I’m thinking about buying Schiit’s Jotunheim with the Multibit DAC. There haven’t been many reviews since the Multibit module became available 6 months ago. Would really appreciate anything you’ve heard or experienced with this combination. Thanks.
If you absolutely need an all in one dac/amp, I think it’s very good. I own it. As with all things, synergy is key. Which headphones are you pairing it with?
I was thinking of using it with a balanced cable for my Senn HD800S, Focal Clear and Senn HD650…and also with the 1/4 inch plugs on my LCD 2, Oppo PM1, HE560, Mad Dogs and T1.
My other amps are the Burson Soloist, WooAudio WA6 with their uogrades tubes, LYR-2 with Bifrost Uber and NOS Telefunkins, and Valhalla-2 with NOS Telefunkins. But none of those amps have a balanced output, and that’s why I’m interested in the Jotunheim.
Also, would you say the $200 MultiBit option makes a big difference in sound quality?
I’ll be posting a full review of the Jotunheim w/ all three of it’s module options (4490 G2 DAC, Multibit DAC and Phono), as well as a comparison with the Lyr 3 and the same modules, in the not super-distant future (there are a couple of things in the queue ahead of them).
That’ll also include comparisons with the Modi 3 and current Modi MB vs. the internal DAC modules, as well as comparison with the latest Bifrost Multibit as a source.
As @ProfFalkin says, the Jotunheim @ Multibit DAC module is a very good combination. It’s a bit denser and warmer sounding than with the 4490 G2 module (or vs. the Bifrost Uber). It’ll be faster and more detailed than the Lyr 2, albeit with a bit less low-end slam.
Using the balanced output will get you slightly better separation, resolution and micro-dynamics, as well as a more authoritative delivery and, of course, more power vs. the SE output. Interestingly a Lyr 3 would give you the same power output from it’s single-ended output as the Jotunheim will give you from its balanced output.
It’s definitely different to the 4490 G2 card, and I personally prefer the Multibit DAC module over the 4490 one, as to which you’ll like better it’s hard to say. Similarly, it’s hard to say if the difference is “big” - as that means different things to different people. I think it’s relatively easy to discern the difference, but I’ve spent more time than I care to think about in the practice of finding the typically small audible differences between different DACs - and find it’s really only in reviews, where differences are innately exaggerated, that one could say the difference between any two competent DACs was “big” in absolute terms (“big” in relative terms is another matter).
The 4490 G2 is a little more neutral than the Multibit module, with slightly better clarity, but the Multibit has better macro and micro-dynamics and a more impactful bottom-end.
What Torq said
My go to, lol
Thanks especially for your first sentence, which got me thinking. I don’t absolutely need an all in one dac/amp, and wound up getting a stand alone Bifrost Multibit. The added flexibility is fairly important now and may be even more so in the future. Thanks again.