Schiit Aegir Power Amp Impressions

Discussion in 'Power Amps' started by rlow, Oct 16, 2018.

  1. moriya

    moriya Rando

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2020
    Likes Received:
    28
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    13
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Has anyone tried vertically biamping 2 Aegirs? I know people have talked about horizontal with Vidar on the bass and Aegir on the highs, but seems like if what you're after is "stereo Aegir, but more" vertical biamping would get you 2x the power without the change in sound signature that happens when you put it in differential mode, which might be enough for speakers on the borderline. Could be totally wrong though (haven't tried it).
     
  2. yotacowboy

    yotacowboy McRibs Kind of Guy

    Friend
    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2016
    Likes Received:
    4,276
    Dislikes Received:
    12
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    NOVA
    Home Page:
    It's on my list of things to do now that I'm running bi-wired speaker cables.

    Gotta save some projects for the second wave, lol.
     
  3. parmiep61

    parmiep61 Rando

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2020
    Likes Received:
    15
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    New York
    Hi everyone, had a question for the group after much reading on this forum. So I'm familiar with the Schiit Amp thunderdome post, and I've read a great deal of the Aegir and Vidar threads but still had a question I was stuck on. From what I've seen, there's a preference for the Aegir over the Vidar, and there's debate over stereo Aegir or mono Aegirs as the optimal path for sound quality. I'm looking to run LS50s with a Freya + and a Gungnir Multibit, and wondering what the right amp combo for me is:

    • Stereo Vidar (as stereo Aegir seems to be a bad option for LS50s due to their inefficiency unless I've misunderstood what I've read)
    • Mono Aegir or Vidars - I fully appreciate that mono Vidars might be overkill for this system, but I'd be curious to hear impressions of those who have heard both mono Aegir and Vidars for comparison. Given that the stereo Vidar was the loser of the thudnerdome thread, was wondering if it made a difference to have it as a mono.
    What do you guys think?
     
  4. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2017
    Likes Received:
    5,183
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Canada
    @parmiep61, you should please also read the banner at the top of the page that says “New members read this and introduce yourself before your first post”. There are 2 links in there you should follow.

    Once you’ve done that, a few things:

    1. How far away do you sit from the LS50s?
    2. What kind of volume do you generally listen at?
    3. What kind of music are you into?
    4. What amp do you have now, and what are you trying to achieve with the new amps and the LS50s?
     
    purr1n likes this.
  5. parmiep61

    parmiep61 Rando

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2020
    Likes Received:
    15
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    New York
    Appreciate you calling that out, my apologies for stepping in it with my first post. Consider the rules read and I've rectified the lack of an introductory post. Here's hoping for no more (or at least fewer!) missteps.

    To your questions:

    1. About 5-6 feet away, though unfortunately at about a 45 degree angle due to the layout of my apartment and their needing to be on top of a bookshelf. Part of the reason I'm planning for the KEFs is because of their supposed off-axis performance, and because I won't be too far from them.
    2. It depends on the time of day. I'm fortunate that my living room wall isn't shared with anyone, but I still try to be considerate at night - so loud during the day and quieter at night. Ultimately, I love a full sound with some bass to it, but also don't need the room to shake and make trouble for me with my neighbors.
    3. A wide range, though mostly electronic/Indie with some rock thrown in (things like Flume, Royksopp, Air, Tame Impala, Glass Animals, Queens of the Stone Age, etc.), though I'm keen to get more into Jazz.
    4. Currently amp-less in this room. I'm on a Sonos setup with a Playbar, two Play:1s and a Sonos Sub. I'm pleased with the Sonos setup for my television watching, but I know from my Dad's own passion for music and gear that there's a whole bigger and better world of sound that I haven't explored. Ultimately, I'd like to have a sound system that really brings out the detail of the music I'm listening to and that is quality for the money I'm willing to spend. Everything I've read about the KEFs is that they expose weak links in your system and reward you for quality in said system. I know I likely don't have to spend as much to achieve what I'm outlining here and that it's usually best to go test things out in person, but with COVID making things the way they are, I'm comfortable taking a leap of faith based on the glowing reviews I've seen of the various components, and how they play together.
     
  6. Vtory

    Vtory Illogical Spock

    Friend MZR
    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2016
    Likes Received:
    6,301
    Dislikes Received:
    39
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Greater Philadelphia Area, PA
    @parmiep61

    Either dual vidars or aegirs are not cheap by any means. So, my suggestion is not to consider such routes unless you are 100% certain about the speakers. I am saying this because LS50 (to me) inherently has lots of issues that can't be fixed by amps (rather coaxial and/or x-over design issues), which is largely independent from its impedance behavior.

    Single vidar is always safer way to go when we don't have a clear idea about what we do.
     
  7. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2017
    Likes Received:
    5,183
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Canada
    ^ was just typing up pretty much the same thing. Agree 100% with @Vtory. Vidar is a safer bet. Plus non optimal speaker positioning and your newness to the hobby, Aegir not the right choice here.

