Schiit Yggdrasil GS

Discussion in 'Digital: DACs, USB converters, decrapifiers' started by Vtory, Nov 19, 2019.

  1. Vtory

    Vtory Illogical Spock

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    Product page: https://www.schiit.com/products/yggdrasil-gs

    And I quickly looked at their measurements... What the f***? GS and A2 do REALLY resemble.

    Very curious about what GS actually sounds like.

    References
    GS measurements: https://www.schiit.com/public/upload/PDF/Schiit DAC APx555 Standard Test Suite_ Yggdrasil GS.pdf
    A2 measurements: https://www.schiit.com/public/uploa...dard Test Suite_ Yggdrasil Analog 2_Gen 5.pdf

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  2. Vtory

    Vtory Illogical Spock

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    Also according to Schiit, A1 can be upgraded to GS via firmware rom update for $35. Seems not a super easy task though.

    From the FAQ:
     
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  3. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    That’s basically what they say for all their self-installed upgrades, prior to the new Bifrost 2 “Autonomy” platform.

    Disassembly/reassembly instructions are here: https://www.superbestaudiofriends.o...ggdrasil-gen-5-usb-upgrade-instructions.4842/

    The caveats are still true though, that if you’re not careful and break or electrocute something, you’re SOL (not the turntable).

    I myself have stripped 2 screws (and maybe damaged the case threads) opening up my Yggdrasil for the Unison Beta test, so beware.

    The same thing is offered for Modi Multibit. More info starting here: https://www.superbestaudiofriends.o...tibit-for-the-masses.2494/page-72#post-253466
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2019
  4. Vtory

    Vtory Illogical Spock

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    @schiit Wondering if this Yggdrasil GS is also eligible for factory-in unison upgrades in early 2020. I'm guessing so but your confirmation could be really helpful for potential buyers.

    My colleague indeed showed some interest this afternoon when I talked about this.. but I want her to benefit unison as I know her main digital transport is PC and qobuz.
     
  5. rlow

    rlow A happy woofer

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    Did you see this earlier today Vtory?
     
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  6. Vtory

    Vtory Illogical Spock

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    Thanks I've gone through Yggdrasil threads but not Gungnir ones.

    I can more comfortably recommend GS now!
     
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  7. magicwonder

    magicwonder Rando

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    What about Yaggdrasil GS vs Gungnir Multibit A2, they are about $350 apart, is the upgrade worth it?
     
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  8. Dana Reed

    Dana Reed Rando

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    I just received a GS, and it’s replacing my Gungnir A2 in my 2 channel setup. (Gungnir Multibit moves to headphone duties with a Jotunheim)
    I didn’t set up a head to head A/B on them, but the GS seems to output a bit higher level than the Gungnir Multibit, and nominally seems more resolving. That could just be my purchase justification though. If I have time, I'll try some A/B between the two after I figure out level-matching.
     
  9. Sunflower_sutra

    Sunflower_sutra Acquaintance

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    Does anyone have a guide on how to upgrade the rom? Using marvs usb guide I upgraded to gen 5 last year but no means competent with electronics
     
  10. Sunflower_sutra

    Sunflower_sutra Acquaintance

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    Have ordered the updated rom chip and will give it ago. If it goes well will post pics so that other non-techies know what to do. If it dosent will need advice on a new dac! :p
     
  11. Lasollor

    Lasollor Friend

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    Just follow the GEN 5 USB upgrade instructions. (There is a Modi Multibit ROM upgrade thread somewhere too with useful tips)
    You can find the before/after pictures of the ROM upgrade I did last month here:
    https://www.superbestaudiofriends.o...il-gen-5-usb-upgrade-instructions.4842/page-3
     
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  12. Sunflower_sutra

    Sunflower_sutra Acquaintance

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    Managed to update the rom, not too tricky. thanks for the advice.

    Transients immediately seem improved also change in depth with vocals not so forward. Only brief impressions on a cold Yggdrasil so will hold my full judgement till it’s had a while to settle and my ears get use to it.
     
  13. theveterans

    theveterans Acquaintance

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    Would the Yggdrasil GS come with Unison USB installed now that it's out?
     
