Jump to content
IGNORED

The best DAC you never heard is now a production reality


Recommended Posts

Yggdrasil is still a couple of weeks out, I hear. I also hear that it's pretty great. I have a few pics, but at this point, only plans to get one.

 

I will offer that I'm not entirely sure how a non-high-res DAC (or one with suspect capabilities) will fare with the technorati (Yggy is 20-bit, innit?).

 

IMO, and FWIW, it always comes down to the implementation. I have a 16-bit DAC that is absolutely stellar, and for streaming TIDAL, it's outstanding.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd take rampant speculation over on DIYaudio with a very large grain of salt....

 

Yggdrasil is still a couple of weeks out, I hear. I also hear that it's pretty great. I have a few pics, but at this point, only plans to get one.

 

I will offer that I'm not entirely sure how a non-high-res DAC (or one with suspect capabilities) will fare with the technorati (Yggy is 20-bit, innit?).

 

IMO, and FWIW, it always comes down to the implementation. I have a 16-bit DAC that is absolutely stellar, and for streaming TIDAL, it's outstanding.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

20 bits doesn't mean it's not high res, it means it's honest about the dynamic range that can be produced with today's tech at that price point. At between 20 and 21 bits, you're into the thermal noise of the vast majority of today's electronics.

One never knows, do one? - Fats Waller

The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. - Einstein

Computer, Audirvana -> optical to EtherREGEN -> microRendu -> USPCB -> ISO Regen -> USPCB -> Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 DAC -> Spectral DMC-12 & DMA-150 -> Vandersteen 3A Signature.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sure the Schiit Yggdrasil will be a great DAC for the money. But I find some of the marketing claims a little difficult to stomach. Here's one from Jason Stoppard:

 

"What we're trying to do, and what we will shortly introduce, is a DAC that is bitperfect from input to output, using the only closed-form digital filter and multibit DACs. This may be an insane goal in today's world, but, in our philosophy, "as true to the source as possible" starts with retaining the original samples. And that's what we'll do. It's up to you to decide if it's sonically meaningful, though..."

 

The Phasure NOS1 DAC (fed by a signal filtered/upsampled in XXHighEnd beforehand) has been capable of this for nearly 5 years now. In its latest NOS1"a" guise, it's seriously, seriously good.

 

I've never liked the sound of any delta-sigma DAC I've ever heard, so I do applaud Schiit's approach.

 

Mani.

 

So are you saying its nothing but a Schiit stack?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

So are you saying its nothing but a Schiit stack?

 

I agree with Mani about the marketing claim. Phasure NOS1 has used a closed-form digital filter and multi bit DACs for a time now. Okay, the closed-form filter runs in a PC and not the DAC, but Schiit didn't delineate where the filter runs. It's hard, if not impossible, for these companies to keep track of everything that has been and is in the world of DACs IMO, but they are a small company and sometimes you just take those risks to drive sales. Schiit has built a pretty good rep for high value/low cost components and early reviews seem encouraging so I am betting its going to sound pretty good. We shall hear and hopefully pretty soon if the schiit is in the pudding.

Mac Mini / Pure Music > Firewire & USB > Metric Halo LIO-8 > Hypex NCORE 400 > Geddes Abbey Speakers > Rythmik Servo & Geddes Band Pass Subs // DH Labs Cables, HRS MXR Isolation Rack, PurePower 2000, Elgar 6006B

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with Mani about the marketing claim. Phasure NOS1 has used a closed-form digital filter and multi bit DACs for a time now. Okay, the closed-form filter runs in a PC and not the DAC, but Schiit didn't delineate where the filter runs. It's hard, if not impossible, for these companies to keep track of everything that has been and is in the world of DACs IMO, but they are a small company and sometimes you just take those risks to drive sales. Schiit has built a pretty good rep for high value/low cost components and early reviews seem encouraging so I am betting its going to sound pretty good. We shall hear and hopefully pretty soon if the schiit is in the pudding.

 

Yes!

