Schiit Eitr, Mutec MC-3+ USB, Audiobyte Hydra Z

p. posted:

I have ordered the Eitr based on the reviews, now waiting for delivery which will take several weeks because of high demand. Really curious to hear how it performs.

On schiit dot com they say that they will ship starting from Oct. 20. I'm looking forward to read how it performs with the Naim DAC, please post your findings! Thanks, nbpf

Finally the Eitr arrived some days ago - and it‘s a wonderful sounding device, I‘m really happy.

Compared to the Audiophilleo2 + Pure Power Music is more real now, more present. The digital harshness is gone, instuments are better defined, I can hear more nuances and the music feels more lively, has more energy. The Eitr is just better in every aspect.

Only downside is that it requires a digital cable, where the A2+PP could be connected directly to the Dac. I have some cables on loan right now from my dealer, the reasonable priced Analysis Plus Black Digital  is more to my liking than similar priced Chord or Audioquest. Maybe I‘ll try Analysis Plus Crystal as well, although much more expensive than the Eitr itself.

p. posted:

Finally the Eitr arrived some days ago - and it‘s a wonderful sounding device, I‘m really happy.

Compared to the Audiophilleo2 + Pure Power Music is more real now, more present. The digital harshness is gone, instuments are better defined, I can hear more nuances and the music feels more lively, has more energy. The Eitr is just better in every aspect.

Only downside is that it requires a digital cable, where the A2+PP could be connected directly to the Dac. I have some cables on loan right now from my dealer, the reasonable priced Analysis Plus Black Digital  is more to my liking than similar priced Chord or Audioquest. Maybe I‘ll try Analysis Plus Crystal as well, although much more expensive than the Eitr itself.

P., are these RCA-RCA cables or are you using an RCA-BNC version? How do you power the Eitr? Thanks, nbpf

@NBPF, the Eitr comes with a small power supply that is supposed to be a linear power supply, at least it is astonishingly heavy for its small size (the ps). Shiit claims there is no need for more fancy third party linear ps, which I‘m happy to believe.

The Chord cable was BNC-BNC with RCA adaptor on Eitr side, the Analysis Plus is RCA-RCA with BNC adaptor on nDac side. Maybe I‘ll find the time to try without adaptor using an RCA input on the nDac.

I have been a Naim user since 2000 and for most of that time I was the classic passive user , doing everything through my ( excellent) dealer and staying pure Naim other than the addition of some Sonos .

That all changed 6 months ago with the discovery of Roon. Whilst I am tech aware I would certainly not describe myself as tech-savvy, but I have learnt a lot recently and I now have Roon running across 4 rooms with Naim and 4 with Sonos all powered by a NUC that I built myself :-) .

So with that as background let me now ask what I suspect may be a dumb question.

I am currently driving my NDX/NDAC system with Sonore UPnP but have been looking at the MUTEC as an option to connect direct to that system with an UltraRendu/LPS-1 as source. The thing I don't understand is all of the comments above are about connecting the MUTEC to an nDAC but wouldn't I want to connect to the NDX that then goes through the nDAC or is my lack of knowledge showing ? 

Look forward to receiving feedback and guidance 

 

You could do either as both the NDX and nDAC (obviously) have digital inputs.  I have been using a Mutec MC-3+ Smart Clock USB directly into the nDAC and it makes a very good USB bridge to the DAC from a PC. I see the UltraRendu has a USB output so that should work OK with the Mutec USB input.

Terry - can't say if it will sound better through the NDX - never tried it.  The best digital (and analogue) path is generally the shortest.  Not familiar with Roon but yes probably the NDX is superfluous if not going to stream directly from it.

If you do get a Mutec it will benefit from a good power cord  - I am using Isotek EVO3 Sequel - reasonably priced and sounds really good.  Some Mutec owners have done LPS upgrades but that voids the warranty and I think here the power cord can be equally as effective.

cheers

Terry Smith posted:
...

I am currently driving my NDX/NDAC system with Sonore UPnP but have been looking at the MUTEC as an option to connect direct to that system with an UltraRendu/LPS-1 as source. The thing I don't understand is all of the comments above are about connecting the MUTEC to an nDAC but wouldn't I want to connect to the NDX that then goes through the nDAC or is my lack of knowledge showing ?

...

The Mutec MC-3+ USB is, among others, a USB to SPDIF bridge. Thus, you could connect it directly to

1) your NUC server. In this case the NUC should also run a Roon endpoint, of course.

