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Chord Mojo DAC-amp ☆★►FAQ in 3rd post!◄★☆

Discussion in 'Portable Source Gear' started by Mython, Oct 14, 2015.
  1. jdpark
    Actually you don't really need a "coax" cable, you just need a regular cable with an RCA interconnect on one end and a mini-jack on the other. Although coax cables are supposed to be 75 Ohm from point A to point B, many cheap ones actually aren't up to these specs. (https://www.head-fi.org/threads/can...oax-or-does-it-have-to-be-a-75ohm-one.563361/)

    The sound was passable. I would say USB is sharper, more defined and with more body. I have never used the optical input. I wouldn't recommend using a CD player and a regular cable from the coax digital output to the mini-jack of the Mojo unless that's your only option. In that case, go for it, and enjoy your CDs.
  2. GreenBow
    Well when I first got the Hugo 2, I knew and heard it was better. The extra (shall we say) 3D effect was standout. However I was not used to it, and it took a while to acclimatise to. It took a while to hear the sounds as whole. Initially it seemed like I was hearing the Mojo but extra sound stuck on the side of the Mojo sound. Meaning for a particular sound in the sound field. This is using amplifier and speakers. After about two weeks I saw that the sounds were whole, but it took longer to totally get it. I think it took me about a month before I was putting Hugo to play, and was knowing what to expect. (That doesn't mean the Hugo 2 does not astonish me every day.) I remember it taking about that long with the Mojo too. I remember it being all uphill from about ten day to two weeks.

    I knew instantly though that the Hugo 2 was perfect. It was neutral with a natural warmth to the sound. I knew I would soon hear all the extra sounds as a whole and it was just a matter of time. It wasn't just the 3D effect that was more noticeable. There were details everywhere. Sounds I had not heard before. Sounds that were there before, but sounded off, now sounded spine tingling. ... You have to bear in mind also that I am not using Hugo 2 on top end kit. There is much more to hear than I am hearing. I only use budget Rega Brio (2017 version), and Dynaudio Emit M10.

    On my headphones, the Hugo 2 is virtually wasted. I only have the Grado 225e. They just sound of the plastic they are made of, when paired with Hugo 2. I should however give myself longer to try them, and acclimatise, as explained above.

    I have to completely disagree that flat is not exciting. I won't buy equipment that is not balanced. I find it too hard to pair other equipment with if I buy off balanced. Secondly you don't get to hear what the musicians and engineering were meant to be doing. The Hugo 2 is neutral, and for that it's perfect.

    Ok thank you. I was being vague when I quoted 7KHz, because I could not remember the exact frequency. I will likely remember now though, as I have been wrong and made a fool of myself. However the point is that I think it's shame that all headphones do this. You can't get better than flat. Nothing better than balanced sound.

    It astonishes me that people find the Mojo has better clarity than Hugo 2. The Hugo 2 is somewhere else completely compared to the Mojo. No insult to the Mojo either because it's absolutely brilliant.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2018
    Wildcatsare1 likes this.
  3. IamMathew
    Thanks for fast reply. So better OP stage = necessarily bigger DAC?

    How big is the impact of output stage of your DAC design on sound quality compared to the impact the digital part (digital filtering/ FPGA DAC firmware) has?
    Or else- if I were to buy Hugo 2, what would give me more SQ upgrade over Mojo- better output stage, or better FPGA filtering algorithm?
    Thanks :)
  4. jpjasmine
    Thanks. My transport is actually a raspberry pi -> i2s dac (allo digi one) coax out -> dac. Mojo may not be the way for me to go then...
  5. Sonic Defender Contributor
    @GreenBow, I also found the Hugo2 to be stunning, and as you described in, rather neutral with a natural warmth. Fantastic device to be sure. I also thought the Mojo was fabulous. My point has never been about the Mojo or the Hugo2s abilities. Anyway, great that you are enjoying your gear so much.
  6. Deftone
    Interesting to find out after spending the day with mojo that the bass is so solid and palpable on IE800S I haven’t had this on other sources, it can be quite addictive!
  7. ScareDe2
    Just wanted to share, I went to the store with the Mojo + Fiio (connected with a coax cable) and to my ears this combo works best with less expensive and neutralish headphones. The best synergy was with: BeyerDynamic DT770 250 > Focal Spirit Pro > Focal Utopia > AKG K812 > Grado SR80. Grado is not neutral so it was an easy last. Interesting that the Focal Spirit actually sounded better than the Utopia with the Mojo. But the DT770 really is the best. If I had to keep just one headphone for portable solution, this one reigns supreme.
  8. Deftone
    What was it about the sound that made you prefer these pairings? I’d like to know I’m more detail.
  9. ScareDe2
    With the K812 the emphasize is on the soundstage, very big and combined with the mojo the music seems to lack some snap/punch. I don't think the Mojo brings the K812 to its full potential. With the Utopia there was a focus on the nuances, I would hear with precision like how hard the drummer hits his symbal, but it was an analytical experience rather than emotional. Was like, look this is all the little things the musicians are doing. It sounded too technical.

