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I had the Bifrost and it was a bottleneck in my system. It's not a bad DAC, it's just not a great one.Granted, it is not the best DAC in the world - i.e. right out of the box - but if you want to make it "soar" - it is possible...
1. bypass the USB input - that is truly this little DAC's biggest "bottleneck"
- I installed a v-link192 USB-SPDIF converter - what a difference!!!
2. treat it to a great power cable - the internal power supply is a bit small and limits the performance of audio circuitry, so installing a great power cable will do wonders for the dynamics and imaging
3. treat it to great interconnects - this will improve details and clarity
4. if it's an older Bifrost (like mine) - you can upgrade it to either the most recent AK4490 version or even the multibit option
I went with the more affordable AK4490 upgrade and my Bifrost has never sounded so good.
Granted, I could have spent the money spent on cables and upgrades on a new DAC, but I wanted to see exactly just how good the Bifrost could be - i.e. when allowed to.
It really is quite special - once it's tricked out :-)
Hi-Fiish sounding means to me artificial sounding. Natural sounding is High End. One can find plenty of Hi-Fi gear in Best Buy. Atrocious sounding SS amps, sold in 70s, were also called Hi-Fi since they met German DIN 45500 standard.
I cannot call my system High-End when the most expensive part of it - "The Room" is "Mid-Fi".
willywonka, I've tried most of what you are talking about, even had the multi-bit in my system. It's a good $300-$600 dac (however you have it configured) but the NuWave DSD DAC is so much better there is no comparison. I new I could never achieve the liveliness, energy and dynamics that I new could be achieved by staying with the Bifrost system.
It's a good dac to get started in computer audio, but for me it's not the end all.
Zman, I’m ot surprised at your findings, considering the Nuwave is over twice the price of the bifrost.
But it would be interesting to compare them in my system😆
Looks like the Gungnir multibit is probaby a better choice as a competing product
Having said that, I am a big fan of PS Audio gear. Great power supplies.
Mid Fi: Wyred 4 Sound DAC2->Mark Levinson ML26->Rogue Magnum M-120 monoblocks->Magnepan 3.3rs (recently recapped and reglued)+REL Brittania Subs.
According to the mags, that system would barely be on the radar since it didn't require a HELOC to buy.
I used to fall asleep with my walkman on auto-reverse in the 80s. I’m lucky I can even hear my system.
Mid Fi..... sounds killer to me though. It's the synergy of carefully chosen, quality gear that makes it really kick ass.... What's great is that I'm an on the road tech so I spend the day in my van listening to a pretty crappy stereo if you want to even call it a stereo..... So when I get home and fire up my system it's like night and day.