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Chord Electronics Qutest DAC - Official Thread

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  1. Qute Beats
    Please do. I'm not unwilling to upgrade, but want to be confident it's worth it.
  2. kerisabe
    Yes, im also on the same boat. Dont have any problem w my present toslink but Ive heard of things on the lifatec, they say the music is smoother running through the lifatec. Will do a/b comparison, i hope there is a significance jump in sound quality. Pls give me some time currently still breakin in the receptacle, amp and speaker cables.
    Zzt231gr likes this.
  3. Qute Beats
    Yes the lifatec is the one that keeps cropping up. Take all the time you need, thanks again.
  4. kerisabe
  5. kerisabe
    Btw I have a question regarding streaming quality using macbook pro running audirvana. Would the quality of streaming be better if the macbook pro is connected through ethernet cable to an airport express extender? Main airport extreme router is in another room. I use a small airport express to a wall plug which runs the ethernet cable to the mbp. Running optical to cut the noise.
  6. MagnusH
    The reason toslink cables can sound different is because of different amount of jitter that they introduce. Jitter is a time-slot error, simplified: all the bits get there as they should, but not exactly when they should.

    I experienced a little smoother higher frequencies with my Lifatec, but the difference wasn't huge. Note that this depends on the DAC as well, and its ability to handle jitter (basically reclock the signal). I have the RME ADI-2 DAC.
  7. Qute Beats
    Thanks for that. Sure I can buy the difference in jitter on the cable being a factor with some DACs and would expect glass to be a better light transmitter, but Rob Watts' designs are jitter free AFAIK, though folk claim a difference with their Qutest. Just trying to understand.
    Baten and Zzt231gr like this.
  8. MagnusH
    I don't think any DAC is totally free of jitter (for any input), but some DACs are better at handling it than others. I think @Rob Watts puts on his "salesmen-cap" from time to time :)
  9. heo44
    Last edited: May 27, 2019
  10. Deftone
    The Chord measurements show impressive jitter suppression just like RME.
  11. Rob Watts
    Hmm - the facts are that you can put 2uS of 1kHz jitter on my DACs via SPDIF and can measure absolutely nothing, down to a FFT noise floor of -180dB. 2uS is a thousand times larger than jitter you would normally encounter on SPDIF.

    I don't have a "salesmen-cap". Can you buy one on Amazon?

    I am a measurement/objective listening based designer, and am driven entirely upon measurements and carefully controlled listening tests. If I can or can't hear a difference, I post on that. If I measure or can't measure a difference, I post on that. And if I find an observation that contradicts things I have posted before, I post that too. Moreover, Head-Fi posts from people using my designs has been incredibly useful in the past, as people finding sensitivities (X sounds different due to Y and Z), and this has allowed me to investigate issues because of these sensitivities - which then results in better performance from new designs - and I post on that too. But source jitter is for sure not one of these issues.

    As a scientist/design engineer I deal in realities, and am solely driven on one thing - trying to close the gap in reproduced audio from unamplified live sound. And I post on my understanding of those realities; I certainly don't want or need a salesman's hat...:smile_phones:
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    JamieMcC, Em2016, acordfan and 14 others like this.
  12. kerisabe
    Well said @Rob Watts thank you for creating qutest I am having a blast!
    blueninjasix likes this.
  13. Baten
    Audiosciencereview: no jitter whatsoever
    Stereophile measurement: no jitter whatsoever
    -180dB seems a little exaggerated though. So you do have a salesman cap :) :)


  14. Triode User
    Have you considered that Rob might have better measuring equipment than the reviewers?
    Qute Beats likes this.
  15. Baten
    I'm not sure what is better measuring than a $28000 APx555 man :p you tell me.

    A better argument would be that measurements and highly dependant on the users' settings/config.
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