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Hugo TT 2 by Chord Electronics - The Official Thread

Discussion in 'High-end Audio Forum' started by ChordElectronics, May 10, 2018.
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  1. BladeRnR
    Hi all,

    Long time lurker. Please pardon the Neophyte questions. I've only ever dabbled in stand-alone DAP's so a desktop solution like a TT2 for me would be like moving from a VW > Ferrari. I'll ask my questions in order:

    1. Is the TT2 by itself enough or would the M-Scaler addition be justified and if so, why? Would the DAC in the TT2 then be negated by the M-Scaler or is it in the audio chain?
    2. What Digital Media Player would you guys suggest (Or even use yourselves) as Source. Would it be sacrilegious to use a "merely" a DAP - even say a FIIO X7MKII or Sony WM1A or a more complete solution like a Cambridge CXN V2? I'm open to all suggestions and opinions.
    3. I still haven't plumped down for a Big $$$ set of Headphones but I like Bass. Even HE1000S/Utopia reviews suggest the Bass would be too light for my tastes. Leaning toward Sony MDR-Z1R'S as I have heard them and was frankly, blown away. ok, they're coloured / dark but I'm not into all that transparency crap. If I listen to music I like to be excited - not put to sleep.

    Thanks in advance. Australian here too.

  2. Rhamnetin
    1. Early impressions are that the M Scaler is largely beneficial even for the Chord DAVE, thus it ought to be for the TT 2. The M Scaler is not a DAC so it won't negate the entirety of the D/A conversion in the Hugo TT 2, the M Scaler will just be doing the upscaling.

    2. You want bit-perfect playback software. I prefer to use a PC with foobar2000 and WASAPI. Apart from this, the impact of source on the audio chain with high end Chord DACs is at times overrated and exaggerated, a notion that even Rob Watts has echoed previously.

    3. Some others you might like to try (try before buy) in that price range are the upcoming ZMF Verite (you probably have to fly somewhere to try these though), and... I'll probably stop there.
  3. BladeRnR
  4. BladeRnR
    Great reply and thanks for taking the time, especially your comment regarding Digital Source. I'm a Programmer so certainly understand the perspective of using a PC as source. It seems all the Hi-Fi shows I attend Down Under where there is a Headphone Display and numerous Amplifiers there's always a plethora of Macbook's used as Source.
  5. supervisor
    Campfire Cascade.
  6. ToonMechaMan
    For those who've listened to both the DAVE and the TT 2 has the TT 2 narrowed the gap considerably since the original TT or is the DAVE still leagues ahead in resolution?
  7. RustyGates
    Thanks @Rob Watts for the answers re the D/A stage, and thanks @Rhamnetin for the links.

    Another couple of questions if you don't mind Rob, and if you've already answered these before, please point out to it.

    1. What is the significance of a 10e pulse array D/A as it is in the TT2 vs 20e in the DAVE. In your blog post you mention you require 16e to completely balance switching activity.

    2. This is regarding the digital volume control circuit: Is it completely linear and absolutely bit-perfect?

  8. Rob Watts
    Hugo TT2 drives my 802 D3 directly and that's from the SE output only; of course, it has enough volume for me, but I don't play at anything like mastering volume levels in studios! TT2 has been designed to supply difficult loads in terms of current delivery and linearity.

    Yes Hi-Fi Lounge today; tomorrow I fly to Asia to do some events, notably CanJam Shanghai and Tokyo International Audio Show; when I come back I am doing an event with Nintronics on Sat 24 November.

    Yes and yes; the gap has indeed been narrowed, but Dave is still leagues ahead in terms of transparency - depth and detail resolution in particular. The difference is bigger than I expected, I thought when developing TT2 it would be much closer.
    Chord Electronics Stay updated on Chord Electronics at their sponsor page on Head-Fi.
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  9. Rob Watts
    I think the 10 elements against 20 is a contributor to Dave being more transparent than TT2; and this is for a number of rather complex reasons! Both 10e and 20e have balanced transitions in the pulse array; this is the primary reason why pulse array is so master clock jitter insensitive.

    Of course a volume control can never be bit perfect, unless it is set to 1.00000.... But the concept that is useful is does the volume control change the sound quality; and to do this one has to ensure that the signal within the audio bandwidth is identical apart from gain changes; and I achieve this with an advanced noise shaper. This sounds much more transparent than just adding dither, and I can test the performance by using a -301 dB 6 kHz test signal, and checking that the digital module will reproduce a -301 dB signal perfectly with zero amplitude errors; and the Verilog volume module does indeed do this. All my code has to pass this test now; and it is a crazy level of perfection, but listening tests has revealed that we can actually hear the slightest small signal error, no matter how small.

