Chord Electronics DAVE - DAC / Pre Amp

Email enquire

We are taking pre-orders now. Please call us on 01707 320 788 to discuss reserving one from the first batch of DAVEs (nearly sold out).

Digital To Analogue Veritas in Extremis or commonly know as DAVE by Chord Electronics is set to be the worlds most advanced DAC, further pushing the boundaries of whats possible with digital music. Chord have been producing exceptional DACs mastering the use of the FPGA chipset and most recently dominating the press and forums with their portable headphone amplifier/DAC the Hugo. Reading into the thousands of pages of forum threads, countless reviews and critical praise it is hard to see where Chord could improve on such aclaimed product, but here in DAVE both techniqually and sonically they have raised the bar dramatically.

DAVE features the LX75 version of the Spartan 6 Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) which has ten times the capacity of the Chord Hugo, giving them the opportunity radically improve performance in both time domain (Transient timing accuracy) and noise shaper accuracy to give the smoothest of analogue playback to a digital signal. Advanced analogue circuitry and power supplies have also been deployed to give an ultra low noise floor and improved analogue output stage. Truely this is the pride and Joy of Rob Watts' tireless work to always be at the forfront of DAC technology and while their competitors have not even caught up with the performance gains delivered with the Hugo, DAVE now sets a new astronomical benchmark for all DACs to live upto.

Technology in Depth: New WTA Filter

Chord Electronics has implemented a brand new WTA (Watts Transient Aligned) filter with 164,000 taps. WTA filtering is now up to 256 FS (that's 256-times the sample frequency) - no other DAC has ever FIR filtered at such a high rate! In order to process signal at this unprecedented rate, DAVE has massive parallel-processing capacity with 166 separate DSP cores just for the WTA filtering alone. This enables DAVE to reproduce the original unsampled analogue signal more accurately than any other DAC.

The output stage has been advanced with a new 20-element Pulse Array DAC and a unique second-order analogue noise-shaper, which gives ultra-high-frequency linearity. Its output feeds both balanced XLR and single-ended RCA outputs, as well as an advanced headphone output with more than enough capability for the most impedance-challenging headphones.


A key benefit over its predecessor is a full-sized LCD display, showing input, sample frequency and volume, plus set-up and configuration options. The display, which sits behind the famous Chord porthole, is clearly visible from a variety of angles and retains the signature colour display for volume and sample rate as introduced by the landmark Hugo DAC/headphone amp. 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.

DAVE’s advanced technology is enshrined in Chord Electronics’ trademark casework which has been precision-milled from solid aircraft-grade aluminium to deliver functional strength and rigidity, as well as great beauty. Simply stated, DAVE is the most advanced DAC in the world, something Chord Electronics is immensely proud of.


  • USB B-style: 44 kHz to 768 kHz - DXD and Quad DSD 
  • 2x optical: 44kHz to 192kHz 
  • 1 x AES: 44kHz to 192kHz 
  • 4 x Coax: 44kHz to 384kHz 
  • Dual-data mode available 

Outputs digital: 

  • 2x ultra-high-speed coax 768kHz dual-data mode for use with future-unannounced Chord Electronics products.
  • Maximum output voltage: 6 volts RMS 
  • THD and noise at 2.5 volts: RMS 0.000015 %
  • THD and noise at 2.5 volts: 127dBA Awt (124dBA into 33 ohms)
  • Dynamic range at -60 dBFS 1kHz -127 dBA A wt

(No measurable noise floor modulation, no a harmonic distortion)

(Analogue distortion characteristic: no distortion for small signals) 

  • Power requirements: mains power 80 volts to 260 volts; AC 20 watts

Please Note: stand sold separately

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: 0.055Ω (short circuit protected)
Operating voltage: 90v AC – 250v AV auto switching 50Hz – 60Hz
Dimensions (including connectors): 7.8cm (H) 33.5cm (W) 15.2cm (D)
Weight: 5kg
Book a Demo - Chord Electronics DAVE - DAC / Pre Amp

Nintronics offers generous trade in prices to help make your next upgrade as seamless as possible, while greatly reducing the overall price of your purchase. Depending upon the items involved, Nintronics will be happy to send out one of our nationwide installation engineers to collect your traded in items and unbox, setup and calibrate your new equipment.

Trade In - Chord Electronics DAVE - DAC / Pre Amp
Write Your Own Review
You're reviewing:Chord Electronics DAVE - DAC / Pre Amp
Your Rating

Products from the same brand

  1. Chord Electronics Ensemble Stand
    Chord Electronics Choral Ensemble Equipment Stand Chord Electronics

    9 years warranty

  2. Chord Electronics CPA 3000 Stereo Pre-Amp
    Chord Electronics CPA 3000 Stereo Pre-Amp Chord Electronics

    9 years warranty

  3. Chord Electronics Hugo 2 Dual Colour
    Chord Electronics Hugo 2 Chord Electronics

    7 years warranty

  4. TT2
    Chord Electronics Hugo TT2 - Desktop DAC and Headphone Amp Chord Electronics

    7 years warranty

  5. Chord Electronics M-Scaler Front
    Chord Electronics Hugo M-Scaler Chord Electronics

    7 years warranty

We offer FREE delivery to the mainland UK (excluding Channel Islands, Isle of Man, Isle of White, Isles of Scilly, and some of the remote Scottish Isles).

For other areas please contact us for a quote. Select items can be delivered internationally by prior agreement. Again please contact us for a quote. We will always do our best to help.

Our aim is to dispatch goods within 2 working days of an order being placed. Please allow 5 working days from the time of your order to receipt of item. If an order is expected to take longer than this our order fulfillment department will contact you to inform you of this.

Where multiple items are ordered, we will dispatch them all in one package. If you have ordered any special or customized items, or items otherwise not immediately available, we will dispatch the order when all items are available. If you have any concerns regarding this, please contact us and we will do are very best to help you.