Yeah, I see your point, thanks.
I'm trying to minimize the impact of whatever opamps are on the soundcard. Bypassing the soundcard is really the only effective approach, but for the moment since I'm driving K601 I had expected that the Vali could be emphasized as much as possible in the audio chain.
I have a prototype USB DAC from a good friend and audio designer, but haven't put my hands on a pair of RCA cables yet tonight.
The Modi sounds like good bet, regardless. How much of this Schiit will I end up buying, though?