    So no not bit perfect; but within the audio bandwidth no distortion or noise added (to a -350dB accuracy).
    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/
    onsionsi, Jimbo2me, snk8699 and 2 others like this.
  10. AndrewH13
    2) forget bit perfect program settings and all other laptop variables, when using a DAP, it just works! I’ve considered a server, but cannot really see advantages over my DAPs with my Hugo’s. I have a Fiio strapped to my Hugo 1 and short one inch 75ohm coax cable connected for iem and Headphone listening. I have an A&K connected to Hugo 2 via short USB cable, then into a TAG McClaren hifi. It is conveniently controlled on my lap via an iPad with A&K Connect software.
  11. AndrewH13
    Course you not a traitor, all in the Chord world! If you go, let me know, we can meet for a chat. I’m setting off from Essex now with my wife, they can speak while we discuss TTs and Scalers!
  12. Amberlamps
    This what I like about you Rob.

    You can post here offering technical details regarding your products, a vast amount of knowledge gathered over decades.

    Yet some people come on Head-fi ( in another part of head-fi ) and knowing little to nothing regarding electrical engineering and your specific business, proclaim that your way is wrong and that their 1 year course of electrical engineering proves it.

    I would of left here years ago due to the trolling that goes on in certain threads, but you stand upto them and will gladly discuss your work in such detail that their arguement has ended before it has even begun.

    Keep up the good work.


    I’m not an audiophile, but I have an mscaler on order which is arriving soon, in your opinion, for an everyday person who likes to listen to music but is not someone who will turn his living room into a faraday cage. Would you say that your MScaler is for every music loving person or just for those who are fanatical about music ?

    After reading many reviews about your mscaler and blu mk ii, I’m expecting a night and day difference, but I don’t have super hearing that allows me to pick up tiny chances in music that some others could, example, the filters on Hugo 2, I can’t hear the difference between them at all, and xphd, sometimes I hear the difference, other times no.

    Knowing this, would you say that the mscaler is for me or is it only for those audiophiles who are fanatical about extracting the last nth from their hardware and music.

    Basically, I’m an ordinary joe, in your opinion, do you think it’s a wise purchase for me since I’m not a fanatical audiophile, no offense intended with that description.

    Thanks Rob
    Jimbo2me, ZappaMan and paul2qute like this.
  13. Rob Watts
    Well at the end of the day I am just an everyday person who wants the most musical enjoyment I can get. You don't need to have golden ears to enjoy the M scaler; indeed I think it is actually the musical benefits that is the most important - that's why I described it as transformational. Whether you find it transformational depends upon two things - yourself first; and the quality of the rest of your system. And because the listener is the biggest variable, always try to listen first - and with enough time to just simply see how much it changes your musical enjoyment.
    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/
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  14. Amberlamps
    Hi Rob,

    My music is mostly all flac files, 44.1 - 192khz, and a few albums that are dsd 128 and 256. The rest, are CBR mp3’s 128 - 320.
    My system is a Hugo 2 connected to my PC, which uses a digital psu Corsair AX1600i, I’m unsure if a digital psu helps with rfi compared to a normal psu ( the fan doesn’t need to spin on this psu ), and my motherboard has spread spectrum enabled, which I’m also unsure if that will help with RFI. As far as I’m aware, I don’t suffer from rfi problems but maybe I do but just don’t know it ? My headphones are Sennheiser HD800S, fingers crossed that my gear is enough to get the best out of your mscaler.

    Some people are saying that the mscaler is susceptible to rfi, if its near a wifi router etc. Does it suffer from rfi easily ?

    It’s good to hear from yourself that it’s for everyone and not just audiophiles with a good ear for music. I personally can’t wait for it to be delivered.

    Thanks Rob, fingers crossed for a next week delivery :)
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2018
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  15. Triode User
    Amber, I think you might be picking up on a comment from someone using my cables and where they had a dect phone station and a wifi router near the MScaler + Dave. I am not sure whether the proximity of the dect station and a wifi router turned out to be an issue or not and if it did then it might equally have been due to the RF noise from those getting into the Dave rather than getting into the MScaler. Perhaps @Antiquarian can chime in as it was they who had the possible issue and I think the WAVE cable solved it in any case.
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