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Most preamps—passive or active—use a potentiometer for volume control. Freya uses a sophisticated microprocessor-controlled relay-stepped attenuator for perfect channel matching and zero distortion—and with 128 steps for ultra-precise level control. You can hear it clicking as you turn the volume up and down.Sounds like they feel their pot isn't insignificant.
Makes me very happy that I bought the IFI Ipro Ican instead. That unit has all of the tube magic with no harshness.
Excellent review. What drives me crazy is if you are going to build a pre ( with a tube option ) and it doesn't have some of that tube magic ( and you are not the first to notice this ), then why bother at all. I'm not talking overly warm or rolled off etc. , just some added tonal richness etc. that appeals to many. I was interested but not now.
In agreement with Reelvox. Not only is there a distinct difference between the 3 modes, but I hear distinct differences between various tubes. I have tried Sylvania 7N7, Sylvania 6SN7A (1954) and a whole assortment of 1940's 6F8G and 6C8G. I have demonstrated SS vs Tube mode to many people and everyone chooses tube. The SS mode is good, but tube mode adds a dose of organic 3D goodness to the sound. Probably distortion, but it is preferred. The only tubes I don't like are the stock tubes. They suck. Schiit should have offered the choice of Freya with no tubes and Freya with the current Tung-Sols.I use and highly recommend socket savers. It make tube swapping quick and easy by having the socket level with the top of the Freya. It also keeps things from dropping into the preamp.
just to throw in my two cents.i own a Freya and my experience could not be different than the OP. No disrespect at all.i find the differences between the passive, buffer, and tube stages to be stark.the tube section is IMO amazingly toobey in the best possible way. i am using new production Tung Sols.
Given your polar opposite appraisal of the Freya compared to the OP, please share the components in your system to put your appraisal in context.Thanks,Anand.
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