 

As much as I've enjoyed reading Jason's blog on Head Fi, he is a writer after all and does it very well. Oh, his marketing company does well too. As I mentioned above, I'd want to see measurements for sure. 'til then, just a bunch of talk.

W10 NUC i7 (Gen 10) > Roon (Audiolense FIR) > Motu UltraLite mk5 > (4) Hypex NCore NC502MP > JBL M2 Master Reference +4 subs

 

Watch my Podcast https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXMw_bZWBMtRWNJQfTJ38kA/videos

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I agree with Mani about the marketing claim. Phasure NOS1 has used a closed-form digital filter and multi bit DACs for a time now. Okay, the closed-form filter runs in a PC and not the DAC, but Schiit didn't delineate where the filter runs.

 

What does "closed form" mean in this context?

 

It's hard, if not impossible, for these companies to keep track of everything that has been and is in the world of DACs IMO, but they are a small company and sometimes you just take those risks to drive sales. Schiit has built a pretty good rep for high value/low cost components and early reviews seem encouraging so I am betting its going to sound pretty good. We shall hear and hopefully pretty soon if the schiit is in the pudding.

 

It's Mike Moffat, who pretty well invented the DAC as a separate component, so I'm definitely interested in whether they can live up to the hype.

One never knows, do one? - Fats Waller

The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. - Einstein

Computer, Audirvana -> optical to EtherREGEN -> microRendu -> USPCB -> ISO Regen -> USPCB -> Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 DAC -> Spectral DMC-12 & DMA-150 -> Vandersteen 3A Signature.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What does "closed form" mean in this context?

 

Great question. I think this is the root of the issue. "Closed form digital filter" does not seem to have a universally accepted definition. I read through several of the Schiit threads and this is the only pseudo-definition of that term that I found and it was from Jason Stoddard.

 

"I'd love to see some examples of other audio digital filters with closed-form solutions (that is, that preserve the original samples, and act as a true interpolator.) As far as I know, and as far as Mike knows, there aren't any, except our algorithm."

 

Again back to Phasure, the above definition sounds like what Peter St touts as a capability of Arc Prediction in his XXHighEnd software.

Mac Mini / Pure Music > Firewire & USB > Metric Halo LIO-8 > Hypex NCORE 400 > Geddes Abbey Speakers > Rythmik Servo & Geddes Band Pass Subs // DH Labs Cables, HRS MXR Isolation Rack, PurePower 2000, Elgar 6006B

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great question. I think this is the root of the issue. "Closed form digital filter" does not seem to have a universally accepted definition. I read through several of the Schiit threads and this is the only pseudo-definition of that term that I found and it was from Jason Stoddard.

 

"I'd love to see some examples of other audio digital filters with closed-form solutions (that is, that preserve the original samples, and act as a true interpolator.) As far as I know, and as far as Mike knows, there aren't any, except our algorithm."

 

Again back to Phasure, the above definition sounds like what Peter St touts as a capability of Arc Prediction in his XXHighEnd software.

 

Apologies in advance, because after your very nice reply to my question, I'm going to disagree after doing some further research (which I probably should have done before asking). I think Schiit is talking about the mathematical definition, which is not completely precise, but the Wikipedia page (Closed-form expression - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) is instructive, especially the table under "Comparison of Different Classes of Expressions." Note that an infinite series (for example, a Fourier series) is *not* considered closed form.

 

I can think of (at least) two ways to take what Schiit is claiming. The first (and something they've hinted at) is that they've gotten around the problem with Fourier and other infinite series of what are called "conjugate variables." When you optimize for one of the conjugate variables (in digital audio filters, time domain performance), the other conjugate variable (in digital audio filters, frequency domain performance) becomes less optimized. Thus the tradeoff between aliasing (frequency domain) and ringing (time domain). The largest claim Schiit could be making is that they have found a way, uniquely among everyone who's ever designed a digital filter, to get behavior in both domains correct at once.

 

I'm not sure that's possible, and so I'm wondering whether they're teasing the Big Claim, while what their "closed form" solution actually does is something merely difficult rather than impossible, like provide nicely behaved (possibly reversible, therefore lossless?) calculations for their interpolated and original-sample results.