    With the DT770 the sound is more balanced. It sounds good and my focus stays even, I don't get lost in one things like, details or soundstage. It just seems right. the Focal Spirit Pro is a close second but I think it was not driven with enough power. Or at least, it was less engaging than with the DT770.
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2018
  10. Armando Cruz
    Much appreciated for your answer jarnopp(spot on!).Most of the time I use headphones to hear my music( I have it a beyerdynamic 1990 pro connected to my mojo, the sound is STUNNING by the way ) . I would like to have some speakers , but I really Really don't want to spent much money on it. I live in uk, the Monitor audio bronze it as a price of 279 , while Klipsch cost it's around 500 pounds...It's almost the double in here... Because of that I do not feel much attracted to klipsch:\ . I was thinking... is there any amplifier ( without dac hardware in it )between 200 and 300 that could do the work ? This way I could use chord mojo as dac only( does it sound good to you? I heard that chord mojo does it a very nice job working just as dac)
  11. Sonic Defender Contributor
    Yes as a DAC alone the Mojo is quite competent. I happen to like the sonic signature of the Mojo very much. For amps you should be able to find quite a few solid options, certainly if you are willing to look used. I would also say look into the Polk Audio American HiFi line. I purchased the S20 I think and I am quite pleased with the performance to price. Not sure if Polk is expensive in the UK. What about Mordaunt Short speakers? have you looked into them? My friend had a set of their entry level bookshelf speakers, Carnival 1 I believe, and they were also surprisingly nice. I guess it depends on your listening goals, the room, do you want to do nearfield listening, that type of thing. I found supporting the S20s with a modest REL TZero sub in a small room and nearfield listening to work very well for my needs.
    Armando Cruz likes this.
  12. jarnopp
    Well, since you can get the Monitor Audio so reasonably, that makes sense. I own this amp and it’s pretty respectable in the price range:

    Here is the UK dealer inquiry link:
    Armando Cruz likes this.
  13. Rob Watts
    With portable devices it is all about power, from two POV - battery life, and how warm the unit gets. So a bigger case = bigger more capable batteries, and larger surface area to dissipate the heat. So Mojo's FPGA has half the power than Hugo 2's - even though it's the same FPGA - as pretty much with Hugo 2 I am using max capacity and max internal clock speeds. And I can increase the element count on Hugo 2, as more power is available. So when using it as a DAC, the improvements are mostly down to the FPGA and the 10e pulse array.

    Now the OP stage design is quite different in that Hugo 2 uses the method I created for Dave - the 2nd order analogue noise shaper - and this has big benefits particularly when using low impedance loads, such as anything below say 100 ohms. Distortion with low loads does not significantly increase with Hugo 2, and this is down to the analogue noise shaper topology. So the benefits of this will depend upon the headphone used.
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  14. mathi8vadhanan
    Check out the Onkyo A-9010 + Q Acoustics 3020 pairing.
    Armando Cruz likes this.
  15. GreenBow
    If you prepared to spend £500 on speakers, don't overlook the Dynaudio Emit M10. (I have a pair on my desktop now, doing their job.) They are good at low volumes so good for desktop use. You might need a bit of space behind them so consider that. (I have managed to get almost 30cm behind them.) Also the new KEF Q350, but they say not so good at low volume.

    Amplifiers in your price range would be the Onkyo A-9010, at approximately £200. (The Marantz PM6006 has an onboard DAC.) I imagine the Marantz probably outperforms the Onkyo on analogue amplification. However I am not sure, and the Onkyo is said to be very good for the price. However since you can pick the Marantz up for a bargain these days. The Marantz actually might be the one to buy.

    Good luck with Mojo through your kit. I'd also recommend trying an AudioQuest Jitterbug. It tames the Mojo somewhat and makes the USB signature more like the optical. Threfore making it more pleasant with partnering kit.

    I had the Mojo through the Dynaudio Emit M10 and the Rega Brio (2017). Uh-mazing.
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2018
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