Schiit Gungnir Multibit

After deciding I wanted to experiment with some higher end DAC’s.
I picked one of these used for $850 which seems to be more or less the going rate for A2/USB Gen 5.
It’s my first extended experience of a DAC in this price range, and I can only compare it to one I have on hand. An SMSL SU-8, the dual 4490 DAC in the Jottenheim, a massdrop SDAC, and a topping D10.
Most of the listening so far is through my Jot into the Elex, and a little into the Ether CX.

There quite frankly is no competition, listening for the first time was a definite wow, it’s just a much better listen, which given the price difference, I guess you probably hope.
A lot of the differences in layering, staging and tonality didn’t surprise me, the increase in Bass extension caught me off guard.
The overall presentation is is just more musical, it’s on the warm side (which is unusual for Schiit), but in a good way.
I’ve give a more detailed post on sound when I can get some more hours on it.

Still need to try it on the ZDT Jr, and I definitely need to go plug it into my speaker system, probably tomorrow at this point.

Schiit is going to release an updated USB interface in Q1, which will require a return to the factory for the upgrade, I’ll probably go ahead and do that.


Not a lot of call for $1K DAC’s here, but here’s my final thoughts on this.
I’m keeping it, and I might look for another one, though I’ll probably experiment with some other options in the same price range.
The Gungnir is a ladder DAC, using Ti chips designed for medical equipment to provide the ladders, rather than actual resistors on a circuit board.
Generally it just sounds better than anything I have on hand. I hate to say more analog, but the sound has a more refined overall feel, that I associate with analog.
Most of the sound difference is in the subtleties, but I do perceive better Bass control, improved Timbre in the mid range and treble, the biggest difference is in the way space is composed, it’s wider, taller, more precise but still very full sounding.
Connecting it to my speaker system (where from a cost standpoint it’s probably a more rational purchase) pretty much confirmed what I heard in the headphones. The sound stage was astonishing compared to any other source I have on hand.
I don’t use my speaker system much any more and it’s in a far from optimal setup but I’m sorely tempted to pick up a second Gungnir to dedicate to it.


Ah, the joys of eBay… I purchased a VMV D1SE last week and was very happy with it. However, I accidentally bought two more DACs this week; a BF2 and Gungnir A2 Multi Bit.
After trying to glean some information from Head-Fi about the specific Gung that I had purchased before it arrived, a forum member was curious how the BF2 and Gungnir MB compared. I’ve just posted my impressions over there but I’m HFG guy! So I thought I’d post this here too:

I wasn’t really sure what to expect when I hooked all these DACs up some hours ago but my conclusion was quite easy to arrive at. I’m still fairly new to hifi so I’ll abstain from going into any real detail at the risk of making myself sound like a fool.

PC/FLAC > Douk U2 Pro (temp clocks) > VMV D1SE, BF2 & Gungnir A2 MB > LB MC3 > Kinki THR-1 > HE500, DT880 600 Ohm & HD560s

I had all of the DACs and the amp warm up for about two hours prior to listening. I spent most of the time with my primary music headphone, HE500. The first hour I went between last week’s acquisition, the VMV, and my new Gungnir. It wasn’t immediately obvious to me what was going on but the Schiit sounded “better”, somehow. I started the musical journey with many of my standard test tracks, my favourite Tool track, Lateralus, is always first. The odd bit of Zeppelin followed, a track off Quadrophenia, Careless Whisper, True, some live Count Basie, and then back to some more contemporary stuff, Hyperlandia, some local bands with whom I’m familiar with, etc…

In terms of resolution, it was tricky to separate the Gungnir and the D1. I think I was listening for this at first but my attention was drawn to the smoothness of the Schiit. The primary aspect that became obvious after a few different tracks was the sense of space the Schiit presented. It sounded taller most notably but the layering was more complex on the Gungnir too; this helped with instrument separation, sense of depth, and the sound stage being more believable overall. Two other things were apparent during my listening. The Gungnir had better timbre and seemed more dynamic. Kick drums and snare drums were more slammy on the Gungnir. The sense of space that the Gung presents helped me make up my mind fairly quickly that it was the DAC to beat, but the additional impact really surprised me. I thought there was going to be more of a difference in timbre between the Schiit and the VMV but it was pretty close, with the Multi Bit ahead. Though, I purchased the D1SE as it has a reputation as be an excellent allrounder, so it does make sense to me taking that into consideration.