  14. zonto

    zonto Friend

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    See: https://www.schiit.com/products/yggdrasil-gs

     
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  15. Sunflower_sutra

    Sunflower_sutra Acquaintance

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    Been warming the Yggdrasil up for 4 weeks now. Noticed clipping on particular electronic tones and was really pissing me off as it never did it before. Luckily my amp has the option of attenuating by 6db the XLR input and has completely solved the issue. It appears the upgraded rom on the old analog circuit must increase the output voltage which caused problems with my amp.

    my initial impressions of improved transients, still holds. Also appears to have more delicate micro dynamics
     
  16. Orkney

    Orkney Acquaintance

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    Just took delivery of a GS. Too early to tell much of anything about anything but quite a different prez to the Metrums I've been running recently and the Gungnir MB 2 I ran before that. Certainly a much more imposing package.

    Got the Unison card at the same time but no plans to install it for a while.
     
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  17. ChaChaRealSmooth

    ChaChaRealSmooth SBAF Gearmaster

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    Background

    The Yggdrasil GS seems to be kind of a dark horse in the Schiit lineup. It's an Yggdrasil, sure, but it has the "old" A1 cards even despite the new firmware. With all the nervosa around having the "latest and greatest" with Schiit gear (I'm looking at all of the crazy nervosa in the Unison USB thread guys; seriously, did all of your Gen V stuff suddenly turn into poo when Unison got released?), this does seem like a strange thing to actually want to buy (well, Schiit admitted on their own website it's a crazy idea).

    Those who are have been around know that in the process of the A1 and A2 update, the Yggdrasil and Gungnir kind of switched places in terms of tonality. The OG Yggdrasil A1 was known for being neutral, maybe even cool-sounding, and the A2 is warmer (some call parts of its presentation muddy). The Gungnir went the opposite way; the A1 was warm, the A2 is decidedly not. After talking to Marv some, I made a calculated guess that the cooler tonality is what I wanted, and thus, the choice was between the Yggdrasil GS and the Gungnir A2. I decided to buy the Yggdrasil GS because, well, it's a Yggdrasil for a cheaper price, and I was honestly more curious about it than the Gungnir A2 (the Gungnir I've heard a few times at meets).

    Sonic Impressions:

    Now, I'm sure everyone here has at least heard of the "Schiit R2R warmup time." It's absolutely real with the Yggdrasil GS. Interestingly, GS doesn't sound offensive day 1; was a little bit tipped up in the treble and a bit congested, but honestly still very enjoyable. The sound rounds out after 24 hours, and after 48 hours, it seems to have mostly settled, with any differences either being so minute as to not notice, or being placebo. Either way, not nearly as ridiculous as the near 3 week time for Yggdrasil A2. Maybe this is due to the used A1 cards used in the GS?

    I'm not sure what changed with the new firmware other than measurements, but what I can say is that the Yggdrasil GS sounds a lot like a Gungnir A2+* (or I guess you could say like a Yggdrasil A1). I would have to audition Gungnir A2 properly in my setup to assess which one may be more resolving between the two, but I suspect it's close with maybe the Yggdrasil GS pulling just ahead. Anyhow, the tonality is similar, with the Yggdrasil GS being noticeably more even throughout the registers. Also, the GS doesn't have the slight looseness in the midbass the Gungnir A2 can kind of exhibit. I think the Yggdrasil GS might be a touch more incisive than the Gungnir A2, although people should already know that Schiit multibit DACs are not for those who dislike incisive presentations. Both have the same overall timbre, the Schiit R2R timbre, and similar sweetness.

    Now for to compare to the X-Sabre Pro, the DAC I have at home, I'd have to say that I give the nod to the Yggdrasil GS. It's almost no contest from the context of where my preferences lie: the Yggdrasil GS is more nuanced, slams more, has more heft, does dynamics better, and is more resolving. I like the Yggdrasil's staging much better; unlike the XSP, the Yggdrasil doesn't have to "fake" the Schiit stage because, well, it just produces the stage. Images feel substantial on Yggdrasil GS, not paper-thin like on the X-Sabre Pro. In fact, the only area where I think the XSP might win is in blackground, but the funny thing is that the Yggdrasil GS actually sounds darker in the blackground on first listen because of its lively dynamics. So yeah, it's safe to say that I like the Yggdrasil better on almost all counts.

