Chord’s award-winning DACs, headphone amplifiers, and phono preamplifier have been all the craze for the previous 8 years due to the excessive stage of innovation and distinctive sound high quality. It’s onerous to argue with the standard of the Qutest, DAVE, Mojo 2, or Anni Built-in Amplifier.
The Head-Fi revolution created an enormous alternative for the British producer and so they haven’t squandered it. With a lot consideration on their transportable and desktop options, Chord’s somewhat intensive vary of energy amplifiers, pre-amplifiers, and built-in amplifiers appears to get ignored. That may be an enormous mistake for those who’re available in the market for reference high quality solid-state amplification.
5 years for the reason that introduction of ULTIMA, Chord Electronics’ most completed amplifier topology in its historical past, the Kent firm has trickled the expertise down into an built-in amplifier for the primary time, setting new efficiency requirements for single-box amplification.
The brand new Chord ULTIMA INTEGRATED is a 125-watt amplifier designed by Chord Electronics’ founder, proprietor and chief engineer, John Franks. With the most recent dual-feed-forward error-correction topology, Chord Electronics’ legendary proprietary ultra-high-frequency energy provides and the corporate’s unmistakable industrial aesthetic, the ULTIMA INTEGRATED will make its world debut at Excessive Finish, Munich, 18 Could (see it in Chord Electronics’ room: A 3.1, C122).
Franks’ superior error-correction topology, which displays and instantly corrects alerts earlier than the output stage, is essential to the four-input ULTIMA INTEGRATED, and gives astonishing sign accuracy for unrivalled constancy from a one-box built-in machine.
The ULTIMA INTEGRATED additionally takes benefit of the very newest developments in superior low-distortion energy provides, gadgets providing exceptionally low noise and excellent amplifier operation.
All 4 of the ULTIMA INTEGRATED’s inputs, one totally balanced and three unbalanced, take pleasure in particular person buffering and are selectively filtered towards potential ingress from radio frequency interference; choice switching is by way of microprocessor-controlled sealed relays.
As well as, the amplifier advantages from an AV bypass enter, plus a balanced preamp output for connection to further energy amplifiers.
The brand new ULTIMA INTEGRATED is the primary new Chord Electronics built-in amplifier for seven years and is the one full-width mannequin within the firm’s vary (Anni, from the Qutest vary, is the corporate’s solely different built-in amplifier).
The ULTIMA INTEGRATED follows a line of extremely superior full-width ULTIMA-technology energy amplifiers, together with the unique flagship ULTIMA mono energy amplifier (780 W), the successive ULTIMA 2 (750 W) and three (480 W) mono energy amplifiers, and the ULTIMA 5 (350 W) and 6 (180 W) stereo energy amplifiers.
ULTIMA INTEGRATED industrial design aesthetic
The brand new ULTIMA INTEGRATED shares the identical all-new 28-mm-thick entrance panel seen in John Franks’ lately launched ULTIMA PRE 3 preamp. The brand new frontage gives a superbly symmetrical aesthetic, centered on a spherical energy on/off management which makes use of the corporate’s acquainted polychromatic (dimmable) lighting, giving a transparent and easy indication of the amplifier’s enjoying standing. The ability sphere is flanked by a newly designed mixed quantity and enter selector, plus a mixed steadiness and AV bypass management.
The entire metalwork is precision-machined from strong aircraft-grade aluminium, together with Chord Electronics’ iconic Integra Legs. The higher panel (lid) options Chord Electronics’ established vented design, with a newly redesigned logo-engraved dimmable LED mild ring, giving distinctive visible enchantment day or night time.
Like all of Chord Electronics’ full-size and Reference vary amplifiers, the brand new ULTIMA INTEGRATED is accessible in a alternative of Jett Black or Argent Silver. The amplifier may also be specified with a extremely polished black acrylic facet block possibility at no further price.
Chord Electronics’ founder, proprietor and chief designer, John Franks, mentioned: “The brand new ULTIMA INTEGRATED gives ranges of efficiency not but seen in any built-in amplifier. It options no fewer than 4 separate high-power line enter phase-corrected energy provides working in concord to provide this new amplifier the excessive power energy ranges and quick transient energy that Chord Electronics’ merchandise are recognized for.”
Along with its 4 inputs, AV bypass and balanced outputs, the amplifier’s rear panel additionally comprises high-quality loudspeaker terminals, a 12 V set off and a ten A C-19-type IEC.
Extra about Chord Electronics’ ULTIMA expertise
The ULTIMA topology is a state-of-the-art amplifier design that includes John Franks’ newest circuit creation. ULTIMA is the final word expression of the best high-performance, ultra-fast, high-power amplifier expertise obtainable right this moment. ULTIMA attracts on the corporate’s three many years of analysis, design and engineering in Nice Britain.
ULTIMA’s expertise relies on a technical paper by Dr Malcolm J Hawksford (emeritus professor at Essex College) which was taken up and refined by Bob Cordell of Bell Labs. Chord Electronics’ proprietor and Chief Designer, John Franks, then took the idea and developed it to a a lot larger stage; a development of Cordell’s superior dual-feed-forward error-correction topology incorporating Franks’ personal superior ideas in ultra-high-frequency energy provides, which have been a cornerstone of the corporate’s proprietary-technology amplifiers since its inception in 1989.
Every amplifier is painstakingly hand-built on the riverside Kent manufacturing facility, The Pumphouse, over a interval of a number of days, with every construct overseen by a devoted engineer. Chord Electronics’ famend aircraft-grade strong aluminium casework gives a reassuringly high-end and fully non-resonant enclosure for the electronics. The casework is neatly complemented by the distinctive Integra Leg system which gives each hanging visuals and the power to stack with numerous different full-size Chord Electronics merchandise in addition to the Choral items, such because the DAVE DAC/preamp and BLU MKII CD/digital transport, when utilizing the devoted Choral Ensemble stand.
- Output energy: 125 W into 8 Ω
- Frequency response: 10 Hz-200 kHz +/- 3 dB
- Enter impedance: 100 kΩ
- Enter most voltage: 3 V RMS (single-ended)
- Output most voltage: 35 V RMS
- Channel separation: 100 dB
- Operation voltage: 80-250 V AC auto-switching
- Energy consumption: 200 W
Worth and availability
The ULTIMA INTEGRATED is accessible to pre-order from Chord Electronics’ ULTIMA sellers now (transport September 2023) for £8,500.