DAC Pre-Amplifier

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Product Description


DAVE is the most advanced DAC Chord Electronics has ever made. It features the very best conversion technology available, using proprietary techniques never seen before, making the Chord Electronics Dave DAC 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.


  • Frequency response: 20Hz to 20kHz flat within +/-0.1dB (HF filter off)
  • Tap length filter: 164,000
  • THD + N: 127.5dB (AWT)
  • Channel separation: Great-than 125dB @ 1KHz
  • Dynamic range: 127.5dB (AWT)
  • Sample frequencies: 44.1Khz – 768Khz (16 – 32bit) and DSD64 to DSD512 native DSD + DoP (input dependant)
  • Digital inputs:
    4x 75Ω S/PDIF BNC Coax – 44.1kHz to 384kHz
    1x AES XLR – 44.1kHz to 96kHz
    2x Fibre Optic TOSLINK – 44.1kHz to 96kHz
    1x USB Type B – 44.1kHz to 768kHz (16 – 32bit) – PCM and DSD
  • Analogue outputs:
    1x Stereo Pair of Unbalanced RCA
    1x Stereo Pair of Balanced XLR
    1x ¼” TRS Jack Headphone Output


Not all DACs are created equal. Using proprietary technologies painstakingly developed by Robert Watts over the past twenty-years, DAVE is our most advanced FPGA DAC to date.

Handling the conversion of your music with absolute precision, and exceptionally low noise, yields an organic performance that simply cannot be matched.

The DAC, which is also a reference-level headphone amplifier and ‘digital preamp’, distills 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-sharper performance of any known DAC. DAVE’s technology delivers music with unmatched reality and musicality, with an unrivaled timing response. The device’s lossless digital volume control outputs the signal directly 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.

Digital Inputs
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
Analog Outputs

1x Stereo Pair of Unbalanced RCA
1x Stereo Pair of Balanced XLR
1x 1/4″ TRS Jack Headphone Output

Frequency Response
20Hz to 20kHz +/- 0.1dB
-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)
333.5mm (W) x 71mm (H) x 154mm (D)
7kg (15.5 lbs)


Chord Electronics

Engineering without limits means uncompromising standards for Chord Electronics. The British professional audio company took flight in 1989 when founder and Chief Engineer John Franks found inspiration in his junior engineer job at an avionics company. Aviation electronics demands reliability, performance, and superior attention to detail. That’s exactly what Franks brings to Chord's digital products. His comprehensive knowledge of power supply design and an ethos of doing things ‘right’ regardless of cost and effort sets Chord apart from competitors.  This is reflected in the new and innovative Hugo M Scaler upscaling component. The BBC received the first Chord amplifiers, followed by world-leading artists and studios, including Abbey Road, Sony Music (New York), and The Royal Opera House. Chord’s audio prowess generated demand for a domestic range. This audiophile-approved range encompasses the design, engineering and build standards the finest professional equipment requires. Today, Chord applies proprietary technologies to all of its British-made products. As a result, you can expect studio-grade audio performance across the entire Chord range encompassing amplifiers, DACs and music streamers from the Mojo 2 to the DAVE DAC. As a nationally recognized leader in the field of high-end audio and home theater, Overture is a proud dealer of Chord Electronics products. We sell customers the best DACs and music streamers from Chord. Interested in purchasing a new Chord Electronics product? You can trade-in any component towards a Chord Electronics product by filling out Overture's Trade-In Form.