Separate names with a comma.
No, it can’t be. Jason said it something new and that can’t be Sol.
Loki Maxi! Loki Maxi! Loki Maxi!
Well... aside from driving subwoofers, Class-D remains perhaps a few seasons away from making it anywhere near the winners podium as far as high-end is concerned.
Plenty of people pay $$$ for Class-A power amplification, and there are good reasons for this which lie outside the realm of mere prejudice or arbitrary preference.
P.S. Plug a pair of extremely resolving headphones such as HD800s or Focal Utopias into *any* Class-D amplifier, and play your 'best' recordings using your 'best' source. For most listeners, I believe this would clarify the limitations of Class-D in short order
OK, I hope the first to visit takes pictures etc.
I think they'll show the Sol and/or announce its release timing / pricing more solidly. However, I think the speculation is around what Jason was referring to in the post below. Are you thinking he's referring to the Sol below or something separate/additional to the Sol? (Emphasis below added).
Either way, we'll know soon enough.
I would actually love to see Schiit implement Class D for budget products. I got started in hi-fi with a pair of $30 speakers (Dayton Audio B652) and a $30 amp (Lepai 2020a). I have moved upstream since then but that starting point was really important when I didn't have more than $100 to spend. Every setup I have moved to since then has found a home with either friends or family, and in some cases has sparked new interest in stereo sound.
Personally, I see two places where class D could work really well in Schiit's lineup:
The first is a power amplifier in a Magni size chassis. It could be paired with a Sys to become a small integrated amp. You could add a Modi, or upgrade the Sys to a Magni to add headphone functionality. This device would essentially add speaker functionality to Schiit's budget line of products. A Magni 3 / Modi 3 / Class D amp combo would be a Yggy/Ragnarok stack for the masses. Additionally, if it could be switched into mono mode like Vidar, it would give people an upgrade path and make this a viable solution for systems that require more power.
The second place I could see Class D in Schiit's lineup is an integrated amp in a Saga chassis. If Saga lost the tube, moved over to a regular volume pot, and dropped a couple inputs, it might have enough space for a Class D amp inside, making it a high-value integrated amp for those who can't stretch to a full Saga/Vidar combination, or who want something much smaller/simpler. If Schiit could fit in a modular slot for a DAC as well, this would be a pretty killer product in my opinion.
I can envision some potential risks with such an approach: when one starts making super-inexpensive "gear for the masses" and goes too far down the road of price cutting, then one is "hopping on a crowded train" and coming into direct competition with massive mid-fi and low-fi gear manufacturers which can eat smaller companies alive in any production costs competition. In tandem, surely a small specialty company runs the risk of losing it's valuable product differentiation and brand distinction via veering too far into the production and marketing of cheaper, less qualitatively distinctive products.
I imagine it's generally a risky gamble for smaller specialty companies to begin treading to far onto the "home turf" of mass manufacturers.
Case in point (though not entirely analogous): Tesla was doing great in the luxury car market, but now they are close to "losing their shirts" trying to profitably manufacture a car model to compete with "The Big Boys" at a lower price tier.
IMO, Schiit occupies a unique place in the audio market. Their marketing, structure and processes are efficient enough for them to profitably produce quality *distinctive* products (made in USA!) with excellent performance at price points which are quite affordable, but not too *cheap*. I hope they stick close to this formula
Look at these two sentences closely:
Notice the capital "C" in "Continuing" and the capital "A" before "nother". That clearly references the "continuity" amplifier that starts in Class A and switches to "Continuity" mode if more power is required. At least that was what Jason talked about in the past.
Your point is taken, but it seems alarmist. I'm obviously not suggesting Schiit go down a rabbit hole of competing at the lowest end of the price spectrum at all costs.
"Super-inexpensive" is a relative term. Magni and Modi are considered by many (including me) inexpensive for the kind of products they are, and I certainly consider them "products for the masses," in terms of high end audio. That's all I meant by that statement. I wasn't suggesting that Schiit try to make something more mainstream than Magni or Modi. I was only speculating that they could make the Magni/Modi equivalent of a speaker amp using their traditional manufacturing methods, with their normal product margins, and in normal production quantities (so starting small then ramping up production to meet demand).
Now, if your opinion is that Class D is terrible in all cases all the time, then I can see how what I suggested is heretical. My last post would, after all, then be a suggestion that Schiit make bad-sounding products for the sake of sales or going more mainstream. Clearly though, that is not what I was suggesting. After all, there are plenty of people who think Class D can work well in certain applications, even if they believe Class A or AB is better (like me).
I don't even know why this should be necessary to point out, but it's not like anyone here is ever suggesting that Jason make something he doesn't like or doesn't want to make, simply to appease us, or for the sake of growth. People mentioned that Jason had less harsh things to say about Class D in the InnerFidelity interview that was linked earlier. I haven't listened to it yet but I will. Riffing off of that, I was only explaining where I personally could see Class D used in Schiits lineup, assuming Jason designed an implementation of it that he liked.
Schiit has, on numerous occasions, made products utilizing technologies they had previously said they disliked, once they were able to make a version of it that worked well, sounded good, and suited the application. The most recent example of this is Modi 3, which uses a switching power supply instead of a linear one, even though Jason said in the past that he dislikes switching supplies. But he obviously designed an implementation of it that he thinks sounds good, allows for great functionality, and has a strong price/performance ratio. If Jason was doing something similar with Class D, it could be really cool.
That is certainly the inference I got from those sentences.
In the end, don't most audiophiles seek a faithful reproduction of the artist's performance? One that sounds like the artist/recording engineers original performance/recording?
If so, then they should probably use the same stuff the professionals use in their studios and their concert venues...
Surely, there's no Class D in any of those systems!
Value for money we all can understand and appreciate. I think if something is cheap or expensive is very different per person (and in which period of her/his life) and not so relevant. When I bought my second hand power amplifiers which I still have and use I felt at the time that the price was OK. Then I did not realize how special they would be to me. But now that amount I paid (even worse after inflation correction) I would consider really expensive for several reasons, even knowing that I like them so much. And I think that is what Schiit is doing: they are changing our minds, showing us that it should be fun and not stress you out because of red numbers on your bank account.
If Jason can make classD amp in a magni chassis with a sound he pursuits for less than one hundred dollars then he would do it. During the interview with innerfidelity he said two very interesting points, first that a change in technology made classD faster than before and because of that interest in classD came back. And the other thing that I find very relevant of what he said is that quality improvement on amps/dac are way less impact full than improve transducers quality. And that cuts on both sides: we, the buyer, can spend our euros/dollars more effective but then of course you buy the Schiit hardware. I am pretty sure that when my power amp dies that Vidar or Vidar2 or the all new 25W class A amp (Bragi?) gets a change.
This!...a million times this.
Yes, or they blow. Either way they make my head go right 'round