I've recently had a great run with Chord products in my system including the Hugo TT DAC and now the small-sized Mojo (mobile joy) headphone DAC. On the opposite end of the spectrum from the Mojo is DAVE which the company says is the most advanced DAC they've made so far.
The new Aurender A10 should be arriving this summer for approximately $5,000 and should cover just about all of your digital file playback and streaming needs. Inside will be a 2TB drive for storage and 120GB SSD cache to improve playback quality, with Tidal native as well.
On the back are both balanced and unbalanced analog outputs and USB, Ethernet and optical digital inputs. Formats handled include PCM up to 32/384 and DSD128.
Here are a couple photos of the two products in the Lenbrook (distributors of NAD, PSB and Bluesound) suite that included MQA. Above is the Bluesound Vault 2 streamer and CD file ripper ($1,199) and below the NAD M12 Preamplifier/DAC ($3,499). Both units on display include the necessary firmware and software to decode MQA files.
Chord Electronics had their suite divided into two rooms at CES, the main room as shown in the photo above and the smaller back room where all the headphone listening was taking place. Chord had their Mojo and Hugo TT DACs set up with a variety of Audeze headphones as reported earlier.
But in the main room was their latest DAVE DAC (which I'll be profiling in a later post) as well as some of their best electronics. The system was topped off with one of my personal favorites, the Vienna Acoustics The Music loudspeakers.
Though not a listening stop, we had to say hello to the guys from Mobile Fidelity including (L-R in the photo above) Rob Loverde, Shawn Britton and Jonathan Derda. Turns out Shawn has mastered some of Graham's work, so they immediately set to talking about the new album and the possibility of MoFi getting their hands on it.
First, Bryston reminded show-goers that earlier this year they updated their BDP-2 Music Player (reviewed here by Michael Lavorgna at AudioStream.com and Larry Greenhill here and the box on top in the photo above) with a new "Integrated Audio Device" or "IAD".
Bryston claims that the new IAD delivers improved specifications and replaces the current two-piece third-party sound card and SPDIF interface module. All new BDP-2 players are currently shipping with the new IAD installed, and legacy BDP-2 consumers have an option to retrofit to the new device for $500.
One of the great pleasures of CES is discovering new music. People come from all over the world, and often bring surprising choices.
Such was the case when distributor/retailer GTT Audio's Bill Parish asked what I'd like to listen to, and I turned it back over to him. I'm not sure who made the choice, but between Parish and Mola Mola's Bruna Putzeys, who had walked over, a track from Christine and the Queens emerged. New to me, and I've already ordered the disc on Amazon.
First shown at Rocky Mountain in October, the soulution 760 DAC was again on hand and is now expected to ship at the end of January for startling $72,000. I say startling not only because this is pre-owned Aston Martin DB-9 territory but also because soulution tends to go with a minimilist esthetic with their casework. So the focus is on what's inside, not the fancy metal.
Making good on the prototype that Great Britain's Prism was showing last year, the new Callia DAC will finally be released for retail this month at $1,895. It will handle 32/394 PCM and double DSD via USB, optical and SPDIF inputs on back. There will be both balanced and unbalanced audio outputs with digital volume control along with low-impedance headphone output with sensitivity adjustments on the back panel.
Pictured here is the tiny, almost pocket-sized digital recorder from NAGRA, the Seven 2 channel Digital Recorder, which lists for $4999 in the US. The Seven can record PCM files up to 192 kHz and has been designed as the successor to the Nagra LB, ARES-C, ARES-BB+ and Nagra V recorders. It has one digital input and two analog inputs equipped with traditional Nagra microphone preamplifiers which include phantom +48V microphones for condenser mics.