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Chord Hugo - The PORTABLE discussion thread - Page 4

post #46 of 889
Quote:
Originally Posted by isquirrel View Post


I found my Hugo needed a good 100+ hours on it before it started to lose some of that harshness as you put it. Though it was excellent to start with! It now has 300+ hours and it sounds creamy smooth. I am using Audirvana + but will try Amarra today.

I prefer the sound without Audirvana up sampling. I found it lost a little bit of PRAT.
isquirrel, I'm using Audirvana+ now with my MBP. Please let us know how you like the Amarra music player.
post #47 of 889
Quote:
Originally Posted by LFC_SL View Post


I have never heard any RWA mod. I have had stock AK240 and Hugo side-by-side on loan at home for a week. Can you expand? You say "quite close" then "significantly better". How does RWA mod differ to stock also to your ears (I have read the marketing claims). Thanks

(Edit: grammar)

What I mean is that AK240 and Hugo are, to my ears, close in terms of the TYPE of signature: clarity, musicality, speed, space, airiness. But Hugo does everything better (not miles ahead, it is not possible at this level). On the other hand the 901 is very different: power, smoothness, depth, etc.

post #48 of 889
Quote:
Originally Posted by bpcans View Post


isquirrel, I'm using Audirvana+ now with my MBP. Please let us know how you like the Amarra music player.


Tried Amarra for a few hours today, my feeling is that Audirvana is cleaner, has more clarity, its certainly easier to use!!

 

Amarra sounds coloured and thicker through its presentation. I can see why people like it.  

 

My preference is Audirvana - I ran back to it...

post #49 of 889
Quote:
Originally Posted by avl06 View Post

Good to be home
The musicality of Hugo is a topic definitely worth discussing. I have no analogue experience, I'm a child of CD. Hugo seems to share a smoothness with analogue but not at the expense of almost hyper detail. Was that your intention Rob?

Hmm. The over reaching intention is to try to get Hi-Fi sound real - shut your eyes, and you are there, center stage row 10. When I listen to live un-amplified music, I am always struck by how far audio needs to come. The power of live instruments, with the huge palette of timbre qualities, the exact placement of instruments in space, the fact that you can easily hear individual instruments - these are the virtues that I cherish. Now live music does generally sound smooth - but then listen close to a live trumpet, or a crash of cymbals, and smooth is not a term one would use!

 

On musicality, this is of course the primary goal, we listen to music to enjoy it. My view is that if it's easy for the brain to understand what is going on in an audio scene, then you will improve musicality. But musicality is not something one can evaluate easily, particularly if you have a lot of listening tests to get through. Now, my goal is not to artificially sweeten the sound, but to make it completely transparent, with no character of its own. Problem is, nobody knows what a perfectly transparent product is. So how does one do listening tests to refine transparency? How do you know you are not adding something artificial and just enjoying distortion? The key to making something transparent is testing for variation. By that I mean, if a device you are listening to exhibits more variation, then it is better in a transparency point of view. So if instruments have more variation in timbre qualities, then its better. If there is more variation in sound stage, its better. If you can hear more instruments at once, its better, if you can resolve changes in timing and rhythm, its better.

 

There is also another important element - if I hear a difference, I need to fully understand why, from an aberration perspective, it is making a difference. Then if you understand why something makes a difference, you can make further improvements by engineering a reduction in those aberrations. The tap length on the interpolation filter is a case in point; maths prove that if you use an infinite tap length filter you will perfectly reconstruct the bandwidth limited signal - it will be as if you had not sampled the signal. I knew that the conventional assumption of a few hundred taps for the reconstruction filter would be fine was wrong; but the only way of proving that is too listen carefully. I will keep on increasing tap length until I can't hear an improvement, then I will add some for good measure. I know that Hugo's 26,368 taps is not at the limit yet. That's what makes my job so satisfying and exciting - I know much more improvements are coming!

 

Rob     

post #50 of 889

Rob,

 

Thank you, I am loving the Hugo, it does things that in my opinion no other DAC I have heard does. I have loved music since I was a child and since then have in course been a customer and then represented as a distributor a number of very high end brands, Wilson, Rockport, Aesthetix etc etc for a number of years. During that time audio has always been my passion.

