Chord Dave volume control with Naim preamps?


Since Chord Dave has a digital lossless volume control, I would imagine it does not matter at which level you set the Dave’s volume setting when connecting it as a source to a Naim preamp? I wanted to check if my limited understanding of the topic is correct…

I have Chord Dave set in “preamp mode” with the Dave volume set to -12 dB and it is connected to my NAC552 preamp. When having it set this way I can listen to music with the 552 volume set to about to 9 or 10 o’cklock, it starts getting uncomfortably loud at 11 o’clock

Would it matter to sound quality if I lowered the volume of the Dave to say -25 dB so that I gain a wider range of 552 volume control?


My findings, first with Hugo then Dave, were that dialling down the volume on the DAC gave improved sound quality. I suspect this might be partly to do with the preamp performing better at a higher volume level due to the reduced input level from the DAC, but either way I just dialled the DAC level down and the pre level up until it sounded right.

Seems to mirror my findings… I originally had the Dave set at -12dB and now moved it to -22dB which sseems to be better… curious, what level do you have your Dave set at?

Interesting. I had my TT2 in DAC mode. Sounded fantastic but gave me too little travel on my 202 pre. Moved to pre mode and have found -11 to be about right. If I go lower it gives me more travel but absolutely does not seem to sound better. That said I’ve certainly not gone down as low as -25.

Sorry, I can’t remember. I no longer use it into a Naim preamp.

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