So, I added a few more tracks to my playlist, replaced the VMV with the BF2 and went right back to Tool. The differences between the Gungnir and Bifrost weren’t immediately obviously. Tonally, I was expected them to be fairly different. From many of the comments on this thread, the Gungnir A2 has a reputation for being more neutral sounding. I’m not sure whether I’m getting this confused or that the change in the output stage is more noticeable on the DS Gung, but this is a MB model. I know a lot more about what the BF2 is supposed to sound like - ‘fun’, ‘flavoured’, ‘thunderous and dark’, ‘engaging’, ‘exciting’. Though, I found both of these piece of Schiit to sound tonally similar - engaging is the word I’d use. However, what really didn’t take me long to discover was the difference in resolution. The BF2 was lacking. I was initially surprised when I noticed this because, as I mentioned above, I’m fairly new to hifi and am always sceptical that I will be able to hear differences between DACs and ever more expensive amps, etc… Though, as I found, the difference in resolution between the two didn’t take long to identify. I think I remember hearing a reviewer say that this was one of the aspects that the BF2 isn’t competitive in in this price range. This makes me a little more confident in my assessment. I didn’t go as far in my comparisons between the Gungnir and BF2 after noticing the difference in resolution; I just sat back and enjoyed my music through the big boy, occasionally switching back to the Bifrost to confirm my impressions.

These three DACs all sound brilliant, but the Gungnir MB beat out the other two in one way or another from what I’ve heard today. In my mind, this Gungnir sounds like the love child of these other two DACs. What matters to me most, and what pay particular attention to when critically listening, is drum presentation. I’m a drummer. I restored vintage drums in a past life and studied sound engineering at university many years ago; my attention there almost solely on drum recording and production. I mention this as I wished to caveat everything I’ve said with that so as to highlight that I put far too much stock in drum presentation in my appreciation of audio gear so your mileage may vary. Though, I hope others will find what I’ve said useful so they too don’t have to buy several DACs a week to find what they’re looking for.

TLDR: Gungnir MB wins.


Nice, I’d agree the gumby is a step up from the bifrost, I just wish the gumby had equally good single ended out so it was more viable with more amps (that’s one place the bf2 is great, it’s single ended and balanced outputs are somewhat similar quality, while the gumby’s balanced outs are noticeably better than it’s single ended imo)

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Fortunately, I only use SE for my living room speaker set-up, and this is only used for watching a bit of YouTube with my dinner, nothing serious. My apartment is on the top floor of my building and I’m a considerate neighbour. 99 % of my music listening is balanced out, through headphones.
Thanks for the tip though; I’ll bear that in mind when my situation changes. I may just stick my LB MC3 on the XLRs …or buy an Yggy :shushing_face:

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Just got it out of the box, no impressions yet… Didn’t get SN 001 :cry:

I noticed the vent holes are actually covered by something, like a sheet on the bottom of the holes. Is this normal. . .?

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The covered holes definitely do not look normal…might want to get those removed.
The MB DACs run hot - last thing I’d want to do is to cover up any venting.

The Yggdrasil DAC I have is this way too. It appears porous enough to allow venting. I suspect it is to prevent dust/debris accumulation inside. The Yggy gets warm but never “Hot” so I haven’t really worried much about it. It did strike me odd that none of the other pieces of Schiit I have or had in the past (BF2’s, Jot 2, A3 etc.) had this, but did not alarm me. I mean $2600 YGGY vs $700 BF2 and the larger holes in the chassis, just figured that the extra protection was warranted.

You can email Schiit support or ask a question through your account portal where you ordered and ask. They’ve always been reasonably quick to reply. I would do this if you are concerned and before you take the top off yourself. Be a bummer to void your warranty. As mentioned, I never have because there are no over temp issues, and I don’t believe Schiit would send something out that they would potentially need to cover and fix under warranty.

EDIT: OK so I was curious enough now to reach out to Schiit Support and asked about the vent holes and the covering inside.

Here’s the response I received. I’m OK with it, makes sense. The chassis for the Yggdrasil is reasonably large - same for the Gunginr. I suspect the side panel cross flow venting on the Yggy is enough considering the larger internal volume. I did not notice if the Gunginir has venting on the sides or not. I asked specifically for the Yggdrasil so you may still want to email for yourself and Gunginir if you are still concerned.

Screenshot 2022-06-30

Also, not sure it got mentioned with all this other distraction - but Congratz on the new DAC!!!


Yeah, it’s not like a DAC needs vents to begin with lol. It’s been running all Knight, and merely feels ‘comfortably warm’(Pink Floyd’s original song title).

