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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. Deftone
    Maybe Rob could post his own measurements of Mojo, theres too much variation with Mojo measurements online.
  2. Rob Watts
    The only difference between a 768 AES/EBU (the usual dual OP from M scaler) and a DX output is the DX has volume control data in the user data, with an appropriate header that identifies the user data as DX data. Both TT2 and Dave has DX outputs from their volume controls, and setting the DX option on with the M scaler means that it too can control the volume for future products that is DX compatible.

    And not wanting to discuss the technical minutia is absolutely fine by me. I too only want to enjoy music and get the maximum emotional involvement whilst listening to music; in particular I want to close the huge emotional or musicality gap from reproduced music to un-amplified live music. But then so do a lot of manufacturers make similar claims. But simply talking about enjoying music doesn't make it so, and most manufacturers claims simply do not hold water - and that's where the technical minutia becomes very important.

    Your questions about measurements are very pertinent and perceptive and I will be addressing that later in this post.

    But I will add one thing; I enjoy reading Head-Fi, and enjoy it when people are passionate, even if I don't agree with their perspective - we all have different viewpoints, and are entitled to express them. But those expressions must be at all times be civil and gentlemanly (or lady-like); I for one don't like the way our culture is being dragged low by lack of respect for one another.

    "Non-oversampling DACs are known for their musicality..." This of course is incorrect; but it exposes a real problem we have when listening and making judgements. The sound-science faction have misunderstood the problem - it's not that the ear/brain can perceive differences that are below the threshold of hearing but it's the interpretation of those differences that's the problem. So how can we differentiate between a change that makes the SQ warmer and smoother and more natural that is a genuine improvement against aberrations and errors that also sound warmer softer and smoother but actually represents a big step backwards? This is the real problem with using listening tests - making judgements. And here we have to be extremely careful and tread lightly, and constantly re-evaluate what we are doing; otherwise we end up just running around in circles.

    To overcome these issues you have to conduct the listening tests extremely thoroughly and carefully; you need to understand from a technical perspective exactly what is going on - and that implies a lot of technical evaluation and careful measurements. But what is needed is the ability to explain what happens in listening too what is going on from an aberration perspective; otherwise no progress will get made.

    Measurements are a big problem; most test gear is incapable of measuring my DACs. Then you have the issue of how the test gear and device under test (DUT) is set-up - this can have a huge difference to your recorded results. In the same way that setting up your audio system can have a major impact in SQ, so the same is true with measurements. It is not an objective reality as people make out.

    Then there is the issue of what measurements you are actually doing and why; I am the only designer that talks about noise floor modulation and publishes plots showing it, because I have done the listening tests and know how important it is subjectively. But noise floor modulation tests must be done in a particular way, otherwise you get inaccurate results, and the APX555 is the only test gear that can accurately do this measurement. This is because ADCs within the test gear has large noise floor modulation themselves, but the APX555 uniquely uses 4 ADCs to overcome this limitation.

    So measurements, like listening tests, must be done very carefully, and conclusions reached must be tentative and subject to constant reappraisal. We can be never sure that what we are measuring is the set-up, the test gear or the DUT or a combination of all three.

    There are far too many mickey mouse websites using false data (they have agendas) or simply rushed measurements using inadequate test gear and this explains the huge variations one can see. But if you want to see measurements done carefully then just look at my published results; each product will have my measurements in each thread.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2019
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  3. Benni-Mac
    @Rob Watts did you ever comment on the above findings from @dmance? The original posts and some graphs I believe are on page 486 of this thread. I find all this stuff interesting. If you’ve already responded and I’ve missed it, apologies.
    AndrewOld likes this.
  4. dmance
    It's present in the digital signal ...but perhaps moot being that it is so small. In fact, at the analog output of a Hugo2, it makes no difference. That is, at least from my APx525 measurements, both usb and optical produce the same output jitter. Excellent, BTW. Ahh, the wonderful mysteries of DAC design.
    wswbd and JaZZ like this.
  5. Rob Watts
    No I haven't tried to replicate the issue - at the time it came up I was in Asia. Then I forgot all about it. I am away from home again, and won't get back till after London CanJan.

    What is odd is that the signal word clock from USB passes through exactly the same DPLL modules as SPDIF inputs, so it does not make sense.
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    onsionsi, RustyGates and AndrewOld like this.
  6. Glossator
    I get the impression that Opto-DX is out in the wild - has anyone managed to try it yet??
    Pentagonal and simorag like this.
  7. naynay

    Just a question regarding BNC cables, if the cable has a separate earth at one end, if used between M Scaler and Dave i am assuming the earth cable connects to a spare BNC on the Dave?

    Thank you.
  8. dmance
    FYI, for those interested in Opto-DX, the product is now shipping and I have my whitepaper for download here.
  9. Christer
    For me currently, the question is whether to Stream or to Storm,but the two box opto dx option also looks interesting. _MG_0537.jpg _MG_0556.jpg
    Or maybe to Storm and Stream?

    PS. The two books are there for support reasons. These two snakes are heavy beasts. But either of the two definitely make a very audible improvement over the stock BNC.
    Deciding which one I prefer over all,and with most of my very differently recorded and mastered recordings is the tough bit.
    "Blessed be those who can't hear any differences between any cables".
    Cheers CC
    audio_1, Uncle Monty and jarnopp like this.
  10. AndrewOld
    Surely you be better off putting your money towards a better Chord DAC than spending it on wires and a Benchmark DAC?
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
    thomaskong78 likes this.
  11. andrewd01
    Is there a hifi equivalent to Feng Shui? If there is, that ain’t it!
  12. Christer
    Thanks for your advice.
    Not to worry I am waiting for a Dave to come at a price I am willing to pay for it.
    And the Benchmark HGC 2 I only use for its very good headphone amp.
    A lot of classical albums have been monitored at sessions with that amp.
    Regarding DAVE there was one for sale a while ago at a second hand site here in Sweden. But alas not any cheaper than I could buy a new one for in Asia.
    So I'm biding my time and will travel with my Qutest/HMS /HPA2 again, until DAVE prices drop further.
    Or maybe I'll buy a TT2 this winter.
    And those cables would still come in handy, "trust me I'm a doctor" they make quite a difference compared to the stock BNC even with my humble Qutest.
    Cheers CC
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2019
    JM1979 likes this.
  13. George Hincapie
    I don't know, that Bombay Sapphire headphone stand is pretty inventive :laughing:
  14. rkt31
  15. Christer
    Well regarding the Bombay Sapphire bottle I have to admit it is not my own invention.
    I actually saw it somewhere here at Headfi long ago and it made sense to me and works well,so when this bottle was empty I immediately saw a good use for it.

    Why waste money on expensive tropical hardwood headphone stands?

    I just noted that Grado have a new headphone with earcups made with the South American tropical hardwood Cocobolo.
    I would hesitate more than twice before buying those irrespective of SQ.

    And those specially designed and expensive Chord stands although metal, are not for me either.
    I only buy stuff that makes a difference and improvement SQ wise.

    I primarly listen to my equipment. Fancy looks is for the vanity crowd imho.

    Which brings me back to the Benchmark dac/amp, which doesn't look like much compared to some "Goldy Looks" big beefy headphone amps that cost three- four or ten times as much but too often ,do not sound any better or as transparent as the Benchmark amp does.
    Apart from their new bigger HPA4 few headphone amps few others measure even nearly as well as the HPA2.
    There is a good reason some Pro's in the classical recording business use Benchmark amps.

    Cables often make a very easy to detect and clearly audible difference to me.
    Hence my interest in the Wave BNC cables.
    Cheers CC
    514077 and George Hincapie like this.
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