Now in its 32nd year, The Chord Com­pany isn't slow­ing in its quest for mu­si­cal ex­cel­lence

What Hi-Fi (UK) - - Feature -

The Chord Com­pany is a le­gend of the hi-fi world. Its Bri­tish-made hi-fi ca­bles have been earn­ing ec­static re­views and wow­ing mu­sic fans for more than 30 years. And dur­ing that time its rep­u­ta­tion for af­ford­able ex­cel­lence has seen its ca­bles go on sale in over 20 coun­tries.

As with so many of the best hi-fi brands, though, Chord’s ori­gins could barely be more hum­ble. It all be­gan on the kitchen ta­ble of com­pany founder Sally (ibb (then ,ennedy) to­wards the end of 1984. Re­al­is­ing that a par­tic­u­lar cable re­quested by a US dis­trib­u­tor of Bri­tish hi-fi didn’t ex­ist, Sally de­cided to draw on her love of mu­sic and years of ex­pe­ri­ence in the hi-fi busi­ness and make it her­self.

Im­pecca le a en ion o Èe ail

,een to set the right tone from the out­set, Sally had her de­but cable ex­haus­tively tested be­fore launch to en­sure it set new per­for­mance stan­dards. The hard work paid off, as the cable’s rep­u­ta­tion grew and it grad­u­ally found its way into key re­tail­ers. The press took no­tice, too, with rave re­views ce­ment­ing Chord’s ar­rival on the se­ri­ous hi-fi scene.

Since then, the com­pany has gone from strength to strength, de­vel­op­ing range af­ter range of cut­ting-edge, per­for­mance-first ca­bles and ex­pand­ing far be­yond that first ‘Chrysalis’ in­ter­con­nect. 0ver the years, Chord has added ev­ery­thing from speaker and power ca­bles to )D.I, USB, stream­ing ca­bles, and even guitar leads – all de­vel­oped un­der tech­ni­cal direc­tor Nigel 'inn.

Nigel, who’s been with Chord since 1990, is him­self a hi-fi buff and ac­com­plished mu­si­cian. No cable is re­leased with­out un­der­go­ing ex­ten­sive lis­ten­ing tests by Nigel and his mu­sic-ob­sessed team in Chord’s cus­tom-built, state of the art lis­ten­ing room - in­clud­ing blind test­ing. Chord even in­vites feed­back from cus­tomers and re­tail­ers be­fore fi­nal­is­ing a new cable.

Not sur­pris­ingly, this de­vo­tion to mak­ing mu­sic sound bet­ter has led to Chord bag­ging a huge num­ber of awards from the hi-fi press over the years. 'or ex­am­ple, the Car­ni­val Sil­ver Screen picked up the What Hi-fi? Award for Best Speaker Cable an as­ton­ish­ing four years in a row.

De­spite many of its ca­bles enkoy­ing long-run­ning suc­cess, Chord has never been a brand to stand still. 0n the con­trary, its tire­less quest for the ul­ti­mate sound qual­ity has seen it con­stantly in­no­vate. Since 1998, for in­stance, all Chord in­ter­con­nects have em­ployed high-fre­quency ef­fec­tive shield­ing and low-mass, min­i­mal-metal plugs, af­ter ex­ten­sive Chord re­search dis­cov­ered the need to pro­tect ca­bles from the elec­tri­cal in­ter­fer­ence mod­ern homes are rife with.

Chord’s lat­est in­no­va­tion is Tuned ARA: tech­nol­ogy (see panel be­low). It’s borne of a de­sire to un­lock the full po­ten­tial of the au­dio qual­ity de­liv­ered by the lat­est CD play­ers, DACS and stream­ers.

But what of the fu­ture? What does the next 30 years hold for Chord? Ônow Alan <(ibb, Chord .D>, Nigel and I are reach­ing our 0th year,õ says Sally, Ôwe’re re­ly­ing on the skills and en­thu­si­asm of the younger mem­bers of the team to keep Chord go­ing, adapt­ing and chang­ing to the busi­ness cli­mate while main­tain­ing our core val­ues.õ

All of which should sound like mu­sic to the ears of the world’s next gen­er­a­tion of hi-fi fans.

Chordys next gen­er­a­tion of high-end ca­bles uses Tuned ARA= tech­nol­ogy ” and each one is hand-made

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