 

Just speculating and blathering here, 'cause they've sure got me curious....

One never knows, do one? - Fats Waller

The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. - Einstein

Computer, Audirvana -> optical to EtherREGEN -> microRendu -> USPCB -> ISO Regen -> USPCB -> Pro-Ject Pre Box S2 DAC -> Spectral DMC-12 & DMA-150 -> Vandersteen 3A Signature.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

from Jud:

I'm not sure that's possible, and so I'm wondering whether they're teasing the Big Claim, while what their "closed form" solution actually does is something merely difficult rather than impossible, like provide nicely behaved (possibly reversible, therefore lossless?) calculations for their interpolated and original-sample results.

 

that is exactly what I understood after reading their blogs, posts, etc.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Mike's latest post in the Head-Fi thread points to the Yggy being on the website, complete with the option to add it to your cart, early next week.

 

New Schiit! Ragnarok and Yggdrasil - Page 359

 

Those who've been following the HF threads will know there was a storm-in-a-teacup when Mike confirmed that he keeps his source gear on all the time and that is their recommendation for the Yggdrasil - personally, I would have thought that anyone prepared to shell out $2300 plus shipping for a 35lb DAC might be willing to accept that as a given, but it sent a few into a tizzy.

 

Note that the first batch will be down on the projected 250 units - I've made no secret from the start of this thread that I believe that first batch will disappear faster than Schiit can load them into cartons for delivery. I have no objection to the sticker, but I do object to the fact that it would cost me something in the vicinity of 4K USD delivered. If you're in the CONUS and someone you know gets their hands on one of these, I think you owe it to yourself to try to get some time with it. Even if the hype train has been a big part of this product's release, look at the prices people are still asking for Theta R2R DACs from the 90s ......

Just one more headphone and I know I can kick this nasty little habit !

Link to comment
Share on other sites

... I have a 16-bit DAC that is absolutely stellar

.....

 

Hi may i ask you which dac is ? i am trying to move to a multibit dac. I am presently using a apogee rosetta 200 that is sigma-delta.

Not bad but a little flat ... i would like something more exuberant ... more exciting even if less precise.

Thanks a lot, gino

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yggdrasil is still a couple of weeks out, I hear. I also hear that it's pretty great. I have a few pics, but at this point, only plans to get one.

 

I will offer that I'm not entirely sure how a non-high-res DAC (or one with suspect capabilities) will fare with the technorati (Yggy is 20-bit, innit?).

 

IMO, and FWIW, it always comes down to the implementation. I have a 16-bit DAC that is absolutely stellar, and for streaming TIDAL, it's outstanding.

 

Scot, your link takes us to the Border Patrol site, but they no longer list any source products. Is it the TDA1543 NOS DAC ?

 

https://www.facebook.com/pages/BorderPatrol-Audio-Electronics/407211206002193

Just one more headphone and I know I can kick this nasty little habit !

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Where are the posted measurements?

 

Schiit Audio, Headphone amps and DACs made in USA.

 

That's all you get-the specs page. What were you expecting?

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The FAQ section is hilarious! :)

For every one of their products. Good copywriting.

 

The product does sound intriguing, and Schiit have a good track record for value. It will be interesting to see if this turns out to be "just another ~$2500 DAC" or something that challenges much more expensive units.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Schiit Audio, Headphone amps and DACs made in USA.

 

That's all you get-the specs page. What were you expecting?

 

AP or dScope measurements would be "proper".

W10 NUC i7 (Gen 10) > Roon (Audiolense FIR) > Motu UltraLite mk5 > (4) Hypex NCore NC502MP > JBL M2 Master Reference +4 subs

 

Watch my Podcast https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXMw_bZWBMtRWNJQfTJ38kA/videos

Link to comment
Share on other sites

For every one of their products. Good copywriting.

 

The product does sound intriguing, and Schiit have a good track record for value. It will be interesting to see if this turns out to be "just another ~$2500 DAC" or something that challenges much more expensive units.

 

I want my yggerschnitzel!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share



×
×
  • Create New...