2) An ultraRendu (microRendu, sMS-200ultra, etc.) running a Roon endpoint.

You could also setup a Raspberry Pi to act as a Roon endpoint and connect it directly to the Mutec (or to any other USB to SPDIF bridge). Also, be aware that Sonore will soon come up with an ultraDigital USB to SPDIF interface by the end of the year. This will be powerable by an LPS-1. If you only need a USB to SPDIF bridge with BNC connector, this might actually be all you need.

nbpf posted:

Has anybody compared any of these devices as USB to SPDIF convertors into a Naim DAC or into another SPDIF DAC? Thanks, nbpf

I have now the Mutec and my M2Tech hiFace Evo connected to the inputs 1 and 2 of the nDAC via two DC1 BNC-BNC cables of the same length: both are fed by the same fitPC3 via two Supra USB cables also of the same length. Both the fitPC3 and the M2Tech are powered by TP PSUs. I have ordered a Schiit Eitr (now finally on stock at the European Schiit site) that has been sent today. Thus, I should soon be able to post my findings on these devices.

p. posted:

Great, curious to read about your findings, have fun!

Thanks, here are some preliminary results: I am running my M2Tech hiFace Evo + TP PSU, the Mutec MC-3+ USB and the Schiit Eitr in parallel. All three are fed by a FitPC3 and output to a Naim DAC. I first compared:

1. fitPC3 > Supra USB cable > Evo > Naim DC1 BNC-BNC > Naim DAC
2. fitPC3 > Supra USB cable > MC-3 > Naim DC1 BNC-BNC > Naim DAC
3. fitPC3 > no-name cable > Eitr > Supra Coax-Coax > Naim DAC

My impression was that 2 and 3 were more similar to each other than 1 and 2 or 1 and 3. In photographic terms, I would say that 2 and 3 had higher contrasts than 1. Next I focused on:

A. fitPC3 > Supra USB cable > MC-3 > Naim DC1 BNC-BNC > Naim DAC
B. fitPC3 > Supra USB cable > Eitr > Coax-BNC Canare adapter > Naim DC1 BNC-BNC > Naim DAC

The two setups sound different but I find it difficult to describe the differences. Perhaps A is more analytic, less warmer and organic than B. Perhaps the background in A is darker, perhaps in A there is slightly less energy in the mid-range frequencies than in B. Still difficult to distinguish between 1-3 or even A-B in blind tests. That's it for the time being. I hope that I will be able to make more detailed comparisons in the next couple of days.

Thanks NBPF for this detailled review, very interesting!

So it seems bothe USB bridges MC-3 as well as Eitr are on a similar level and just different flavors? Did you already decide on which one will stay in your system?

I wonder how PC+Eitr compares to a Naim Core. Maybe I‘ll try next year, but not sure what I‘ll do in case Core should sound better, as I like my MacBook as digital source for its flexibility, it just plays everything from SoundCloud and YouTube up to HiRez Wav files. 

Cheers & happy new year 

&

nbpf posted:
p. posted:

Great, curious to read about your findings, have fun!

Thanks, here are some preliminary results: I am running my M2Tech hiFace Evo + TP PSU, the Mutec MC-3+ USB and the Schiit Eitr in parallel. All three are fed by a FitPC3 and output to a Naim DAC. I first compared:

1. fitPC3 > Supra USB cable > Evo > Naim DC1 BNC-BNC > Naim DAC
2. fitPC3 > Supra USB cable > MC-3 > Naim DC1 BNC-BNC > Naim DAC
3. fitPC3 > no-name cable > Eitr > Supra Coax-Coax > Naim DAC

My impression was that 2 and 3 were more similar to each other than 1 and 2 or 1 and 3. In photographic terms, I would say that 2 and 3 had higher contrasts than 1. Next I focused on:

A. fitPC3 > Supra USB cable > MC-3 > Naim DC1 BNC-BNC > Naim DAC
B. fitPC3 > Supra USB cable > Eitr > Coax-BNC Canare adapter > Naim DC1 BNC-BNC > Naim DAC

The two setups sound different but I find it difficult to describe the differences. Perhaps A is more analytic, less warmer and organic than B. Perhaps the background in A is darker, perhaps in A there is slightly less energy in the mid-range frequencies than in B. Still difficult to distinguish between 1-3 or even A-B in blind tests. That's it for the time being. I hope that I will be able to make more detailed comparisons in the next couple of days.

