Schiit Jotunheim 2 - Impressions Thread
Mar 13, 2021 at 11:07 PM Post #1,217 of 2,153

Smoothstereo

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Can you provide more details about that Frankenstein you have on Vali 2?? Looks awesome !!!
I have had my Vali2 for 3 years or so and when I first got it, I was not satisfied with the stock 6BZ7 tube, so my search for my perfect tube started. Luckily I found the Vali 2 tube rolling forum here at Headfi to get ideas and suggestions. Read so many posts and tried quite a few tubes along the way. The Vali2 is a tube rollers' dream. I am still learning.

In addition to the stock tube, I have tried 6922, 7DJ8, 7308, (this one cost me almost the same price of the Vali2), 5670 with adapter, 6SN7/6H8C with adapter, and dual 6J5G with adapter. There are quite more that I haven't tried like the 12A*7 family and other dual tubes.

My journey stopped when I landed on two Zenith 6J5G. They souned exactly what I wanted for my set up. The adapter was bought on ebay. Here is the link. Hope this helps.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1pc-Dual-6...214762?hash=item2ee7d8676a:g:j5EAAOSwhcJWM0XX
 
Mar 13, 2021 at 11:47 PM Post #1,219 of 2,153

tkddans

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My Bifrost 2 and Jotunheim 2 are coming tomorrow.

I have the following to test and share:
- GoldPlanar GL2000 (filter removed mod)
- Sennheiser HD800 S
- STAX SR-L300 (Bifrost to Stax energizer)
- Thieaudio Clairvoyance IEM
 
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Mar 14, 2021 at 12:55 AM Post #1,220 of 2,153

HanselPA

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I have had my Vali2 for 3 years or so and when I first got it, I was not satisfied with the stock 6BZ7 tube, so my search for my perfect tube started. Luckily I found the Vali 2 tube rolling forum here at Headfi to get ideas and suggestions. Read so many posts and tried quite a few tubes along the way. The Vali2 is a tube rollers' dream. I am still learning.

In addition to the stock tube, I have tried 6922, 7DJ8, 7308, (this one cost me almost the same price of the Vali2), 5670 with adapter, 6SN7/6H8C with adapter, and dual 6J5G with adapter. There are quite more that I haven't tried like the 12A*7 family and other dual tubes.

My journey stopped when I landed on two Zenith 6J5G. They souned exactly what I wanted for my set up. The adapter was bought on ebay. Here is the link. Hope this helps.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/1pc-Dual-6...214762?hash=item2ee7d8676a:g:j5EAAOSwhcJWM0XX
Beautiful!! Yes, it helps, thanks!!
I had my Vali for little more than 2 years. Now is boxed, but I think you just gave me a reason to give him some love again.
I did try 6922 and later settle for EH 6CG7.
How they sound that make you stop your journey??
Thanks!!
 
Mar 14, 2021 at 2:57 PM Post #1,222 of 2,153

richierich

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If you're wondering if the Jot 2 can power the HE6SE I can confirm they do. That means it can power most headphones on the market today (through the balanced output).

On balanced output on low gain I use the Jot 2 at a sweet spot of 12 to 2 on the volume knob. This is the preferred setting and sounds balanced all around (no pun intended).

For SE output on high gain the HE6SE sounds good but not as great as the balanced output and the volume knob needs to be set from 10 to 2 and doesn't sound as crisp (slight clipping/distortion due to being under-powered through SE output).
 
Mar 14, 2021 at 4:44 PM Post #1,224 of 2,153

Smoothstereo

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Beautiful!! Yes, it helps, thanks!!
I had my Vali for little more than 2 years. Now is boxed, but I think you just gave me a reason to give him some love again.
I did try 6922 and later settle for EH 6CG7.
How they sound that make you stop your journey??
Thanks!!
I guess I should have said my journey has Paused instead of Stopped as you know this audio hobby journey never ends =). What stood out to me was the dual Zenith 6J5G tubes gave me more stereo separation, opened up the stage a bit. Instruments had a bit more space to breathe. The voices had more texture and decay. The instrument notes trail/linger a little longer. There was an ease of flow. They provided a good balance from top to bottom. The other tubes that I have tried, either was too warm, or too dark, or too bright, or hiding some detail, etc. It was always something that had to ruin the overall experience for that respective tube.

So not sure if all the credit goes to the 6J5G tube type or the brand and vintage or maybe a mix of these. As they say, there's always a better tube out there. I might experiment with some other brands and different vintages down the road. But for now, I just want to enjoy my music with the Schiit Jot2/Vali2/Bifrost2.
 
Mar 14, 2021 at 5:50 PM Post #1,225 of 2,153

MtnMan307

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Lyr 3 isn't balanced. Hence the wishful thinking. That being said, I'm eying the Lyr 3 for my SE power plant needs. Just wish I could afford it.
Lyr 3 is insanely powerful for an SE amp. I have a pair of AKG K240 Sextett LP, freaking 600 ohm monsters, and the Lyr 3 delivers the horsepower needed. And that combo sounds really good too!
 
Mar 14, 2021 at 10:27 PM Post #1,226 of 2,153

tkddans

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My Bifrost 2 and Jotunheim 2 are coming tomorrow.

I have the following to test and share:
- GoldPlanar GL2000 (filter removed mod)
- Sennheiser HD800 S
- STAX SR-L300 (Bifrost to Stax energizer)
- Thieaudio Clairvoyance IEM
Listening Conditions/Preface
All headphones except for STAX are listened to using Jot 2 on high gain, using XLR balanced output (with the IEM 2.5mm using a XLR adapter).
STAX is running from RCA from the Bifrost into a SRM-2525 energizer.

I wish I had my old Monolith still to compare and have a reference point here. I will have a Xduoo ta-30 coming in April to compare.

