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DAVE is Chord's flagship DAC, a true reference-level product, loaded with the latest-generation FPGA technology. Put simply, it is the most advanced DAC in the world.


DAVE is the most advanced DAC we have ever made. It features the very best conversion technology available, using proprietary techniques never seen before, making DAVE the most advanced DAC/preamp amplifier in the world. DAVE stands for ‘Digital to Analogue Veritas in Extremis’, a moniker that best reflects the product’s capability; a device so advanced and with so few compromises, that it is absolutely truthful in the extreme — a standard that all other DACs on the market simply cannot hope to match.


The DAC, which is also a reference-level headphone amplifier and ‘digital preamp’, distils twenty years of Chord research, development and advanced engineering into one device. At its heart lies a new version of the advanced Spartan 6 Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) with 1,000x the processing power of the traditional mass-produced chip DAC. DAVE’s FPGA is loaded with over a million lines of code to confront complex timing issues head-on, with speed and precision.


The FPGA’s extraordinary capability enables a number of key sonic benefits, including significantly improved timing and the best noise-shaper performance of any known DAC. DAVE’s technology delivers music with unmatched reality and musicality, with an unrivalled timing response. The device’s lossless digital volume control outputs the signal direct to your power amplifier for the purest experience.


DAVE has a full-sized LCD display, showing input, sample frequency, volume and set-up configurations options, within Chord’s famous porthole design. On its fascia, DAVE also features a rotary encoder with a large stainless steel controller and ball buttons, enabling direct interactivity in addition to the supplied remote control.


Options Available:

Precision machined from a solid block of aircraft grade aluminium, a work of art on its own, the Ensemble Stand is irrefutably the most satisfying way to display your Choral system components or stack.


Full Product Review by Stereophile here:

DAVE - Reference Digital to Analogue Converter, Headphone Amplifier & Preamplier

  • Frequency Response:

    20Hz to 20kHz +/- 0.1dB


    THD +N:

    127.5dB (AWT)


    Channel Separation:

    >125dB @ 1kHz


    Dynamic Range:

    127.5dB (AWT)


    Headphone Output:

    1% THD 6.8v RMS with 300Ω (154mW)

    1% THD 6.8v RMS with 33Ω (1.4w)


    Output Impedance:

    0.0055Ω (short circuit protected)


    Operating voltage:

    90v AC – 250v AV auto switching 50Hz – 60Hz


    Dimensions (including connectors):

    333.5mm (W) x 71mm (H) x 154mm (D)





    • 4x 75Ω S/PDIF BNC Coax – 44.1kHz to 384kHz
    • 1x AES XLR – 44.1kHz to 96kHz
    • 2x Fibre Optic TOSLINK – 44.1kHz to 192kHz
    • 1x USB Type B – 44.1kHz to 768kHz – PCM and DSD



    • 1x Stereo Pair of Unbalanced RCA
    • 1x Stereo Pair of Balanced XLR
    • 1x ¼” TRS Jack Headphone Output



     20Hz to 20kHz flat within +/-0.1dB (HF filter off)

    THD + N: 127.5dB (AWT)


    DYNAMIC RANGE: 127.5dB (AWT)

    SAMPLE FREQUENCIES: 44.1Khz – 768Khz DSD64,128,256,512 native DSD + DoP (input dependant)


    Key Features

    • Chord Custom FPGA DAC
    • 768kHz Type B USB Input
    • 4x 768kHz BNC Coax Inputs
    • 2x 96kHz AES/EBU Inputs
    • 2x 192kHz Optical Inputs
    • Expandable DXO Inputs
    • 1x Unbalanced RCA Outputs
    • 1x Balanced XLR Outputs
    • 1x ¼" Headphone Output
    • Supports 800Ω Headphones
    • Configurable Crossfeed
    • Standalone Preamp Function
    • Galvanically Isolated USB
    • Supports up to 768kHz
    • Native DSD Supported
    • DSD 512 (8x) Capable
    • Solid Aluminium Chassis
    • IR Remote Control Included
    • Included Accessories
    • 1.5m Type A to Type B USB Cable
    • 1.5m 10a IEC Mains Power Lead
    Reference Dave Remote
    Dave Owners Manual
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