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New Schiit SYN - Analog Surround Sound Processor

mhardy6647

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There's some new kind of filtering software that gives you control over the position of the speakers, and can give you a wider sweet spot, but it is really expensive. I can't remember the name right now.
Sounds like you might be talking about BACCH? Not new but, yes, expensive.
More tricks.
 

jbattman1016

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SRS wow!, Q Dash sound. All kinds of devices have come out to produce a larger image from just two speakers. Most of them failed because you couldn't move your head. I've had carver SRSQ sound, and even the built-in sound card in my old PC had virtual speaker surround Cole Dolby Spruce.
There's some new kind of filtering software that gives you control over the position of the speakers, and can give you a wider sweet spot, but it is really expensive. I can't remember the name right now. But I'm very interested in a plug-in that will do this on my PC with a good sound card or an external dock that has the processing power and the software built-in to produce a large stereo sub field that is convincing with two speakers. It is possible, just hard to do.
I think some of the Creative Labs offerings have some virtual surround sound on their headphone dacs, which you could hook up your speakers to.

Example:
 

mhardy6647

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Hopefully the Syn is in @amirm’s queue for a future review?
I am sure no one would complain if someone graciously ordered one and had it drop-shipped to @amirm -- or just packed up one they had already and sent it along to the PNW.

I could send him a Dynaco QD-1 to compare its analog surround sound to, if it were of sufficient interest. ;)

 

Cawafuoshi

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Probably the Syn is my biggest sin in audio gear purchases ever together with the Saga and their mini class A/B amp. All of that gear was needed for a 5.1 setup connecting all analog sources into the Syn and have the center powered by the small amp.

It worked well enough for music many times but not all the times.

It sucked for movies most of the times.

Well, I might use the Syn as a DAC for a media PC. Or as a headphone amp for a gaming PC. Or just as a pre-amp. It might not be a complete loss.
 

Sig.Rossi

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I would like to try the Syn. But I'm not sure what I can use as an amplifier on the outputs.

Will any amplifier work for this, even an integrated one?

Do class D amplifiers with volume controls or tone controls work?

Or does it have to be a straight power amplifier?

It is not clear to me how to interpret the output values of ths Syn.

What should you pay attention to when it comes to the input values of amplifiers to be used with the Syn?
Especially to avoid problems of saturation or something like this.

I thought it would pop up used frequently but didn't find one over here in Europe.
 

Left

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Cawafuoshi, did it suck even when you changed the source to Dolby Proligic or Dolby Surround (the current name for their swiss army knife matrix decoder)?
 

scottm_dj

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Admittedly i have not read all 19 pages here, but I know many people are wondering just what/who the Schiit Syn was made for...and the answer is: ME--with a literal analog connection smorgasbord on the back of my preamp, including three multi-channel analog inputs (see astonishing back panel in attachment). I happen to still be fully in the analog world (because it simply blows the doors off of anything I've heard digital) and own the highly-coveted 100% analog superb sounding Multi-channel Audio Research MP1 preamp. That beast just exudes quality, from the individual per- channel daughter boards, to the industrial looking wide solder traces--trust me when I say they don't make them like this anymore!

I replaced an equally coveted Conrad Johnson Mch tube MET1 preamp--it's main claim to fame being an awesome ARM Matrix surround retrieval system from two channel material. Although I don't miss the tube rolling & notable hiss at all, the AR sadly does not have that expansion system and I miss it greatly. That's what the Syn will bring when I get it soon.

So...in more detail...I have a Bryston streamer running USB into an Oppo 205--the latter being the only digital (HDMI) input of my entire system. I'd connect the Mch analog output from the Oppo as usual into my preamp, but the 2Ch output from the Oppo will go into the Syn (possibly before it goes into Modwright's slick new Analog Bridge to beef up the performance!). That in turn will connect analog into a second Mch input on my AR.

Now...for something like a movie I have conventional unaltered DD/DTS surround sound decoded from the Oppo. But for music (namely Qobuz high-res streaming), I will have the Syn to manually adjust all 6 channels as needed to get a great Matrix surround effect. That's what the device was made for. Thanks Jason for still living in the analog domain like me!

I just love the sarcasm of this company--from the actual name to all sorts of examples on its website. But If you read the Syn manual in particular it says about the remote which obviously has the constraints of controlling an analog system...so there's only so much functionality that it could have. They say "extra features are available on the remote (other than volume control and process toggling)...if you simply hold the remote and have a family member adjust the physical controls on the unit while you listen". Ha ha .. well done guys ')
Screenshot_20231213_222609_Gallery.jpg
 
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Cawafuoshi

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Update on my Syn: I decided to connect it to a different system in the same room as my Dolby home theater setup. Right now, the Syn setup is a 4.0 missing a center and a sub. I would do comparisons between the two if I can bring myself to make it a 5.1. For music, the 4.0 is def immersive enough.
 

