Chordette Gem Bluetooth DAC. A Review With Pictures.
Dec 24, 2015 at 11:30 AM Post #16 of 17
I just bought one of these newly and steeply discounted from a local retailer here in Seattle. I compared it's Bluetooth performance to NAIM Uniti Qute and Audioengine B1, using the NAIM analogue in for the two stand alone wireless DACs.

Sound: both the NAIM and the Chord boogied hard, music flowed out. The Chord had a slight hash occasionally in the treble, but had slightly more detail throughout audio band. The Audioengine was interesting in comparison. Nice clarity, least obvious coloration and best HiFi dimensionality via Bluetooth, but no musically drama either, the sound was almost PRAT-free compared with the other two.

Interesting note on the review in the original thread above. In Art Dudley's 2011 stereophile review, he describes sound characteristics exactly like those this reviewer observed straight out of the box, and generally panned this DAC. I am wondering how long he had run it in before making his evaluation?
Jul 15, 2018 at 4:50 PM Post #17 of 17
Not to revive an old thread from the grave, but I couldn't find a more recent one regarding the Chordette Gem.
I have one of these. I think it's a great DAC. As Knownothing mentioned above, the Stereophile review seems to have had a similar experience as the OP. The sound must change for the better as it is continually used. I bet the Stereophile reviewed would change his mind after letting it run a few hundred hours.
My music sounds great with this Gem. I also have a Chord Mojo, and have compared the two. I do favor the Mojo, but the Gem is a great sounding DAC in its own right. Perhaps the proprietary FPGA in the Mojo provides more musicality than the off-the-shelf DAC of the Gem.
I use the Gem via USB, and use the outputs into my Stax energizer. I rarely use the bluetooth, although when I have, I did not have any complaints about the quality of the sound.

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