Chord Electronics Qutest Digital to Analogue Convertor Black

The Chord Electronics Qutest DAC retains the architecture, and improves upon the premiere technologies previously found in the Hugo 2. With a brand new design and a vast array of technological advances, this DAC will offer only the best quality in sound reproduction.

The new Chord Electronics Qutest compact Digital to Analogue Convertor (DAC) is a highly accomplished device that has been based on the latest proprietary Rob Watts’ FPGA technology previously used within the Chord Electronics Hugo 2 DAC/Headphone Amplifier. An elegant precision-machined aluminium chassis houses a wide range of impressive new features and technologies that have been included to make your listening experience even better than was previously possible.

Using the same internal DAC architecture and proprietary software coding as the Hugo 2, the Qutest DAC provides proven class-leading technical and sonic performance. The Qutest also offers unique frequency-shaping filters and input selection controls, available via two fascia-mounted spheres. These facia controls allow the Qutest to offer greater flexibility over control of the device. Though it shares much of the same architecture, and even improves upon some of the features within the Hugo 2, the Qutest DAC comes in at a significantly lower price-point due to the fact that it removes the headphone amplifier, lithium-ion batteries, and cross-feed functionality.

The latest evolution of Chord Electronics’ affordable DAC, the Qutest directly replaces the 2Qute, offering all of the benefits of Chord Electronics’ acclaimed proprietary hardware and software technologies and making them available to a wide range of connected devices. Featuring a galvanically isolated USB-B, optical and dual coaxial digital inputs, the Qutest will provide an instant upgrade to everyday audio devices, along with the ability to modernise any older digital source components. The Qutest implements RCA analogue outputs to allow for the connection of integrated amplifiers, pre-amps, and headphones amps. The high-resolution 768kHz-capable dual-data digital inputs included will allow you to connect to Chord Electronics devices, including the 705/768kHz-ready M-Scaler-technology BLU MKII digital/CD transport.

The Qutest is ready for the future of audio! Designed for static use within home audio and desktop hi-fi systems, the Qutest benefits from 5V Micro USB powering which offers improvements in flexibility when compared to its predecessor. The Qutest offers support for up to 32-bit/768kHz PCM and DSD512 via the isolated USB-B input, 24-bit/384kHz PCM and DSD128 via coaxial (BNC) and 24-bit/192kHz data on Optical TOSLink. Support is also provided for DSD 64 to DSD 256 via DoP, and ASIO native DSD format is supported up to 512.

The galvanically isolated Class 2 USB input featured on the Qutest has been included due to the fact that it is more of a home-system orientated device. To achieve this isolation, Chord Electronics have used an unusual method that allows for very high data rates of up to 768kHz. The input is driverless on Apple and Android devices, with driver for Windows devices also available (ASIO included).

The aluminium casework used in the construction of the Qutest has a significantly greater mass than that of its predecessor. The chassis has been precision-machined from solid aircraft-grade aluminium billet. The Qutest then rests within a shallow cavity in this chassis, thus providing better protection of the circuit board and adding even more isolation from external vibrations.

The new design of the Qutest boasts a square-edge chassis, created by owner and Chief Designer John Franks. This design retains the circular magnifying window that has become popular within Chord Electronics’ devices, allowing you to see the custom circuit board encased within. The control spheres included are used to offer user-selectable frequency-shaping and input selection, and will illuminate with handy colour-coded information that will denote the sample frequency and filters in use (the brightness of this illumination can be user-adjusted). Another new feature is the user-selectable output voltage; this voltage is available in 1, 2, and 3V RMS outputs for flexible connectivity with partnering devices.

The Qutest features all of the latest FPGA and advanced WTA (Watts Transient Aligned) filters, allowing this intuitive DAC to bring a wide variety of performance improvements in a number of areas. Gains have been made over timing accuracy, noise reduction, dynamic range, and tap depth – the technical indicator of how complex the interpolation filter is – has more than doubled to 49,152, when compared alongside its predecessor.

The four-function switch filter included in the Qutest is operated by its own control sphere and offers a useful degree of user-selectable frequency-shaping. This will bring warm and soft, or transparent and incisive presentations, and will allow the Qutest DAC to provide even greater flexibility in and user control.

