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Mini-review: Schiit Lyr - Page 2

post #16 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by redwarrior191 View Post
Thank you very much Asr, I was interested in the GL vs Lyr for the LCD--2 before..  If I'm not mistaken, the dynalo is supposed to output 1watt into 32ohms, right?? i thought the dynalo would be the bare minimum for an LCD-2..So it really is true that orthos, even the more efficient one like the LCD-2 need quite some juice to be driven well.... thanks for your impressions, Asr..


Yes the Dynalo is rated at up to 1W @ 32 Ohms. However I wouldn't really call the LCD-2 efficient - at 91 dB/mW, that's definitely more towards being inefficient.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by leesure View Post
Given all that, are there any amplifiers of which you are aware that outperform the Lyr with the LCD-2's given budgets constraints of <$500 for an amp? <$1,000?

 

I ask because you were fairly harsh in your critiques (ie "LCD-2...was muddy-sounding on the Lyr with either tube set.") but I haven't heard a better performer for the LCD-2's nor the HE-6's in it's price range.

 

I know you ask "I'll add that amping the LCD-2 with the Lyr undermines the LCD-2's potential, and if you're buying or own the LCD-2, which isn't exactly a cheap headphone, why cheap out on an amp and subtract from its potential?"

 

My answer would be that in a world with no limits and no budgets, you are correct.  However, people DO have various budget limitations and $2,000 for a headphone setup (source>amp>phones) is a substantial investment to all but a very few.  Given that limit, I would rather spend $1000 on the LCD-2's and 'Cheap out' with $900 for the Bifrost/Lyr combination than buy a more expensive DAC/Amp combo and be faced with a lesser transducer.  I am confident the better sound can be had by placing the greater percentage of the budget on the 'phones than on either of the other parts.

 

I'd be genuinely curious to hear your opinion on that matter.


I'm not aware of any <$500 amps that'd match or beat the Lyr. As far as the <$1K bracket, I could mention these but I don't have them anymore for a direct comparison (but I can say they'd at least be better than the Gilmore Lite):

 

- Avenson Audio Headphone Amp (reviewed here: http://www.head-fi.org/t/531228/review-schiit-audio-asgard-avenson-audio-headphone-amp)

- DIY M3

- unbalanced B22 (price is build-dependent but I've seen some for <$1K)

 

I'll also add that my definition of "muddy" could easily be sonically acceptable to someone else, so that's definitely subjective. If it helps, I could improve that to "semi-muddy" but muddy/unclear nonetheless. Blurry (as in, sonically out of focus) would be another word I'd use. I also want to reiterate that the Lyr indeed sounds good for the LCD-2 and I definitely didn't mean to imply it's bad or terrible. The point I wanted to make is that while it's good for its price, its sound comes with compromises.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by WNBC View Post
In any case, the Lyr is an excellent starter tube amp.  It's also a good finishing amp if one doesn't plan on getting deep into this hobby of sound and wants a moderately priced amp that's going to for the most part keep one engaged with the music for a long time.  


I'm definitely in agreement with this conclusion. A technicality I want to point out though: the Lyr is a hybrid amp.

post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by leesure View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by Asr View Post

 

I formally compared the Lyr w/ 6N1P tubes to my Gilmore Lite w/ Elpac btw and my conclusion is: the LCD-2 r2 exhibited obvious signs of being under-driven by the GL. The GL actually sounded worse than the Lyr.

 

The LCD-2's obvious signs of being under-driven by the GL: very weak bass & mid-range overall. Severe lack of directness to sound. Slowness in note attacks. Music sounding like an unorganized blurry mess. Percussive impacts lacking impact.

 

If I didn't know better I'd actually the GL a slow amp based on its performance with the LCD-2, but I know better (because it's not slow, it's actually one of the fastest amps I've ever heard when driving far easier headphone loads) and my conclusion is that the GL simply lacks the power output to properly drive the LCD-2. The GL is not an amp I'd recommend for the LCD-2 at all - it really sounded that bad to me. The Lyr, on the other hand, would be my recommendation as a minimum amp.

 

Considering the identical Dynalo "architecture" of the GL and GS-X, I'd make another conclusion: it's not the circuit that's to blame, only the power output difference, because the LCD-2 sounds way better on the GS-X (when balanced) than it does on the GL. Considering the GS-1 has the same power output spec as the GL, I wouldn't recommend it for the LCD-2 either. The GS-X in balanced mode is the only Dynalo-based amping that I'd recommend for the LCD-2. For better unbalanced amps I'd recommend either the B22 or Dynahi. The LCD-2 r1 that I previously owned performed better on a B22 than it did balanced on my GS-X.


