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Chord Chordette Toucan Headphone Amplifier

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Just saw that on internet shop site:

Chord Chordette Toucan Headphone Amp

Price: £799

Chord Chordette Toucan Headphone Amplifier at Audioaffair





The Chordette Toucan is a high end headphone amplifier, designed to accept either an RCA, balanced XLR or digital input, with two headphones output sockets. Many Hi Fi systems now omit the inclusion of a headphone output making private or discrete listening a problem. Furthermore, the quality of many headphones outputs is substandard and included as a "last minute addition". Adding a high quality headphone amplifier will allow you to enjoy the best possible performance from your headphones.

The Toucan features both gold plated RCA phono inputs and true balanced XLR inputs for analogue sources and has two headphone jack sockets so two people can listen at the same time, hence the name Toucan meaning ‘two can listen’. The addition of a USB port means the Toucan can be connected to a personal computer and will seamlessly appear as an audio device by the operating system. Any music played on the computer will be digitally decoded and then converted to a Hi Fi quality signal for playback.

The listening experience has been further enhanced by the addition of a cross-feed network filter. When selected, this will provide a spatial effect giving the feeling that the music has moved outside the head. This results in a more coherent soundstage and lifelike performance. A manually operated solid aluminium volume control makes for precise and easy volume adjustment.

Specifications

Frequency Response 20Hz – 200Kz
THD+N 0.06%
Dynamic Range 112dB
Digital Inputs (Switchable) 1 x USB ( B type )
1 x RCA Phone pair or XLR balanced pair
Outputs 2 X ¼ inch Headphone Jack Sockets
USB DAC 0.006%THD;44/48KHz, USB 2.0 Compliant
Power Supply 12V 3A 2.1mm connector. Centre Pin Positive.
100V – 240V 50/60Hz 1A wall adapter supplied
Dimensions (mm) 160 x 70 x 40mm (Width x Height x Depth)
Weight 0.4Kg
post #2 of 14
I made a thread about this a week or so ago and am trialling one as we speak.

My immediate reactions are its very bright and detailed, but lacking in bass and warmth.
post #3 of 14
Sounds quite expensive for the feature set. Wondering how it can differentiate itself sonically in the high-end headphone market.

Awaiting impressions from some brave souls.

F. Lo
post #4 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by c3p0 View Post
I made a thread about this a week or so ago and am trialling one as we speak.

My immediate reactions are its very bright and detailed, but lacking in bass and warmth.
May I know what source and headphones are you using with the Tuocan ?

Thanks,
F. Lo
post #5 of 14
Can't find it on the Chord website
post #6 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by fkclo View Post
May I know what source and headphones are you using with the Tuocan ?

Thanks,
F. Lo
Chord qbd76 and senn hd650 phones.

There was a lack of bass and it sounded very bright.
post #7 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by c3p0 View Post
Chord qbd76 and senn hd650 phones.

There was a lack of bass and it sounded very bright.
Did the sound improve over time ?

F. Lo
post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by fkclo View Post
Did the sound improve over time ?

F. Lo
I had it for a few days. Was pretty dissapointed with how it sounded straight away, and let it "burn in" for a couple of days. It didnt improve at all.

imo it had over harsh highs which didnt sound too good. Sounded very digital like a sound card to me.

You should check it out. Its not chords finest moment. Its a pity because the chordette gem is good for the money.
post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by c3p0 View Post
Chord qbd76 and senn hd650 phones.

There was a lack of bass and it sounded very bright.
If it can make the HD650 bright and bass-light, something very wrong is happening there

That's a shame. I like the look and presentation of the amp, and "Toucan" is a pretty cool name.
post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by c3p0 View Post
I had it for a few days. Was pretty dissapointed with how it sounded straight away, and let it "burn in" for a couple of days. It didnt improve at all.

imo it had over harsh highs which didnt sound too good. Sounded very digital like a sound card to me.

You should check it out. Its not chords finest moment. Its a pity because the chordette gem is good for the money.

Really thanks for the feedback. Just wrote to the dealer to cancel my order. I hope it is not too late.

I have a Chord QBD76 and a BLU Transport, and am very impressed by it. Sad to hear about the disappointment with the Tuocan. I think Chord wants to have a share of the "mid-end" market but apparently failed miserably.

F. Lo
post #11 of 14
I am lucky. Just get a confirmation about cancellation of my order.

F. Lo
post #12 of 14


Decided to dig this thread up because I actually found them very bassy compared to other amps. Gave a nice balance to ER4S, and actually overpowering on some larger cans. Funny how people's perceptions differ so widely.

 

Quite detailed as well but I can see why you thought it was harsh/bright.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Covenant View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by c3p0 View Post
Chord qbd76 and senn hd650 phones.

There was a lack of bass and it sounded very bright.
If it can make the HD650 bright and bass-light, something very wrong is happening there

That's a shame. I like the look and presentation of the amp, and "Toucan" is a pretty cool name.
post #13 of 14

FWIW, someone asked in the other thread (a while ago now) what DAC etc is being used in the Chordette Toucan.

 

When plugged in via USB, it identifies itself as a TI/Burr-Brown audio device.  I just popped the lid on mine, and indeed there it is:  a TI/BB PCM2704 DAC chip.  I also see a Linear Technology LT1371CSW switching regulator, a couple of IRF520 power MOSFETs (one per output, looks like), and an FQP7P06 "60V P-Channel QFET".

 

There are also a whole bunch of tiny 8-pin ICs with TI logos and numbers that nontechnical-me is having trouble googling for.  :)

 

Anyway that seems to be the heart of it.  Feel free to ask for specifics.

post #14 of 14

Just want to add that I have had a Toucan on demo for a week now and do not agree at all with c3p0.

 

I have HD650s too and compared with an Aune DAC/amp and my trusty old Denon MC6000 audio interface the Chord has an exaggerated bass and recessed mids the moment the music starts to get going.

 

The sound stage is nice and wide but even when using my Beyerdynamic T70p and AKG ATH-900X headphones I found the same thing every time....enhanced bass, wide sound stage and recessed mids. Timing also seemed a little off for some instruments/vocals. I let my other half have a comparison and with no prompting she said the same thing, the Chord has too much bass.

 

How weird!!! Maybe Chord have an variation in their quality control but you hope not given the price!! :)

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