Chord Hugo M Scaler

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As low as $4,995.00
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Using technology first seen in the flagship BLU MKII digital/CD transport, the Hugo M Scaler is a standalone upscaling device containing the world’s most advanced digital filter. When used with a dual-BNC-input Chord Electronics DAC, it is capable of redefining digital audio sound quality.

The Hugo M Scaler is a highly advanced standalone upscaler capable of redefining sound quality from digital audio. It uses Rob Watts’ (our Digital Design Consultant’s) unique filter technology, the most advanced in the world, to upscale standard 44.1kHz digital audio up to 705.6kHz (16x CD’s 44.1kHz native resolution), ready to be passed to a suitable DAC; Hugo M Scaler extends its upscaling performance to 768kHz (from 96kHz input data) for our dual-BNC-input DACs: DAVE, Qutest and the new Hugo TT 2.

The Hugo M Scaler brings the unrivaled advantages of our ground-breaking FPGA-based WTA (Watts Transient Alignment) filtering technology to digitally connected audio devices, dramatically improving sound quality. Although optimized for use with selected Chord Electronics DACs (for the maximum 768kHz upscaling/decoding benefit), the Hugo M Scaler can be used with other DACs with suitable inputs, subject to their decoding capability.

The Hugo M Scaler’s compact form factor aligns with the TT (Table Top) series and has been designed to be stackable with other units in the range, including the TToby stereo power amp and the Hugo TT 2, to form a highly advanced yet space-saving system. In line with other models in the Hugo and Hugo TT series, the device features a number of illuminable fascia-mounted spherical controls, governing input selection, output sample rate and video mode for lower latency. The control spheres display data visually including input source and the incoming sample rate, using a polychromatic scale.

When partnered with either of Chord Electronics’ 768kHz-capable dual-BNC-input DACs, the Hugo M Scaler sets an astonishing technical benchmark for digital audio performance at its price point, redefining sound quality from digital audio.


M Scaler Technology Profile

The Power of Upscaling

The M Scaler is an instant upgrade to any existing DAC you have. It has the ability to upgrade your standard definition digital input signals and output them to your DAC at a max resolution of 352.8 or 384kHz via a single BNC SPDIF output or via a 176.4 or 192kHz via an Optical SPDIF output. If you have a Chord Electronics DAC that utilizes Dual Data Digital inputs, such as the Chord Qutest, Hugo2, Hugo TT2 or the Dave, then you can increase this output resolution to 705.6 or 768kHz via the M Scaler Dual BNC SPDIF outputs. The Hugo2 requires a special cable for the 3.5mm dual data input, so we've developed a Black Dragon Mini Coax Cable to connect it to the M Scaler.

Keith Howard wrote a wonderful profile on Rob Watts' theories of why the upsampling filters are so critical to remarkable digital audio playback. Read the Hifi Critic article here.

KEY FEATURES

Chord Custom Coded FPGAChord Custom Coded FPGA
1,015,808 Taps1,015,808 Taps
Upsampling to 768kHzUpsampling to 768kHz
USB InputUSB Input
2x BNC S/PDIF Input2x BNC S/PDIF Input
Optical InputOptical Input
Dual Data Mode BNC O/PDual Data Mode BNC O/P
BNC S/PDIF OutputBNC S/PDIF Output
Optical OutputOptical Output
Solid Aluminum ChassisSolid Aluminum Chassis
Convection CooledConvection Cooled
IR Remote Control IncludedIR Remote Control Included

Reviews

Chord Magazine Guide
Chord Magazine

Guides & Advice
by Moon Audio

Moon Audio Review
Moon Audio

by Drew Baird
Dec. 2018

The Absolute Sound Review
Absolute Sound

by Chris Martens
Aug. 2019

pdf
(Size: 415.1 KB)
Keith Howard examines the background and philosophy behind Rob Watts' ultra-long filters, found in Chord Electronics DACs - Hifi Critic | July 2018
pdf
(Size: 524.5 KB)
Chord Electronics Hugo M Scaler Upscaling Device

Inputs

  • 2x BNC
  • 2x optical
  • 1x galvanically isolated USB Type-B compatible with DSD and PCM data (up to DSD 256); with DSD upsampled to PCM

Outputs

  • 1x optical
  • 1x S/PDIF
  • 1x galvanically isolated dual BNC (enables upscaling to the maximum resolution (768kHz from 96kHz data)

Additional features:

  • The most advanced digital filter in the world
  • Adjustable sample rate output (with pass-thru mode)
  • Video mode (for lower latency)
  • Auto video and source selection
  • ‘DX’ controls for future product
  • Designed, engineered and entirely made in the UK
  • Precision-milled chassis, crafted from aircraft-grade aluminum

INCLUDED ACCESSORIES

  • Mains Power Adapter
  • IR Remote Control
  • M Scaler User Manual
  • 3-Year Warranty

Technical Specifications

  • FPGA: Xilinx XC7A200T
  • Filter tap length: 1,015,808 WTA taps
  • Dimensions: 235 x 40.5 x 236mm (WxHxD)

Compatible with Android, Apple IOS, Windows, OSX, and Linux.

5.0 / 5.0
3 Reviews
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It's worth it!
I wanted to experience my Chord Hugo TT 2 independently so some time passed before adding the M Scaler into my chain. I could have been perfectly happy with just the TT2 but I was blown away by the difference once I added the M Scaler. The veil was lifted. The notes and the space between the notes became much more pronounced and impactful. There's a spatialization that seems to occur with the sound stage too.

My library is managed by JRiver Media Center, a Qnap 4 bay NAS, a DIY HTCP with a SOtM tX-USBexp PCI express USB 3.0 host interface card that connects to my Chord M Scaler, which in turn attaches to my Chord Hugo TT 2. My current configuration utilizes Peach Tree M-25 powered speakers but I’m making another change to include a pair of Bryston Mini A 3-way bookshelf speakers powered by a Mytek Brooklyn AMP. Dual Silver Dragon BNC interconnects between the M Scaler and TT2 certainly add a level of detail as do the Black Dragon RCA interconnects to my powered speakers. I use an Audioquest Carbon USB cable between my HTPC and the M Scaler.

There was a distinct benefit to listening to music using either My Audeze LCD-MX4 or Focal Utopia headphones. Music sounds much more luscious, engaging and non-fatiguing.

If you can afford the price of the M Scaler I can whole heartedly endorse it as a valuable addition to you system, at least in a configuration similar to mine.
August 2, 2019
Purchased
3 months ago
I love any product fromChord Electronics. Mojo, Qutest, my my new TT2, and M scaler. Other than listening music from UltraRendu/Roon, we like streaming music shows and M scaler is extremely good at upscaling the music to a completely different level to tinkle our back bone making some goose bumps. . There is no comparison to M scaler. It is the only one in its path. Want to buy stocks for Chord Electonics.
Harbeth super HL5 plus Pass Lab int
Harbeth super HL5 plus Pass Lab int
May 8, 2019
Purchased
6 months ago
Great product!
Drew and his team are incredibly friendly and helpful. This product makes an audible difference when streaming good quality audio. It makes you feel more like you are in the venue with the performance. If you have a good amp and detailed speakers, you definitely will want to try this out on your system.
May 8, 2019
Purchased
11 months ago
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