Chord Electronics Hugo M-Scaler

Original price was: $7,995.00.Current price is: $7,695.00. inc GST

Using technology first seen in the flagship BLU MKII digital/CD transport, the Chord Electronics Hugo M-Scaler is a standalone upscaling device containing the world’s most advanced digital filter.

When used with a dual-BNC-input Chord Electronics DAC, it is capable of redefining digital audio sound quality.

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Chord Electronics Hugo M-Scaler

The Chord Electronics Hugo M-Scaler is a highly advanced standalone upscaler capable of redefining sound quality from digital audio. It uses Rob Watts’ (our Digital Design Consultant’s) unique filter technology, the most advanced in the world, to upscale standard 44.1kHz digital audio up to 705.6kHz (16x CD’s 44.1kHz native resolution), ready to be passed to a suitable DAC; Hugo M Scaler extends its upscaling performance to 768kHz (from 96kHz input data) for our dual-BNC-input DACs: Qutest, Hugo 2, Hugo TT 2 and DAVE.


User Manual >> Quick Start Guide >>


The Hugo M Scaler brings the unrivalled advantages of our ground-breaking FPGA-based WTA (Watts Transient Alignment) filtering technology to digitally connected audio devices, dramatically improving sound quality. Although optimised for use with selected Chord Electronics DACs (for the maximum 768kHz upscaling/decoding benefit), the Hugo M Scaler can be used with other DACs with suitable inputs, subject to their decoding capability.

The Hugo M Scaler’s compact form factor aligns with the TT (Table Top) series and has been designed to be stackable with other units in the range, including the TToby stereo power amp and the Hugo TT 2, to form a highly advanced yet space-saving system. In line with other models in the Hugo and Hugo TT series, the device features a number of illuminable fascia-mounted spherical controls, governing input selection, output sample rate and video mode for lower latency. The control spheres display data visually including input source and the incoming sample rate, using a polychromatic scale.

When partnered with either of Chord Electronics’ 768kHz-capable dual-BNC-input DACs, the Hugo M Scaler sets an astonishing technical benchmark for digital audio performance at it price point, redefining sound quality from digital audio.



  • Tap-length filter: 1,015,808 (16FS filter)
  • Connectivity (input): 1x Galvanically isolated Type-B USB, 2x Coax BNC and 2x Optical
  • Connectivity (output): 1x Galvanically isolated dual BNC (enables upscaling to the maximum 768kHz), 1x BNC S/PDIF and 1x Optical
  • PCM support: 44.1kHz, 48kHz, 88.2kHz, 96kHz, 176.4kHz, 192kHz, 352.8kHz, 384kHz, 717.6kHz, and 768kHz. 16 – 32bit
  • Driver support: Driverless with Mac OS X and Linux, driver required for Windows OS
  • Additional features:  The most advanced digital filter in the world / Adjustable sample rate output (with pass-thru mode) / Video mode (for lower latency) / Auto video and source selection / ‘DX’ controls for a future product design



  • IR Remote Control
  • Dual BNC Cables
  • Mains Power Adapter
  • M Scaler User Manual



HEADPHONICS REVIEW – The Chord Hugo M Scaler is possibly one of the most intriguing journeys I have had in a long time when writing a review. I will also say its possibly one of the most difficult write-ups I have had to do also. Not because it was bad, quite the opposite, it is rather brilliant.

It is more about how to describe that brilliance in easily understood words to the headphone and portable audio crowds because the changes are like nothing I have experienced before in this hobby. The concept of a ‘lens’ on your music is apt, the idea that dynamic range and how ‘vivid’ your best setup can sound can be improved is relevant. However, you need a revealing setup to get the benefits.

Is it the final step or the fabled ‘end game’? No, because the M Scaler is but one piece in a long chain. Improve other aspects of that chain and it is likely the M Scaler will happily shuffle up another level to match that improvement. I would actually argue it helps everything else get a little closer to being an ‘end game’.

Going modular does retain the shelf life of the M Scaler immeasurably. Not only is my ‘humble’ Qutest DAC transformed but it leaves me wondering what if I had an even better Chord DAC or connected it to a more expansive HiFi speaker system? Something perhaps where the results are more readily detected and shared?

Well, that’s just GAS now, isn’t it? The M Scaler may well be world-class, but my wallet is definitely 3rd rate. Bah humbug!


MOONAUDIO REVIEW – Hugo M Scaler + Chord DAC = Awesome

I’ve listened non-stop to the Hugo M Scaler connected to a new Hugo TT 2 DAC (new and shipping soon) for days. As John Darko’s RMAF post notes, the M Scaler has a magic knob – the Output Sample Rate button. Switching the scaler in and out of the signal path is like visiting the optician.

“Better or worse,” my optician asked as a lens slid in that weird robot face tool they use. A glass would drop, and clear vision returned. I’d click the M Scaler’s Output Sample Rate button, and music detail, beauty, and full sound returned. Hearing more musical detail, clarity and a bigger soundstage and make going backward impossible.

The improved transient accuracy of the longer filter makes instrumental timbre clearer, tightens bass and dramatically opens up the soundstage. (Keith Howard quoting Rob Watts on M Scaler sound benefits).

Yep, I’d click the M Scaler in and better dimensionality, resolution and razor-like focus returned. Playing with “sharp” and “smooth” digital filters on the TT2 was fun too. The “Sharp” and “Smooth” filters require more explanation than I have time for today so I’ll add to these initial Hugo TT 2 impressions soon.



FPGA: Xilinx XC7A200T

Filter tap length: 1,015,808 WTA taps

Dimensions: 4cm (H) 23.5cm (W) 23.8cm (D)

Weight: 2.55kg

Additional information

Weight 2.55 kg
Dimensions 23.8 × 23.5 × 4 cm


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