Impressions of the Chord Qutest DAC

… brilliant - I love the sound of it.

It’s head and shoulders above all other DACs I have listened to at home - I just didn’t want to follow the trend - I mean so many ‘audiophiles’ own a Qutest so I was on a mission to prove them wrong, wanting to say that they have all been fooled with ‘expectation bias’ by the great reviews and promotions.

Well I can’t do that now can I. Within the limits of my budget the Qutest is the Greatest.

Damn - I’m now with the audiophile masses. But I can’t help what I hear.

5 Likes

You will probably want a linear power supply for it soon

1 Like

Why?

2 Likes

There’s nothing at all wrong with following a crowd if they’re all heading in the direction you want to go :slight_smile:

I can still recall the moment I first plugged a Chord Mojo into my XS3 integrated - it sounded very good!

I can also recall the moment I plugged my Hugo 1 into the same system, it sounded even better, and is still plugged into that system!

Enjoy your Qutest :slight_smile:

2 Likes

An MCRU linear power supply lifted mine nicely. The big bonus was how everything else sounded so much better after taking out the supplied PS.

2 Likes

I already had a very good linear power supply - so as soon as I dumped the Qutest on the rack the Qutest never did get used with its supplied power supply.

2 Likes

I also have the Chord Mojo - its good but nothing compared to the Qutest.

If anyone thinking the Mojo is a good substitute for the Qutest - think again!

1 Like

what cables are folks using for connecting streamer to Qutest?

I’m using Atlas Cables BNC Coax from the Qutest to the Auralic Aries G1 Streamer.

And Chord Company Shawline (the red ones) for connecting to the amplifier.

1 Like

Why indeed? Perhaps we should give a health warning that use of a non-Chord power supply will invalidate the warranty.

Moving on, I bought the Chord Qutest to use with my Innuos Zen so that I could listen to music via Qobuz. My NAC272 does not offer a possibility to connect to Qobuz directly.

We have a young cat who loves to get round the back of the hifi and climb up the cables. She has already chewed through the low voltage power cable from a wall wart supply to headphone amp and destroyed my M2TECH USB to SPDIF converter. So I acquired an MCRU power supply as replacement and have tried it with the Qutest. Yes, the MCRU supply smoothes off the treble in comparison to the standard supply (in my opinion).

However, the treble smoothing effect of power supply, replacement mains and ethernet cables in my system can be a questionable benefit. I have taken all of these out of the system for a while and am enjoying music with the atmosphere of the recording venue and find it more foot tappingly good.

2 Likes

A pair of Van Den Hul Digi-Coupler from HQ Player/SRC•DX into the Qutest dual BNC inputs.

Into the dual BNC inputs - you must be up-scaling.

It sounds just fine as it is. Goodness knows how much extra goodness you can get from up-scaling too.

Correct, with HQPlayer, the input light turns turquoise blue and the filter is bypassed. Without up-scaling you’ll never know what the Qutest is really capable of.

1 Like

In my bedroom I have a Bluesound Node2 into 42/110. Very tempted to give it a Qutest upgrade as I feel the source isn’t up to the amp.

I love my qutest. It’s connected to my Bluesound node and although not my primary source (that being vinyl) it’s great.
It is also beautiful in its construction and if you pick it up it gives you a sense of satisfaction
Highly recommended- it’s not popular for no reason!

1 Like

Just do yourself an favour and don’t listen to the Dave.

1 Like

Yes, bad thing to hear Dave if you can’t afford it! When I replied ‘yes’ at the time of auditioning Hugo TT, I had no plan, desire or expectation ever to go higher, but I did have funds I could divert to it if I really, really wanted. (I later had a home audition of TT and Dave against my Hugo, with son swapping so blind listening, trying hard to be convinced TT would do - I failed, Dave standing out so clearly (literally).)

1 Like

Yup. It’s without doubt the best dac I have heard. To be fair I have not ‘auditioned’ because Dave et all is out of me league but I have heard one extensively. Puts everything else I have heard to shame.

I can’t imagine why a Qutest would not be an upgrade in most people’s systems.

I might have to pick you brains about how you did this with HQPlayer exactly. Assuming you used a computer and maybe sound cards - what are the building blocks?

I mean the Qutest sounds great as it stands but, but the option is there.