The Chord Electronics Hugo M Scaler is a highly advanced standalone upscaler capable of redefining sound quality from digital audio. The Hugo M Scaler has been 35 years in the making and brings the unrivalled advantages created by Chord Electronics’ Digital Design Consultant, Rob Watts. Ground-breaking FPGA-based WTA (Watts Transient Alignment) filtering technology digitally connect audio devices and dramatically improve sound quality.
The Hugo M Scaler uses the world’s most advanced filter technology to upscale native resolution (44.1kHz) digital audio music up to 705.6kHz (16x CD’s). Once the digital audio data has been processed by the Chord M Scaler, the audio data is ready to be passed on to a suitable DAC. The Chord Hugo M Scaler extends its upscaling performance to 768kHz (from 96kHz input data) for dual-BNC-input connections to the following Chord Electronics DAC’s: DAVE, Qutest and the new Hugo TT2.
Although optimised for use with selected Chord Electronics DACs (for the maximum 768kHz upscaling/decoding benefit), the new Hugo M Scaler can be used with other DACs with suitable inputs, subject to their decoding capability. The advanced upscaling technology of the Chord Hugo M Scaler can improve the sound quality of all digital source audio systems and will benefit the following products: network audio players; smartphones and smart devices; laptops and computers; CD/DVD players/transports and more.
The Chord Electronics Hugo M Scaler features five digital inputs, including 2x BNC and 2x optical, plus a galvanically isolated USB Type-B) offering wide-ranging digital connectivity. The USB-B input is compatible with DSD and PCM data (up to DSD 256), with DSD upsampled to PCM using proprietary filtering, which has much better attenuation of DSD noise and distortion.
The Hugo M Scaler’s output connections include an optical, S/PDIF and galvanically isolated dual BNC sockets, the latter of which enable upscaling to the maximum resolution (768kHz from 96kHz data), enabling direct connection to the 768kHz-capable dual BNC digital inputs featured on the previously mentioned Chord Electronics products.
The compact form factor of the Hugo M Scaler’s aligns with the TT (Table Top) series of products and has been designed to stack with other units in the range, including the TToby stereo power amp and the aforementioned Hugo TT2, to form a highly advanced yet space-saving system.
In line with other models in the Hugo and Hugo TT series, the Hugo M Scaler features a number of illuminated front fascia-mounted controls, providing input selection, output sample rate and video mode for lower latency. As with previous Chord Electronics digital devices, the front fascia controls display data visually including input source and the incoming sample rate, using a polychromatic scale. The Hugo M Scaler also features front-panel ‘DX’ controls which have been included for use with future products.
The upscaler benefits from an adjustable sample rate output (with pass-thru mode) enabling user-defined control, subject to the technical limitations of the output type: 192kHz optical;
384kHz BNC and 768kHz dual BNC), plus a video mode for lower latency, bringing useful flexibility with a wide range of partnering components. Further extending its functionality is auto video and source selection.
Featuring technology previously exclusive to the Chord Electronics BLU MKII upscaling digital/CD transport (£7,995), the extraordinary upscaling ability of the Hugo M Scaler brings the benefits of Rob Watts’ proprietary FPGA-based tech to a much wider audience, given its £3,495 price point.
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 it price point, redefining sound quality from digital audio.
Redefines sound quality from digital audio
- The most advanced digital filtering technology in the world
- Upscales digital audio up to 705.6kHz (16x CD’s 44.1kHz native resolution)
- Upscaling to 768kHz (from 96kHz files) with selected Chord Electronics DACs
- Rob Watts’ 35-year goal of >1M taps achieved: M Scaler has 1,015,808 WTA taps
- Improves all digital: streamers; smart devices/computers; CD/DVD players and more
- Transient accuracy is taken to a completely unprecedented level
- Use with a DAC in headphone, desktop and conventional hi-fi systems
- Compact TT chassis stackable with Hugo TT 2 DAC/pre and TToby power amp
- Multiple inputs for a range of devices: galvanically isolated USB-B; 2x BNC; 2x optical
- Galvanically isolated dual BNC outputs (to 768kHz) for use with DAVE, Qutest, Hugo TT 2 and future products; single BNC to 384kHz output, optical to 192kHz
- Adjustable sample rate output with pass-thru mode, plus low latency video mode
- Automatic modes for video and source selection plus remote control
- ‘DX’ mode for connection to future Chord Electronics products
- Designed, engineered and entirely made in the United Kingdom
- Dimensions (WxHxD): 235 x 40.5 x 236mm
- Weight 2.55kg
- Three-year warranty