Audio Note Kit 1 Upgrade Or New Dac


So I have a 2010 audio note kit 1 with upgraded internals(caps, wiring, etc.), but stock output transformers. I also have a chord 2qute dac. The dac is fed by a sonore ultrarendu. I am considering making a upgrade. Updated ccore output transformers for the ANK amp or a new dac( probably the chord qutest) My question is which component would I see the most benefit in upgrading, if either. I am very happy with my sound already, just seeing if I could minorly improve on some things. 
akwilson501
The output transformers are the critical weak link in tube amps. Better OPTs (larger cores, less induction, better coupling between primary and secondary, less hysterisis distortion and wider bandwidth) equate to better sound quality. BUT - cost goes up! So be prepared to spend more for better OPTs!
Hirata TANGO opts are an easy recommendation!
Changing to another Chord DAC will not result in an improvement in SQ!
I am currently listening to an AN Kits Dac1.1 given to me as a loaner while my dealer upgrades the caps in my AN UK Dac. I think it sounds excellent and I can imagine that you are very happy with the sound you're getting. An upgrade to the output transformers should be a huge upgrade that is the route I would likely pursue. You say you also have a Chord 2qute have you compared it to the ANK?


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The event will be held at Acoustic Designs 16074 N. 78th Street, Suite B104, Scottsdale, AZ 85260.

The following DACs will be present:

  • Schiit Yggdrasil
  • Chord Qutest
  • Benchmark DAC3
  • iFi Audio Pro iDSD
  • PS Audio DirectStream
  • Holo Audio Spring DAC2
  • Jolida Glass FX DAC 
  • NuPrime Evolution DAC
  • L.K.S. DAC MH-DA004
  • Line Magnetic

The DACs will be played in an acoustically treated room on a reference system consisting of Focal Maestro Utopia Evos driven by SAE and Acoustic Research gear.

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Hi akwilson,

 You're happy with your current sound quality but what do you prefer most,  the AN kit or the Chord  presentation? My gut feeling would be to move toward the AN with higher quality output transformers.

Good Luck,

Charles