Chord Qutest - Constant Drops/Glitches on any song

Core Machine (Operating system/System info/Roon build number)

MacBook Air 13 inch 2019
1.6GHz i5 Dual Core
8 Gig of Ram
MacOS Catalina 10.15.7
Roon Version 1.7 (build 667)

Network Details (Including networking gear model/manufacturer and if on WiFi/Ethernet)

Fiber to the house - 900 megabits down (hard wired)
Eero Pro router using latest 6.02 firmware
Netgear Prosafe Managed Switch (GS108Ev3)
CalDigit TS3 Plus Hub

Work Flow:
Cat 6 cable from RJ45 jack (from the street) to Netgear Switch, Cat 6 cable to Caldigit ethernet Port supporting 1GB port, Thunderbolt 3 cable from Caldigit to Macbook Air and Audioquest USB Carbon Cable from Caldigit USB-C 3.1 Gen.2 port (10GB support) to Chord Qutest.

Audio Devices (Specify what device you’re using and its connection type - USB/HDMI/etc.)

Topping A90 Connected via RCA to Chord Qutest

Description Of Issue

When playing a song either located on the hard drive (DSD format down to FLAC) or streaming from Tidal or Quboz, there is constant, stutters, and 1 to 2 second pauses all the way thru the song length.

The Qutest window on the top of the unit constantly flashes different colors as it seems to be downgrading the resolution to keep up with the song. I am not upsampling just playing however the native song was recorded.

Thank you.

New Information - the stutter is slightly reduced in frequency when Roon is minimized on the desktop which is beyond odd, when I pull up Roon to change a song, it fully glitches and stutters??? - thoughts here?

Also - same config as above on Audirvana - NO ISSUES - thanks.

Hi @BAYMS10 and welcome to the Roon forum. I’m not official Roon support but while you’re waiting I’ll do my best to help. Given the Chord DAC works fine via Audirvana (even with higher-res material I assume?) and the symptoms you describe I’m guessing that your MacBook is maxed out at some kind of limit (minimising reduces the workload as the GUI doesn’t need rendering?). It’s a fairly thin spec for Roon and there’s no graphics card. I’m not a Mac person either but this would be a start to see what the CPU, Memory (and I/O but I’d bet on one of the other two) usage is:

Good luck and feel free to wait for the more authoritative cavalry but that’s my amateur opinion at no cost.


@killdozer Hi - thank you for your input, appreciate it! - I forgot to mention that I have an EGPU utilizing a Radeon RX5700 XT as the primary for any and all GPU aspects so I can’t imagine it being that particular component. I prefer Roon and just not sure why it is having an issue, no other apps are running except Chrome with a few open tabs.


So Roon probably does a little more than Audirvana (again I don’t use it so can’t say for sure), the database can be a bit of work depending on your library size. It just has all the hallmarks of stuttering delivery and I suspect you’re CPU bound but that’s just a feeling.

Actually, I would bet that is the culprit. Roon GUI is built like a video game using OpenGL and does quite a hit to the GPU when displaying animations (like the little pulsing bars). Try, removing the Radeon and running Roon with just the Mac’s internal display.

See here:

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Hi Daniel - BINGO, that worked BUT… I need the EGPU connected as it is providing the horsepower to drive my Dell 49 inch monitor at the native resolution and helps with my video editing in final cut.

Is there a fix??? please?


Have you verified the drivers are up to date.

Hi @BAYMS10,

Does this issue only occur on the Qutest? If you try to play to System Output do you have similar symptoms occur there when using the other display?

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