Chord Mojo 2 Review

What is it?

The Mojo 2 is  the latest version of Chord’s widely admired Mojo portable-ish DAC and headphone amplifier.

What’s great?

Thrillingly open, detailed and musical sound. Good connectivity options. 

What’s not?

Charges via microUSB. Not as portable as it thinks it is. Arcane control interface.

The bottom line

Some connectivity improvements are helpful, but fundamentally the allure of Mojo 2 is in the profound improvement it can make to your desktop or (at a push) your portable sound 


Chord Electronics has been setting audio standards and establishing bewildering control methods since its inception in 1989. And with the original ‘Mojo’ DAC/headphone amp, the company arguably legitimised the entire ‘portable DAC’ sector – even if it was a pretty chunky device by ‘portable’ standards. 

So successful was the  Mojo from the moment it hit the market in 2015, in fact, that it inspired a slew of imitators (most of them a fair bit more portable, admittedly) from companies both venerable and upstart. Imitation is a form of flattery, certainly, but unless the Mojo 2 can put some distance between itself and all the very many alternatives it’s ‘inspired’, it could well find itself flattered into irrelevance.

Build quality

The majority of Mojo 2 is made of anodised aluminium – which feels almost as good as it looks. The casework itself is 23 x 83 x 62mm (HxWxD), but its rounded-off corners help it feel nicely palm-sized. Whether or not it’s pocket-sized is a different question, and whether or not its weight of 185g is pocket-friendly is yet another question.  

It looks and feels like a premium product, though, no two ways about it. And if you’re not the one who has to interpret the dozens of different colours in which its polycarbonate control ‘spheres’ can glow to find out what Mojo 2 is up to, the control interface is uniquely decorative too. If you are, though, lots of luck – the size of digital file Mojo 2 is dealing with, volume level, EQ setting and more besides are all indicated only by variations in colour. 

Mojo 2 is a strictly hard-wired device. The addition of a USB-C input is very welcome, and there are digital coaxial and digital optical inputs as well; analogue audio is available via either (or both) or the two 3.5mm outputs. The battery is good for roughly eight hours of use between charges – Mojo 2 still has to be charged using the elderly microUSB standard, which is a pity, but at least it doesn’t (unlike the product it replaces) get disconcertingly hot while it’s charging. 


And here the gripes and criticism come to a screeching halt. Attach Mojo 2 to your laptop, smartphone or whatever at one end,  attach an appropriately talented pair of headphones at the other (or an analogue connection to a full-size system) and the difference this DAC makes to the unassisted sound of your source player is never less than significant. In the right circumstances, it can be profound.

It creates a big, well organised soundstage. It has absolute authority over dynamic shifts both broad and fine. It expresses rhythms with the certainty of James Brown. And it knows exactly what’s going on even in the depth of a mix – no detail is too fleeting or too minor to elude it. And it does all of this while maintaining an attitude that’s all about entertainment rather than analysis.

At the bottom end, bass sounds are deep, swift and packed with information. At the opposite end of the frequency range, treble is similarly substantial, similarly rapid and similarly stacked with detail. And in between, Mojo 2 can reveal all the character, all the attitude and all the details of technique that your favourite vocalist has to give.

Integration of the frequency range is smooth, with nothing overstated and nothing underplayed. There’s a unity and coherence to the way Mojo 2 presents music that gives a strong impression of ‘performance’ – even if the music you’re listening to never previously existed outside its creator’s laptop and headphones. 

Naturally enough, the bigger and more information-rich the digital file you serve it, the more convincing and confident Mojo 2 sounds at its output stage. But it’s by no means snobby – if a bog-standard Apple Music stream is what it’s given, it’ll do its utmost to make the best of it.

In short, it seems unlikely in the extreme that you can make a more significant pound-for-pound difference to your digital audio experience than the one Mojo 2 can give you. 

Price and availability

The Chord Mojo 2 is on sale now, and it’s priced at £495.