Sal1950

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I could send him a Dynaco QD-1 to compare its analog surround sound to, if it were of sufficient interest.
Oh, I know a few guys that would kill for that. :p
 

sthomper

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i have been using a syn now for about 9 months and enjoy it. i had a basic schiit stereo system...just beyond near-field listening in a basement. i had played around with the halfler/eno schematic in years past when listening to ambient(steve roach stuff) and movies. with some guitar tracks, grant green or john lee hooker I have been able to get the guitar centered better with a bit of presence boosting. and with all channels going the ambient stuff really comes alive. i am also very happy with the dialog adjustments when watching video. im sure there are esoteric products from the past that do similar but this fits into my smaller wood cubes that house my equipment and provide all sort of options, mains only, mains with center, no center with mains and surround...at various levels of volume and shaping adjustment. so for the the 399, i get surrondish effects now with movies, and soundfield adjsutment to all sorts of music...and it fits in my furniture easily. I'm ok with it.
 
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mhardy6647

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Oh, I know a few guys that would kill for that. :p
1) I hope one of them was around when I left the other one I had on the freebie table at a NEARC swapmeet a few years back. :)
2) Other than the rheostat, it's pretty trivial to cobble one up.
1711128637553.png

source: https://www.hifiengine.com/hfe_downloads/index.php?dynaco/dynaco_qd-1_imp_scan.pdf

Of course, the rheostat doesn't have to be ganged. One could envision a bespoke audiophile QD-1 with three separate rheostats. It would tune kinda like an Atwater Kent TRF AM radio, but oh the tweakability. ;)
1711129316659.jpeg

(an Atwater Kent TRF radio, for comparison ;))

I also note, wryly, that a later morph of the "Hafler Circuit" was apparently sold in large enough numbers to (still) come up on eBAY regularly, even NOS.

1711129102329.png

completely passive still ;)
1711129445894.png



1711129174367.jpeg


Cheaper than Schiit -- I mean... umm... cheaper than SYN, too. (ahem)
:cool::facepalm:
 

dzerig

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Update on my Syn: I decided to connect it to a different system in the same room as my Dolby home theater setup. Right now, the Syn setup is a 4.0 missing a center and a sub. I would do comparisons between the two if I can bring myself to make it a 5.1. For music, the 4.0 is def immersive enough.
You are using a Halfer circuit, as implemented by Jason Stoddard. I used the extension speakers outside the stereo speakers in my wired up Halfer circuit back in the 80s. I assume most people using Syn are doing behind the back or such?

I like Halfer because it is a way to extract discrete signals from each channel without removing any signal you want to keep. With Halfer you only remove the common signal in the center.

Halfer is a great way to expand spatial information, without altering the mix or frequency balance in the signal.

I had purchased a Rotel receiver with Surround Sound but was never able to get it to work with it's own power amplifier in multi channel mode. But I can use the preouts from the Rotel to the five inputs of Syn.
 

tmtomh

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You are using a Halfer circuit, as implemented by Jason Stoddard. I used the extension speakers outside the stereo speakers in my wired up Halfer circuit back in the 80s. I assume most people using Syn are doing behind the back or such?

I like Halfer because it is a way to extract discrete signals from each channel without removing any signal you want to keep. With Halfer you only remove the common signal in the center.

Halfer is a great way to expand spatial information, without altering the mix or frequency balance in the signal.

I had purchased a Rotel receiver with Surround Sound but was never able to get it to work with it's own power amplifier in multi channel mode. But I can use the preouts from the Rotel to the five inputs of Syn.

This is very interesting. To be clear, is there somewhere on Schitt's site or elswhere online that shows clearly that the Syn implements a Hafler circuit, or are you just surmising? Thanks!
 

mhardy6647

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This is very interesting. To be clear, is there somewhere on Schitt's site or elswhere online that shows clearly that the Syn implements a Hafler circuit, or are you just surmising? Thanks!
I doubt that they wish to disclose the details. Draw one's own conclusions
 
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Anyone experiencing a slight right/left channel imbalance with the SYN? I am having to use balance control on my foobar player to even things out. :facepalm:
 

EJ3

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You are using a Halfer circuit, as implemented by Jason Stoddard. I used the extension speakers outside the stereo speakers in my wired up Halfer circuit back in the 80s. I assume most people using Syn are doing behind the back or such?

I like Halfer because it is a way to extract discrete signals from each channel without removing any signal you want to keep. With Halfer you only remove the common signal in the center.

Halfer is a great way to expand spatial information, without altering the mix or frequency balance in the signal.

I had purchased a Rotel receiver with Surround Sound but was never able to get it to work with it's own power amplifier in multi channel mode. But I can use the preouts from the Rotel to the five inputs of Syn.
I wish that it had a .2 or .4 (pair or quad subs) to the output.
 

dzerig

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I wish that it had a .2 or .4 (pair or quad subs) to the output.
I would be interested in a Syn-uous or Syn-iMax with added features, but I imagine the specialty parts in small quantities would make this an unappealing product from a business point of view.

That said, Loki Max seems to sell okay!

This is very interesting. To be clear, is there somewhere on Schitt's site or elsewhere online that shows clearly that the Syn implements a Hafler circuit, or are you just surmising? Thanks!
Jason discussed it in a video where he described the processing channels as matrix processing with secret sauce, such as frequency shaping. Not sure he called it a Hafler circuit, that's what I call it though.
 
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mhardy6647

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I would be interested in a Syn-uous or Syn-iMax with added features
The best part of that would be that Schiit could continue to sell the current product and call it Original SYN.
:cool:
:eek:
:facepalm:

PS I think I'll register that trademark so I can sue the pants off 'em when they do.
 
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