Chord Electronics Qutest DAC - Official Thread
Jan 20, 2019 at 12:53 AM Post #2,911 of 5,800

musickid

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for christer AFAIK portable power banks and the supplied psu are ok everything else is at the owners own risk. with no real difference in sq between either of the first 2 i would stick to the tested supplied psu. each to their own.
 
Jan 20, 2019 at 1:42 AM Post #2,912 of 5,800

Christer

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for christer AFAIK portable power banks and the supplied psu are ok everything else is at the owners own risk. with no real difference in sq between either of the first 2 i would stick to the tested supplied psu. each to their own.

Hello again musickid.
Yes I am fully aware of the "owners own risk" thing with M Scaler and have not tried anything else than the supplied power supply with it although I know Rob himself even recommended and uses a specific powerbank which I could not buy and which seems unavailable .
But the fact remains that to my ears and with my references direct to the live sound in the hall in quite a few cases the battery powered LPS I am using sounds better with Qutest/M Scaler than the switching PSU that came with my Qutest,
This is also something that was mentioned in one review of Qutest.The supplied PSU may not be as good as the dac itself is capable of delivering, and I can quite easily hear the difference between the two. And going back to the supplied one is only something I do when the battery powered one runs out of battery power.
So in that case I can say that there is actually a real difference.
As you say each to their own.
Whether M Scaler would also benefit from a battery powered LPS is something that I would like to know but I don't want to run the risk of losing warranty to try out for myself.It is simply too damned expensive for me to run such a risk, But I know that even with Chord's top dac DAVE some users/owners have exchanged the powersupply and at least according to them with better SQ results than the orginal one.
And if I understand things correctly most powerbanks are also switching power units and although practical for me under some circumstances, may not actually be better SQ wise.
According to the review in question and some other sources switching power supplies can be prone to sending noise back into the dac. But well isolated battery power LPS with the most silent batteries and well made USB isolation correct voltage setting treatment does not according to that school. I know Rob prefers using switching PSUs in his DACs but that does not completely rule out that there may be benefits to be gained from trying other ways of powering his DACs.
Dirty mains power can be a problem in many places and some companies go a long way to fight it.
My own 900 watts per channel stereo amp back home has a separate power supply unit weighing 50 lbs, to mention just one way of dealing with dirty power.
I have even got a headphone amp from the same company that can be used with and without a separate power supply unit. And the difference between the two is not subtle.
While travelling this winter I am using a battery powered headphone amp and my laptop running on battery and also Qutest on battery power.
The fewer units that are connected to the mains the better the SQ in my experience.
Cheers Controversial Christer
 
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Jan 20, 2019 at 2:01 AM Post #2,913 of 5,800

musickid

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Hello Christer,

when you say battery powered LPS is that linear power supply? the only okay battery power i know of comes in the shape of https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/263266765245

i'm slightly confused as 1) i didn't know LPS can be battery powered and 2) it was clearly stated LPS power voids the warranty. the only two ok power sources are the supplied psu and the eg in the link.
 
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Jan 20, 2019 at 9:56 AM Post #2,914 of 5,800

Ragnar-BY

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Nobody knows how output of Qutest is designed except Rob Watts.
What I sad, if you need to make 2 or 3 volt rms output from 5 volt power you have to use switched DC-DC converter Flyback or Boost.
But it can be good implemented.
I tried all these option in my system.
3 volt output sounds most open and dynamic. 2 volt output sounds more cleaner and focused in high frequencies. 1 volt output sounds the worst.
Last night I was listening in 1V mode. At the first glance 1V sounds slightly better and slightly darker than 3V. Initially I also thought that 3V mode is more dynamic, but after more listening, I`ve realized that is only subjective impression because of darker sound. Maybe it is because of my amp, but Violectric V200 can take even more than 3V RMS. Anyway, I love Qutest sound in all modes, but it seems 1V might work better for my setup. Also it gives additional headroom for volume control with sensitive cans, like my Fostex TH-900.

