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Schiit Gjallarhorn objective review

talkingbook

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Schiit has some great reviews and some lackluster on this site, so it is hard to assume their products are a good buy without objective review.
I know there are other options out there (still learning what they are), but I would like to support American made products when possible.
The Gjallarhorn is potentially bargain priced at $299. Are there any objective reviews that I missed?
If this seems like a promising amplifier, can we get it reviewed on the site? I would be willing to contribute to this effort.
 

staticV3

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The Gjallarhorn is potentially bargain priced at $299. Are there any objective reviews that I missed?
There's a full APx555 measurement report on Schiit's website:

It has all basic measurements.

In the end, you're looking at an 85dB SINAD, 10W 8Ω, 13W 4Ω Amp for $300.
Let's just say there are better deals out there.

Edit: if you'd like to lend Amir a unit for review, then it'd be best to send him a PM.
 
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antcollinet

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Schiit has some great reviews and some lackluster on this site, so it is hard to assume their products are a good buy without objective review.
I know there are other options out there (still learning what they are), but I would like to support American made products when possible.
The Gjallarhorn is potentially bargain priced at $299. Are there any objective reviews that I missed?
If this seems like a promising amplifier, can we get it reviewed on the site? I would be willing to contribute to this effort.
It's a 10W amp. In 2023. And doesn't even measure that well.
 

jae

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15W into 4 ohm is a bit lightweight. Products from Topping and Icepower have options ranging from nearly 4x-10x the power for similar price with confirmed 3rd party measurements. Spend maybe $200 more can you are in the territory of nCore based amps with much more power. The AIYIMA A07 TPA3255 as a budget option costs 1/4th the price and has 5x the power.
 
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talkingbook

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For those of us with high efficiency speakers and not trying to fill up a great hall a 10 watt amplifier is a good match that can help avoid accidental overdrive. So personally, I’m looking for an amplifier that has around this wattage or more and is a good value irrespective of the wattage.
 

antcollinet

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For those of us with high efficiency speakers and not trying to fill up a great hall a 10 watt amplifier is a good match that can help avoid accidental overdrive. So personally, I’m looking for an amplifier that has around this wattage or more and is a good value irrespective of the wattage.
Which is fair enough. But even if you only need 1W to fill your room, that still only leaves 10dB for dynamics in your music.
 

Joe Smith

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I like much Schiit stuff, but for me, these are underpowered, even for my setups in mostly smaller rooms. Right now, it is hard to beat the value of the Aiyima A07 with the stock power supply (32v/5a). I know the Schiit gang don't like cheaper Class D, and others here as well, but I like 'em.
 
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talkingbook

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Newb here, thanks for the advice! I will probably pony up to the the Topping PA5 then. I have another thread about how to avoid destroying my speakers with it :)
 

Asyrin

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It's a 10W amp. In 2023. And doesn't even measure that well.
Honest question: Does this really matter for the desktop use it's intended for?

I have it hooked up to an Asgard 2 and Modius 3E driving my Kef Q150 and the volume dial on the Asgard rarely goes past 8 o'clock. 9 o'clock is for when no one is home and I want to really push the system on something that bangs. 10 o'clock becomes painful after a couple of minutes.

So what would more power really give me?
 

AaronJ

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Honest question: Does this really matter for the desktop use it's intended for?

I have it hooked up to an Asgard 2 and Modius 3E driving my Kef Q150 and the volume dial on the Asgard rarely goes past 8 o'clock. 9 o'clock is for when no one is home and I want to really push the system on something that bangs. 10 o'clock becomes painful after a couple of minutes.

So what would more power really give me?
Just curious, what did you have powering the Kef’s before?
 

Joe Smith

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A little A07 from Amazon while I decided how I wanted the system setup.
And you are preferring the sound with the new G amp to the A07? The Asgard is probably helping things along a good bit...
 

JiiPee

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Which is fair enough. But even if you only need 1W to fill your room, that still only leaves 10dB for dynamics in your music.
According to Crown Audio calculator:

With 10W power and 86 dB/W/m sensitivity 8R speakers You can have 70dBSPL at 2 meters distance with 20 dB headroom. 86 dB/W/m is not especially high sensitivity.
 

antcollinet

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According to Crown Audio calculator:

With 10W power and 86 dB/W/m sensitivity 8R speakers You can have 70dBSPL at 2 meters distance with 20 dB headroom. 86 dB/W/m is not especially high sensitivity.
I'm listening at typically 80 dB. Would give only 10dB headroom for music dynamics. Marginal at best even in a desktop setting.

But the main point for me - for only around £100 more, I can have an Ncore based amp with 125W, and much better measurements. Or for less money, I can have any number of SMSL, Topping, or Aiyma (etc) amps with much more power, and similar measurements.

