• 06-10-2015, 03:11 PM
    Feanor
    Got a new DAC TWEAK on the way
    As you might recall, I have a Schiit Audio Bfrost DAC with USA and the Uber analog section. The Bifrost uses the C-Media CM6631A chip to support asynchronous USB. I've been using USB via a 15' Pangea cable with silver plating on the main signal wires.

    For a quite few months I've been having one weird problem: once in a while the DAC will seem to loose the USB signal -- I get pure static noise that persists until I stop and restart playback or seek back/forth in the song I'm playing. I'm sure this is a USB problem, probably but not necessarily caused by the computer, because when I change the computer USB connection I'm using, the problem becomes better or worse. I've been considering going back to a S/PDIF coax connection, I decided first to try gaget that is also purveyed by Schitt Audio, the WYRD USB power isolator; see HERE -- a Wyrd solution to my weird problem, I hope).

    Here's what Schiit says about it ...

    Quote:

    So, what the heck is this little thing? Well, it’s either the world’s most expensive and limited USB hub, or it’s the key to eliminating sticky USB audio problems. Simply put, it cleans up your USB connection, eliminating noise and glitches caused by crappy USB power or USB port power management.

    The Cure for Noise and Glitches:
    Have you ever heard strange noise from your USB DAC? Or have you had it “drop out” after the computer goes to sleep? Or does your computer have trouble recognizing your DAC at all? It could be due to noisy USB power, or USB port power management (very common with Windows 8 and Mac Mavericks.)

    Improves Sound, Color Printing, Data Stability:
    Just kidding. This is silly. That’s like saying charging your iPhone off Wyrd makes the battery last longer. But some listeners say Wyrd improves the sound of their system. We’re not going to make any such claims. Nor are we going to recommend it for printers, external USB drives, or iPhone chargers.

    The thing is in the mail; I'll update after I've tried it for a while.
  • 06-10-2015, 06:33 PM
    blackraven
    Cool, keep us posted. Have you taken a look at their new Yggdrasil DAC? It's supposed to be awesome.
  • 06-11-2015, 08:40 AM
    Feanor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by blackraven View Post
    Cool, keep us posted. Have you taken a look at their new Yggdrasil DAC? It's supposed to be awesome.

    Wlll do on the WYRD.

    Vis-a-vis the YGGDRASIL, I'd love to hear one but I have no know source to audition one other than ordering from Schitt. They offer a return privilege but given cross-border shopping that is an expensive hastle. Too expensive for me to now in any case.

    YGGDRASIL apparently endorses the view of some that the 20-bit ladder DACs, no longer trendy, were nevertheless the best sounding ever. The DAC they are using, (mentioned above), is allegedly used in medical and military applications that require high accuracy but hasn't been used in DACs before. Also, neither the Ygg nor any other Schiit DAC uses upsampling. Like their mid-range Bifrost and Gungnir DACs, the Yggdrasil's analog section is all-discrete with no opamps.

    The Ygg won't handle DSD, unfortunately. But it is upgradable and if DSD catches on (in Schiit's esteem), they will offer an upgrade.

    Guts of the Yggdrasil: USB interface, S/PDIF input, DACs, and analog output boards are all separate and upgradable when these become available ...

    http://schiit.com/public/upload/gene...l_pcb_1000.jpg
  • 06-14-2015, 07:56 AM
    Feanor
    A brief update.

    The WYRD arrived and is installed. I have listened for several hours without the occurrence of the signal lost/garble connection problem I described, that is ...

    "For a quite few months I've been having one weird problem: once in a while the DAC will seem to loose the USB signal -- I get pure static noise that persists until I stop and restart playback or seek back/forth in the song I'm playing.
    "

    I was experiencing this problem at intervals of about 1-1.5 hours on the more reliable of my computer's USB connectors; with another connector the occurrence was more frequent, about every 0.5 hours. So far in about 4-5 hours with the WYRD I have had no occurrences -- so far so good. Schiit Audio touts the Wyrd as being especially useful in case of USB-powered DACs, which my Bifrost is not, nevertheless it seems to have a beneficial effect (so far).

    What about sound quality? I can say I've heard absolutely no degradation of SQ but I'm not sure I've heard an improvement either; maybe I'll have more to report. Schitt explicitly says they know no reason that SQ should be improved, but they coyly state that some users insist that they have hear improvement.
  • 06-14-2015, 08:14 AM
    blackraven
    Glad to hear it worked out for you. I was considering the Yggdrasil before I bought the Luxman, but I can't find any in depth reviews on it. And Schiit charges a 15% restocking fee on returns which is a bunch of schiit.

    Have you seen their new cheap DAC called the Fulla Schiit. No pun intended.
  • 06-14-2015, 05:19 PM
    Feanor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by blackraven View Post
    Glad to hear it worked out for you. I was considering the Yggdrasil before I bought the Luxman, but I can't find any in depth reviews on it. And Schiit charges a 15% restocking fee on returns which is a bunch of schiit.

    Have you seen their new cheap DAC called the Fulla Schiit. No pun intended.

    Guffaw :biggrin5: Yes, the Fulla is an actual USB-powered DAC/headphone amp for portable use.

    Here's about the best Yggy review I've see so far, based on a pre-production copy ... Schiit Yggdrasil DAC Review (pre-production): a short preview of your next DAC ... pretty exhaltary.

    Here's another, fairly short item that discusses some technical details that aren't mentioned on the Schiit site ... Schiit drops new consonant-heavy high-end DAC ... That includes the Analog Devices SHARC DSP that oversamples to 352.8 or 384 kHz at 20 bits, retaining all the original bits but interpolating; the is device is what provides the digital filtering which, presumably, is a key to the overall sound quality.
  • 06-24-2015, 08:35 AM
    Feanor
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Feanor View Post
    ...
    For a quite few months I've been having one weird problem: once in a while the DAC will seem to loose the USB signal -- I get pure static noise that persists until I stop and restart playback or seek back/forth in the song I'm playing. I'm sure this is a USB problem, probably but not necessarily caused by the computer, because when I change the computer USB connection I'm using, the problem becomes better or worse. I've been considering going back to a S/PDIF coax connection, I decided first to try gaget that is also purveyed by Schitt Audio, the WYRD USB power isolator; see HERE -- a Wyrd solution to my weird problem, I hope).

    FOLLOW UP:

    I' glad I can report that the WYRD has apparently solved my lost/garbled signal problem. I've been listening for 20+ hours without a recurrence of the problem that used to occur every 1-1.5 hours.

    The WYRD is worth recommending for anyone having USB-to-DAC glitches, burps, dropouts, or signal losses (such as I mentioned). Per Schiit's descriptions, I'd suspect it is especially worth considering for anyone with a USB-powered DAC or other downstream device, (although my Bifrost Uber is self-powered).

    Does the WYRD improve sound quality? Well ... maybe. In my case the basic character of the sound is unchanged, but it could be that I'm hearing very slightly better, sharper imaging; however I haven't done any AB'ing for sound quality because I don't want to forego the other advantages in the meantime. Results might be more definitive in case of a USB-powered device.