Schiit Modius DAC announced

Discussion in 'Digital: DACs, USB converters, decrapifiers' started by JohnCarter17, Jun 2, 2020.

  1. Inoculator

    Inoculator Almost "Made"

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    This is why the Freya S is my favorite purchase of the last year. I used to headcase about all balanced or all SE components, now I mix and match whatever I want. Saved me from my "everything must be balanced" nervousa that had gripped me for far too long. Granted Nexus does have its own sound, but a worthwhile tradeoff.
     
  2. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    It's more a matter of Schiit now caring more about that final 0.0001% THD than before. It wasn't something they, or John Atkinson, or anyone else in the world really cared about since 80-100db SINAD is already so fricking good (all those amps you hear in the high-end Atmos movie theaters in SoCal are probably 75db SINAD Crown amps).

    Amir used to sling shit, implying bad engineering. What he and the rest of of the objectivist losers at ASR didn't know was how easy it was for Schiit to get that final 0.0001% if they really wanted to do it. Think of this as running up the score.

    BTW, the AK4493 is a -113db part per their specsheet. Schiit exceeded this at the line outputs. Obviously they have their secret sauce.

    Schiit didn't start the measurement war, never wanted it, but now that it's started, they will win it. It's actually opened up new markets for them. Game on. I don't want to say that measurements are easy, but there are dozens of papers on TI's site on how to get the best from their parts covering PCB layout to component selection to design.

    I'm getting cleaner Toslink results already. Will post measurements later today.

    I'm not going to take credit for this because someone else pointed this out to me, but Nelson Pass'ish Super Symmetry? That's the "typical application" guidance in the LME49724 datasheet below.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
  3. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    https://cinemag.biz/line_input/PDF/CMLI-15-15B.pdf

    Look up typical understanding at the bottom of page 4. Keep in mind the stuff on the right with the R2, R3, R4 and the amp symbol is supposed to indicate the driver stage of the input device.

    No. There will be some loss, but still near x2 voltage.
     
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  4. YMO

    YMO it's not drinking alone if you're on Zoom

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    Lame, thanks dad.
     
  5. rtaylor76

    rtaylor76 Can't wipe his tag

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    I think there is some overstated dislike for the OPA1662. It may not have the best low end definition, but I think it excells in other areas, especially the dynamics of the rest of the frequency band and the not so strained harsher sound out of an op-amp with loop gain.

    Balanced already is going to have more gain and lower noise (at a given volume). I think the OPA1662 sounds like it will quell some digitus for many in the SE world and those in the pro or pro-sumer XLR world will appreciate the sonic clarity and accuracy of those balanced outputs. It is the best of both worlds actually.

    To sum up:

    Love - Unison
    Love - Balanced or SE (and different sound signature for each that most likely suits that market segment)
    Wish - more balanced amp options that were more affordable and sound great
     
  6. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    Open loop gain sounds better. More feedback, closed loop, sounds worse, but better distortion. The question is how much distortion is acceptable for you. ASR makes distortion a race to the top. It's not. At some point, it's good enough. At the next point, it's so good that there's zero correlation to subjective sound quality. More than that, it then rapidly becomes a race to the bottom (or bottom line). Keep in mind that John Atkinson's (of Stereophile) analyzer just a decade and a half ago couldn't pick up the shit now that $149 USB interfaces can. Microphone and preamp technology hasn't gotten any better for half a century.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
  7. Poleepkwa

    Poleepkwa Friend

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    Making
    Well, that is like implying if it measures poorly it will sound great = if it measures good it will sound bad. If Schiit has to sell a shitload of AKM Dacs to continue pursuing their Multibit lineup, then so be it. Come-on Schiit where are the Sabre DACS allready? ;)
     
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  8. JellyRhino

    JellyRhino Acquaintance

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    As some senior members already pointed out, the Modius seems to offer incredible value in this market. AFAIK, I don't think Marv implied mediocrity. As with any value proposition, the choice is that you can enjoy better sound now or wait until you get rich enough to purchase a better product (Asgard 3 vs ECP DSHA3F/Elex vs Utopia). I prefer to enjoy better sound now, because life is short. It's amazing how the very pragmatic people at Schiit can put cookie cutter designs to shame because they work hard, listen, and care. I understand from Marv's impressions that this is AKM done right (still is AKM).
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
  9. bengo

    bengo Friend

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    The ratio of Ri1/Rf1 is setting the amount of feedback. Same for Ri2/Rf2. Rl is the load. Capacitors for smoothing ripples in the power supply etc. This is basically just a bog standard op amp circuit. I assume whatever Schiit is doing will be a fair bit more clever than that.
     
  10. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    OPA1662 I don't think is bad at all, and it does have some traits. It just's behind when compared to the balanced opamp which is crazy good (spec and sound). FWIW, there's less digititus with the LME49724. Warmer sound doesn't always hide stuff.

    Yes and no. This the more typical way of balanced outputs for opamps before balanced differential output opamps came out. You can argue SuSy feedback is nothing special, like "of-course".

    [​IMG]
     
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  11. JellyRhino

    JellyRhino Acquaintance

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    @purr1n If I read you right, the Modius could be synergistic with the Asgard 3.
     
