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Schiit Designed For The Real World

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  #61  
Old 08-26-2020, 03:56 PM
alpha60 alpha60 is offline
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Would like to add my experience with the Freya+ w/ standard tubes.

Ordered around June, had a long wait until early August (related to COVID parts issues i understand). So, been listening for about a month.

The setup is an ELAC Miracord 50 (on sale $420), JBL 305P MKII powered monitors ($280 pair), the Freya+ (list), and Blue Jean Cables LC-1 RCA + balanced XLR cables (<$150 all in).

Schiit was recommended by an SF-based friend who is deep in headphones. I liked their approach of compact, well-made products with a high sound quality to budget ratio. Seemed to me that the company found a good balance of small shop attention to detail and actual usability, and a good sense of humor.

I had considered other preamp/cable combos, a more simple Schiit preamp with unbalanced cables to go with the JBL's and Elac I already owned. But at the recommendation of Schiit, went with the balanced setup (aimed at the JBLs). They recommended Blue Jean cables.

I'm super happy with the sound, especially @ this budget. Impressive sound stage, clarity at volume, and range. It's simple to use, takes up very little space. The build quality seems quite high, the unit is gorgeous, the orange glow is soothing. The remote is pretty awesome, weighty and simple. It was a great surprise to realize its magnetic. The relay click of the volume is alien, and kinda cool. The Freya runs very hot, to the point i decided to isolate it from the wooden chest where it stands.

The system handles jazz, vocal, and the limited classical/opera I have tried quite well. Much of the electronic side of rock it handles well also - like Massive Attack's Mezzanine and LCD's Sound of Silver. Maggot Brain is quite nice, as are various steely dan's and such.

The system strains a bit with the heaviest parts of Dark Side and Wish You Were Here (180 gram re-releases) - when distorted guitar meets powerful low end, the mid-high's seem to get muddled (or dare i ask if the recordings aren't as good as we'd like to think they are?) At the same time, it handles GY!BE beautifully, as well as John Spencer BE's Orange oddly well.

This new compact setup is a departure from my previous hifi adventures. before, i had a home theater thing with CD as the primary music source. it was big and much more expensive (Roksan 5 channel amp, preamp and DVD player, Mission dual driver floor standing with upgraded internal wiring + surround + 20" sub, and some kinda silly-expensive cables and granite under the speakers - laughing at myself right now).

This is a different beast altogether. The enjoyment level is no lower than previous. Even a smart phone source is workable. And it's very nice to know that i can put this system into boxes in <10 minutes, carry it all to the car myself, and still have room for a keg in the trunk. I haven't tried it, but i'm pretty sure this system could run a kickass 30-50 person party.

Schitt's tech Q&A has been super helpful and responsive. Many thanks to Daniel. They have a customer service person who seems to be battling outrage (work by day, molotovs by night?) but, OK Karen.

Hope this post is a plus to Schiit as a company, and potential customers. Thanks.
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  #62  
Old 10-23-2020, 05:25 PM
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McMusicman McMusicman is offline
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A compliment to the designers of the Freya Plus. Running one with KenRad JAN VT231 NOS Tubes & Melz 1578 in front of a Bryston 4B3 with Magnepan 1.7. Completely black quiet with no hiss, even when my ears are 4" from the panels. All the adjectives I can think of seem cliché these days so I will pass along the best compliment one can receive. A new friend came over and saw my system and asked if I minded if he could listen. He then explained that he has a few albums of his own on Qobuz and I had no idea he even enjoyed music. I replied, "Sure, have a seat in the chair". He was so blown away by the sound of his own music that he asked if he could come over the next day with the demo tracks from his sound engineer to approve versions for three new songs. His comment: "My home stereo system is better than 98% of what is found in most households but yours is Other Worldly." Since I know no other Audiophiles in my area, this outside review was greatly appreciated from a man who creates and plays music. Combining the right tubes with the Freya Plus in a neutral and resolving system will make the magic happen. I was reluctant to purchase the Freya Plus but the ability to leave everything on and put tubes in stand by mode carried the day. Now, after listening for 10 months, I will not part with it. Coupled with the right components and given the right set of tubes it will outshine preamps costing multiples of the price.
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  #63  
Old 10-23-2020, 05:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McMusicman View Post
A compliment to the designers of the Freya Plus. Running one with KenRad JAN VT231 NOS Tubes & Melz 1578 in front of a Bryston 4B3 with Magnepan 1.7. Completely black quiet with no hiss, even when my ears are 4" from the panels. All the adjectives I can think of seem cliché these days so I will pass along the best compliment one can receive. A new friend came over and saw my system and asked if I minded if he could listen. He then explained that he has a few albums of his own on Qobuz and I had no idea he even enjoyed music. I replied, "Sure, have a seat in the chair". He was so blown away by the sound of his own music that he asked if he could come over the next day with the demo tracks from his sound engineer to approve versions for three new songs. His comment: "My home stereo system is better than 98% of what is found in most households but yours is Other Worldly." Since I know no other Audiophiles in my area, this outside review was greatly appreciated from a man who creates and plays music. Combining the right tubes with the Freya Plus in a neutral and resolving system will make the magic happen. I was reluctant to purchase the Freya Plus but the ability to leave everything on and put tubes in stand by mode carried the day. Now, after listening for 10 months, I will not part with it. Coupled with the right components and given the right set of tubes it will outshine preamps costing multiples of the price.
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  #64  
Old 11-24-2020, 03:40 PM
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Samac Samac is offline
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Originally Posted by Samac View Post

And you know what, that’s what I’m going to do; Get the Bifrost 2 and Vidar.


Scott
Well, at the time I thought that was the route I was going to take. I’m still very pleased with the Freya S. I hesitated on the Vidar because even in mono I had doubts they would be all the power I would need.

I was hoping Schiit was going to release a more powerful amp this year. Since that didn’t happen I decided to go for the amp I’ve been desiring for the past five years: Rotel RB-1590.

Should be in this week or early next week. Well, very excited and wanted to conclude this conversation on my amp quest.

The Bifrost is still a leading contender when I pursue a new dac. I look forward to seeing what future amps Schiit will offer.

Cheers,

Scott
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Last edited by Samac; 11-24-2020 at 05:52 PM.
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