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Schiit Asgard: Unboxing and First Impressions - Page 84

post #1246 of 1705
Quote:
Originally Posted by jermng View Post

Have you tried plugging IEMs into an Asgard. There's a definite buzzing. There's also a VERY faint buzz when I plug in my ultrasone pro 900s ... It's barely audible but it's there.

I was told by Jason that the Asgard was not designed for IEMs, thus the buzz. And I guess because I heard the buzz with the IEMs, I was looking for it in my headphones. Only heard the buzz w the ultrasones. No buzz in the LCD-2s or DT990.

I guess I would have to agree.  It would never occur to me to plug IEMs into the Asgard.  Just doesn't make any sense.  I have two pair of Ultrasones and they are perfectly silent with my Asgard.
 

post #1247 of 1705

The signal from my Asgard has no buzz but the transformer definitely has a buzz.

post #1248 of 1705

I use my IEMs with my desktop amp fairly often.  If I've already got them in my ears its easier than switching to a full size pair if I'm just watching some youtube vids or something.  Plus sometimes my parrot just won't shut up and I need the isolation.

 

They don't need the amp, but its a lot easier than having to mess around behind my PC and get them plugged into my soundcard or something.

post #1249 of 1705

If an amp has too high of a noise floor for using very high sensitivity earphones, why not build a simple adapter to pad down the output to appropriate level?

post #1250 of 1705

My current amp is quiet enough that I don't need one.  There's a tiny bit of hiss, but its so quiet I can't usually hear it over the fans in my PC through the isolation of my SE530s.  When my room gets cold and all the temperature controlled fans slow down I can just barley hear it.

 

I might need it in the future though.  Is there a a way to do that without screwing up the crossovers or just messing with the FR like an inline resistor would?

post #1251 of 1705
Quote:
Originally Posted by maverickronin View Post

My current amp is quiet enough that I don't need one.  There's a tiny bit of hiss, but its so quiet I can't usually hear it over the fans in my PC through the isolation of my SE530s.  When my room gets cold and all the temperature controlled fans slow down I can just barley hear it.

 

I might need it in the future though.  Is there a a way to do that without screwing up the crossovers or just messing with the FR like an inline resistor would?

Yep, just make it a voltage divider, using an appropriate value resistor across the SE530.
 

post #1252 of 1705

The Asgard has been on back order for about 2-3 weeks.  It started shipping again this past week and I just got mine this afternoon and I thought I'd add my own impressions.  Please go easy on me...this is my first ever review of an audio component and my first ever on Head-Fi.  :-)

 

Customer Service...or Jason ROCKS!
Like others, I am stunned by the incredible responsiveness of customer service.  Certainly they have the benefit of a small operation and therefore an intimate connection to inquiries.  Nevertheless, we should applaud a company who answers an email question within 10 minutes on a Saturday afternoon.  Maybe I got lucky, but others have mentioned similar stories often enough that we have to just accept that they offer exceptional service and responsiveness.

 

Delivery time was also great.  They handed off to the carrier when they said they would...although I should note that the speed of the actual transit is the responsibility of the carrier (FedEx home delivery in my case) and not Schiit.

 

Accessories
As others have noted, the Asgard ships with a power cord, a 1/8" to 1/4" adaptor, a stereo 1/8" to RCA cable, and adhesive rubber feet.  The RCA cable is very thick and sturdy.  It is probably not the match of high-end audiophile cables, but its much better than the cables that come with most consumer electronics.  The rubber feet are small and shallow--they give only about 1/8" of clearance. 

 

I'm thinking about replacing them with some AcoustiFeet, which I like using for my computers.  They could have helped some of the mechanical hum that some folks have reported.  However, it's probably unnecessary...remember the speedy email response that so impressed me?  The 6moon review mentioned the low-level buzz issue as well as a side note that Schiit was already working on the solution.  I wanted to know if they had addressed it yet and Jason said that all units now shipping (they just came off of backorder last week) should have the fix.  I can say that my unit seems absolutely silent.

 

Sound Quality
I'm burning in the Asgard at home with a Senn HD590 and a Grado SR225.  Both sound incredible.  My previous amp was a Rega Ear demo unit that I bought at a steep discount from a local high-end stereo shop.  The Rega was definitely a huge huge improvement over using my PCs stock headphone jack (or at least it was once I found and corrected a faulty cold solder joint).  However, right out of the box I noticed vastly improved detail on the Asgard with both the Senn and the Grado.  I thought that the Rega had opened up huge detail, but the Asgard really blows my mind.