I don't have to settle for 10W
 
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JiiPee

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I'm listening at typically 80 dB. Would give only 10dB headroom for music dynamics. Marginal at best even in a desktop setting.

But the main point for me - for only around £100 more, I can have an Ncore based amp with 125W, and much better measurements. Or for less money, I can have any number of SMSL, Topping, or Aiyma (etc) amps with much more power, and similar measurements.

I don't have to settle for 10W
Sure, but for many of us 70 dB is easily loud enough. Also, for many of us the ethical aspects matter when deciding which manufacturers products we purchase.
 

Presb4

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Asyrin

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How would you compare the Schiit G with the A07?

I'm not an audiophile, just an enthusiast so I'll use specific examples.

I'm a sucker for the Eagles with the wholly predictable Hotel California off the Hell Freezes Over album being the pinnacle of recorded music in my mind. On the Gjallarhorn, the guitar stands out much better for me. It sounds like I can better hear the individual strings instead of just chords. On Get Over It, the bass sounds more full, the entire recording feels like it has more substance. I guess that's probably better bass? I have an SB1000 hooked into the system but I have it properly tuned to that you can't actually hear the subwoofer specifically so any change in bass wouldn't be coming from the speaker amp. Maybe it just sounds like it blends better?

Another odd thing I noticed is the point at which I stop turning the dial because the music sounds good on my Asgard is a full 3 o'clocks to the left on the Gjallarhorn vs what it was on the A07 though that had an independent volume knob so maybe that has something to do with it. I kept the A07 at about noon.

There was definitely an electrical noise in his small, quiet room with the A07. I wouldn't say it was loud or distracting but it was present. With the Gjallarhorn, I can't tell if it's on or not short of the light on front.

I was really curious so I did a wholly unscientific test where the stack was set up on the side of my desk out of view and my wife would swap the cables or not between them and I'd come back in and try to figure out which amp was hooked up. Using Hell Freezes Over, I was able to correctly identify the Gjallarhorn 10 out of 12 times. Though, as I said, the A07 has a volume knob and no bypass I'm aware of so we did our best for volume matching but it couldn't possibly have been spot on.

I hope that made sense. I'm just a guy who wants good sound out of his speakers and headphones.

Oh, and lastly, the fact that the power supply is contained within the unit has been a hell of a lot nicer than I anticipated from a cable management standpoint.
 
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Trudius

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I'm not an audiophile, just an enthusiast so I'll use specific examples.

I'm a sucker for the Eagles with the wholly predictable Hotel California off the Hell Freezes Over album being the pinnacle of recorded music in my mind. On the Gjallarhorn, the guitar stands out much better for me. It sounds like I can better hear the individual strings instead of just chords. On Get Over It, the bass sounds more full, the entire recording feels like it has more substance. I guess that's probably better bass? I have an SB1000 hooked into the system but I have it properly tuned to that you can't actually hear the subwoofer specifically so any change in bass wouldn't be coming from the speaker amp. Maybe it just sounds like it blends better?

Another odd thing I noticed is the point at which I stop turning the dial because the music sounds good on my Asgard is a full 3 o'clocks to the left on the Gjallarhorn vs what it was on the A07 though that had an independent volume knob so maybe that has something to do with it. I kept the A07 at about noon.

There was definitely an electrical noise in his small, quiet room with the A07. I wouldn't say it was loud or distracting but it was present. With the Gjallarhorn, I can't tell if it's on or not short of the light on front.

I was really curious so I did a wholly unscientific test where the stack was set up on the side of my desk out of view and my wife would swap the cables or not between them and I'd come back in and try to figure out which amp was hooked up. Using Hell Freezes Over, I was able to correctly identify the Gjallarhorn 10 out of 12 times. Though, as I said, the A07 has a volume knob and no bypass I'm aware of so we did our best for volume matching but it couldn't possibly have been spot on.

I hope that made sense. I'm just a guy who wants good sound out of his speakers and headphones.

Oh, and lastly, the fact that the power supply is contained within the unit has been a hell of a lot nicer than I anticipated from a cable management standpoint.
Thanks for the explanation. You are not the first one that has quoted the Eagles as music to be used for audio subjective testing. Both cheapaudioman and stereo review X (a vintage audio reviewer from the UK) use Hotel California. The A07 should be giving you about 100WPC@ 8 ohms which is about 3 time that of the Gjallarhorn. What you are reporting with this Schiit amp is quite similar to what I've heard audiophiles report about other Schiit amps, like the Audiophiliac and the reviewer at Stereophile with the Aegir. When I bought my first Aegir I plugged it onto an old HK receiver that had SE preouts. I was expecting a drop in performance going from 35 WPC to 20 WPC (Aegir) and was shocked, shocked! at how much better the Aegir amp was performing.
So you are saying the Asgard was at 3 o'clock or 9 o'clock (I would expect the latter).
 
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