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Chord QBD76 - Can I bypass laptop's soundcard if I use the bluetooth connection?


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Hi all,

 

Yeah, so if I buy the QBD76 DAC, can I bypass my computer's internal soundcard if I use the bluetooth connection? If so, am I better off using the bluetooth connection than connecting via digital out?

 

I was told earlier that if I connect over digital I am limited by laptop's soundcard, which is not what I want in a high quality audio system... Suggestions for £1000+ converters were made - crazy money in adtion to the £3k DAC...

 

Merci

 

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It was possibly me who suggested using a INT202 to connect to a Chord QBD76 but you do have other options...

 

First up, because of the way the Chord buffers and reclocks the incomming SPDIF stream it is one of the most transport agnostic DACs I know of. If using CD quality (16/44.1 or 48) then SQ through its USB input is pretty good, even though it's not async which everyone says is essential. This is the first method of "bypassing" the laptop's soundcard.

 

Next option is Bluetooth: with this it's essential you have a Bluetooth connection which supports the Apt-X protocols / compression. This is lossless and supports upto 24/96.

 

Finally you can use SPDIF either TOSLink direct from your laptop or with a USB or FireWire converter ranging from £100 M2Tech HiFace upto £1000 or so or INT202. In terms of capability, only this supports the dual-wire AES mode needed for highest 24/192 bit-rate files.

 

So yes, for best quality a £1000 FireWire converter may be "recommended" but there are a lot of options below that which will also give good results. The problem some people will argue with DACs such as this without a good async USB or FireWire input is that you need extra device to get the best quality however I would argue that such a combo (£3000 DAC plus £1000 converter) can still beat other DACs (e.g. Weiss' DAC202 at £4500). Also remember that £1000 for INT202 plus computer is much less than Chord's blu transport recommended or best quality from CD playback.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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Hi Eloise, have you actually compared the Chord + INT202 against Weiss 202? Just curious..

 

As to the topic above.. I can safely say the Chord blu transport easily beats its usb input. Similarly, the usb input easily beats the bluetooth connection which I felt sounds significantly inferior.

 

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For the record ... I've not directly compared Chord QBD76 + INT202 (infact only heard Chord QBD76 with RME HDSPe AES32) to the Weiss DAC202. I've heard Naim DAC with INT202 but again not directly compared the two.

 

Eloise

 

Eloise

---

...in my opinion / experience...

While I agree "Everything may matter" working out what actually affects the sound is a trickier thing.

And I agree "Trust your ears" but equally don't allow them to fool you - trust them with a bit of skepticism.

keep your mind open... But mind your brain doesn't fall out.

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