CHORD DAC into Naim pre-amp experiences

hi all,

in a tinkering mood whilst were are in this current climate and thinking of lending a chord DAC just to hear what one sounds like when fed via usb off my zenith server / VS BNC fed off my naim NDS

interested in peoples views of running a CHORD DAC into a naim pre-amp (in my case is a NAC282 with HiCAPDR), heard some get better SQ having no pre-amp in the chain but is that at the expence of losing the NAIM sound which for me is an important factor…

I run a Qutest into a Supernait 2 (with HiCap DR). I previously used a NDac and found the change to the Chord beneficial for classical music - IMHO much more detailed presentation with better pin-pointing of solo instruments, whilst still sounding realistic. I hope this helps though strictly not what you were asking.

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DAVE seems very happy to run into any of NAC552, 252 or our 52.

The quality of the dac to NAC cable does matter quite a lot though.

what do you use bluesfan RCA - DIN ? RCA - RCA

i tend to use CHORD SARUM cables myself

I run a DAVE (via Mscaler and Chord Sarum T BNC digital cables) into a 552 through Chord Sarum T RCA>DIN.

DAVE on its own blew my CD555 onto eBay, no bother.

However, I found DAVE sounded best into the 552 set in Pre-amp mode with the digital volume set to -12db (similar to the volume adjustments the original Hugo thrived on). In DAC mode I found it to be not so musical.

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Out of curiosity, have you tried Dave direct into the 500 without going through 552?

I tried a 2qute between a Core and a 552, it did a lot right but the overall effect was rather too sterile, changing the digital coax helped a bit but I couldn’t warm to it. It was only intended as a temporary solution while waiting for what turned out to be the ND555 and a humble Rega DAC-r plugged the gap in the end.

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No, not going to, to be honest. Apart from the faff, where would I stick my NAT01…no Carry On answers please :yum:

Chord Sarum RCA to DIN is a well known successful pairing for DAVE & a Naim NAC.
I tried several from the likes of Flashback without success but the AR Sound Lunar seems to work well, so long as the RCA connectors are tightened up well - too loose and all the life drains out of the music for some unfathomable reason.

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Fair comment - an analogue preamp indeed is necessary if you have analogue sources.

yep i have been running Chord DACs successfully for a few years into Naim NACs currently a 552.
I have returned back to a Chord Hugo Mk1 as overall I find that sounds the most musical having owned for a short time a DAVE, and borrowed others from the Chord stable - I also set the output level to ‘turquoise’ on the Hugo Mk 1 as for what ever reason I find that ‘flows’ the best into the 552 (and 252 I had before). Oh and I have tried Chord DACs directly into Naim power amps - oh dear - it falls very short a lot of what a high end Naim NAC does for the Naim power amp in terms of impedance matching and bandwidth matching… I kind of hoped it wouldn’t be the case :slight_smile:

I find there is some similarity between DACs and Headphones - they are very personal things - and sometimes the most detailed are not necessarily the most enjoyable for an individual.

I use a Highline phono to DIN interconnect

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