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Bifrost first impressions

A Review On: Schiit Audio Bifrost DAC

Schiit Audio Bifrost DAC

Rated # 2 in DACs
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Review Details:
Audio Quality
Design
Quality
Value
Purchased on:
Price paid: $349.00
danlevy
Posted · 24179 Views · 0 Comments

Pros: audio quality, ease of set-up, build quality, price

Cons: none yet

 

I'm really happy with my Bifrost.  I don't know if your experience will match mine but here goes:
 
I already have a DAC hooked up to my "good" system in my listening room.  But I have been waiting to find the best way to listen to the music in my downstairs family room served from an upstairs Drobo via Ethernet.  The Drobo is packed with all lossless audio, some of it ripped from CD, some high resolution, some needle drops.
 
So here's what I have:
Old iBook G4 running OS 10.5 and iTunes > ethernet > Drobo > ethernet > Airport Express optical out> Schiit Bifrost > decent Rotel preamp and amp > B&W ceiling speakers in family room.
 
Nothing special, right?  But with the Bifrost, I have never heard such excellent, natural sound from the system.  There is no wireless: it's all a wired ethernet connection to the optical out of the Airport Express into the Bifrost.
 
I control it wirelessly. Either using the Remote iOS app on my phone or iPad, or using Screen Sharing from a laptop downstairs sharing the upstairs iBook which has the iTunes library for the Drobo.  All of sounds just fantastic.  More surprising was how good Spotify sounds.  Here, I am just transmitting wirelessly to the Airport Express using Airfoil, with my (paid version) Spotify preferences set to the high quality stream (I think it's 320k). This is remarkably good sounding...I was trying to explain to my kids this morning how much like science fiction this has to feel to anyone in his or her early fifties who might have dreamed of the great jukebox in the sky, that it is actually here.... the sound is somewhere between better-than-acceptable and really-damned-good, depending on the source.  
 
Of course I might have achieved the same result using any number of inexpensive DACs but waited for something like Bifrost to come along that satisfies my various rational and irrational consumer urges.  I am definitely going to hook the Bifrost up at some point to my "good" system and expect it will do well in that context too.

 

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