Schiit Happened: The Story of the World's Most Improbable Start-Up
Feb 25, 2016 at 8:21 AM Post #10,187 of 72,810

shultzee

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I had a MJ2 show up DOA.  The same day I unpacked it and notified Schiit  I had a return authorization and when I dropped it off at Fed Ex I got a email that a replacement was on the way.
Amazing customer service from Schiit.  
 
Feb 25, 2016 at 8:46 AM Post #10,188 of 72,810

artur9

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  You didn't read what I wrote. What's failing is UPnP/DLNA. 


Well, to be fair you wrote that after the response you quoted :wink: IIRC.  No big. (edit)Turns out I recalled not correctly, sorry(edit)
 
My guide was just a way to get up and running quickly not necessarily what I would recommend.  What I do is use a customized/configured version of MinimServer and a customized/configured version of Debian Jessie and a configured version of MPD and upmpdcli.  But that setup took me months to achieve so I agree with you on just buying something nice.
 
BubbleUPNP is very nice but I no longer have any android devices.
 
Feb 25, 2016 at 10:24 AM Post #10,189 of 72,810
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So what's the obstacle to using the regular device power supply rather than USB power? I mean, obviously that wouldn't work for Fulla or Modi, but for Bifrost and up? If it would get rid of common service issues (and whatever kind of sound quality issues might be involved with bad USB power), it seems like it'd be a big win. Is this more expensive/more complicated than I'd think?


Good question.
 
All of the USB inputs on all of our products are USB-powered, including ones that have internal power supplies. We made this decision early on in the Bifrost USB Gen 1 implementation, and carried it through the line, in order to help keep the whole USB interface separate from the internal power supply. In early products, this seemed to provide better sonics--but, to be honest, we haven't done a lot of testing on the pros and cons of self-powered USB vs bus-powered USB lately. Given the increasing troubles with USB bus power, it may be time to revisit this.
 
Now, this doesn't mean that all of our USB interfaces will suddenly be self-powered. It simply means it's time to look at it. You may find us taking some alternate routes to improving USB performance and reliability. And, as usual, no need to panic that this will result in changes overnight--when we're saying, "It may be time to look at this," that means, "We are just starting to think about this, and making changes to a stable product should never be undertaken in haste."
 
Aside: I personally find it inexcusable that an interface that is defined as being able to provide 500mA via USB 2 and 900mA via USB 3 frequently provides nada, zero, zip because the manufacturer wanted to save 0.3 minutes of battery life (or whatever justification they use). But I suppose the USB standards association has no real teeth, so abuses like this happen all too often. It makes me wonder what will happen with USB 3.1, which can technically provide 5A (yes, amps) at 20V (yes, twenty volts) for charging applications. I guess we'll see how that works.
 
Schiit Audio Stay updated on Schiit Audio at their sponsor profile on Head-Fi.
 
https://www.facebook.com/Schiit/ http://www.schiit.com/
Feb 25, 2016 at 10:34 AM Post #10,190 of 72,810
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  Awesome Chapter Jason, thanks.
I lost it when you mentioned the cat puke in one of the service amps. Do you have more funny stories/mysteries you'd be willing to share?


Surprisingly few. The biggest service head-scratchers, as a category, are the amps that look like they've been put in an industrial clothes dryer and/or dragged behind a skateboard for a mile or two. It's amazing to me that amps can get so banged up in normal use.
 
(And, by the way, products in this category are usually Magni/Modi--supporting the idea that the inexpensive products are not used in exactly the same way as other products up the line. But we still get a lot of dirty/dusty/stained/grimy products, which paradoxically seem to be more in the Mjolnir/Gungnir category. Go figure.)
 
We also get a reasonable amount of products sent back to us in ways designed to break them--like Magnis stuffed into a flat-rate padded envelope, or a Valhalla 2 in a 12 x 12 x 12 box with no padding at all. Those get photographed before, during, and after opening, and a repair estate provided.
 
And we get a few modded products. Most are pretty mild, but there have been a couple with enough stuff tacked onto the board that we had to say, "No way we're working on this unless it goes back to stock."
 
Recently we had a Vali 2 that got submerged in water. We couldn't find anything wrong with it, though. 
 
Schiit Audio Stay updated on Schiit Audio at their sponsor profile on Head-Fi.
 
https://www.facebook.com/Schiit/ http://www.schiit.com/
Feb 25, 2016 at 1:36 PM Post #10,193 of 72,810

Joel47

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But we still get a lot of dirty/dusty/stained/grimy products, which paradoxically seem to be more in the Mjolnir/Gungnir category. Go figure.)

 
Smokers sitting next to their gear?

