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georgehifi

Mass exodus of Chord dacs owners in the classifieds

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What's with all the owners selling their Chord dacs suddenly in the classifieds, did Chord hit the wall or something???

 

Cheers George

Edited by georgehifi

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I doubt you'll get a completely forthright answer!

 

But I sold my Hugo and then my Hugo 2 after no longer being able to ignore certain traits that got in the way of my listening enjoyment. I found transient attack unnatural, and detail retrieval too forensic. Also, the upper mids and treble were too forward for my liking. This applied to acoustic music, of course, and classical music in particular.

 

My lowly Marantz SA11s2 disc spinner is enough to satisfy my ears these days.

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There is a certain amount of fashion about DACs (according to my audio guru) so that might be part of the picture. 

 

Meantime I'm working on a bitcoin analogy.

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The NAD M51's went through the same thing a few years ago.  They were the it-and-a-bit DAC to have, then the classifieds became flooded with them.  A thread of this very nature for the M51 was started asking the same question!

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It was Giesler GroB DACs over the last couple of weeks, up until I advertised mine none had ever been offered secondhand since their release over a year ago, then I sold mine and from memory another three popped up within a few days.

 

cheers Terry

 

 

Edited by TerryO

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10 minutes ago, TerryO said:

It was Giesler GroB DACs over the last couple of weeks, up until I advertised mine none had ever been offered secondhand since their release over a year ago, then I sold mine and from memory another three popped up within a few days.

 2 of the 4, including mine were because of we were simplifying systems (we had our Marie Kondo moment!).  It was a coincidence that we closely followed your sale. 

1 hour ago, was_a said:

But I sold my Hugo and then my Hugo 2 after no longer being able to ignore certain traits that got in the way of my listening enjoyment. I found transient attack unnatural, and detail retrieval too forensic. Also, the upper mids and treble were too forward for my liking. This applied to acoustic music, of course, and classical music in particular.

I no longer own a standalone DAC, so maybe it is safe for me to say that Chord DACs underwhelmed me...

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56 minutes ago, ThirdDrawerDown said:

There is a certain amount of fashion about DACs (according to my audio guru) so that might be part of the picture. 

This ^^

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Who knows.

 

Maybe its simply upgrading to later DAC's like the TT2  that can drive speakers directly and connect to the M-Scaler.

 

I have owned a couple of Chords and have a TT2 and M-Scaler right now, but the TT2 is bung and awaits fixing before I can listen to it.   For me they have all sounded good (unknown about the TT2 and up-scaler of course until the TT2 is fixed).   But this is a fast moving area where we have a DAC like the Gross that can take on the much more expensive Direct Stream which itself gets better which each software release.

 

What I can say is before the TT2 went bung the wife of a audiophile I lent it to thought it sounded fantastic and she has heard a lot of DAC's -  so maybe its simple personal preference.

 

Thanks

Bill

Edited by bhobba

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Wow, I haven't been looking at this forum much lately so this is very interesting, to say the least. So has the next big thing arrived or is around the corner?

 

I searched "Qutest" and saw only one that was purchased for $2,400 and asking $2,100.  Extremely good resale value even if the buyer ended up talking the seller down another 2 or 3 hundred.

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It’s a sign there are not great differences between the good sounding dacs, which then allows people to jump ship with some comfort that they are not losing out.

 

 

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There might be a lot of Chord DACS for sale, but I'll bet there's more in circulation at the price. I've heard the Hugo 2 going through a Densen/PMC combo at CAV and it sounded superb. 

There's so much choice these days, everyone's chopping and changing. I've also noticed a large number of Vitus R100 integrated amps

for sale as well. 

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@was_a MScaler required according to experienced hands. 

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3 hours ago, was_a said:

I doubt you'll get a completely forthright answer!

 

But I sold my Hugo and then my Hugo 2 after no longer being able to ignore certain traits that got in the way of my listening enjoyment. I found transient attack unnatural, and detail retrieval too forensic. Also, the upper mids and treble were too forward for my liking. This applied to acoustic music, of course, and classical music in particular.

I didn't even like the sound of the DAVE when I auditioned it in my system. It was unpleasant hard brittle glary with unnatural detail. All I wanted to do was keep turning it down. Since I predominantly listen to classical, I guess we agree.

Edited by Ittaku

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Having owned two Hugo2's, a DAVE and now TT2 I find the inclusion of an M-Scaler important to easing back some of the perceived short-comings of the DAC. Of course in the case of the TT2 + M-Scaler this puts one in the realms of a $11K - $12K digital front-end which gets into MSB Discrete & second hand Nagra HD DAC territory. 

 

Good time to be alive in the digital game!

Edited by Galactic Soap

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I go back and forward on Chord DACs. I've owned most of them - Qute, Hugo, QBD76HD, DAVE/Blu2, and currently own the Mojo, M Scaler, TT2 and Qutest.

