil LESS IS MORE
    -90.31dbFS 16-bits 44.1kHz 20kHz bandwidth
    upload_2021-9-9_21-58-7.png

    Note the above is normal. At -90dbFS, we are flipping the last bit, which we can clearly make out. The 16-bit signal is not being dithered.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2021
  10. purr1n

    purr1n Super Friend

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    Agreed with @Cellist88, but only if you are a resolution whore. The piano is perhaps the most complex instrument with a crazy incredible frequency range. Depending upon how it's mic'd, you may miss some stuff. There isn't a huge difference, but the difference is there is you have decent gear.

    As for soundstage, I didn't think there was difference - well except for A2/OG better able to capture ambient decay trails a bit better.
     
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  11. purr1n

    purr1n Super Friend

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    Somebody asked about simultaneous outputs since A1/GS and A2/OG to lesser extent will have trouble simultaneously driving parallel loads or even a single very difficult load. The reason is that the OG's SE output is summed from the BAL outputs. The BAL outputs prefer higher impedance loads, so when they are asked to deliver more than they want, the SE performance declines. I know a few folks had trouble driving EC amps with 600-ohm pro-style input transformers with the A1/GS. Not so here. However, I do think the SE outputs that bypass any kind of input transformer into SE gear sounds better than the BAL outputs.

    This doesn't appear to be the case here. Below is the Yggdrasil LIM driving both Magni 3+ from SE and a difficult 600-ohm load.

    Schiit Yggdrasil LESS IS MORE
    1kHz 0dbFS BAL outputs no dither 24-bits 48kHz 600ohm load -and- Magni 3+ as SE load simultaneously
    upload_2021-9-9_22-55-3.png

    Same distortion profile / THD as driving 200k ohm load. However the voltage does go down to 3.2Vrms, hence a slight rise in the noise floor.
     
  12. purr1n

    purr1n Super Friend

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    Finally, SE output into typical headamps or preamps.

    Schiit Yggdrasil LESS IS MORE
    1kHz 0dbFS BAL outputs no dither 24-bits 48kHz 100k ohm load
    (Note 0dbFS = 4V output, SE only has 2Vrms output)
    upload_2021-9-9_23-3-4.png

    As expected, a bit more AC noise, and slightly higher even harmonics.
     
  13. Cellist88

    Cellist88 Friend

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    I feel less is more will probably be better for movies. Can already imagine the opening of blade runner 2049 with the upgraded bass articulation, clarity and slam, with better blackground, though it is downmixing and not atmos overhead.
     
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  14. Riotvan

    Riotvan Got lost for three weeks at Delft City Hall

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    Thanks for testing this out! Not worried about the voltage drop at all.
    This could really simplify my setup, one less dac and no worries about syncing them up. Just need to work out the crossover in analog.
     
  15. Baten

    Baten Friend

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    So, perfect 16-bit reproduction with its 16-bit DAC chip. Looks extremely nice, God damn I might need to buy my first Yggdrasil. I love 16-bit DACs, I've always loved TDA1541A-like sound (think Audial etc). I'm guess-timating this will be reminiscent and at least as good.

    Only one question, weren't there rumors schiit were gonna make a NOS-feature DAC? I was waiting for that. This is not it?
     
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  16. leafy

    leafy Acquaintance

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    @purr1n What's your thoughs on the LIM vs GS then?
     
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  17. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    Maybe LIM might be an answer to those folks who always found Schiit DACs too sharp/incisive?

    There have been a number of folks who never seemed to agree with Yggdrasil or Gungnir Multibit and preferred NOS like Metrum, or smoother DACs like PS Audio Directstream, etc. I wonder if LIM would suit them better than previous Schiit MB DACs?
     
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  18. EagleWings

    EagleWings Friend

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    Yes, I am also curious about the extent of treble smoothness on the LIM. I find even the Bifrost2 to be edgy and strident in the lower treble. If the LIM is free of this issue, it will be a solid option for treble sensitive folks such as myself.
     
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  19. Pancakes

    Pancakes Friend

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  20. purr1n

    purr1n Super Friend

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    It's been a while since I've heard the GS, so take with a grain of salt, but also keep in mind that I tend to have a pretty good audio memory. Note =, <=, and < which denotes significance of difference.

    The LIM is probably about on the same level with respect to retrieval of low level information. None of these DACs are slouches in this regard. It's only a matter of really good to even betterer than really good to amazeballs.

    Plankton:
    Goes like this: Gungnir A1 = Bifrost 2 <= LIM = Yggdrasil GS/A1 <= Gungnir A2 < Yggdrasil A2/OG

    For "blackground" and clarity:
    Note this is with BAL
    Gungnir A1 = Yggdrasil A1/GS < Gungnir A2 = Yggdrasil A2/OG < Bifrost 2 <= LIM <= MIL

    Harmonic richness (throughout entire range, not to be confused with outright warmth)
    Yggdrasil A1/GS = Gungnir A1 < LIM <= Gungnir A2 <= Bifrost 2 = Yggdrasil A2/OG

    GS and MIL may be the most neutral of the bunch. LIM does have the best treble timbre and most liquid, but it's also more muted on the top end. GS always had prickly highs, that largely goes away after three weeks warm-up, but it's always slightly there in some way or other. MIL is like this too (not enough time with it yet to really say with greater certainty). LIM just doesn't have this. Timbre just sounds very normal. That is unexcitingly normal - in a good way. (Read more below on this).

    LIM may be the most liquid sounding of the Schiit multibit DACs to date (honorable mention to Modi MB actually). However I would not say that it's not incisive. All the multibit Schiit DACs are fairly incisive. I think that's part of their sound (e.g., always steep linear phase filters). It's really hard to describe this. the LIM is very unassuming 90% of the time. It's just that 10% of the time with any track I'm listening to, it does some cool stuff that catches you off guard. I probably would have dismissed the LIM if I were 25 years younger. I think it's a matter of me getting older and really grasping that there ain't no exciting times if there weren't any boring times. The yin and yang thing.

    It's like this: when I worked for this lobbyist group, I got to fly around the world internationally business class. I mean, I got a bed on international flights, and got to hang out in the back of the plane with unlimited bourbon, whiskey and chocolates while shooting the shit with the flight attendants, arab sheikhs, and military/aerospace consultants from the UK who more or less confided in me that they wouldn't mind at all if the British Royal Family were strung up and hanged, Texan oil guys who were trying to strike deals in the middle east, etc. Heck, I even saw Ed Sheeran right under my hotel window as he arrived for a big event. (LOL, I was a dumbass and didn't know who he was or how fancy my accommodations were at Leicester Square - all travel was handled by the travel agency I was required to use.).

    Anyway, what I'm saying is that fun stuff gets old - really quick. In less than a year, I was begging my co-worker: hey do you want to go to Scotland, Seoul, Singapore, Xiamen, Bangalore, Mumbai, etc. No, really, I DO NOT WANT TO GO. (I mostly took NYC and London, my two favorite spots). Even today, I have zero desire to visit where most Americans want to visit in the EU: Paris, Rome, Barcelona, etc. I'm happy with NYC and on occasion, the UK (maybe Manchester or Cardiff next time).

    This is where I am in DACs. The LIM still has pretty special sound, but it's not the grand tour of the major EU cities. For that, get the A2/OG.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 11, 2021

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