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ZROCK2 vs Schitt Loki? (Read 891 times)
Wavendon
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ZROCK2 vs Schitt Loki?
02/24/21 at 18:20:57
 
I am a novice at this but would someone please tell me what would be the key differences between using a ZROCK and the Schitt Loki?

Many thanks for your help

Andy
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Lon
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Re: ZROCK2 vs Schitt Loki?
Reply #1 - 02/24/21 at 20:04:46
 
There are many differences as can be seen from comparing the two manufacturers' descriptions.

One important difference is that the ZROCK2 incorporates a gain stage that incrementally increases as the EQ is increased. The other very important difference is that there are two carefully crafted EQ curves to choose from, and they are applied incrementally--you are not adjusting different frequency ranges separately, you are applying one of two curves and also adding gain.

There's also a tube stage in the ZROCK2 and the use of many different brands and more than several different "types" makes for subtle and not-so-subtle tailoring of the overall sound. You can also customize your ZROCK2 with options of coupling caps, a power supply bypass mod, a tube regulation mod, different RCA jacks. . . it's a serious component that is heirloom quality in build (and has a liftetime warranty).

I bought one thinking it would help me with some discs. I ended up using it as the tonal center of my system with very satisfying results, and buying another with the mods for the main system, the original going into my audio and visual system. Then I put together a headphone only system and got another one. . . which has made headphone listening a joy. I personally don't think I'll have a system without one now--in a way it makes you the final mastering engineer of the material, custom fit for your system and room.
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HR-1,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25th x2, CSP3-25th.Taboo Mk IV; Rega RP3 w all GrooveTracer mods PS Audio: PST+DSD,P15,NPC,PowerBases,AC-12 pwr cbls, Reference spkr cbls;Mapleshade:Samson V3;;VooDoo:Cremona+Amati intrcncts, Iso-Pods;headphones:PM1,HD800S,ZMF Ori
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gsanger
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Re: ZROCK2 vs Schitt Loki?
Reply #2 - 02/24/21 at 22:41:07
 
I haven't heard a ZROCK, but I do have a Loki, and what Lon said is spot on.  The Loki is what you would expect with a typical EQ - if you want less lower mids, you just turn down one knob.  If you want more highs, you turn a different knob, whereas the ZROCK is infinitely adjustable, and has an impact on the total tonal balance of the signal.

I personally like the Loki's top three EQ options (I think 400 Hz, 2kHz and 8kHz), but I don't like what it does with the bass (20 Hz).  Somewhere on the internet, there's a forum post where someone from Schiit talks about their design choices, and for some reason, they had to do something different with the lowest one, and it really shows.  The bass gets flabby, lifeless and indistinct if you turn the knob any direction.  The other three are fine, especially if you only cut, never boost.

I mostly just use mine to turn down the highest frequencies a few dB, as my system has a way of getting overly bright from time to time.  I also have a few albums I enjoy, but were either mixed or mastered poorly, and being able to make some adjustments on the fly makes them more enjoyable.  Most of the time, though, it's either bypassed, or out of the system completely.  It's also really useful in making headphones more listenable, less so with speakers.

I'm personally interested in getting the ZROCK, and think it's perhaps a more elegant solution to some of my problems, and from the samples I've heard, a far better way to affect EQ changes in the lowest frequencies, but for the time being, the Loki is a fine choice.
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gsanger
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Re: ZROCK2 vs Schitt Loki?
Reply #3 - 02/24/21 at 22:48:10
 
Found that forum post!  Here's the post where Jason talks about the development of the Loki:

https://www.head-fi.org/threads/schiit-happened-the-story-of-the-worlds-most-imp...

And here's the part about how the low frequency EQ is different:

"*Well, within reason. LC filtering for the bass ranges means big, big inductors—as in, 1 Henry or even larger. Engineers are cringing right now. For the rest of you, that means “a big hunk of metal and lots and lots of turns of wire—stuff that won’t fit into a Modi-sized chassis.” You’re looking at—at minimum—a 1.5 x 1.5 x 1.5” square, with 100 ohms or so of DC resistance…and if you want it to be linear, to keep your THD down, you’re also looking at an exotic core, like an 80% nickel version. That’s why Loki Mini uses a gyrator (a simulated inductor) for the lowest-frequency band—an actual inductor would be too large to fit into the chassis, and would significantly impact cost, even if it did fit in the chassis."
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