Set a reminder on your Apple Watch, Google Calendar, Echo Dot or life-hack of choice for precisely 11am GMT (6am EST, or 10pm if you're in Canberra, Australia) on 31st January. No, it's not Y2K (we hope), Chord Electronics is releasing a new product and it is the one shrouded in darkness at the top of this story.
We wish we had more concrete information to report, but right now all Chord is prepared to announce on its website (opens in new tab) is the headline, "Counting down to January 31st 2022".
That being said, we can certainly make an informed guess based on our extensive knowledge of the British firm's output. We strongly suspect this is our first glimpse of the Chord Mojo 2 in the wild, the hotly-anticipated second-gen. iteration of the hugely successful (and multiple What Hi-Fi? Award-winning) Chord Mojo portable DAC.
Those familiar with this publication will need no further introduction to the Mojo (short for 'Mobile Joy'), but for the uninitiated, this is a DAC we loved so much that we travelled to Chord's renovated Maidstone pump-house factory in 2019 to see how Chord makes it. And we didn't even have to wear a mask – halcyon days.
Despite our long-standing admiration for the Mojo, as a 2015 issue product in the fast-moving world of mobile tech, Chord's most entry-level portable DAC offering has certainly been earmarked for an update.
The new product is only visible thanks to a white back-light illuminating the edges of the chassis, but we are able to see four of Chord's trademark ball-like buttons. The original Mojo sports just three (for power on/off and the volume level, but if you press the two that look after volume while the unit is powering up, its output sets to line level) with the power button lighting up in different colours depending on the sampling rate of the input signal.
This particular configuration looks more akin to the chassis of the What Hi-Fi? 2021 Award-winning Chord Hugo 2, which is especially intriguing since this DAC comes in at £1800, while the original Mojo can currently be snapped up for £495. The Chord Qutest, another What Hi-Fi? 2021 Award winner and the company's cheapest powered DAC, has just two of these pressable orbs.
Obviously there's a lot we still don't know about the new product, but what we do know is that Chord Electronics will be unveiling it in less than two weeks, on 31st January. Exciting times.
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