Best DAC £1000+ 2014
Chord Electronics claim Hugo is the world’s most advanced headphone amp/DAC and the most advanced 32-bit DAC they have ever made.
Hugo has a wealth of inputs including five digital inputs along with A2DP aptX Bluetooth and advanced 384kHz PCM and DSD 128 playback for today’s high-resolution DXD (Digital eXtreme Definition) music files allowing audiophiles to experience music in true high definition, along with the best possible reproduction of CD-quality music.
Most importantly Hugo can be used as both a portable headphone amp/DAC as well as a reference-level standalone DAC at home. It is possible using the built in volume control to play directly into active speakers for a minimalist high quality system.
Thanks to two additional digital inputs, coaxial and optical, any connected component with a digital output will also benefit from Hugo’s advanced technology. Hugo also has A2DP Bluetooth capability and uses a custom-made module with the aptX codec to feed a digital signal directly into the DAC circuitry, so even without cables, high-quality music can still be enjoyed. In addition to 384kHz PCM files, the Hugo can also process DSD 128 data using the latest DSD-over-PCM standard (DoP).
Hugo has a built-in battery-charging circuit, with a full charge reached in approximately two hours allowing up to 14 hours playback time. Further features include an advanced reference-grade digital volume control that does not lose digital information and changes colour with volume changes. The casework is precision- machined from aircraft-grade aluminium, with a bright silver hard-anodised finish.
Finally it features a top-mounted ‘porthole’ that gives users an intriguing insight into the internal circuitry, which changes colour with differing incoming sample rates.
See the Chord Hugo Microsite Here!
Read what we think of the Hugo here.
Read the Qobuz Review of Hugo here
Read the HiFi + Magazine Review Here