Schiit Happened: The Story of the World's Most Improbable Start-Up
Apr 30, 2016 at 5:36 AM Post #10,546 of 72,810

jimmers

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Mr. Jimmers,
 
The comments from Audiophiles not the reviewer's comments.
 
Tony in Michigan

Mr. Tonykaz,
 
Sorry, I read the review 2 weeks ago in the magazine - no comments there; I didn't realise they had posted the review on their website already (with comments).
 
I thought "Nice review!" might have been ironic (?), (the exclamation mark ...) and "Those winey Audiophiles" might have been referring to the Stereophile staff, as I remembered you being less than complimentary about them in the past.
 
Apr 30, 2016 at 4:46 PM Post #10,549 of 72,810

artur9

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  Stereophile just reviewed the Big Schiit Rag Amp.
 
Nice review! 
 

What I found amusing about the review was JA's inability to use his normal measurement techniques due to the micoprocessor controlled bias (or something.  I don't know how this stuff works.)
 
It's like Jason went out of his way to build an amp that would poke a finger in the eye of the measurement crowd.  Note that I don't mean he actually did, just that I felt that way about JA's tribulations.
 
I think measurements need to catch up to the microprocessor inhabited world we live in now.
 
Apr 30, 2016 at 8:06 PM Post #10,550 of 72,810

jimmers

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I think measurements need to catch up to the microprocessor inhabited world we live in now.

Maybe if Mike makes an ultimate ADC they will be able to capture the music going in to an amp and measure the output and compare them and diagnose the changes?
To be honest I thought that's what they would have been doing 20 years ago - obviously the tech, though available, wasn't good enough, ADC not good enough I guess.
 
edit:
Miller Audio Research makes some impressively spec'd gear, yet when Paul Miller tested various audiophile USB cables for HFN the best test he could come up with was capturing the Eye Pattern for each - total fail really.
 
The pictures on their site show some of their customers (Arcam, Chord using CRT monitors, old pictures or ...) 
 
May 1, 2016 at 4:25 AM Post #10,551 of 72,810

landroni

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  Maybe if Mike makes an ultimate ADC they will be able to capture the music going in to an amp and measure the output and compare them and diagnose the changes?


The problem with this approach is that it's reductionist by nature. It's as if you took two variations of the same partition, compared them, identified the pixel changes between the two, and then proceeded to infer (subjectively, mind you!) which would sound better or that the two would sound the same to the human ear... Or that you could measure the voltages output from two different songs, computed the corresponding differences, and inferred from there the difference in emotions provoked by each song on a human listener... It's an exercise in futility.

If we turn to physics, just because you can know everything about the molecules of a door, the atoms, you’re still never going to be able to tell, from the elementary properties of those atoms, how that door is moving. The jump from one level to another cannot be done.
 
May 1, 2016 at 5:48 AM Post #10,552 of 72,810

jimmers

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  What I found amusing about the review was JA's inability to use his normal measurement techniques due to the micoprocessor controlled bias (or something.  I don't know how this stuff works.)
....
I think measurements need to catch up to the microprocessor inhabited world we live in now.

Which is what I was responding to i.e. normal measurement techniques.
 
 
The problem with this approach is that it's reductionist by nature. It's as if you took two variations of the same partition, compared them, identified the pixel changes between the two, and then proceeded to infer (subjectively, mind you!) which would sound better or that the two would sound the same to the human ear... Or that you could measure the voltages output from two different songs, computed the corresponding differences, and inferred from there the difference in emotions provoked by each song on a human listener... It's an exercise in futility.

I was referring purely to the testing of an amplifier, nothing to do with inferring musical qualities and certainly nothing to do with visual images, purely comparing output to input but instead of using steady state signals using varying music-like signals.
 
Currently most measurements on audio amplifiers, as done by Stereophile etc. are steady state, which has little to with music signals and even less (nothing?) to do with musicality or emotional response (?). The problem,as you would know from JA's testing of the Ragnarok, as pointed out in Jason's response, was that the continuous steady signal is interpreted by the Ragnarok firmware as a fault condition - not music, and it reduces the bias to the output devices leading to high distortion readings as the amp heads via class B to shut-down (or somewhere close by).
So I don't really understand the "The problem with this approach is that it's reductionist by nature."  
As for the rest ...
 
Edit:
My "diagnose the changes?" that you underlined was referring to gain at various frequencies, harmonic distortions, phase changes, intermodulation, transient performance etc. - the normal stuff but on a dynamic, music-like, signal.
 
May 1, 2016 at 7:18 AM Post #10,553 of 72,810

ScottFree

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Hey Jason. Any updates on Mike's surgery? I hope everything is going well.


Sent from my iPod touch using Tapatalk


Looks like he's doing alright:
 
http://www.head-fi.org/t/766347/schiit-yggdrasil-impressions-thread/2325#post_12544514


Great to hear. Though I do wonder with today's modern world if whether we could rebuild Mike into something better. After all we do have the technology.