Given all that, are there any amplifiers of which you are aware that outperform the Lyr with the LCD-2's given budgets constraints of <$500 for an amp? <$1,000?

 

I ask because you were fairly harsh in your critiques (ie "LCD-2...was muddy-sounding on the Lyr with either tube set.") but I haven't heard a better performer for the LCD-2's nor the HE-6's in it's price range.

 

I know you ask "I'll add that amping the LCD-2 with the Lyr undermines the LCD-2's potential, and if you're buying or own the LCD-2, which isn't exactly a cheap headphone, why cheap out on an amp and subtract from its potential?"

 

My answer would be that in a world with no limits and no budgets, you are correct.  However, people DO have various budget limitations and $2,000 for a headphone setup (source>amp>phones) is a substantial investment to all but a very few.  Given that limit, I would rather spend $1000 on the LCD-2's and 'Cheap out' with $900 for the Bifrost/Lyr combination than buy a more expensive DAC/Amp combo and be faced with a lesser transducer.  I am confident the better sound can be had by placing the greater percentage of the budget on the 'phones than on either of the other parts.

 

I'd be genuinely curious to hear your opinion on that matter.

 

 


The NFB-10SE's amp section provides as much grunt as the Lyr. It has as much authority and exerts the same level of control over the LCD-2, but with greater precision and transparency. The 10SE is also far better value when you factor in the added cost of complementary tubes for the Lyr and the fact the 10SE is also a balanced dac/amp combo. Have you ignored the very first response to the OP because Chinese gear is excluded from the question you posed?

 

post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post


The NFB-10SE's amp section provides as much grunt as the Lyr. It has as much authority and exerts the same level of control over the LCD-2, but with greater precision and transparency. The 10SE is also far better value when you factor in the added cost of complementary tubes for the Lyr and the fact the 10SE is also a balanced dac/amp combo. Have you ignored the very first response to the OP because Chinese gear is excluded from the question you posed?

 


1. I was asking the OP, not whomever responded to him.

 

2. Is that last question meant to imply I have some bias against Chinese goods?  Nothing could be further from the truth...I own an Audio-GD NFB12, Maverick D1 and have owned a Little Dot MkIII. Certainly the 10SE looks like an interesting offering.  I have yet to hear one.  Had the OP responded with "I think the A-GD10SE is one that can match or even beat the Lyr" I would have had to accept that. 

 

M one experience with A-GD has been the NFB-12, which I found to be OK, but not spectacular, especially as regards detail recovery.

post #19 of 22

My initial post, the first after the OP, acknowledges the disparity in price between the GS-X and Lyr. It also provides a comparison to the NFB-10SE to support the OP's findings, but on a more level playing field (price). The question you subsequently posed was rhetorical in light of this, unless the 10SE is excluded in some way, or you've determined that only the OP can address this open question (which is nonsensical).

 

I wasn't implying bias in my previous post. I apologize if that's what you've drawn from it.

post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by olor1n View Post

My initial post, the first after the OP, acknowledges the disparity in price between the GS-X and Lyr. It also provides a comparison to the NFB-10SE to support the OP's findings, but on a more level playing field (price). The question you subsequently posed was rhetorical in light of this, unless the 10SE is excluded in some way, or you've determined that only the OP can address this open question (which is nonsensical).

 

I wasn't implying bias in my previous post. I apologize if that's what you've drawn from it.



You seem quite intent on being argumentative about this.  I frankly don't recall whether I ever read your reply.  I commented early on about the price disparity and suggested a comparison to the G-lite to keep it in the SE Dynalo family.  He replied to that spurring my question above.  You are, of course, free to comment in this open topic, but my question was directed to the OP...the one who posted the initial review. 

 

Thank you for expressing your opinion on the A-GD offering.  I have not heard it and only noticed after your prior post that the price had come down so dramatically from the 10WM.  As I stated earlier, I believe the LCD-2's benefit significantly from a balanced amp and am glad to see another balanced offering in a very affordable range.

 

There, feel better?

post #21 of 22

Golly gee, how did this thread turn into a political fan boy discussion? As far as I can see the OP levels fair praise to the Lyr, within the context of his own preferences and equipment.  

post #22 of 22

Asr, you were right about the Asgard and right about the Lyr. I think the Lyr for most part has a weird upper midrange/low treble harshness but for dark Orthos like the LCD-2 rev.1 and LCD-3,it works well. I honestly think if it was not for the LCD-2/LCD-3, the Lyr would not be as popular. 

 

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