  • Support for 24-bit/384kHz PCM, DSD128 via coaxial (BNC), 24-bit/192kHz data on Optical TOSLink
  • Features all of the latest FPGA and advanced WTA (Watts Transient Aligned) filters
  • Support for up to 32-bit/768kHz PCM and DSD512 via the isolated USB-B input
  • Shares the architecture and improves upon technologies found in the Hugo 2
  • Designed for static use within home audio and desktop hi-fi systems
  • User-selectable output voltage available in 1, 2, and 3V RMS outputs
  • Compact Digital to Analogue Convertor (DAC)
  • Support for ASIO native DSD format up to 512
  • Support for DSD 64 to DSD 256 via DoP
  • Galvanically isolated Class 2 USB input
  • Benefits from 5V Micro USB powering
  • New style aluminium casing
More Information
BrandsChord Electronics
Product Specifications

Frequency Response


20-20 kHz +/- 0.2dB







Dynamic Range



124 dB AWt





0.0001% 1 kHz 2.5V RMS 300 ohms


THD and Noise at 2.5v RMS ref 3V



-117dB 300 ohms AWt


Channel Separation



138 dB at 1kHz 300 ohms





Class 2 Galvanically Isolated




1x Optical TOSLink 24-bit/192kHz-capable

2x BNC coaxial input 24-bit/384kHz-capable (dual data mode up to 768kHz for M-Scaler operation)

1x HD galvanically isolated USB-B input 32-bit/768kHz and DSD512-capable





1x (pair) stereo RCA phono outputs: 1, 2 and 3V RMS

What Hi Fi Awards Winner 2019What Hi Fi Awards Winner 2019Best DAC £500-£1200. Another superb Chord DAC sets a benchmark.
What Hi Fi 5 Star ReviewWhat Hi Fi 5 Star ReviewChord has managed to do it again. The Qutest sets a new benchmark at this price
What Hi Fi Product Of The Year 2019What Hi Fi Product Of The Year 2019Best DAC £500-£1200
Hi Fi News Outstanding ProductHi Fi News Outstanding ProductAll this is wrapped in Chord's superb-quality milled aluminium casework, with analogue outputs adjustable to suit power amps, preamps and headphone amps.
Hi Fi Choice Editors ChoiceHi Fi Choice Editors ChoiceIntroducing the "World’s most advanced compact DAC".
Hi Fi WorldHi Fi WorldOnce again, Chord has come up with a desirable DAC that combines elegant design, future-proofed technology and a stunning performance that will do justice to any music you care to feed it.
What Hi Fi Awards Winner 2018What Hi Fi Awards Winner 2018Qutest - Best DAC £500-£1200
What Hi Fi Product Of The Year 2020What Hi Fi Product Of The Year 2020Best DAC - 2020 Product of the Year winner
What Hi Fi Awards Winner 2021What Hi Fi Awards Winner 2021This superb Chord DAC still sets the benchmark
EISA 2019-2020EISA 2019-2020Chord Electronics Qutest Digtal to analogue Convertor Best DAC award 2019-2020
What Hi Fi Awards Winner 2020What Hi Fi Awards Winner 2020Best DAC £500-£1200

Product Brochures

Chord Electronics Qutest Digital to Analogue Convertor Black Instruction Manual
Chord Electronics Qutest Digital to Analogue Convertor Specification Sheet
Your Delivery:

Orders received before 1:00 pm* will be despatched the same day and can be delivered for next working day, (except bank holidays).  For you convenience you can choose multiple shipping options on the checkout page. We will also email with your tracking and dispatch information.

30 Day Returns Policy

HiFix is committed to selling quality products which we hope you will love, we do understand, however, that there maybe a time when you need to exchange or return something you have bought. We really do hope you are pleased with your purchase but should you wish to return anything bought from us, we will be happy to refund or exchange a product within 30 days.

NameSKUQtyLead time
Chord Electronics Qutest Digital to Analogue Convertor Black432541In Stock for Immediate Dispatch

Warranty information for Chord Electronics:


Chord Electronics products are designed and manufactured to the highest quality standards. However, if something does go wrong with the product we are here to help. From your date of purchase your product is warranted against faulty materials or workmanship for a period of 36 months on all products except the Mojo, which is a period of 12 months.

This 36 month guarantee applies to all Chord Electronics Products (excluding the Mojo) including Digital to Analogue Convertors, Digital Streamers, Headphone Amplifiers. Phono Pre Amplifiers, Stereo & Mono Pre Amplifiers and Stereo Pre Amplifiers. Providing you with peace of mind and the assurance of premium Quality.

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