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Schiit's Saga Preamp Impressions

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  1. Mike Foley
    Tung Sol arrived today, and there is no more noise. I reckon it’s an improvement over the stock valve/tube. The treble seems a touch sweeter, plus the imaging has a bit more depth.
    Do tubes need running in?
     
  2. limelake
    Excellent ! I am glad the tungsol solved your wooshing. I would say yes tubes do benefit from running in. I have 3 tubes currently for my Saga. A new production Tungsol, A GE6sn7 FAA, and a very well used 1952 RCA. RCA sounds best but it's old, used on obviously had alot of hours on it.(bought it for 9.95$ from the The Tube Store used. I think all my tubes sound better with a little time on them. I just turned on my Saga with the tubes in it and let them sit for a day then played music thru for another. I walked away for this time and only listened at first install then after a couple days. I connected to a headphone amp I don't care about for this for the music. I noticed a difference after my short so called "Running in" with all my tubes. I dropped the stock tube on a cement floor and it was destroyed so it never got the time my others have. I do remember the stock tube well, seemed to be best out of the box then made no difference later.
     
    Mike Foley likes this.
  3. limelake
    I do wish I could justify buying a NOS Mullard or NOS Tungsol....way too much money for me ! The russian Tungsol is a best buy with no regrets. Love mine. Sounds better everyday.
     
  4. Mike Foley
    My Tungsol is a Russian one, not NOS, as I can’t afford to experiment with different valves, plus I don’t have the patience anymore! This new Tungsol gets good reviews, it’s affordable, and it’s an improvement over the stock valve, which adds up to a no brainier purchase.
    I’ve played a few albums through it, and I reckon it’s getting better all the time. I’ll give it a few days, then will compare properly with the stock valve.
     
  5. limelake
    I figured your tungsol was Russian as is mine. They really are excellent. I could live with mine forever with no regrets...it is that good. All my saga tubes were 35 $ or less. I can't buy into tubes that cost more than my equipment. With the Russian tungsol you aren't missing anything worth talking about. Ya I like my used rca best....but consider this, my tungsol is in my saga more than anything else.
     
  6. limelake
    please do let me know your impressions when your tube has a bit more time on it.
     
    Mike Foley likes this.
  7. zeissiez
    Hi guys. I have a Yamaha HS7 speakers+HS8S subwoofer setup which is currently being fed by an Auralic Vega DAC. This morning I played around with a Jotunheim in the setup. Here's what I found:
    1) With the Jotunheim (with the built-in DAC) replacing the Vega, the soundstage collapsed, details were gone, imaging took a plunge. The difference was day and night. Then,
    2) The built-in DAC was then bypassed, and the Vega was used instead as the source, feeding the Jotunheim (served as a preamp). The mids thickened by a considerable margin, the vocal became more flashed out with more meat and bone. Transparency and micro-details were slightly affected, but they were still at a good level. That was the best setup I heard from those speakers.

    So from the test, I reckon that the built-in DAC was a massive let-down to otherwise a fine performance from Jotunheim. Jotunheim as a preamp, was a revelation. So now the question is, how does the Saga compare? Has anyone compared the two as preamp to speakers?
     
  8. theveterans
    I had the Asgard 2 as my pre back then but with Saga, the soundstage with the right tube (Tungsol new production) the soundstage opened up without compromising the bass impact. Treble definition and clarity also improved. IMO, it wouldn’t bottleneck your Vega in passive mode and you can improve your Vegas quality with the Tungsol tube

    BTW, the Saga sounds more neutral/transparent than the Asgard 2
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2018
    Mike Foley likes this.
  9. Mike Foley
    I’ve had the Russian Tungsol in for a week now, and it’s definitely better than the stock valve. The treble is more open and sibilants are much reduced. The imaging is more solid and Bass is more tuneful. Well worth £20.00 or the equivalent in dollars.
     
  10. limelake
    Ya it's a great tube. Spending more money isn't really worth it. I am truly glad for you. Hope it gets even better with time.
     
    Matro5 likes this.
  11. Mike Foley
    Yes, I’m impressed with this valve, and so is Mrs Foley, who isn’t interested in the technicalities of our system, only the sound.
    I think it’s still running in, as music I played a few days ago is sounding better today, even the appalling remaster of Laura Nyro’s “Eli and the thirteenth confession” which is now almost listenable. That CDis so bright and harsh it could strip the enamel of your teeth!
     
  12. limelake
    Tubes do tend to soften harshness (without robbing detail or sounding tubby....i don't have a warm fuzzy system....) I have found my Adele, hall and oats , Ozzy Osbourne and many others to sound less harsh with tube(s) . There is just some really Schiity harsh digital music out there. Newer stuff and remasters mostly.
     
    Mike Foley likes this.
  13. jefffree69
    Hi there,

    I just upgraded my Bifrost to Multibit. Its really helps reduce the digititis on many recordings. Its certainly a lot more focused and warmer sounding than my Marantz CD 6005, which has a very airy sound, by comparison. But in a way I miss that sweet airy detail, on lower levels at least (before it gets to a blarey level).

    Hoping to find the holy grail and considering adding a SAGA into the mix. When you mention the stock tube, i see there are 2 options available -
    are you referring to "Russian 6N8S (NOS)" @ $349 or "Tung-Sol 6SN7" @$374

    And what do you mean by "Russian Tungsol" , something altogether different than the one Schiit offers?

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2018
    Mike Foley likes this.
  14. Mike Foley
    The tube I bought is new production, made in Russia under the Tungsol brand, and it cost me £20.00 from a supplier here in the UK. I guess it’s the same the Tungsol tubes that Schiit are selling from their online store. It’s a definite improvement over the stock tube.
    I wouldn’t spend £374.00 or $374.00 on a NOS tube. That’s more than Saga retails for!
     
  15. limelake
    Tubes schiit sell are russian including the tungsol. This is the tube we are speaking of. An old tungsol would be made in the USA and cost 100$ or more and be a rediculous investment.
     
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