These are only first impressions, so please take with a grain of salt. Notes are based on using the Jot 2 + Bifrost 2 for only several hours (keeping the gear turned on the whole time to "warm up" as people suggest one should do). The observations below may be elaborated on, disagreed with, or in some way changed in a future post.

Listening Material
Apple Music
(I don't bother with lossless stuff sorry)

My
reference playlist




Initial Impressions
GoldPlanar GL2000 (filters removed mod)

I've had a love/meh relationship with GL2K's ever since I bought the Clairvoyance. Still, I tried listening to the GL2K and giving an honest fresh take on my newly acquired Jot 2/Bifrost 2 combo.

First impressions are that the GL2K's sound at least as good as they had been on the Monolith - from memory anyway.

- Bruno Mars and crew have clear vocals. Enjoyable and perhaps more forward with my gear
- These headphones are doing as well as ever or mayyyybe better. I'm getting strong vocal presence and clarity for male and female.
- Additional notes on clarity, separation, and other improvements on these headphones may just be due to having recently taken out the paper filters
- Gotta move on to others to see what else I can find...


Sennheiser HD 800 S
I'm noticing a kind of distance it seems. It almost sounds like the music is not as intimate as I want it to be. Maybe this is a trend from headphone to headphone. Maybe it's the amp. I'm really not sure. Just saying though...what I notice above all here is a sense that music is further from me than I want it to on initial impression. Maybe I have the drivers on my head weird haha.

Let's not take this too seriously. Initial impressions and all, blah blah blah.

I'll say this though...I'm finding myself enjoying the 800 S less than the GL2K's. The 800 S feels less well-rounded. What the heck is that about? Paper removal mod on the GL2K? The Jot/Bifrost pairs better with the GL2K? Who knows. That's just my feeling right now.


STAX SR-L300
Damn I love STAX. Maybe it's fatigue though from listening, but the noise is a bit harsh for me tonight. Take that for what you will about the amp I have. Maybe if the amp was warmer, I wouldn't feel this way? Who knows for sure. The STAX SR-L300 is fairly bright, so fatigue here could have happened on any hardware.


ThieAudio Clairvoyance
No fatigue felt here. The Clairvoyance have been my favorite phones lately (ear or head).
- Listening to Bruno Mars on Charlie Rose, I have a very clean playback. No issues for these IEM's thus far with noise on the Jot 2.
- Man I'm running out of fumes here....


Initial Conclusion
The Jot 2/Bifrost solves my powering needs, does it with very little to no noise floor, and powers my IEM's nicely too. It isn't wowing me. It isn't disappointing me.


I don't know what to say without comparing what I heard against another amp. I could share a lot more than I did, but would those things be due to the amp or just what I notice about the headphones? This isn't supposed to be headphone review after all.

My takeaway from all of this is that the amps are doing quite well so far. The DAC/amp combo are very quiet and play my music with plenty of power. I'm not sure how much more "musical" they are compared to other gear honestly. It's hard to say yet.

If anything, I'm wondering if I'm missing something I liked from past gear. I felt at times with some headphones that the music almost appeared further from me than I recall. Maybe people perceive wider soundstage, and maybe that's it. Or I'm fatigued, or I need more "burn-in" (psychological or otherwise), or who the heck knows.

So far, these things are not blowing my mind like getting a whole new pair of headphones do. I'm not experiencing a honeymoon with these as of yet. Nor am I experiencing something terrible. I briefly tried comparing my IEM's on this setup against my portable Qudelix, and the Jot 2/Bifrost 2 was a cleaner listening experience and more enjoyable perhaps.

IMG_2294.jpeg
I'll come back maybe at some point with a comparison against an O2 dac/amp perhaps and against the Xduoo tube amp in a month.
 
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Mar 14, 2021 at 11:16 PM Post #1,227 of 2,153

richierich

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You're limiting your audio quality with Apple Music. Try a Tidal hifi trial sub and you'll for sure hear a difference. I just tested one of your reference tracks, Early Morning Light by Sarah Jarosz on Spotify 320kbps quality and then played it on Tidal Hi-Fi. I already can hear a massive difference within the first 10 seconds of the song with the guitar.
 
Mar 14, 2021 at 11:27 PM Post #1,228 of 2,153

tkddans

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You're limiting your audio quality with Apple Music. Try a Tidal hifi trial sub and you'll for sure hear a difference. I just tested one of your reference tracks, Early Morning Light by Sarah Jarosz on Spotify 320kbps quality and then played it on Tidal Hi-Fi. I already can hear a massive difference within the first 10 seconds of the song with the guitar.
I can try it again. Heck, maybe my new gear can spot the difference. I tried tidal once and couldn’t hear a significant difference.
 
Mar 15, 2021 at 12:19 AM Post #1,229 of 2,153

JES

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I can try it again. Heck, maybe my new gear can spot the difference. I tried tidal once and couldn’t hear a significant difference.
I just started an Amazon Music HD trial after using Spotify exclusively since 2014. I'm mad at myself for not going lossless sooner. My two-year old workout TWS buds from my S10 sound much better. My Jot 2 (with balanced DAC module) to LCD-2Cs makes the difference even more pronounced. Give it a try.
 
Mar 15, 2021 at 8:40 AM Post #1,230 of 2,153

tameral

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I just switched from Amazon HD and am trying out Qobuz and Tidal. Both sound a bit better than Amazon HD - they sound sharper - Amazon HD sounded smoothed off to these untrained ears - I used it for about 7 months constantly - noticed a sharp difference when trying out Qobuz and Tidal. I recognize that sound differences can be all made up in your head but hey that's been my experience. Interestingy Amazon HD offers tons more stuff in 24/96 and 24/192 than either Qobuz or I believe Tidal
 

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