  12. JK47

    JK47 The Beer Houdini

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    I thought that Cinemag part # sounded familiar when I asked you yesterday. Sure enough, same ones used on the Aficionado.
     
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  13. purr1n

    purr1n Finding his inner redneck

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    It seems to be one of those DACs can pair well with everything. That is, I don't find specific behaviors like with Yggdrasil A2 which may prefer leaner and tighter woofers, or Gungnir A2 which may prefer mid-bassy systems.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
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  14. Grattle

    Grattle Friend

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    I read his "review". I don't think he made ANY subjective listening comments. Maybe I just got bored and quit reading though...
     
  15. Cspirou

    Cspirou They call me Sparky

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    Was just considering the SDAC balanced as my "cheap" balanced DAC. But a balanced USB Unison Schiit DAC for $50 more? Shoot
     
  16. raif

    raif Man made lobster/plankton

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    I am definitely curious to see these. I have grown rather found of the PI2AES setup for office listening.

    I suppose, worst case, one can always just use the USB on the Rasberry PI to utilize the Unison input if one so chooses.
     
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  17. Bill-P

    Bill-P Level 42 Mad Wizard

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    I like bad-measuring stuffs better.

    Please come out with more bad-measuring stuffs.

    In fact, I don't know why you guys haven't made a tube DAC yet...
     
  18. Psalmanazar

    Psalmanazar Most improved member; A+

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    The Digidesign HD 192 boxes infamously suck. The current AVID boxes are rebranded DAD AX32 and a cut DAD with pro tools HDX connectivity. They’re Burr Brown converters and are going to be warm. Who knows about reactivity and detail but it probably won’t suck. They are modular like the Burl Mothership, have no fans or transformers, very expensive and should be better than all of what we are talking about for the price but you never know until you run hot levels through a shitton of its outputs to see if the power supply starts crapping out or thermally craps out or the drivers crap out. Do not believe what you read on the internet. If you don’t need pro tools, run the DAD with a Madi card but try before you buy.


    Barely. They care slightly more than most pro audio manufacturers now. SPL doesn’t give a shit. Focusrite gives a shit about very limited measurements in their higher end gear. RME started giving a shit when they started caring minutely about the sound a few years ago (before the ADI2 Pro) and gave a little more shit with the inaudible jitter in their digital clocks only after the AliBaba Ayatollah bitched but they really don’t care that much. Amir doesn’t really care either. He shills stuff that measures like crap. The pro guys only care when they can hear it. Most of them come from analog world where they know there’s no way you can hear the massive thd from many pieces unless the noise floor breaks through. Hell usually that 1-5% thd sounds better than the shitty plugin that doesn’t distort at all

    It’s made to a price point. Be glad they didn’t import it from China like nu SSL and slap on 75 bucks and an Xmos chip.

    Unless they’re using dog shit parts (like cheap Focusrite, Presonus, Behringer, RME, Alibaba bazaar junk) you can’t play armchair engineer. The workhorse NE5532 is used in everything from cleaner than all this shit Prism sound gear to grainy old SSLs that smell like absolute crap. The newer OPA are used in a lot of crap like the Ifi and the Apogee Duet. Nobody in their right mind would say that those are competitive with Prism Sound or Dangerous Music products that use older op amps unless they’re a naysayer or a shill or don’t like one little thing about the timbre. The latter two sound much bigger and better.
     
  19. Psalmanazar

    Psalmanazar Most improved member; A+

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    Cool. I’ll have to check it out one day vs the MOTU. I need the multiple analog outs. The problem with the MOTU is the slightly soft midrange more than the treble timbre to me. The bass and treble are still ESS Sabre but well done. Bus power scares me and I’ve learned that there is detail in the grain that is just gone on many more aggressively sheened over products like the Apogee Symphonies and dulled like older Apogee and Velvet Sound chips but the digititus can still remain. The still intact treble detail with no stripping of mud (like Convert 2) means you can process more and run it through more analog goodness and still have stuff be audible that if ran through a Focusrite, RME, Apogee, or Dangerous Convert, would be gone because it was mostly stripped out earlier kinda like high hats disappearing in tape dub downs and warm ass tubes but I’m talking like overdrive pedal sear and transformer saturation (in low mids and treble) not coming through right because the gear is too lofi or too “hi-fi” euphonically voiced. 20hz to 20khz flat fr with an ap analyzer pretty much means nothing here.

    I really notice this on the Focusrites, RME, and Convert 2. Dangerous cleaned up the grain from the Source and Dbox with their own filter but something is gone on it compared to the stock AD and TI filters. Something is gone compared to the otherwise less detailed Lavry Black DACs that also use AD1955.

    Focusrite is now built to a very low Chinese oem price point and coded by contractors. Their whole MO is “value engineering” 1980s Neve designs and now they’re simply at almost the bottom, one step above Behringer and Presonus, and sound not even close to the original designs. It’s like comparing an intact 35mm print of a movie to a 2001 RealPlayer rip of a multi generational cdr copy of a Hong Kong VCD.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2020
  20. lehmanhill

    lehmanhill Almost "Made"

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    A silly question for @schiit or @JohnCarter17. Is that an RJ45 connector pointed at the sky in the middle of the pcb? And would you care to comment on what it connects to? In my DIY dreams, its an i2s connection, but I bet it won't be when I wake up.
     

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