@Rob Watts it would be great if you can tell us how different voltages of Qutest work. Is it true, that 1V mode mean less pressure on internal PSU and may result in better SQ?
 
Jan 20, 2019 at 8:05 PM Post #2,919 of 5,800

eddie0817

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Hi

I manage to pair Qutest with different power supplier, I would say it definitely affect the sound quality, when I pair with the cheap one from Taobao, price around 80 USD.
the dynamic and resolution is better compare to original PSU, but original one is more neutral with less detail also.

And then I pair with the PLiXiR Balanced DC Power Supplies(BCD) 5V 2A, Sound quality improved even significantly, compare to the Taobao one, it gives more solid sound,
the background is very clean and dark with good dynamic,Taobao one treble a bit too sharp.

Compare to the power bank, I would say it is also clean, but the dynamic and resolution are not as PLiXiR, I think the power supply is worth investing. :)
46789703621_5036ec021c_k.jpg


46789703901_162d4250b5_k.jpg
 
Jan 20, 2019 at 9:53 PM Post #2,920 of 5,800

maxh22

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Hi

I manage to pair Qutest with different power supplier, I would say it definitely affect the sound quality, when I pair with the cheap one from Taobao, price around 80 USD.
the dynamic and resolution is better compare to original PSU, but original one is more neutral with less detail also.

And then I pair with the PLiXiR Balanced DC Power Supplies(BCD) 5V 2A, Sound quality improved even significantly, compare to the Taobao one, it gives more solid sound,
the background is very clean and dark with good dynamic,Taobao one treble a bit too sharp.

Compare to the power bank, I would say it is also clean, but the dynamic and resolution are not as PLiXiR, I think the power supply is worth investing. :)
46789703621_5036ec021c_k.jpg


46789703901_162d4250b5_k.jpg

You can also roll different power banks until you get the sound you desire. Each power bank sounds slightly different from the next if you do some listening tests, always go with the warmest smoothest sounding one and your ears will be rewarded in the long term :)
 
Jan 20, 2019 at 11:50 PM Post #2,921 of 5,800

Rob Watts

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I don`t think this is the answer to my question. Digital, or analog it is still different voltage that requires additional power, isn`t it?

The adjustment in level is done digitally, and this is more transparent than doing it with analogue means, as my truncation stage is aggressively noise shaped to ensure -400dB digital domain signal accuracy. Note that all the OP levels go through the same stage - the coefficient value is merely adjusted.

As to OP voltage, Qutest is innately capable of much more OP voltage than 3v, so there is no significant difference in internal operation or distortion. If you are hearing differences, for sure it's down to the ancillary gear connected to Qutest; and each piece will have different optimum values. If you are unsure, then just set it to 2v, the regular CD/DAC output voltage.
 
Jan 21, 2019 at 1:19 AM Post #2,922 of 5,800

x RELIC x

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If you are hearing differences, for sure it's down to the ancillary gear connected to Qutest; and each piece will have different optimum values.

Or differences can be thought to be perceived due to not volume matching when comparing, which is often overlooked or not done accurately. :)
 
Jan 22, 2019 at 4:04 AM Post #2,923 of 5,800

Lodwales81

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After a little help, having trouble using quobuz with my qutest via USB. Quobuz just struggles to connect with both asio and wasabi on both my mac and Windows pc. For the time being I have switched back to Tidal masters but not a massive fan although I do like the Roon integration. I have contacted Quobuz support but nothing back, and help would be greatly appreciated.
 
Jan 22, 2019 at 4:06 AM Post #2,924 of 5,800

Triode User

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After a little help, having trouble using quobuz with my qutest via USB. Quobuz just struggles to connect with both asio and wasabi on both my mac and Windows pc. For the time being I have switched back to Tidal masters but not a massive fan although I do like the Roon integration. I have contacted Quobuz support but nothing back, and help would be greatly appreciated.

As of today Qobuz is integrated in Roon 1.6 which is released today.
 

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