Testing with FD7, I would say there is more BASS, and more BASS INFORMATION. FD7 is on the warmer, thicker, and bassier side to begin with, now it sounds quite analog, with more bass, warmth, and treble smoothness. Very, very nice. It feels like details have been reduced, but I think they have just been refined and controlled, compared to the poorer, harsher treble detail coming from my Sanskrit. Detail is still there, but now doesn’t feel forced at all. I think it sounds a bit more spacious, or at least spatial details are rendered better. FD7 isn’t the best phone for testing that, though. Bass is pretty damn smashing now! Basically perfect. I feel Gungnir sounds opposite to BF2, where BF2 had lighter bass, and had a focus on brighter, clearer treble/detail. So, I think Edition XS would sound significantly better on Gungnir, where I felt it was too neutral, with too much treble energy, and lacking warmth & bass on Sanskrit.

Testing FHE, it sounded the same(like average IEM crap). I think Hook-X sounded maybe a little worse in the treble, a little splashy. Timeless still sounds nice, with the same, characteristically lower density bass. Not as bright now, but still is. Erupt sounds about the same, with better sub-bass. AD900X(SE) sounds pretty cool now - lots of sparkle, air, and that super open sound. Less bright. Now with actual bass! Haha. M50X(SE) and M40X(SE) sounded about the same. FD7 and AD900X had the best improvements. Wish I had better phones to test… Should have LCD-X 2021 and AWAS soon.

I also noticed Gungnir is able to produce those nice, silky ‘glistening’ effects in the mids/treble that I’ve only heard on high end systems in stores.

Sadly, I’m going to return it, because I didn’t get SN 001, and my cat doesn’t give me attention anymore because of it. Just kidding!


Is that a soloists 3xp?

If so, could you compare the BFW and gungnir?

I currently have the soloist 3xp and BF2. Im curious about the gungnir or maybe the yggy.

Says 3XP on the back, yeah. +3A supercharger.

I had my BF2 for most of 2021. I remember it like I said; a leaner, cleaner, brighter and more detail-focused sound. Everything on Gungir feels more mature, controlled, analog/organic, warmer, more dense and enjoyable. BF2 didn’t have the high-end, silky, glistening effect, but rather a highly detailed-yet-standard treble, with poorer, more metallic tone and qualities. If you want the most clean, clear, detail-focused sound, I’d stick with BF2. Unless you will be using something seriously detailed and bright/neutral, like HD800, HE1000SE, Utopia, Edition XS, ADX5000.

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Enjoy the new Dac! I’ve been using the Soloist and Gungnir together for about a year now and I adore them. I think it’s an excellent pairing. The spacious natural sound of the Gungnir is rendered beautifully through the clear detailed Soloist, tempering the Soloist’s occasional harsh honesty perfectly. Both components contribute excellent timbre and micro detail. They also both seem to help fill out a beautifully articulated the low end. Some phenomenally well matched gear in my book.


I actually originally ordered the BF2 for use with my Soloist, but I liked its sound so much I decided I wanted to go for their next step up and hunted down a used Gungir Multibit. I never A/B’d since I returned the BF2 before the Gungnir arrived, but I was super happy with my decision. I can’t really compare, but I’ll say why I love the Gungnir.

The Gungnir delivers a very natural presentation with lots of space in the image and joyfully accurate timbre. It does a great job articulating a full low end that fills in the extra spacial information you hear nicely, but it’s not actually “warm” tonally. Music is detailed with crisp sparkle up top, but it’s totally non-fatiguing without rolling off. It extends the shimmer down into the mids giving guitars and horns a holographic place in the stage. At first blush the extra space and live analog quality can seem less detailed, but as you listen your ears adjust and you begin to pick out minute sounds and texture in the recording. It’s very detailed without insisting upon itself.

I’ll probably upgrade to the Yggdrasil down the road because I’ve found my ideal DAC sound with Schiit’s line, but I’ll be enjoying my Gumby for years to come. I think if you’re a fan of the BF2 with the soloist you’ll thoroughly enjoy the upgrade to the Gumby. Especially if you nab a used one in the 700~800 dollar range (just make sure it’s the Multi-bit with unison usb upgrade).


100% agreed! I know there are certainly smoother amps out there(like the G111 I tried before this, or some tube), but I want the headphones to do the smoothing, and the source to give me full picture detail.

From BF2, I would upgrade to Chord over Gungnir, if I wanted to maximize detail, clarity, cleanliness, instead of the more natural, well-rounded sound Gungnir gives you. Mojo 2 could be the perfect option. I should be getting a hold of one very soon.