Schiit Freya Preamp Review (Episodic)

Discussion in 'Preamps' started by purr1n, Jan 14, 2017.

  1. luckybaer

    luckybaer Friend

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    I was looking for an inexpensive set of 4 tubes to have on hand in the event one or more of the new Tung Sols that came with Freya start to exhibit problems. The best deal I could find were the NOS Russian tubes from Schiit, at $32 for a set of 4, so I pulled the trigger. Outside of Schiit, the least expensive I could find were around $15 each (I didn’t look on eBay).

    I enjoy Freya, and I think I started detecting some sonic differences between passive/JFET and tube gain. There’s nothing wrong with passive or JFET, but tube mode does add something extra - a bit more spaciousness, a more “open” sound (and I do volume match as best as I can with my Radio Shack SPL).

    I’ve never employed a pre-amp in my system prior to Freya, so I may just be a noob about all this, but I really enjoy what Freya brings to my system.

    I bought Freya for the convenience factor (centralized control) and volume control hoping it (she?) wouldn’t mess up the sound. Freya, as an unexpected benefit, seems to synergize quite well with my gear. I can’t get enough of listening to my music now - on speakers and on headphones. $799 well-spent, and another big win for Schiit (along with Gungnir Multibit and Vali 2) as far as I’m concerned.

    P.S.
    Still not being swayed by the siren call of tube rolling.
     
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  2. Argopo

    Argopo Acquaintance

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    In passive mode, the Freya is nothing more than a single resistive element attenuating the voltage out of the source. I just don't see how it can afflict so much damage to the sound compared to the active tube stage. I admit though, since putting my Heresys in my system I have not tried my Freya with a quality pair of tubes and LISST. Should probably try it out.
     
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  3. zonto

    zonto Friend

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    Does anyone know if the Freya has had running changes since inception? Rereading the review in the original post, I noticed it mentioned tube mode had a gain of 5 (14 dB). However, on Schiit’s site it says that tube mode has a gain of 2.5 (8 dB).
     
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  4. monacelli

    monacelli Friend

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    Good catch, @zonto! There must have been a running change. Probably smart on Jason's part since 14 dB is kind of a lot of gain in some situations. Here is [a link] to the first wayback machine snapshot of the Freya page (2016) and it shows a gain of 5 in the specs.
     
  5. Argopo

    Argopo Acquaintance

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    Based on user reports, the more recent batches of Freyas (maybe for the past year or more) have lower gain for the tube stage.

    My Freya is an older version with the higher gain.
     

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