Chord DAVE, any lesser Chord DAC come close?


I had the opportunity to audition a Chord DAVE in my system for a couple of days and I was very impressed.
Anybody who truly thinks dacs are all the same needs to listen to a true high end model.
However not so impressed with the 10k price tag.
So looking for comment from experienced Chord users if any of their lesser DAC models come close to the magic of the DAVE.
6db47fb2 f8db 415d a4f7 49a7b6ed12b0Ag insider logo xs@2xuberwaltz
Uber mate,

Why not audition the cheaper DACS yourself. 
And give us your opinion?
I for one would love hear a comparison.


Cos I ain't made of money!
No Chord 2Qute or Hugo owners with thoughts to share?
If you check out head-fi or superbestaudiofriends...their lesser dacs seem to be almost as good.
Thx Nitewulf
Heard from a friend that headfi was the inplace for the Chord dac gang
Going to have to take a look....
Try the Chinese model Stereophile mentions in this months issue.
$2,995 as I recall.
$2,995 Chinese DAC Richert just reviewed
The Hugo TT 2 would be your next best option to try after Chord Dave.
Uber-
I hear ya, me neither.
The only thing money can't buy is, poverty.......


Wasn't there a very recent thread on the Qutest, with comments on some of the other Chord models?
Post removed 
I have a few responders to myself from this thread that I am sure would love to take your 5k.
Then maybe they could give it to me to go towards a Dave.....
Chord Qutest + iFi iUSB3.0 (for power) + MScaler


Let's say 1300 for used Quest, 299 for used iFi, 4000 for a new M Scaller.  5600 all in. To me the above combo actually sounds better than Dave. There is just more body to the music than what Dave gives you. Dave is the ultimate transparency device at a cost of some tonality.
Every system is different. I've compared the Hugo TT mk2 with the M-scaler to the Dave in my system. I prefer the Dave and kept it.
@ricred1 Did you keep the M Scaler. Clearly Dave sounds even better with the M Scaler. That's not even in contention. That's pretty much the ultimate combo. Soundstage about as deep as it is wide and then some.
astelmaszek,
There are no absolutes in Audio,  only preferences. Although I know several people that absolutely loves the M-scaler, I prefer the sound of the Dave by itself. 
@ricred1 
Sure there are, especially in this case. If you like the sound of 20 element array being fed by 160 thousand some tap filter and you feel it's superior to TT2 (10 element array DAC), feeding a 20 element array DAC by 1 million taps of course sounds better unless all you ever feed your Dave is 352 files in which case, I'd agree. I have a total of 5 albums in my collection in that resolution. But if we're talking about feeding Dave CD or 88/92 files, there really is no comparison between Dave alone vs BluDave. I'm interested, what is it that makes Dave alone better than BluDave? You are the only happy Dave user that apparently heard it being fed Blu/MScaller and didn't feel it was worth it. I'm seriously interested. What's the story. What is it you don't like about the combo?
Uber;

I have Qutest here & running Roon.

I have never heard Dave, but plan too at AXPONA.

I bought it via Audio Advisors for a 30 day trial.   You should too 

I compared it to Playback Designs Merlot DSD dac at same time.

Roon allowed me to upsample, filter PCM, DSD convert.

It is quite the chameleon.
It can be super detailed & incisive & BIG soundstage 
It can be DSD, smooth, detailed & sensuous & great soundstage 
it has big bass !

The upsample and filter in roon allows the cameleon to show thru

In it’s natural state it is highly incisive and detailed PCM 
If tap number is a representative of detail , then DAVE is as good as it will get?
If it was PCM only, I would have sent it back for overload of incisive detail, my system is capable of lots of detail and soundstage ques.
but, 
Roon allows DSD and associated tayloring of sound.

anyway, I’d love to hear a Dave with Roon or M upsampler.

Dave can’t be that much better?   Or my famous last words ! $1880 is reasonable, $10 k is not ( I’m happy )

Playback Designs and Qutest in DSD was a good competition, Playback a tad better, but Qutest and roon allows a bit of sound tayloring that I like 

My thought is try it thru Audio Advisor.

jeffy

ps: Great vinyl is still better, more soundstage 



I had a 2Qute here, belongs to a buddy (who is sending it back) for a day or two last week. Comparing it to my Yggdrasil with updated analog out, and I was not a fan. Seemed sterile and sucked the fun right out of the music. It could be more accurate, I don't know, but nevertheless I wasn't a fan. Was playing RB from a Jay's transport via BNC.I tried a couple of filters but they didn't make it stand out, in my opinion.Other DACs I've had are a non-multibit Gungnir, and an Aqua La Voce S2, but those were years ago so comparisons are moot.  
I submit everyone has different preferences and individual components have to be taken in context with the "whole" system. I've owned several DACs and don't hear the leanness that some refer to with the Dave in my system. I don't think there is a night and day difference between the Dave and TT2 if your talking about audiophile things(soundstaging, detail, bass), but to my ears the Dave is far more "musical and convincing" in my system than any DAC that I've owned. I don't speak in absolutes, but that's my opinion. In another system I could in fact arrive at a different conclusion.
Hey guys,

curious if anyone has some experience with the sound of a few more components to help me figure out my "next step"...