 

I have owned several very expensive DACS, some of which were in the stratosphere, some of which (AudioNote DAC5 signature) used very different methods trying to solve the seemingly endless dilemma of how to give digital that oh so elusive human enjoyment factor. That richness and melody of sound we crave. 

 

The Hugo is the only one which does it right musically. For me. Its addictive.

 

I congratulate you and believe you are really onto something here. I for one look forward with eager anticipation at how far down this path your future designs travel.

post #51 of 889

If any Hugo owners are thinking about using large RCA's and are worried - then don't - ALO sent some large IC's which unbelievably fitted straight into the Hugo.

 

I believe they are 14mm RCA's.

 

post #52 of 889
Quote:
Originally Posted by isquirrel View Post


Tried Amarra for a few hours today, my feeling is that Audirvana is cleaner, has more clarity, its certainly easier to use!!

Amarra sounds coloured and thicker through its presentation. I can see why people like it.  

My preference is Audirvana - I ran back to it...
I like the sound of Audirvana+ also. As you said it has more clarity and is less coloured than Amarra.
Quote:
Originally Posted by isquirrel View Post

If any Hugo owners are thinking about using large RCA's and are worried - then don't - ALO sent some large IC's which unbelievably fitted straight into the Hugo.

I believe they are 14mm RCA's.
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

Nice pic isquirrel. Are you using the Hugo mostly for home use or have you been taking it out on the road?
post #53 of 889

Well I've tried leaving the house, its not easy to tear myself away from listening.

 

This is my setup.

 

Hugo, (Studio Six arrived today with NOS tubes), LCD-X, cables are ALO Salty Pepper

 

post #54 of 889
Great setup! You can leave house with the Hugo. LoL
post #55 of 889
Quote:
Originally Posted by isquirrel View Post

Well I've tried leaving the house, its not easy to tear myself away from listening.

This is my setup.

Hugo, (Studio Six arrived today with NOS tubes), LCD-X, cables are ALO Salty Pepper
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)



Great looking rig isquirrel. I'm seriously jealous! Thanks for the heads up on the RCA cables.
Edited by bpcans - 7/29/14 at 1:53am
post #56 of 889
Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmicHolyGhost View Post

Great setup! You can leave house with the Hugo. LoL

 

No no I can't, really I just cannot......

 

Talking of going portable (iem's) - I am thinking shortlist should be Shure 846, ie800 and Roxanne. 

 

Can anyone comment on these with Hugo please?

post #57 of 889
Thread Starter 
IE800 with Hugo is supremely clear (never heard treble like this from an IEM!), articulate, airy - a really, really good match, even after having had the IE800 for eight months already, hasn't stopped Hugo re-inventing my music for me all over again...

That being said, I have not heard either the Roxanne or the 846, so - cannot compare frown.gif
post #58 of 889

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Edited by seeteeyou - 11/4/14 at 8:02pm
post #59 of 889
Rob is pretty spot on about how Hugo reproduces live acoustic music faithfully. A few weeks ago, there was a brass ensemble came to my workplace for a lunch time concert. As a person who loves listening to music at home, I tried to memorize the sound of each horn instrument in live setting. When I got home I immediately played a few cds of brass ensemble to see how faithful that sound when play back using Hugo. The result is very satisfying depending on the recording quality.

Lastly, I believe when comparing to other high end DAPs using high end ciem or iem, you can hear how much more resolving Hugo reproduces the bass notes when using the same earphones on those DAPs the bass notes are reduced to just bass tones.

Hugo does not smoothen sound out to be more ear pleasing.
post #60 of 889
It was mentioned before you need a man-bag with a Hugo setup to use outdoors. I agree but that is also same with clas dB rig. Think only slimmest of portable amp with dap/phone could still fit on trouser pocket. Then again someome else said Hugo size and battery allows them to use of different offices.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mimouille View Post

What I mean is that AK240 and Hugo are, to my ears, close in terms of the TYPE of signature: clarity, musicality, speed, space, airiness. But Hugo does everything better (not miles ahead, it is not possible at this level). On the other hand the 901 is very different: power, smoothness, depth, etc.
Yes that is my finding too that stock ak240 similar to Hugo. Purely headphone DAC/amp I would buy Hugo, but they do different things. Have you heard stock ak240 and how does rwa mod change the sound?
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