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Some questions about Schiit Jotunheim/other products

  1. Anghi22
    Hello everyone, I was considering buying a Schiit Jotunheim with the multibit module and wanted some delucidations:

    1- Do you think the 100€ is worth the upgrade from the balanced DAC(100€) to the multibit DAC(200€) module for the Jot?
    2- As I understand it the Jot is ok for me since I own active speakers but, if I were to purchase a pair of passive ones, would I need to also buy a preamp to go with it or would it be ok to leave the setup as-is? In case I would need to buy one, which would you suggest(if possible from Schiit too)?

    Thanks in advance for your replies :)
  2. onevstheworld
    2. Preamps cannot driver passive speakers. And headphone amps aren't powerful enough. You'll need a speaker amp. That means Ragnarok, or Vidar.
  3. Anghi22
    Thanks. At this point would I be better off buying a vidar+jotunheim or would you suggest just a vidar/ragnarock plus a standalone DAC?
  4. onevstheworld
    Can't really comment on the SQ of either product as I don't use passive speakers.

    If you have active speakers, you don't need any speaker amp at this stage. Jot by itself is fine. It has pre-out that can go straight into the speakers. Unless you're imminently getting passive speakers, I don't see the point of getting Vidar or Rag. Plus Schiit is a predominantly headphone company, so you're probably wise to expand your options by considering specialist speaker amp makers.

    Also note, if you add Vidar to a DAC, it does not have volume control, so you still need a preamp. I'm guessing Jot will be able to use it's pre-out to control volume (not 100% sure, but Magni 3 does have variable pre-out that can serve that purpose)
  5. Anghi22
    Thanks, I'll consider that whenever the time comes, for now I think I'll buy the jot and use it until I purchase a pair of passive speaker, then I'll lokk for other options, maybe considering other brands
  6. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    The Jotunheim already has preamplifier outputs. What you need is a pure power amp, ie, it doesn't have a built in preamp unlike what are referred to as integrated amplifiers (ie they integrate the preamp and power amp into a single box, if not a single circuit board; usually only the source selector is on a separate board).

    Problem is these tend to be more expensive since the target market are people who want separates, likely for a heck of a lot of power. That makes these relatively rare and expensive compared to integrated amps, even more so today when the DACs are integrated into integrated amps also. That said, if you have the space but not the money, then you can get a rather large Class A or A/B Emotiva instead of a $3,000++ fullrange Class D Bel Canto.
  7. Anghi22
    Which emotive would you suggest? I checked on their site and they all go from 1200$ upward, if I include shipping to Italy that would take me months to buy(not including inportations fees, which are crazy high. Also, I do have the space but not that much so no behemoths of an amp(I have uploaded a picture of my setup and free space).
    If I were to change my mind and stray from my initial idea of a Jotunheim, what would you suggest that could drive passive speakers and a pair of xlr cable headphones, including also a multibit or balanced DAC?
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2018
  8. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    What page were you in? These were practically out in front.
    Emotiva_A150.jpg Emotiva_A300.png

    Well it's either that or you get stuff from over there where the prices aren't even stated on the product page, because if you have to ask, you can't afford it. Kind of like buying a really nice car with a horse on the coat of arms (that is an actual coat of arms, not like the running wild horse on some Fords).


    Nearly the same thing even if you go up north to the rest of the continent.


    You could do a little better crossing the chunnel...oh, wait, no.

    https://nadelectronics.com/product/m22-stereo-power-amplifier/ ($2,999 in the US)
    https://nadelectronics.com/product/c-275bee-stereo-power-amplifier/ ($1299 in the US)
    https://nadelectronics.com/product/c-268-stereo-power-amplifier/ ($799 in the US)

    China via accredited dealers in Europe isn't any better.


    Maybe check if this Schiit doesn't have that high a mark up over there.


    You don't have space and you need a headphone amp. Reality is, most speaker integrated amps aren't as good at driving headphones as they are with speakers, and you still pay more, mostly because most of them have dealers unlike how headphone amp manufacturers like Meier and Schiit try to cut the middle man as much as possible (though you just pay shipping in some way; ie Meier already includes global shipping in the USD price, regional shipping and EU taxes in the Euro price, etc).

    Not to mention you're not going to sit back far enough to warrant buying power amps that, being products with a narrower market, are basically designed to just put out gobs more power to appeal to those who need separate units for that reason (save for Nelson Pass, whose priority, wisely, is still super low distortion and noise), on top of which passive speakers are designed for listeners sitting well over 1m away, not under 1m.

    Why not just get nearfield active monitors like KRK? Those have two amplifiers built into each (one for the tweeter, one for the midwoofer), take a balanced preamp signal (like from the Jotunheim), and are designed for nearfield listening? Also if the sound is too sharp the separate amps means there's usually a master gain on each monitor but each has a secondary gain control just for the tweeter amp.
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2018
  9. Anghi22
    Holy hell, those prices! Anyway, I messed up, I was visiting the Emotiva page from my phone and I could only see those 3 or 4 products on the home which costed 1200 dollars and upward.

    As far as Schiit prices go, they are the same over here than they are over there, the site still lists them in dollars even when I input my shipping location to Italy, so the Vidar comes at 699, with the Magni Modi stack coming in at around 350 for the multibit version, the shipping costs from 45 to 55, depending on the type of parcel; so I am looking at a cost of around 400 dollars for the Schiit stack, which would work well with my actual active speakers and, in cas I buy a pair, with the KRK nearfield active speakers you mentioned, doesn't sound like a bad deal, in my opinion
  10. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    Oh that's why - some sites really just don't have mobile friendly alternate versions.

    Alternately if you just want a power amp you could look for used amps near you. Old NAD 214 amps can go for as low as $150, albeit with a few though minor cosmetic issues. Of course, given your listening area, a nearfield monitor would still be the more sensible option.

    Look into local prices for other studio monitors too, like the BX5a, JBL LSR305, or heck, even older Focal-JMLab or Genelec.
  11. Anghi22
    The only NAD 224 I could find was on ebay for 375€, the BX5a were sold out but costed around 210€, the JBL come 125€, the Focal-JMLab seem to go from 750 upward and the Genelec from 255 upward.

    How are the prices here compared to over there?
  12. ProtegeManiac Contributor
    That NAD 214 better be in perfect performance and cosmetic condition at that price. Even ten years ago I could find some for around $300, if not less.

    BX5a looks good, you could wait for it to be in stock again.

    Focal and Genelec do cost more but if you save up first they're worth it. There's also Dynaudio.

    However in case you won't buy a balanced drive amp with a balanced preamp, ie, XLR outputs, the KRK is one of the few that have unbalanced (ie single ended) RCA inputs, no need for converter cables.
  13. Anghi22
    I will most likely buy a multibit DAC if possible so there shouldn't be a problem with connections, I think XLR can wait for now.

    The NAD has minor scratches and some dents in the case so I don't think it's worth it at that price. I'll just wait and decide with time, firstly I'll buy a dac and amp for my heaphones and then a few months down the line I'll consider what speakers to buy and wheter I should buy an external amp or not.

    Thanks again for all your help :)

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