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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. rkt31
    What is the stock coaxial cable brand supplied with m scaler ? Did anybody try furutech alpha AG coaxial cable ?
  2. rkt31
    Nagra dacx too converts pcm to dsd256, I think, plus it also has tube stage but costs way too much in the name of exotic parts used.
  3. kennyb123
    I’ve had my HMS for a little over a month and a half. My opinion of it has evolved since it landed.

    I was impressed with the improvements I heard when I first connected it to my Hugo TT using the OEM BNC cable that Chord provided. The improvements from the WTA filter at a half million taps were easy to hear and made my music more enjoyable to listen to.

    But did I think the improvements I first heard justified the amount I paid for the HMS? I didn’t really consider that question initially because I was anticipating the soon arrival of a Hugo TT 2. The TT2, with its dual BNC input, would allow me to hear the HMS scaling up to a million taps. There were many who reported that the big leap comes when making that jump. I think my answer to the question as to whether the HMS justified the price at that point would have been "TBD".

    But then news came that my TT2 would be delayed, as Chord was having trouble meeting demand. My TT was going to be with me longer than expected, so I stared thinking about making another planned move sooner. There were many who reported hearing greater than expected improvements from upgrading BNC cables, so I figured I’d delve into this while I still had the TT.

    The first BNC cable I tried was a preowned Stereovox HDXV, which I had purchased from an Audiogon seller. This cable had at one time retailed for $100. Many years ago I had used the predecessor to this, the Illuminati, which was a very well-regarded cable back in its day, so I was optimistic that I’d hear good things from the HDXV. Well, it would be an understatement to say that the HDXV exceeded my expectations. I’m pretty sure that I’ve never heard a cable at this price point bring about such a big level of improvement. If I would have been asked at this point whether the HMS justified the price I paid, my answer at this point would have been “it might come close to justifying it's price, even when only tapping into a half-million taps, but a better digital cable must be used”.

    6Moons reviewed the HDXV very favorably back in 2003 and had this to say about it "The [HDXV] remained steadfast in the face of truly challenging material and showed itself to excel in the realm of retrieving minutiae.” That’s what I heard too.

    The HDXV did not remain in my system very long. I’ve been super-impressed with the bang-for-the-buck I’ve gotten from the Shunyata Alpha series, so I just had to hear what would happen were I to use their Alpha S/PDIF cable between the HMS and the TT. I’m using an Alpha USB upstream of the HMS, so I figured the Alpha S/PDIF would compliment it very well. My dealer was able to arrange to have a cable sent to me last Friday. It arrived on Saturday, and roughly within an hour I told my dealer that there was no way that cable was ever going to be leaving my house. HMS plus the Alpha S/PDIF have brought about the biggest step change from any upgrade I’ve made to my digital source. Given their combined price, one would hope that would be the case - and it most certainly was. If you were to ask me at this point whether the HMS justified the price, my answer would be “hell f’n yes - it’s a game changer when used with cabling that’s up the task, even when only tapping into a half-million taps." (It should be noted that neither the single BNC output on the HMS, nor the single BNC input on the TT, are galvanically isolated. So this may have played a part in my findings.)

    As impressed as I am with the HMS, I think I may even be more impressed with my Chord Hugo TT. It’s truly stunning how much its performance was able to scale with the HMS. I can now honestly say that I’m in no rush to receive my TT2. What I’m hearing now already far exceeds what I thought was possible to achieve - especially from 16/44.1 files. Chord is really on a roll right now - and I'm a very happy customer.
    Aslshark, maxh22, JM1979 and 5 others like this.
  4. dac64
  5. koven Contributor
    Lampizator is on my list for 'life after DAVE' potential. Another one is the Rockna Wavedream Signature. I have only heard at shops in 2-ch setups so it's a bit hard to judge but it seems like quite an amazing DAC.
  6. dac64
    Lucky you!

    If I were 20 years old younger, I will BUY a pacific! :wink:
  7. audio_1
    The only 'life after Dave' will be the DX amps or Dave 2 and HMS 2. I am not sure how the Rockna Wavedream Signature could sound better than the Dave, it only has 5000 tap digital filters. The Lampizator, has zero upsampling, zero oversampling so presumably poor transient timing. Neither have correctly designed digital volume controls.
  8. koven Contributor
    That is a bit close minded. I enjoy my DAVE but there are plenty of great DAC designs out there. Not sure how you can judge purely based on taps. HQP has a one million tap filter. Should that sound 6x better than Dave? I have also heard NOS DACs sound excellent in certain setups, it is all about synergy (and preference).
    wswbd likes this.
  9. analogmusic
    Sure understand the need to be open minded

    But at the same time ignoring the maths and science is being close minded.

    This is not preference or synergy issue just making an effort to understand the maths behind Rob Watts 30 years efforts.

    Yesterday I enjoyed music and a non Chord Dac which cost 200 dollars. That’s ok.

    But I don’t have any ideas that it is better than my Chord Mojo....
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2019
    audio_1 likes this.
  10. koven Contributor
    Of course the engineering behind DAVE is impressive and respectable, but at the end of the day we're listening to music, not building rockets. No doubt DAVE is a reference DAC for many, but believe it or not other DAC designs can and do sound good as well. Audio is super subjective. There are plenty of folks who feel NOS is the best. There are even more people who enjoy music from earbuds and wouldn't care to distinguish a DAVE from their iPhone.
  11. analogmusic
    Made the huge mistake of buying an NOS Dac 10 years ago

    It lasted 2 months in my home and ended back on eBay.

    Rolled off highs (as a result of NOS) and huge inaccurate transient response

    But hey.... whatever floats the boat...
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2019
  12. musickid
    But from a scientific and "laws of physics perspective" right now only chord dacs perform accordingly correct and this is why they measure as they do and sound as good as they do. All other designs are in someway flawed and this is not a subjective observation but a purely objective one....amazing as it sounds.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2019
    audio_1 and 514077 like this.
  13. analogmusic
    Choosing to ignore sampling theory by using IIR filters which are half band.

    Yeah that’s subjectivity.... NOT
  14. musickid
    So you agree? I wonder if fpga dac tech is being used in other fields not just music ie medical applications etc or if it has the potential to.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2019
  15. analogmusic
    Yes I agree...there’s no shortcuts taken by Rob Watts or chord ....
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