    Amp Parirings**:
    1. DNA Starlett: Absolutely fantastic. The synergy is absolutely there; the Schiit R2R timbre, neutrality, dynamics, the slight tube bloom and wetness Starlett adds, the Starlett's timbre.....yummy. Both components are known for good staging, and together it's some of he best headstage I've heard (granted, headphones stage like crap in general). That being said, even the Starlett doesn't do justice to what the Yggdrasil GS can do in stage; you need speakers for that.
    2. Feliks Euforia: Thick and tubey. Actually quite resolving through synergistic headphones; the Euforia seems to either have crazy good synergy or anti-synergy. Actually very good with the GS, not something for people who want more neutral, but for what the Euforia does well a very enjoyable listen. Thoroughly enjoyed with JAR 600 and Utopia.
    3. Schiit Jotunheim R + SR1a: This sounds like what I would imagine a system would sound like if you told Schiit to throw together a super synergistic system from their own gear with headphones of their choice. The sound is assertive, forward, stages like mad for something that sits on your head (because the SR1a has stage that actually exists outside of your head), fantastic imaging, and probably the best timbre I've heard from a system. It can potentially be bordering on strident on female vocals, but this is easily EQ'd if it bothers you (I don't bother because my brain adjusts rather quickly).
    4. Schiit Asgard 3: Believe it or not, despite being a heck of a lot cheaper than the Yggdrasil GS, these two devices sound pretty good together! The Asgard 3 shaves a bit of the forwardness out of the Yggdrasil GS, and yet is still good enough at conveying the technicalities of the GS. No, it's not as good as the Starlett (it never will be), but still absolutely satisfying.

    I should note here that I did try both my X-Sabre Pro and my Yggdrasil GS in my two channel setup, which is made up of a Euforia as a preamp, Schiit Aegir, and Klipsch Heresy horns. Interestingly I felt the Matrix to be too mid-bassy in this setup (the Heresy doesn't do subbass). Once again, I thought Yggdrasil GS to be more nuanced and slamming. I vastly preferred the Yggdrasil's staging here and voicing; speakers is where the Yggdrasil GS's stage shines. I had a lot of fun blasting Michael Jackson, the Bee Gees, etc. However, I only got to the Eagles before my whole family was screaming at me that I was "disturbing the peace and quiet." Oh well.

    Overall, I'd say the Yggdrasil GS sounds grand, incisive, and lively. If you like the Schiit multibit sound, don't overlook this DAC; it's still a Yggdrasil and to me it really shows (good gear doesn't turn to shit because new gear came out). Highly recommended if you want a Yggdrasil but don't want a warmer presentation, but highly not recommended if you're not looking for an emotional engagement plankton machine.

    *If you already own a Gungnir MB A2, I don't think it's worth the "upgrade." Yeah I think the Yggdrasil GS is better, but unless I later find the Gungnir A2 to be significantly less resolving than Yggdrasil GS (very unlikely), we're talking marginal percentage point improvement. Plus, the Gungnir A2 now has the Unison input.

    **note that for the SE amps like Euforia and Starlett, I used a Jensen Isomax 1:1 transformer to convert the balanced out to a SE signal. I did not evaluate the SE out on the Yggdrasil GS, which I'm sure is fine but is known to be worse than using a quality transformer. Also, I used a variety of headphones with each amp; if you have any specific questions do not hesitate to ask below or through PM.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2020
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  18. ColtMrFire

    ColtMrFire Writes better fan fics than you

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    Dude, you are a saint. I literally had my mouse hovering over the buy button on the GS before I read this. My Starlett/Verite is just overdosing on warmth/richness with the Bifrost 2 and I'm looking for something with more synergy while keeping the Schiit house sound. GS sounds right up my alley!
     
  19. Melvillian

    Melvillian Friend

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    @Dana Reed Since you own both, can you share your thoughts on how the Gungnir A2 and the Yggdrasil GS compare?
     
  20. Gungrave

    Gungrave Rando

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    I'm really enjoying the Modius(I had a RME ADI-2 returning it) in my chain PC>Eitr>Modius>Cayin-ha300 stock tubes> Final Audio D8000 pro but im still looking for something better would the Yggdrasil GS be a natural step up from the Modius ?
     
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