CES 2015: Chord Electronics unveils desktop Hugo TT DAC/headphone amp

The desktop Chord Hugo TT features improved connectivity and performance, a remote control, alphanumeric LED display and an asynchronous USB-B digital input. It costs £2995 in the UK.

There's support for up to 32-bit/384kHz audio via coaxial and USB, and 24-bit/192kHz over optical, as well as DSD64 across all inputs and DSD128 via coaxial or USB.

Additional features over the original Hugo (£1400) include two XLR outputs, two 1/4in headphone outputs (in addition to a 3.5mm headphone jack), upgraded coaxial and optical digital inputs, a new larger chassis and supercapacitors.

For those who want to stream music wirelessly through the device, there's A2DP aptX Bluetooth capability provided by a custom-made module.

MORE: Chord Hugo review

Although it's designed to run continuously from the supplied charger, Chord's engineers have also improved the device's battery and added Supercap energy storage, a technology seen in F1 cars where supercapacitors back up the car's batteries by sharing the load and charge demands, thus protecting them.

According to Chord they serve a similar purpose in the Hugo TT, extending the battery life as well as improving dynamics and demanding transients in recorded music.

Chord Electronics' founder John Franks says: "The original Hugo was not optimised for home use: a minority of audiophile cables with the largest RCA and USB terminations sometimes proved difficult to accommodate, and the shorter range of the Bluetooth pairing distance could sometimes cause problems in larger homes.

"The upgrades we've made would not have been possible within the existing Hugo's smaller dimensions, but fit comfortably within the larger Hugo TT."

MORE: Read all our Chord Electronics reviews and news

Chord 2Qute DAC

Also unveiled here at CES 2015 is the new Chord 2Qute DAC (£995), which combines two of our 2014 Award-winning products - the original Hugo portable DAC/headphone amp and Qute EX standalone DAC - in a single, sub £1000 product.

Chord describes it as "essentially a Hugo in a Chordette chassis", bringing the latest FPGA DAC technology into a more affordable home unit.

The new 2Qute supports 32-bit/384kHz audio via coaxial and USB, and 24-bit/192kHz over optical. As with the Hugo TT, DSD64 is supported on all inputs and DS128 via coaxial or USB.

CES 2015: All the latest CES 2015 news highlights

Andy Clough

Andy is Global Brand Director of What Hi-Fi? and has been a technology journalist for 30 years. During that time he has covered everything from VHS and Betamax, MiniDisc and DCC to CDi, Laserdisc and 3D TV, and any number of other formats that have come and gone. He loves nothing better than a good old format war. Andy edited several hi-fi and home cinema magazines before relaunching whathifi.com in 2008 and helping turn it into the global success it is today. When not listening to music or watching TV, he spends far too much of his time reading about cars he can't afford to buy.