Schiit Fulla 2 Review
If you're on the market for a budget-friendly DAC, then Schiit Fulla 2 is a Must-consider. The device is designed to work with phones, tablets, and even computers with low-powered USB ports. It also works with virtually any headphones. In this Schiit Fulla 2 review, we'll break down everything you need to know before buying this DAC device to help you make a more informed decision.
The Schiit Fulla comes as a fully integrated DAC/Amp combo in a small case designed for use between your laptop and headphones. It comes as a second generation of the original Fulla. While Fulla 2 comes with double the size of the original model, it still has an ultra-compact design, and you can easily carry it the palm of your hand. This makes it one of the most portable DAC (digital to analog converter) currently available at the market.
Now let's get deeper and fully into the Fulla 2 to see what it has in store for you…
To start with, the device comes with ultra-compact desktop design.
Just a quick look at this product will tell you that it's a true product of Schiit. Why? It's simple…it comes with silver metallic housing in the shape of a curvy box, which is pretty similar to similar products from the manufacturer.
It features a giant, smooth rotary volume knob and circular air vents along the side of the device. This helps promote good ventilation and prevents the device from heating up when in use.
The entire devices appear quite smaller and will easily fit in your hand. It's just the right size for home or work use, next to your laptop or tablet.
In matters aesthetics, the device looks really good. It will attract the eyes of your friends or colleagues at work with its sleek, elegant design.
One thing that we feel Schiit should've included in this device design is an LED light to indicate whether this device is On or Off. All the other devices from Schiit come with such an indicator light, so we have no clue whey they left it out in this particular unit.
Inputs and outputs
The little guy also offers you a mountain of connection, which greatly enhances its flexibility and versatility. You can use it for just about anything!
A quick look at the front of this device, you'll discover it features a 6.3mm headphone connection. A look at the unit's rear, you'll discover a USB power/data connection, which means plugging this unit to your laptop USB port will power it and, at the same time, make it ready for use.
That's not all…
Back to the front part…there sits a separate port on the front side with a symbol that might be confusing to some users. But a quick look at the manual will tell you that this is an analog input. And it allows you to connect your phone or tablet to the unit via TRS-to-TRS cable and use it as amp-only. This is totally a mind-blowing feature, especially for a DAC/amp in this price range.
Another great thing that makes this unit stand from models in its price range is the separate USB power port. This is a great feature if you have all your laptop USB ports engaged, or you don't want your laptop to supply power to the amp. The port allows you to plug your Schiit Fulla to a separate cable to power it up. This simply means you can use your smartphone charge to power this device.
What's more, if you have powered monitors or powered amp, this DAC device can handle it too, with a variable preamp output.
Next to the USB port is a DAC output that allows you to connect the Fulla to the headphone amp, preamp, or integrated amp, using as DAC only.
Set up and use
If there's one area where Schiit did a really great job in regard to this device, then it must be optimizing it for the ultimate ease of operation.
Just like most of the other DACs out there, this model comes fully assembled and right to use right out of the box.
Now…the best part about it. It comes with a 100% super-friendly one-input-one output interface. In other words, you just plug it in and play.
You plug your laptop or laptop to one end and your headphones to the other end, and you're ready to start using it.
Something else that makes this DAC device from Schiit even easier for you to operate is that it doesn't require you to make any source selection. It also doesn't require you to wade through any menus. And no companion apps to use with it. Plug and play. It's that easy!
The only thing that might some bit of improvement are the little icons above the individual ports. If they could be made more intuitive, the whole design of this unit will be flawless. However, this isn't something big enough to affect the overall operability of the Schiit Fulla 2.
When you connect this DAC to your laptop and connect the other end to your headphones, you should be able to enjoy clean and clear audio that's way better than what you get with your computer's soundcard.
You definitely expect a change in the audio quality from this device, given it's a DAC and amplifier combo. It converts your digital audio files into clearly audible audio signals and then amplifies, sharpens them.
However, you shouldn't have high expectations over this unit…like expecting it to output something similar to that of premium DAC and headphone preamps. The company is a producer of top-of-the-line DACs, but you shouldn't expect Fulla 2 to match the performance of its big brothers.
Let's talk about the headphone preamp function in particular…this unit works just great at 50%. This is a significant amount of power for most headphones and you don't need to go past this point.
As you go past the 50-60%, however, things start getting worse. Depending on the type of headphones you're using, it starts to distort in the high-frequency range. By the time you hit 80-100%, you'll be in for full distortion.
You should view as an entry-level amp that simply improves the basic computer, tablet, or phone sound. Just that. Going through the Schiit Fulla 2 review of previous users will further confirm this fact.
What's in the box
The unit comes packed in a typical cardboard box, as expected for units in this range. A few extra items are included. The complete package includes:
Keep in mind, though, that the package doesn't come with a 3.5mm-6.3mm headphone adapter. This is needed to use the amp, so you'll need to buy it separately. Luckily, these adapters don't cost an arm and leg and are super-cheap.
What we like
What we don't like
That's all for our Schiit Fulla 2 review. The unit perfectly fits the definition of a simple and effective DAC/Amp at a reasonable price. While it doesn't offer anything groundbreaking, it delivers great versatility, good sound, and a great design. If you're just getting started into the world of DACs and looking for a simpler, beginner-friendly model, the Schiit Fulla 2 is for you. If you're just getting started with the Schiit DACs, consider getting the Fulla 2.