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Upgrade uDAC to Schiit Bifrost? - Page 2

post #16 of 19
Thread Starter 

Ah, you guys brought my post back from the dead!

 

Since making the original post, I ordered a Bifrost from Amazon via Audio Advisor. The difference was immediately noticeable, but came at first with a bit of a bittersweet taste. At first it sounded TOO detailed to me. It was odd at first to hear both the reverb and the dry signal almost as discrete sounds as the Bifrost presents to my ears. It seemed disconnected and less warm than my uDAC. At one point, the Bifrost was uncomfortably bright sounding for me, though not right out of the box.

 

Call it burn-in, psychological burn-in, whatever: the Bifrost now sounds much better to my ears. I've put an average of (at least) 5 hours of actual listening use a day on my Bifrost in the near-month I've owned it, with a good amount of pink noise burn-in time as well, so I'm pretty sure it's fully burned in (again, psychological or physical).

 

While now I do hear reverb as being a separate element from the dry signal still, it is no longer distracting as it once was. I appreciate the detail it brings and think the detailed reverb contributes to instrument placement. And the Bifrost is now quite warm enough for me, and no longer bright sounding.

 

Anyway, the Bifrost was quite a good purchase IMO. Even when I first got it, I was glad to have it, but had the above reservations. Now it's downright amazing.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilosonic View Post

True but having bought the Bifrost myself out of curiosity, fully expecting to return it (I was part of the "DACs don't make that huge a difference" camp), I have to say I can't imagine how anyone cannot be satisfied/impressed with it unless they're downgrading from a $2k dac. Very neutral, very revealing, and overall amazing bang-for-buck product imho. 
 

 


In response to this, I was only analyzing the cost as being not worth it to return the Bifrost. 10% of the price of the product is pretty steep. Luckily, I like the Bifrost, so the cost of returning isn't important anyway.


Edited by qoouep - 3/9/12 at 12:46am
post #17 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by qoouep View Post

In response to this, I was only analyzing the cost as being not worth it to return the Bifrost. 10% of the price of the product is pretty steep. Luckily, I like the Bifrost, so the cost of returning isn't important anyway.


I know :) but that's where I must respectfully disagree. 10% isn't that bad compared to some stores like best buy or fry's that charge a 15% restocking fee. Imho, I think it's rather reasonable. Glad you're liking the bifrost tho; hope the improvement over your udac was worth the extra $. 

 

post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kilosonic View Post


I know :) but that's where I must respectfully disagree. 10% isn't that bad compared to some stores like best buy or fry's that charge a 15% restocking fee. Imho, I think it's rather reasonable. Glad you're liking the bifrost tho; hope the improvement over your udac was worth the extra $. 

 



Well, for these purposes I think the 10% is a lot. If I decided I didn't like the Bifrost wasn't what I wanted, I would probably end up trying different DACs anyway, potentially spending even more on shipping and restocking. Basically, what I decided when I ordered the Bifrost was that I would keep it if it were a noticeable improvement from the uDAC, whether or not it were a cost-effective increase in SQ.

 

In an attempt to quantify (subjectively) the increase in SQ from my previous systems, I like to give (again, subjective) numerical evaluations of how much of a SQ increase I gained over the previous system.

 

Prices listed at MSRP.

 

I'll use my first system as a baseline.

1) NuForce uDAC -> Alessandro MS1i ($210): 1

2) NuForce uDAC -> Sennheiser hd595 ($350): 100

3) NuForce uDAC -> Schiit Asgard -> Sennheiser hd595 ($600): 200

4) NuForce uDAC -> Schiit Asgard -> Sennheiser hd600 ($870): 2,000

5) Schiit Bifrost (w/ USB) -> Schiit Asgard -> Sennheiser hd600 ($1220): 10,000

 

Perhaps my ratios are higher than the literal percentage increase in SQ, but my intent is more to show a valuation of each upgrade relative to the others. So, for example, the upgrade from system 1 to system 2 has a ratio of 100, the same ratio as from system 2 to system 5. And to me, that upgrade was worth it, even though system 5 costs roughly 3.5 times as much as system 2 did. (And the upgrade from system 2 to system 5 cost 6 times as much as the upgrade from system 1 to system 2 because the uDAC was carried over through the upgrade!)

 

Anyway, that was a little OT, but I have wanted to write this up for a while now. And I'm not sure how useful other people would find this, but it makes sense to me.

post #19 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by qoouep View Post

Well, for these purposes I think the 10% is a lot. If I decided I didn't like the Bifrost wasn't what I wanted, I would probably end up trying different DACs anyway, potentially spending even more on shipping and restocking. 

 

 

Right but again 10% is still not unreasonable. It is not Schiit's responsibility to price its return fees based on future hypothetical purchasing decisions of their customers should they return the Bifrost, all of which btw will likely have comparable return fees also. 
 

 

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