    And I COMPLETELY agree about making sure you know the LS50s are going to be right for you before committing a ton of money on amps. The LS50s were my first venture back into hifi a number of years ago and I realized they were not for me after cycling through 4 different amps and not being happy.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2020
  8. parmiep61

    parmiep61 Rando

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2020
    Likes Received:
    15
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    New York
    I appreciate the insight @Vtory and @rlow, that makes sense to me.

    Admittedly I am nervous about my speaker choice, mainly because there are so many options in the price range and varying levels of experiences to pull from on the internet. I had looked into Revel Concerta 2 M16s, KEF Q150/350s, the Ascend Sierra 2s and the LS50s and it seemed like they'd be the best for me given what I'm working with spatially and their generally positive reviews/experiences from others. Having said that, definitely a leap of faith (and a reliance on Crutchfield's excellent reputation for customer service and returns in the event I'm dissatisfied).

    I guess in my head I thought I'd build out the system I wanted and figure out the speakers that worked best for it given I'm not tied to anything right now, but maybe that's a backwards way of looking at it.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2020
    Regular Petey likes this.
  9. Senorx12562

    Senorx12562 Case of the mondays

    Friend
    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2015
    Likes Received:
    2,765
    Dislikes Received:
    52
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Limbo
    Based on your description, I'm honestly not sure you wouldn't be better off either staying with what you have or buying something really cheap until you have a little better situation regarding placement. Getting decent sound 45 degrees off axis is pretty unlikely no matter what you buy or use.

    Edit: Dap and 'phones?
     
    rlow and Lyander like this.
  10. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2017
    Likes Received:
    5,183
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Canada
    @parmiep61 do you have the Gungnir and Freya already? Or these would be new as well? For some reason when I read your first post I assumed you already had them.

    Also when you say they will be at a 45 degree angle, do you mean 45 degree vertically or horizontally? 45 degree off axis is ok if horizontal and you can angle the speakers somewhat toward your listening position, but vertical is pretty difficult to overcome like @Senorx12562 says, and pretty hard to get great sound from speakers setup like that. Also will the speakers be very close to the wall?
     
  11. parmiep61

    parmiep61 Rando

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2020
    Likes Received:
    15
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    New York
    I don't have any of it yet, I was going to buy it all together.

    And 45 degrees vertically. It's far from ideal, but I was hoping if I got Isoacoustic Aperta 300s and angled them down I could make it work. To @Senorx12562's point I'd say I'd wait for a better situation, but no idea when that would be.

    Realized I didn't answer your last question - the speakers would be well away from walls, probably the only "pro" in the way the room is laid out for the speakers.
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2020
  12. parmiep61

    parmiep61 Rando

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2020
    Likes Received:
    15
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    New York
    It's a fair point for sure. As I mentioned to @rlow I'd wait to do this, but no telling when my situation will change for the foreseeable future ((which isn't a bad thing outside of this one interest, so knock on wood it doesn't haha).

    Re: the headphone route, yeah it's worth doing due diligence on for sure. It would just limit me to a spot and would be more anti-social of an investment, in that I wouldn't be able to enjoy it with other people.
     
  13. Zurvv

    Zurvv Rando

    Joined:
    May 11, 2020
    Likes Received:
    46
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    13
    Location:
    NYC
    I had the same experience with my Denon X8500H (their flagship). I was super bummed out that my nearfield setup sounded so much better than my floor standing setup. I went with the "oh, it must just be the room" - but one day tried moving my Vidars over and OMG... so much better. Now it is what i expected!

    So my Vidars are now part of the HT setup and Aegir monoblocks are coming today for my desktop setup. :) (they should be enough for the Elac Vela BS. 4 omhs / 86 sensitivity. But it is nearfield and i don't play very loud.)
    (I also went crazy and put the PrimaLuna EVO 400 for the FL/FR on the HT/FS setup. If they don't sound better.. at least they will look super cool. They will make for a nice headphone amp when i'm on the sofa. Yes, i'm looking for justification for the PL. )
     
    moriya likes this.
  14. moriya

    moriya Rando

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2020
    Likes Received:
    28
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    13
    Location:
    San Francisco
    So, since writing that I did some more testing and realized that while, yes, the Denon's pre-amp isn't amazing, it's also not terrible. It's actually pretty good. When I did my original testing, I didn't bother adjusting my levels and as a result had to run the Denon at like 90+% volume. Unlike the Ragnarok 2 I was testing at the time, this really ruins the performance on the Denon - it sounds super flat and lifeless. At more reasonable levels it's a decent preamp, and I actually ended up going with the Aegir on my L/R through the Denon - I would still jump on a Freya+, but no HT bypass complicates things unnecessarily.

