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Hugo M Scaler by Chord Electronics - The Official Thread

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by ChordElectronics, Jul 25, 2018.
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  1. Musikfan
    Hi, I'd like to know the reason if you can share. Thanks.
  2. Amberlamps
    I’ve always stuck to the theory that continually energizing electrical devices is asking for trouble and “may” cause damage later down the line.
  3. supervisor
    because it's intended to just be left on?
  4. tunes
    I keep things simple. That big expensive box for what?

    I am going to use an iBasso DX 200 with optical out to the Chord Dave for most of my listening. A long optical cable does not cause electrical interference, the dap is battery powered so no EMF generated and an easy UI with play lists and also WiFi streaming for Tidal. I had a music server but in the end the dap was just easier. I could only access the server via an iPad.
    Uncle Monty likes this.
  5. Mikey99
    A lot of home appliances and electronics are in standby even if they appear to be switched off. It is just more obvious in this case because that one light remains on.
  6. iDesign
    Not quite. Roon's Exclusive Mode and Audirvana+'s SysOptimizer are unrelated and entirely different. I own Roon and Audirvana+ and have no bias for either software. Objectively speaking, if you use a Macintosh, Audirvana+ may afford you some benefits for the reasons I stated earlier. Also bear in mind Audirvana+ was originally designed for macOS whereas Sooloos (and eventually Roon) began as a Windows project.
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  7. miketlse
    Possibly because the product is designed in the UK, and UK wall sockets do have on/off switches, unlike other countries.
    ZappaMan likes this.
  8. miketlse
    I remember reading an article mentioning that the initial pulse of energy that flows through electronic devices, does pose a risk for any fragile transistors etc on the silicon chips.
    However the risk must be fairly small, or computers, TVs etc would fail far more often when they are switched on.
  9. Triode User
    TVs etc are mostly just woken up from standby. The question being posed was whether to turn the unit off at the mains each time which is different to a tv being in standby.
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  10. Triode User
    No, I think it it is simpler than that. I think it is not intended to be turned off at the mains.
    supervisor likes this.
  11. Mediahound
    By that logic, all Chord products would have no switches or standby.

    Bingo. The Chord devices that have a standby are designed to be put in standby in order to turn off the amplification/supercaps, etc. when done listening for the day. That's not to say you can't also leave them on 24/7 though and some prefer to do that.

    The M Scaler is meant to be leave on 24/7. Maybe because there is a warm up time before if performs optimally and/or because it's largely a 'passive' device that just sits there working for you all the time with no need to be powered off.

    Incidentally, a few years ago Audioquest did a test for warm up times on DACs and concluded they sound best after 24 hours after being powered on: https://www.audiostream.com/content...l-devices-and-proper-warm-ideal-listening-and
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  12. Amberlamps
    Yeah, no doubt the failure rate is low, but, I personally would rather keep them from having to go through a sudden surge everytime it gets turned on.

    A nice constant flow of electricity is how I roll, you just have to look at old style light bulbs, when they went bang, what were you doing milliseconds before it ?

    Turning it on at the switch maybe ?
  13. Rob Watts
    So the mechanism for noise to create SQ problems is via a current flow, which enters the DACs ground plane; the current flow then creates voltages on the ground plane due to the planes finite impedance; these voltages are picked up by the analogue electronics, which in turn then creates RF intermodulation distortion which then creates a tad more noise floor modulation; or the noise is in the audio bandwidth directly (correlated noise) but distorted and that will degrade depth perception. Now the levels that we are talking about is very small; but the ear/brain seems to be extremely sensitive to it, as I have observed it to be easily audible.

    But it relies on a current flow through the ground plane. No current flow, no problems. So with optical, imagine a CD player and a DAC; both mains powered. With the optical connection, there is no loop; just two devices connected to the mains. No loop, no current flow, no problems. But imagine the DAC being connected to another mains powered source, the CD player and say a PC; the CD player will be injecting current into the mains, and if there is an electrical loop with the PC and CD and DAC then there is the possibility of current flowing via the electrical loops; then we are potentially in trouble, even with the optical connection from CD to DAC. But for this to be a significant problem you really would need an earth connection from the CD player to the PC and PC to DAC. In essence then the optical path is being electrically connected as well. You will be OK if the CD player is connected at one point to the mains, and connected to nothing else electrically, and only connected to the DAC via the optical cable.

    Confused? Yes it's complicated! And I have simplified it by not talking about parasitic capacitance and GHz noise, which creates another ground loop...
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  14. ZappaMan
    Thanks rob, what’s the dummies guide version then? If my office/den has my pc source, laptop as network end point (on battery power - connected to mscaler by usb/jitterbug), tt2, mscaler all plugged into the same Lundy protected power strip, am I inadvertently creating rf hygiene issues?
    If my chromecast is connected to mscaler via optical, could there then be issues?
    Would it be best to have only the sensitive dac/mscaler plugged in - in one room?
    Does things being plugged in in seperate rooms have anything to do with it?
    Sorry, your expertise in choosing the best potential setup at home for your gear, is appreciated by non-technical people like myself / thanks in advance !!!!!
  15. Rob Watts
    The dummies guide version is:

    1. Battery powering eliminates the issue, as no mains leakage currents or PSU/ground loops, and should be treated as the reference
    2. Optical to USB is pretty much identical SQ wise on the M scaler
    3. TT2 has no audible benefit by using batteries from the supplied PSU

    Of course, YMMV as sources are different, and just because I can't hear a difference in my system doesn't mean it's impossible.

    But I would add that I spent a huge amount of time on prototype development, design and listening tests to try to eliminate these sensitivities. And I have probably listened to M scaler/TT2 in getting close to a hundred different locations and set-ups - and via headphones they sound consistently the same wherever I am in the world. It just needs 10 minutes of warm-up!
    Chord Electronics Stay updated on Chord Electronics at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
    https://www.facebook.com/chordelectronics https://twitter.com/chordaudio http://www.chordelectronics.co.uk/
    musickid, wswbd, ZappaMan and 2 others like this.
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