I've got a Hegel HD30 DAC now being fed by an Aurender N100H. The sound is *very* affected by the USB cable and power-cord and isolation (still points) I use under the N100H. I also want a sound that is more holographic/3D. I was thinking to upgrade to an N10 which sounds better (based on almost all other reports), but then I heard an owner of the DAVE dac say that this particular dac is remarkably jitter-resistant... he had compared the sound using multiple USB cables and servers (including Aurender n10 and macbook etc) and could hear virtually no difference.

So now I'm wondering what's a better way to go:

* Keep Hegel HD30 DAC and upgrade to Aurender N10
* Keep Aurender N100H and upgrade to CHORD DAVE DAC

Naturally, I would love to audition all of these options in my own system but this may not be possible. Any advice is welcome!

-Dave
Hey guys,

curious if anyone has some experience with the sound of a few more components to help me figure out my "next step"...

I've got a Hegel HD30 DAC now being fed by an Aurender N100H. The sound is *very* affected by the USB cable and power-cord and isolation (still points) I use under the N100H. I also want a sound that is more holographic/3D. I was thinking to upgrade to an N10 which sounds better (based on almost all other reports), but then I heard an owner of the DAVE dac say that this particular dac is remarkably jitter-resistant... he had compared the sound using multiple USB cables and servers (including Aurender n10 and macbook etc) and could hear virtually no difference.

So now I'm wondering what's a better way to go:

* Keep Hegel HD30 DAC and upgrade to Aurender N10
* Keep Aurender N100H and upgrade to CHORD DAVE DAC
* Other? Hugo TT?

Naturally, I would love to audition all of these options in my own system but this may not be possible. Any advice is welcome!

-Dave
Dave,  I haven’t heard the Hegel HD30 DAC so I cant really comment on that.   However I do have the Aurender N10 with a Chord Dave which I love.

I’ve heard quite a few DACs over the years though and to my ears the Chord Dave has been the most 3D sounding.   My vote would be for the Dave.
Keep Aurender N100H and upgrade to CHORD DAVE DAC
The Chord Qutest with M Scaler , or Hugo TT2 with M Scaler  would be good choices.
oh I got an even better idea... get yourself and ipod and save yourselves a lot of money... problem solved ! 
Someone must have just watched the new Joker movie.......
I have seen the Chord Dave pictured with and without the stand. The stand really makes it look cool. Does it come with it or is the stand extra?

ozzy
The stand for the Chord DAVE is sold as an optional upgrade, last I saw it retailed at $2,500 although it does vary with fluctuations in currency conversion.
Say what??
2.5k for a stand???
Is it 24k gold??????

That's just this side of plain silly imho.
Hey... I don't set the prices, just trying to answer Ozzy's question! ;~)
Looks like it's constructed of machined aluminum.
bill_k,

Thanks or that info. 
Seems like a lot more than I thought it was.

ozzy
Uberwaltz I had the Cord Dave on lone from a dealer this past July , it’s a fabulous dac and one of only a handful that gets well recorded vocal’s and the human speaking voice sound much more realistic then others I’ve owned and have listened to with evaluating a wide verity of front end sources bought and borrowed.

My priority for evaluation is how the digital component’s render well recorded vocal’s including a human speaking voice .

Nothing in my price range over the past twenty years ever got vocals to my liking until I listened to the Dave and now currently one other dac I just took delivery last week which Im thinking is equally thrilling with stunning realism ive never heard before with any combination of dacs and digital front ends and it’s remarkably less expensive then the Cord Dave .

Finally after my long winded response to answer your question, your not going to get close to the Daves performance with the Hugo or other models in the Cord lineup, the Cord dealer told me some may think there are just small differences between the Dave and other in the product line however they would be mistaken.


Qutest with M-Scaler

Best,
Jim Smith


Nothing in my price range over the past twenty years ever got vocals to my liking until I listened to the Dave and now currently one other dac I just took delivery last week which Im thinking is equally thrilling with stunning realism ive never heard before with any combination of dacs and digital front ends and it’s remarkably less expensive then the Cord Dave .



Can you share the identity of this other vocally-compelling dac? :)
Hopefully the details on this mystery DAC will be revealed...

I didn’t want to disrupt the OP thread, this dac is part of a stack with streamer and is near completion apparently this November/ .December.

Who manufactures this DAC with streamer? 
No disruption ;) we are happy to hear the details about what you discovered...
With respect to the OP you could pm me and no I didn’t discover it.
Kudos to In_Shore for their attitude towards this thread and staying on topic!
Thank you indeed, does not happen as much as it should nowadays and I am guilty of that as well!