DSD 128 for Qute


Chord Electronics has launched the Chordette Qute EX DAC, an upgraded version of the QuteHD. The Qute EX (£1,195), which is available alongside the QuteHD, offers both 384kHz PCM and DSD 128 playback for DXD (Digital eXtreme Definition) music files. The new converter adds an advanced new chipset and circuit board that enables decoding at up to 384kHz PCM and DSD 128 over USB (against the QuteHD’s 192kHz PCM and DSD 64). Existing QuteHD DACs can be upgraded with the new chipset and board at the factory for £200 (plus shipping); the price differential between the two.
The Qute EX builds on the strengths of original QuteHD, a compact D/A convertor that eschews off-the-shelf chipsets in favour of a bespoke FPGA (programmable) circuit. Its technologies come from the flagship QBD76 HDSD (£4,995), both DACs being based on a circuit design created by digital audio guru Rob Watts and implemented by Chord’s engineering team.
Ready to take advantage of today’s advanced studio-master-quality (DXD) music files, the Qute EX can handle sample rates from 44.1kHz to 384kHz (PCM). Inputs extend to an “advanced” asynchronous USB input and two S/PDIF digital inputs: coaxial and optical. Chord claims that this is “the world’s most affordable high-quality DSD 128- and 384kHz-compatible USB DAC”. Chord Electronics’ proprietary driver software is provided for Mac and Windows operating systems.

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