 

Chord DACs have a sound signature which I typically don't gravitate towards - they are on the leaner, tonally cooler, more revealing end of the spectrum. I normally prefer warmer, darker, richer. But there is something strangely addictive about Chord DACs - when I think I have successfully moved on to something else, I get drawn back to them. Other DACs can sound "better" on a superficial level, but the Chord DACs are the only ones I've heard that (for me) provide that deeply satisfying, musically engaging feeling that, until now, only a good turntable can provide. I think this shows that Rob Watts is onto something with the application of massive processing power to the task.

 

But still the sound from Chord DACs is far from perfect. The QBD76 was a very dry sounding DAC. The DAVE/Blu 2 suffered from a similar characteristic though to a lesser extent, as well as (again, for me) an unnatural sense of space. This gradually creeped up on me after owning it for a year, and I ended up selling both. But I immediately regretted it. The DACs I tried to replace the Blu 2/DAVE with sounded initially better, but just weren't as satisfying in the long term. It was when I brought my little Mojo home from the office to try against the other DACs (which I won't name) it was clear that, despite its obvious shortcomings, the tiny Mojo was a more engaging DAC than some much more expensive and seemingly more technically accomplished DACs.

 

I knew I had to get back into the Chord game, so I bought a Qutest. This is really a superb DAC. With a linear PSU (despite what Rob Watts says) and using the optical input (the other inputs sound awful), this could genuinely be all most of us need. It sounded remarkably like the DAVE, and in some ways better - more liquid, a more natural sense of space - though of course much less resolving. I could really have stopped there. But of course I didn't.

 

I bought a TT2 and M Scaler, and these sound amazing. Again, a strong family resemblance to the DAVE, with some trade offs. More liquid and smoother than DAVE, more dynamic, but with a smaller soundstage and perhaps a touch less resolution. The effect of the M Scaler on the TT2 is far more pronounced on the TT2 than the Blu 2 on the DAVE. So far I think the TT2/M Scaler is producing a version of the Chord sound I think I can live with. But I would love to borrow a DAVE again to compare directly against the TT2 ...

Edited by rossb

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I think - and I could be completely wrong here - that there is a bit of human psychology at play here. Assuming that the first seller lists the product and gets a fair price on sale, this could prompt others looking to sell at around the same price point to also list their products. The fact that the same product has sold for a similar price just recently will prevent potential buyers from trying to bring down the price by a large margin and the seller can justify their asking price.

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4 hours ago, rossb said:

Chord DACs have a sound signature which I typically don't gravitate towards - they are on the leaner, tonally cooler, more revealing end of the spectrum. I normally prefer warmer, darker, richer. But there is something strangely addictive about Chord DACs - when I think I have successfully moved on to something else, I get drawn back to them. Other DACs can sound "better" on a superficial level, but the Chord DACs are the only ones I've heard that (for me) provide that deeply satisfying, musically engaging feeling that, until now, only a good turntable can provide. I think this shows that Rob Watts is onto something with the application of massive processing power to the task.

Since you've had a DAVE, then you've been in the price range close to that of an MSBtechnology Premier DAC. You should really give that one a listen if you're still looking for that engaging realistic feel that TTs provide.

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Just now, AudioGeek said:

Why go there when you have a quality company like Chord?

What? Why buy gear you don't like the sound of? I'm not going to dignify your other comment with a response.

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I have removed one post (and one subsequent quote) making a very serious accusation against a member of the industry.

As no genuine source was cited, I conducted my own research and can only find speculation on other audio forums, therefore I cannot accept the accusation as fact. Given the seriousness of the accusation, I have removed it from this thread and warn not for it to be brought up again.

 

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M-Scaler + Chord DAC of choice, and you’ll be right. Mine only get sold once every generation 👍

 

Could I have better, sure, but what opportunities do I have to hear better at home.......none. 

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My partner had some friends over from work yesterday, and one girl in particular who I knew well when I used to work there had a van tour and was taken back at my system, before she even heard it (she thought the stinger was good…………)

So this girl had never in her life heard or knew about good audio so she had to sit in the sweet spot for a listen, and she didn’t move for two hours, eyes closed and was simply in awe that for the first time she actually heard a band playing individual instruments. I showed her my Chord front end and tried to explain in simple terms what it all did, she kinda got it but when I A/B the M Scaler and I asked her what she heard, she was spot on, more relaxed, less bright and all she wanted to do was listen to music for the rest of the day, but alas, children needed to be picked up from school. 

 

Chord DAC’s need the M Scaler, and if you sell your DAC after hearing that combo, well at least you gave it a good crack. 

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Sime what a great story! It's right at the heart of what music is about. 

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~7.5k for the M Scaler is nothing to sneeze at.. Understandable that some would want to change direction to get the sound they want.

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@custom_made but 7.5k in the grand scheme of the systems cost, compared to its outcome is nothing at the end of the day. 

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I don’t think there is a mass exodus. What is the count? Some people might be selling to buy the same brand.

 

@georgehifi are you the dude on the forums that loves the ladder DACs? I’m still keen to try one. 

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