In the Woods
The great thing about portable audio is you can listen to it anywhere. In the woods, some might rather listen to birds sing or the bickering of a creek, but at least you have the option.
My first shot of the black Hugo 2. I think the colors pop much better than with the silver version.
At the Riverside
Sunset at the river Rhine created this nice bokeh of the stones with the water in the background. I thought the shadow leading to the plug created some more dynamics.
I have a new table. It’s white and big. Like really big. I experimented a bit how I could use the space.
Somehow coffee and audio go well together. It is about enjoying your leisure time and what better way is there to relax? The least the Hugo 2 with the qdc Gemini deserve is the Reserve coffee.
Cameras and Audio
Photography and portable audio just go well together. A lonely soul wandering around and taking pictures while listening to music in the best way possible. Isn’t that romantic?
Actually I left my home early that day to take a blue hour cityscape shot. However, I always carry the Hugo 2 with me, so when I saw a frozen puddle, I thought it would be worth a shot. I like the rough texture of the ice in contrast to the smooth surface and clean design of the Hugo 2. However, it was after this shot that I noticed that I have to buy and use a grey card in the future.
The Hugo 2 can receive data via Bluetooth. It uses aptX with 352 kbps for 16bit-48kHz.
I used focus bracketing for this shot and manually stitched 10 pictures at f/1.8 together. The lighting is all natural.
The Hugo 2’s durable aluminum body with black accent perfectly matches the iMac desktop computer.
To be honest, I have very little experience with flash photography. My Olympus OM-D comes with a removable flash that lets you adjust the angle of direction. That inspired me to experiment with a reflector to catch the texture on the leather case and also the wood pattern on the headphones.
I took this fast shutter photo tossing the Hugo 2 in the air and simultaneously dropping a leaf. Not gonna lie, took a few attempts. It would have been cooler to have a headphone dropping in the background too, but unfortunately I am not an octopus and thus limited to two arms.
One could argue whether it makes sense to use a HiFiMAN headphone outside, but either way you have the choice with so much power in a portable device.
Everywhere You Go
I was told Hugo is a phonetic pun on “you go”, emphasizing on the portability of the device. The Chord Hugo did accompany me everywhere I went.
Following my short paragraph on flaws, I have to stress that the Chord Hugo DAC and head-amp is an absolute killer device. But you already knew that because people have probably been telling you that for a while now. It’s the Swiss army knife among portable DACs and it has an incredible headphone output (well, three) as well. Build quality is superb, too. But most of all, the sound is very truthful to the source with an organic and realistic feel like I have rarely felt. The crossfeed network is implemented perfectly and overall Hugo is capable to put many home set-ups to shame while neatly fitting into most pockets. This is reference material!