Chord Electronics Hugo TT D/A headphone amplifier Specifications

Sidebar 1: Specifications

Description: Desktop D/A converter and headphone amplifier with Bluetooth receiver. Inputs: optical TosLink (24/192), coaxial RCA (24/384), driverless USB (16/44/48), HD USB (32/384, DSD128), A2DP/aptX Bluetooth (16/44/48). Outputs: two ¼" (6.35mm) headphone jacks, 1?8" (3.5mm) headphone jack, 1 pair stereo phono (RCA), 1 pair balanced (XLR). Power supply: 12V 0.5A. Lots of multicolored lights. No other specifications supplied.
Dimensions: 9.2" (235mm) W by 1.8" (45mm) H by 8.8" (225mm) D. Weight: 6.6 lbs (3kg).
Finishes: Black, Silver.
Serial number of unit reviewed: 25831.
Price: $4795. Approximate number of dealers: 50. Warranty: 3 years.
Manufacturer: Chord Electronics Ltd., The Pumphouse, Farleigh Bridge, Farleigh Lane, East Farleigh, Kent ME16 9NB, England, UK. Tel: (44) (0)1622-721444. Fax: (44) (0)1622-721555. Web: US distributor: Bluebird Music Ltd., 275 Woodward Avenue, Buffalo, NY 14217. Tel: (416) 638-8207. Fax: (416) 638-8115. Web:

Chord Electronics Ltd.
US distributor: Bluebird Music Ltd.
275 Woodward Avenue
Buffalo, NY 14217
(416) 638-8207

edbudzil's picture

Correct me if I'm wrong, but neither your publication or your major competitor have reviewed the $2,500 Chord Hugo portable DAC. My (paranoid?) theory has been that this universally-praised component is so good, that it would have had your other portable DAC advertisers running scared. I, like many other Hugo owners, are using the device in our main system as a digital front end (in my case, connected by coax to a Rega Jupiter CD player), as well as with headphones/USB computer. While twice as expensive as my most costly purchase, the Hugo is not "twice as good", no, it's exactly what I've been looking for. The little guy squeezes the last ounce of music out of digital recordings- and, it's portable, and beats my analogue sources. Now, a day late and, for the likes of me, several $1000 short, Stereophile reviews the nearly twice as expensive Hugo TT. Chord has ("have", as the British say) just introduced the Mojo, Hugo's smaller sibling at $599. Dare you to be first to review it!

Venere 2's picture

If I read this review right, in the case of DACs, the old adage "Source first" seems to take a big hit...
It seems a DAC costing 4 times the price of another DAC, will offer noticeable, but subtle improvements. All of the DACs in this review seem close to one another (based on the reviewer's descriptions and comments).

Maybe if someone has a decent DAC, and wanted to spend a few thousand dollars to improve their system, speakers or amplification would yield better results? That is what I am getting from this review.

Jon Iverson's picture
I often struggle in reviews with how to put DAC differences in proper perspective.

Once you lock in on how a particular DAC sounds, it is easy to spot from then on (or at least a while). But I find most listeners, even a group of dedicated audiophiles, have a hard time locking in at first. But once they get it, they are pretty consistent under test.

Also, some systems make it easier to hear DAC differences than others, so would seem to reinforce your idea that speakers and amps can be a major, if not bigger, factor here.

One point though, more expensive is not always better.

bfmcosta's picture

I would be really important to say which digital filter was selected in the Auralic for the comparison, as it has 4 (for non-DSD material) that sound very differently, and the differences highlighted to the Chord Hugo TT may just reflect that...