 

I don't know the terminology most people use, so I can't say what it is about the sound, but I feel a stronger emotional connection to my music listening with the Asgard than I did with the Rega.  I don't mean to be overly effusive, but some of my tracks sound as if the performer is running his or her fingers through my mind.  I'm listening to an Ottmar Leibert piece right now and it's so good I feel little shivers between my shoulder blades.  I keep finding excuses to come into the den for just one more "taste".

 

I can't hear the high-end roll-off that some people have reported.  However, I should note that I'm an over-40 listener and I have definitely lost some high-frequency hearing (I really can't hear that "mosquito ring tone" for example).  So it may be that there is roll-off occuring above my threshold to notice it.  Who knew that my impending decrepitude would be a blessing in disguise?

 

This amp is ultimately going to end up in my office where it will most likely be used with a Denon AHD5000.  I am really really looking forward to that!

 

No Snap, Crackle, or Pop
I really appreciate that there is no audible pop when inserting or removing headphones from the amplifier.  Same with turning the amp on and off.  This was a problem with the Rega.

 

Running Hot
Does this amp run hot?  Compared to the Rega it sure does.  I've had it running now for 5 hours (in the horizontal layout) and relative to the Rega it is very hot.  However, in an absolute sense its just very warm...definitely not going to cook anything on it.  I doubt it would even melt my daughter's crayons...not that I'm not crazy enough to try.  I come from the PC world, so I would say that it is about as warm as a low-end passively cooled video card.  I have absolutely no qualms about the amount of heat I'm observing.

 

Correction: I was checking the temp at the top of the case.  The bottom of the case is significantly hotter...I probably *could* melt a crayon against the bottom of the case.  Definitely going to find some bigger feet and/or setup vertically.

 

Criticisms/Feedback
I only have a few minor nitpicks to offer.  First, the Rega Ear has a set of passthrough RCA outputs with a manual cutoff switch.  This is great for PC use...I hang the Ear off my DAC and pkug my computer speakers to the RCA passthrough connectors on the Ear.  That allows me to easily enable or mute the external speakers while leaving the headphones plugged in full-time.  I will miss that but I'll deal...somehow...(cue violins)...

 

Second, I'd prefer it if the brushed aluminum case were finished/coated.  I like the current look but I'm not fond of the feel of bare aluminum.  Still, it's not a big priority for me.  I knew this from the forum comments and it didn't factor into my purchasing decision at all.  (Correction: I got PM from Jason and the cases are "clear anodized"...I think this was mentioned before on this forum thread, but I had forgotten).

 

Third, it would be nice to include some feet with more clearance.  Right now I have the Asgard lying on a pair of chopsticks until I can find my extra pack of AcoustiFeet.

 

Conclusion
I am very happy with this amp and I am pleasantly surprised at the low cost.  To me, this amp looks, feels, and sound much more expensive.  I would gladly recommend the Asgard to my friends and family.

post #1253 of 1705

Congrats on the Asgard purchase, and thanks for the impressions!  You're in for a real treat with your D5000 -- the Asgard seems to perform exceptionally well with the Denons.  Of all the headphones I tried with my Asgard, I was most impressed with how it handled my Lawton-modded D7000.

post #1254 of 1705

What cans are fairing well with the Asgard so far?

post #1255 of 1705
Quote:
Originally Posted by WarriorAnt View Post

What cans are fairing well with the Asgard so far?

Anything that falls within its power and impedance purview.  

post #1256 of 1705

I prefer my SOHA to the Asgard with all the headphones listed in my sig.  But I don't think I should have bought the Asgard as I don't think it's a good fit for most of my headphone's requirements like the AKG's and orthos.  Though the SOHA also seems to drive my HD600 and LCD-2 better.  But I haven't done lots of A/Bing, just enough to know that I want to continue using the SOHA. 

post #1257 of 1705

I have never heard of the SOHA. Looks like I need to do a little reading...

post #1258 of 1705
The Asgard is magic with the HE-5LE Ortho's.
post #1259 of 1705

Okay I just got a warranty replacement for my Asgard (fingerprinting issue) and I have some interesting observations concerning it.I thought they were going to just swap the chassis, but I believe it is a new unit. The amp runs at least 20 degrees cooler than my original amplifier. I can't tell if the sound is any different or not, but the temperature difference is not subtle. Any idea why this could be?

post #1260 of 1705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Caphead78 View Post

Okay I just got a warranty replacement for my Asgard (fingerprinting issue) and I have some interesting observations concerning it.I thought they were going to just swap the chassis, but I believe it is a new unit. The amp runs at least 20 degrees cooler than my original amplifier. I can't tell if the sound is any different or not, but the temperature difference is not subtle. Any idea why this could be?

Sounds like maybe lower bias.
 

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