Chord Electronics announced the Qutest standalone DAC.

Chord Electronics announced Qutest standalone DAC.

Source: Official website, Last Accessed: 2018/02/01

Qutest is a standalone DAC with conversion architecture based on Rob Watts' award-winning proprietary FPGA technology developed for the class-leading Hugo 2 DAC/headphone amp and is perfectly equipped to bring the benefits of the company's digital technology to a wide range of connected devices, giving an instant performance upgrade, plus the ability to modernize aging digital source components.
The new device is a “pure” DAC (it does not contain headphone amplification or rechargeable batteries like some of its range stablemates), featuring a galvanically isolated USB-B, optical and coaxial digital inputs and is designed to improve sound quality in the home. It is the latest evolution of Chord's most affordable standalone DAC, the multi-award-winning 2Qute, which it directly replaces.
Qutest offers Hugo 2’s proprietary user-selectable frequency-shaping filters and input selection controls, available via two fascia-mounted spheres, introducing useful flexibility. It also features RCA analogue outputs for connection to integrated amplifiers, preamps and headphone amps, plus high-resolution dual-data digital inputs for connection to future Chord Electronics products. A further new feature is a user-selectable output voltage available in 1, 2 and 3V RMS outputs for flexible connectivity with a wide range of partnering devices.
The new DAC supports sample rates up to 32-bit/768kHz and up to DSD512 (Octa-DSD), for PCM and DSD streams respectively, through the USB port, up to 32-bit/768kHz PCM through its two BNC-equiped coaxial S/PDIF inputs and up to 24-bit/192kHz PCM through its optical input.
The newly-designed Qutest chassis, signed by John Franks, has significantly greater mass than its predecessor and has been precision-machined from solid aircraft-grade aluminum billet. The Qutest PCB nestles within a shallow cavity in the solid aluminum chassis, giving the circuit board greater protection within the casework and additional isolation from external vibration compared to previous designs, the company states.

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