 
As a professional IT nerd I occasionally have fellow employees bring in their private PCs for me to look at when I have the time (call it a job perk). The worst I ever saw was one that came from a house with two smokers and two long-haired dogs. Click power switch, DOA. Open case, have to leave my office for a bit. Return with fan to set in doorway. Power supply dead due to power supply fan not spinning due to being covered in tar-soaked dog hair. Suggestion: Buy a new PC. Alternative, chosen by employee: Buy new power supply, CPU fan (because that one was just as bad -- no idea how it kept spinning), and a box of nitrile gloves, and I'll fix it.
That was years ago and I still remember the smell. You want an anti-smoking ad? Show people the inside of a smoker's computer.
 
Feb 25, 2016 at 1:50 PM Post #10,194 of 72,810
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Smokers sitting next to their gear?
 
As a professional IT nerd I occasionally have fellow employees bring in their private PCs for me to look at when I have the time (call it a job perk). The worst I ever saw was one that came from a house with two smokers and two long-haired dogs. Click power switch, DOA. Open case, have to leave my office for a bit. Return with fan to set in doorway. Power supply dead due to power supply fan not spinning due to being covered in tar-soaked dog hair. Suggestion: Buy a new PC. Alternative, chosen by employee: Buy new power supply, CPU fan (because that one was just as bad -- no idea how it kept spinning), and a box of nitrile gloves, and I'll fix it.
That was years ago and I still remember the smell. You want an anti-smoking ad? Show people the inside of a smoker's computer.


Eeek. Luckily, nothing we have (yet) has a fan. But yeah, we do get some very stinky, yellow amps.
 
Schiit Audio Stay updated on Schiit Audio at their sponsor profile on Head-Fi.
 
https://www.facebook.com/Schiit/ http://www.schiit.com/
Feb 25, 2016 at 2:18 PM Post #10,195 of 72,810

reddog

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I can relate. When I was fixing VCRs, I could tell who was a smoker and who was not. The insides of a smokers vcr would be yellow from the smoke, and the video heads would need to be cleaned extensively. It was sad to see the machines suffer from preventable abuse.
 
Feb 25, 2016 at 2:30 PM Post #10,196 of 72,810

madwolfa

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Nothing beats CRT monitor guts soaked with cat urine (suckers loved to sleep on those). Pure destruction.
 
Feb 25, 2016 at 5:15 PM Post #10,197 of 72,810

J&J

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Roaches (not the smoking variety) for whatever reason have an attraction to electronics. I'm guessing if you have a roach problem and the exterminator comes you tell them not to spray or put anything near your precious equipment. and some smart bugs figured it out. 
 
Feb 25, 2016 at 7:26 PM Post #10,198 of 72,810

US Blues

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The point, just about halfway...
  Roaches (not the smoking variety) for whatever reason have an attraction to electronics. 

 
Oftentimes the smoking variety enjoy electronics, but for other reasons.
 
Feb 26, 2016 at 12:28 AM Post #10,199 of 72,810

AudioMan612

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  This one drives me crazy.  I've lost a ton of hair when cables go bad.  But what makes a cable go bad?
 
It's the main reason I buy from places like BlueJeans now.


Well, if you're moving the cables around a lot, you're bending the metal, so if it's not made well, it's just going to split overtime.  This is one of two reasons that there is a "proper" way of coiling cables for storage (this is mainly a thing in pro audio where you're frequently moving long instrument and microphone cables).  Properly wrapping cables helps preserver their life, and it makes setting up very easy, as the cable will quickly just unwrap.
 
Feb 26, 2016 at 12:59 AM Post #10,200 of 72,810

Armaegis

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I'm really curious, what would be a (potentially) good reason for offering a 20 year warranty? Bragging rights? Pride?
Is it a positive enough selling feature to offset the long term repair costs?
Not that we're naming any names; just curious what your thoughts on that are.
 
 
 
Which means: if you aren’t paying close attention to service, you may miss critical data that will help you make your products better.  
Well, here it is, for all HMFWICs: service is not beneath you. And spending your time better at processes, logistics, research, engineering, etc includes service as a primary component.  
Or, in other words: HMFWICs, pay attention to service, or else.
 
And please note these are not empty words. Every day at Schiit, I spend time in service. Sometimes even doing repairs directly—stuff that’s puzzling, off the beaten track, or that occurs in clusters comes to me.
 
Because I take some of the service burden directly, I feel it keenly. I’m highly incentivized to make sure our products are as dead reliable as possible. And this incentivization results in a feedback effect, so things get better and better.  

 
As the principal of a non-profit program in children's education, a lot of this resonates with me. It's especially bad in the university/college levels where professors leave all the marking etc to their TA's. My program has classrooms with twenty kids, with one teacher and one TA per room. While general marking/assignment duties do fall on the TA's, I insist that my teachers take part in the grading for tests because otherwise they will not experience first hand where their students' capabilities are. You can't be a teacher if you don't have direct involvement with student assessment.
 
 
When I was teaching university courses, I did the same thing. Left all the weekly assignments to my TA's, but I always flipped through them before returning and spoke with my TA's over what problems stumped the students most. For midterms and exams, I cranked through all the corrections myself and would spend the next two classes going over problem areas that I discovered.
 

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