Hi,

 

For few years now, i use puclite (yellowtec) with 5v usb lps as usb-spdif converter. Nothing fancy or looks, just really really good music maker. Recommand it, brand is yellowtec.

Before had a hiface, hiface evo, audiophilleo, with and without lps and evo clock. 

p. posted:

... So it seems bothe USB bridges MC-3 as well as Eitr are on a similar level and just different flavors? Did you already decide on which one will stay in your system? ...

Not yet really. For the time being I tend to prefer the Eitr but I would like to test how the MC-3 and the Eitr perform when fed by a  RPi3 instead of my fitPC3. There are huge differences in functionality (I could use the MC-3 to also reclock the outputs of the TV and of the blu-ray player) and, of course, price. For the time being I have tried to focus on the differences in sound when both devices are used as USB to SPDIF interfaces. Ony annoying thing of the Eitr is that it cannot be ordered with a BNC output.

p. posted:

... I wonder how PC+Eitr compares to a Naim Core. Maybe I‘ll try next year, but not sure what I‘ll do in case Core should sound better, as I like my MacBook as digital source for its flexibility, it just plays everything from SoundCloud and YouTube up to HiRez Wav files.  ...

It would indeed be bery interesting to see detailed comparisons between the Core's SPDIF output and the SPDIF outputs of current USB to SPDIF interfaces when fed by a high quality USB source. Many users of the Eitr and of the MC-3+ connect these devices to network players like the Sonore ultraRendu and the SOtM sMS-200ultra. Both from the point of view of aesthetics, convenience (one box instead of 3 plus respective PSUs!) and cost, the Core could be very appealing. Unfortunately, the Core's lack of support for classical music, internet radio and streaming services are dealbreakers for me.

Dre posted:

&

nbpf posted:
p. posted:

Great, curious to read about your findings, have fun!

Thanks, here are some preliminary results ...

Hi,

For few years now, i use puclite (yellowtec) with 5v usb lps as usb-spdif converter. Nothing fancy or looks, just really really good music maker. Recommand it, brand is yellowtec.

Before had a hiface, hiface evo, audiophilleo, with and without lps and evo clock. 

Thanks, I have read about the Yellowtec puclite here and there and it seems to be a very good interface. Which linear power suplly do you use with the puclite? 

nbpf posted:

... Ony annoying thing of the Eitr is that it cannot be ordered with a BNC output.

True! This is also for me the only downside of the Eitr.  Right now I use a RCA-RCA cable with BNC adapter on the nDac side. Not sure this is better than without adapter though. Next year I will try different cables 

p. posted:
nbpf posted:

... Ony annoying thing of the Eitr is that it cannot be ordered with a BNC output.

True! This is also for me the only downside of the Eitr.  Right now I use a RCA-RCA cable with BNC adapter on the nDac side. Not sure this is better than without adapter though. Next year I will try different cables 

I have two DC-1, both BNC-BNC, and a Supra RCA-RCA. The DC-1 and the Supra yield slight differences in sound but I have not tried to compare them so far. Supra do not seem to have 75Ohm digital cables with BNC connectors in thier catalogue.

p. posted:

Thanks NBPF for this detailled review, very interesting!

So it seems bothe USB bridges MC-3 as well as Eitr are on a similar level and just different flavors? Did you already decide on which one will stay in your system?

...

I have decided to return the MC-3. The decision was based on a comparison between the Eitr and the MC-3, letting out my current system. I have tried to take into account only sonic properties. From a point of view of functionalities and connectors, I would have preferred to keep the MC-3. I have also tried to let price differences out of the equation in my judgements.

That said: I am now comparing the Eitr to my default system (M2Tech hiFace Evo + TP PSU) using the same DC1 and USB cables. The differences are there but, to my ears, the two devices have a very similar sound signature. Thus, my preference for the Eitr against the MC-3 could be explained by the fact that the Eitr sounds actually very similar to what I am used to: just a little bit smoother and with slightly hiher contrasts.

I am not sure whether this helps but that's anyway my experience with Eitr, MC-3+ USB and my current system so far.

nbpf

Thanks, I have read about the Yellowtec puclite here and there and it seems to be a very good interface. Which linear power suplly do you use with the puclite? 

It's s diy kit with low noise power supply, but i also used to have a plug play solution from aqvox wich will already give 9/10 of improvement compare to usb power.

It are both quality products, clarity, dynamics and energy not lacking anywhere from the puc.

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