Australian Hi-Fi

The Ultima(te) integrated


Chord Electronic­s has welcomed an integrated model to its Ultima amplifier range, which sits below its flagship Ultima Reference series.

The fittingly named Ultima Integrated is Chord's first full-width integrated design in years and joins the handful of dedicated pre and power Ultima models that have appeared in recent years. The 125-watt (into eight ohms) Integrated features 'advanced' error-correction topology, which monitors and corrects signals prior to the output stage for improved signal accuracy. According to the British company, the Ultima Integrated also benefits from the latest developmen­ts in low-distortion power supplies to deliver “outstandin­g amp operation”.

The latest Ultima houses four inputs — one fully balanced and three unbalanced. Each utilises individual bu‡ering and selective filtering against radio frequency interferen­ce, as well as selection switching through microproce­ssor-controlled relays. There's also an AV bypass input and a balanced preamp output for connecting it to additional power amps.

Design-wise, the new model mimics the Ultima Pre 3 preamp by sporting a 28mm-thick front panel, which has a central power on/o‡ control that uses multi-coloured dimmable lighting to indicate the amp’s playing status. The so-called “power sphere” is then surrounded by a combined volume and input selector and a combined balance and AV bypass control.

The metal case itself is aircraft-grade aluminium, with the lid featuring a vented design and a dimmable LED light ring. The Ultima Integrated is available in a choice of Jett Black or Argent Silver finishes, and can also be spruced up with a polished black acrylic side block option for no additional cost.

According to Chord Electronic­s owner and chief designer John Franks, “the new Ultima Integrated o‡ers levels of performanc­e not yet seen in any integrated amplifier” and, thanks to its four line inputs, delivers “high energy power levels and fast transient power that Chord Electronic­s’ products are known for.”

The Ultima Integrated wears an £8,500 price tag and is due to start shipping towards the end of the year, nearer which time we will have Aussie pricing. Plenty of time to save up, then!

For more informatio­n, contact Radiance Audio Visual on (02) 9659 1117 or visit

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