Chord Electronics Qutest DAC - Official Thread
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Qute Beats

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Regarding the lifatec optical, id say if youre pretty happy with your current cable the upgrade is not a night and day difference. Yes it is more open and musical, but you really have to really listen to it to notice. Today ive added the active ground conditioner, and the diff is night and day, cleaned up the sound by much! Maybe invest on this first then last the lifatec?
Thanks for cable update. What's an active ground conditioner and how do you implement? I use Tacima mains block conditioner with iFi AC purifier inbetween qutest/amp and PC/ext HDD plugs.
 
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Qute Beats

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BTW the most significant upgrade I've made to enjoyment of music from my Qutest was switching form HD650 to AQ Nighthawk, love these 'phones:dt880smile:
 
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kerisabe

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Thanks for cable update. What's an active ground conditioner and how do you implement? I use Tacima mains block conditioner with iFi AC purifier inbetween qutest/amp and PC/ext HDD plugs.
Look for brands like Telos or Synergistic Research for ground conditioners. Its another different function than your distributor/conditioner the way it works is the unit will be connected to your components and eliminate detected noise coming from the components. Youll be surprised how much our components, especially the dac produces noise that loops around the system. The dac (which is the qutest in our case) is one of the main culprit of noise. Ive hooked up 2 lines from the ground conditioner to both the qutest’s bnc connectors. One to the int amp’s ground, and to both of my speakers’ negative terminals. The sound of noise in the vocal that i thought was timbre was gone after installing the ground conditioner! Separation was improved by a huge margin and soundstage is wider as well.
 
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Qute Beats

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Look for brands like Telos or Synergistic Research for ground conditioners. Its another different function than your distributor/conditioner the way it works is the unit will be connected to your components and eliminate detected noise coming from the components. Youll be surprised how much our components, especially the dac produces noise that loops around the system. The dac (which is the qutest in our case) is one of the main culprit of noise. Ive hooked up 2 lines from the ground conditioner to both the qutest’s bnc connectors. One to the int amp’s ground, and to both of my speakers’ negative terminals. The sound of noise in the vocal that i thought was timbre was gone after installing the ground conditioner! Separation was improved by a huge margin and soundstage is wider as well.
I looked up Telos, the 'telos grounding noise reducer' is £5k, more than a Hugo TT2.
https://www.audiocomav.co.uk/av-accessories-/570-telos-grounding-noise-reducer.html
 
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kerisabe

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I looked up Telos, the 'telos grounding noise reducer' is £5k, more than a Hugo TT2.
https://www.audiocomav.co.uk/av-accessories-/570-telos-grounding-noise-reducer.html
Its def worth it tho! It does improve your system by a huge margin. It opens up the sound like youve invested in a maybe 3-4x the price of the ground conditioner itself. I was shocked today when adding the ground conditioner one by one to my components. First the qutest, cleared up the vocal and was very noticable then the amp, speakers and last back to the qutest bnc. Will be adding 2 more rca connections tomorrow to the amp and looking forward for some more positive changes to the system.
 
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kerisabe

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@Qute Beats

Found this interesting article from a lifatec user from: http://forums.audioreview.com/cable...et-job-done-really-inexpensive-too-38941.html

Quoted from the post:

“A few weeks ago I bought a 20" glass Toslink from Lifatec. The adaptor plugs are excellent and snap in perfectly at both ends. Initially I really connected with the mid range textures and low end depth. After a few weeks I have tired of this cable because this particular cable is not particularly adept at delivering some top end sparkle.

Last night I put on some Jean-Luc Ponty: No Absolute Time. As much as I enjoyed the low end presentation the top end really failed to engage me and if anyone is familiar with this particular piece of music you know how important the top end is throughout this recording. So, today I pulled the plug on the Lifatec and put back the $3.00 Toslink from Belkin. Now playing Lisa Lynne: Hopes & Dreams, and harp notes sound rich and defined as they should be. The overall sound is balanced with the Belkin.

While I still prefer a Toslink in the mix somewhere the Lifatec is best suited for those who would prefer low end over everything else or for those trying to add warmth to a bright system.”
 
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kerisabe

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@Qute Beats from my personal experience today w the lifatec i dont see the lost in high freq in my system but im also still breaking in my furutech ncf receptacle so maybe that adds alot of brightness in the sound. We’ll see later how the sound turn out, still have 400 hrs to go breaking in the ncf.
 
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@Qute Beats from my personal experience today w the lifatec i dont see the lost in high freq in my system but im also still breaking in my furutech ncf receptacle so maybe that adds alot of brightness in the sound. We’ll see later how the sound turn out, still have 400 hrs to go breaking in the ncf.
I'm sure you can sell on the Lifatec easy enough if it continues to not prove itself. Good luck. I think I'm sticking with my cheap ebay cable, it has attractive outer braiding after all, though was good to hear your report.
And hope you enjoy the music during that mammoth 400hr brake in. One this I find as a keen music explorer is that when you listen to lots of new music you don't notice any weakness in the system as much, have fun :wink:

Edit: I read the link you gave, the OP did rather like his cheap Belkin cable, was interesting that he tried a few cheap options, maybe the Belkin is one to try..
 
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How much influence, and exactly what influence, a toslink cable has depends a lot of the DAC used. I also find it strange that a optical cable would affect frequency range (a toslink cable can only affect the actual bits and jitter, and jitter don't change frequencies like that).

Added clarity and smoother presentation is what I have experienced when jitter was lessened (the famous "lifted veil"), which was also what I experienced to a small degree when I upgraded a cheap AudioQuest toslink to Lifatec.
 
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Its def worth it tho! It does improve your system by a huge margin. It opens up the sound like youve invested in a maybe 3-4x the price of the ground conditioner itself. I was shocked today when adding the ground conditioner one by one to my components. First the qutest, cleared up the vocal and was very noticable then the amp, speakers and last back to the qutest bnc. Will be adding 2 more rca connections tomorrow to the amp and looking forward for some more positive changes to the system.
Interesting stuff.
I wonder if it’s similar to this strategy and these devices?
https://www.russandrews.com/images/pdf/GroundingMk3.pdf
 
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kerisabe

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How much influence, and exactly what influence, a toslink cable has depends a lot of the DAC used. I also find it strange that a optical cable would affect frequency range (a toslink cable can only affect the actual bits and jitter, and jitter don't change frequencies like that).

Added clarity and smoother presentation is what I have experienced when jitter was lessened (the famous "lifted veil"), which was also what I experienced to a small degree when I upgraded a cheap AudioQuest toslink to Lifatec.
Yes the difference is not massive, but definitely noticable if you paid really closed attention. As I said, it might be more noticable but just too many breaking in process im doin now, will do a a/b comparison later when everything is settled.
 
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A question / suggestion to Mr. Watts:

Dear Mr. Watts,

I had the pleasure to visit your company's room at the Hi-End Show in Munich earlier this month.
I was quite curious about the new phono stage called Huei and I have found it to be quite amazing, so I am waiting
impatiently now for the market launch.
As a Qutest owner I was especially glad to find out that you have used practically the same body for Huei,
as for Qutest. I think they will make a nice pair on my rack. :)
What I especially liked very much in the design of Huei as compared with Qutest is first, there is a power switch
- I find that very very good; second - Huei has as well balanced outputs. This makes me very happy, since the manufacturer
of my beloved Moon power amp recommends always when possible to use the balanced inputs.
My question would be if you intend to offer us as well balanced outputs with the next version of Qute - whatever the name? And maybe a power switch too would be very agreeable. :)

Yours sincerely
 
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