[VIDEO]https://youtu.be/HoLs0V8T5AA[/VIDEO]
 
May 1, 2016 at 5:07 PM Post #10,556 of 72,810

420277

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heres an idea i just thought off and its proberbly been mentioned before ,but ill be moving to speakers in the future and was wondering why cant you guys build a amp that is upgadable like your dacs so when sound develops you can just upgrade
 
May 1, 2016 at 7:18 PM Post #10,557 of 72,810

AudioMan612

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  heres an idea i just thought off and its proberbly been mentioned before ,but ill be moving to speakers in the future and was wondering why cant you guys build a amp that is upgadable like your dacs so when sound develops you can just upgrade

Probably in-part because amplifiers are advancing far slower than DAC's, especially in the loudspeaker world.  The popularity of high-end headphone amps is relatively recent in the grand scheme of Hi-Fi.  On the other hand, high-end loudspeaker amplifiers have been around for ages.
 
I'm not trying to say that upgradeable amps are a bad idea, modular electronics are great in general, not just in the world of audio.  It's certainly something that goes on the pro list when trying to decide what equipment to buy.  I just don't see it as necessary or useful on an amplifier than a DAC.
 
May 1, 2016 at 10:01 PM Post #10,558 of 72,810

Argo Duck

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You saying we need to rebuild Mike into something better? Like the present model isn't good enough? :eek:

Great to hear. Though I do wonder with today's modern world if whether we could rebuild Mike into something better. After all we do have the technology.
 
May 1, 2016 at 11:56 PM Post #10,559 of 72,810

Armaegis

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Hey now, even the best components need to be recapped every now and then.
blink.gif

 
May 2, 2016 at 12:09 AM Post #10,560 of 72,810
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  What I found amusing about the review was JA's inability to use his normal measurement techniques due to the micoprocessor controlled bias (or something.  I don't know how this stuff works.)
 
It's like Jason went out of his way to build an amp that would poke a finger in the eye of the measurement crowd.  Note that I don't mean he actually did, just that I felt that way about JA's tribulations.
 
I think measurements need to catch up to the microprocessor inhabited world we live in now.


I actually didn't go out of my way to make it difficult to measure, but, on reflection, I can see how it seems that way.
 
Kinda cross-posting from another thread (edited for this thread), a "cliffs notes" version of the Ragnarok whys/wherefores:
 
Why did we make the Ragnarok an “intelligently managed” amplifier, that continuously monitors and sets bias (as well as monitoring for faults and correcting for DC offset?) The short answer is to provide a more stable operational point (which should eliminate much of the “warm up” variability, at least IMO) and to eliminate the need for coupling caps or DC servo (which, to me, are both imperfect solutions, but we can have loooooonnng discussions about that.) The long answer is in Chapter 27 where I discuss all the decisions that went into the development of Ragnarok, over the course of several years (but, if you have read this chapter, you know that there's a ton of rambling there beyond the microprocessor control.
 
So for what reason did it measure so oddly in Stereophile’s testing? First, de-biasing on continuous sine waves is part of Ragnarok’s operational algorithm. On extremely high volume pure sine waves, such as the 20 watt (1/3 power) one used in testing, it will eventually step the bias down to zero. A 1W pure sine wave won’t do a thing—it is below Ragnarok’s Class A bias. We ran hundreds of hours of music through Ragnarok in developing this algorithm to ensure it was not triggered by music, while watching the output of the bias ADCs on a screen. And, as Stereophile noted, Ragnarok does not de-bias with musical input. Again, we can have loooooonnnng discussions about whether this is “right.” (It does preclude the typical 1/3 power preconditioning test, for example.)
 
And the mystery? The mystery is why Stereophile could not reach our numbers for power output and THD. This is something that's difficult to guess about, since I wasn’t in the Stereophile lab to see how they were testing the product. As I have noted in 2015, Chapter 12, getting good, repeatable measurements is by no means a certainty. Was the test system set up for single-ended output? (Therefore shorting the negative outputs together, which is no bueno for circlotrons.) Was there a single-ended instrument in the mix? (Clipping a scope probe ground to the negative output of an inherently balanced amp also can cause big problems.) But all that is speculation. That said, I will be the first to note that Ragnarok won’t deliver the numbers that, say, a high-feedback, multiple-gain-stage amp will, so if you’re looking for PPM levels of THD (0.000X%), it’s not the amp for you. 
 
I try to do the best to chronicle what we do—and why we do it—in the most transparent manner, in this thread. (Some would say, “in excruciating, painful detail.”) We want you to know who we are, what kind of decisions we have to make, and why we do things. It’s up to you to decide if what we say resonates with you, and if our products meet your needs. I hope you do…but I also understand there will never, ever, ever be 100% consensus. 
 
All the best,
 
Jason Stoddard
 
Co-Founder
Schiit Audio
 
Schiit Audio Stay updated on Schiit Audio at their sponsor profile on Head-Fi.
 
https://www.facebook.com/Schiit/ http://www.schiit.com/

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