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Our Thoughts on Chord Electronic's new 2go Streamer for Hugo-2

The Chord Electronics 2go streamer was launched @ this year's Bristol Show and certainly caught our attention when heard it there for the first time there. Arriving just before "lock-down", what better opportunity to really get to grips with this seemingly flexible friend of their impressive Hugo-2 DAC/headphone amp.

We had already become familiar with the excellent ability of Chord's Poly & Mojo combination. This offers an engagingly musical solution for those who want to enjoy their local network stored music alongside streamed services such as TIDAL & Qobuz. With precise imaging and accurate soundstage presentation, the Poly & Mojo certainly do a pretty decent job, all for around £900. So, how would the 2go/Hugo-2 compare, especially given its three times the price?

Initially listening via Focal Clear headphones, it was soon obvious that the 2go/Hugo-2 combination had everything that their smaller siblings offered, but with significantly improved dynamics and better audio separation. Details otherwise hidden away in the mix are being clearly brought out and made more apparent. Whether playing music from an Innuos ZENith music server or streamed from TIDAL, the 2go/Hugo-2 combo kept asking you to play more & more music.

Then came the next challenge... just how would the new pairing compare against a dedicated streamer, in this case a Naim NDX (albeit the original Mk1 version!!!)? Well, this just proved to be equally conclusive.

First setting the Hugo-2's output to match that of the NDX (the Hugo-2's fixed line out mode is 3V, so a tad lively over the NDX's 2.1V), initial impressions were of a detailed presentation with excellent imaging and presence. But there was a bit of HF brightness apparent at times but this was soon addressed by employing the Hugo-2's digital filters with Filter 2 being preferred. Once this was sorted, every track played simply flowed, resulting in being drawn further into the music with every note played and repeatedly queuing up further tracks to listen to.

There are some initial limitations though, in particular the lack of a specific control app from Chord Electronics themselves, but there are some 3rd party app options out there (Chord themselves recommend 8Player for iOS & BubbleUPnP for Android).

But, based on these listening sessions, the Chord Electronics 2go/Hugo-2 combination certainly shows what can be achieved - and rather superbly too.

(NB the new 2yu digital output module availability has been delayed.)

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