    EDIT: Would love to hear how you like the PL vs just using the Denon's pre for 2-channel. The PL looks like a great preamp with pretty much everything I want (balanced ins/outs, HT bypass, tubes). Well, everything except price, but c'est la vie.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2020
    Zurvv likes this.
  15. Zurvv

    Zurvv Rando

    Joined:
    May 11, 2020
    Likes Received:
    46
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    13
    Location:
    NYC
    wow i'm in love. The mix of yddgy a2 + freya plus with CBS 5692 + monoblock aegir + elac Vela bs 403. (ie, AMT - "jet 5" tweeter)
    I was worried that switching out from the vidars i'd lose my bass - i did, a little, but that is fine for me. They seem more in control. (i'm not a base head. pointless bass is pointless to me.) Billie Eilish Bad Guy was to boomy for me before, but now it is just right. (of course, maybe it was done to be boomy.)That said the bass, in Fire and Rain stepped back.
    I'm not totally sure what changed from coming from the vidar (which are now in my HT) - saying it is more musical seems like a cop out.

    ugh.. same day getting both the PrimaLuna evo 400 and monoblock Aegir... and the wife not in the mood to hear any music. *sigh*
    I'll look a little deeper when she go out... which will be when Covid is over :( (no man cave here... small NYC apt)

    But even the low volume of music from my desktop nearfield (with the wife is ok with) is a nice fix to the Meze Empyrean i had been using (post vidars moving.) Those were some soupy mids and this is warm and refreshing. (Toto Africa and Mr blue sky sound great.) That said, it might be a little to "clean" for some people.

    also, holy crap these things get hot :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2020
  16. Yoduh

    Yoduh Rando

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2019
    Likes Received:
    1
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    North Carolina
    You may want to take a serious look at the Schiit Ragnarok 2 if you are converging on building a system around KEF LS50's. I really enjoyed the pairing with LS50's nearfield on my desktop but please keep in mind that my desk is 8' wide and placement is important with these guys in my opinion. I found that LS50's are fussy with equipment pairing and placement and I definitely would not be happy with them if I didn't have a REL subwoofer and great DAC in the mix. I started with a REL T5i which was pretty good, then moved to a T7i which was great and then found a used R218 which was even better. Next stop on my journey is likely going to be a Mcintosh MHA150 or Schiit Aegir. Here is a video that I posted to YouTube where I shared some additional thoughts about the Ragnarok 2 and some other toys if you're interested:
     
    parmiep61 likes this.
  17. parmiep61

    parmiep61 Rando

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2020
    Likes Received:
    15
    Dislikes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Location:
    New York
    I'll check it out for sure, thank you for sharing your thoughts! I've hit pause on the living room speaker plans and gone the head-fi route instead per suggestions from other posters, but it's very much a pause and I'm still doing research, so this will be helpful to look into!
     
  18. Davids

    Davids Rando

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2020
    Likes Received:
    36
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    13
    Location:
    Boston Massachusetts
    A single Aegir landed in my hands today, fresh off backorder. It's way too soon to share any impressions so in the meantime I have two questions:

    Does the Aegir need a little time to break in and reach its full sound quality? And if so, about how long?

    Many thanks!
     
  19. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

    Friend
    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2017
    Likes Received:
    5,183
    Dislikes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Canada
    My general rule for new class A/B amps is 30-50 hours at moderate volumes will usually get you most of the way there. Aegir may get there quicker due to higher operating temperatures, but who knows. Of the 3 new class A/B amps I’ve owned, all changed over that timeframe from what they sounded like fresh out of the box.
     
    Davids and daniellistens like this.
  20. Davids

    Davids Rando

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2020
    Likes Received:
    36
    Dislikes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    13
    Location:
    Boston Massachusetts
    The Aegir is pretty damn great in my two-channel system.

    Most of the observations I’ve read here hold true for me too: My music sounds more dynamic – both macro and micro-dynamics are significantly better – the bass is articulate and has real impact without being bloated or overwarm; the soundstage is wide and fairly deep; the tonal balance is just on the warm side of neutral; instruments are distinct and well-defined; and the sheer amount of musical detail I’m hearing is pretty wonderful.

    I’ve been listening to a lot of music I know very well and I’ve been surprised, over and over, by new details I’m hearing. The detail is not, however, over-analytical. I’m hearing deeper into the music.

    Which brings me to the one aspect of the Aegir that’s most impressed me. There have been moments – just moments mind you – when I’ve felt a sense of immediacy, palpability and connection that is new in my experience.

    The best analogy I can come up with is the idea of looking through a window. I can see pretty well through just about any windows, unless it’s really filthy. The cleaner a window gets, the better my view out. A really clean window – dirt-free, streak-free – gives me a really good view of what’s going on outside. Take the window away, though, and there’s the real world in front of my eyes. Every once in a while, the Aegis removes that window. I hear the music unmediated by the technology reproducing it.

    It’s a level of transparency that just blows me away. Gimme more.

    (A quick note on its power. I’ve got Thiel CS1.2s, a relatively inefficient (87dB/W) speaker in a 15’ x 15’-ish sloped-ceiling room. And I don’t listen too loud. Power is not an issue at all. )
     
    Dignan2000 likes this.

Share This Page