Three decades in development, Chord Electronics’ next-generation ULTIMA 3 mono power amplifiers will be making their UK debut at Ascot, complemented by the flagship DAVE DAC and upscaling BLU MKII CD/digital transport.

Chord Electronics, will be demonstrating its new ULTIMA 3 mono power amplifiers for the first time in the UK at The UK HiFi Show Live 2019.


The Kent-based company will be introducing the benefits of its new state-of-the-art dual-feed-forward power amp technology, which also incorporates MD John Franks’ own advanced concepts in ultra-high-frequency power supplies. Chord Electronics’ show system will also include its flagship front-end, the BLU MKII digital/CD transport, which includes the company’s latest FPGA-based 768KHz upscaling technology, its reference-level DAC, DAVE, plus the company’s CPA5000 preamp.

KEF Blade 2 & ChordMusic

The British-made electronics will be joined by (fellow Maidstonian) KEF’s Blade 2 loudspeakers and Chord Company’s flagship ChordMusic cables in a  ‘Best of British’ system.


First unveiled in October 2018, the new ULTIMA amplifier topology (which originally was exclusive to the range-topping £30,000 ULTIMA power amp), is now more affordable than ever having trickled down into the new ULTIMA 3 mono power amps (£11,000 each).

Sharing the same Chord Electronics’ DNA as the flagship ULTIMA, the new 480-watt ULTIMA 3 is a direct replacement for the company’s SPM 1400 MKII and sits in the Full Size range. The new amplifier has been redesigned with a remodelled fascia featuring Chord Electronics’ MD, owner and Chief Designer, John Franks’, latest design.

The new precision-machined fascia is made from aircraft-grade aluminium and features a solid 28 mm-thick front panel, enhanced by a recessed spherical power button that illuminates for both operation and standby modes. A hidden front-panel switch, neatly located in the vertical split line, enables the lighting to be dimmed if required.

Like all Chord Electronics’ Full Size and Reference range amplifiers, the new ULTIMA 3 is available in a choice of Jett Black or Argent Silver finishes. The amplifier can be specified with either the stackable Integra Leg system in Jett Black, Argent Silver or Nickel finishes or the highly polished black acrylic side block option. The amp offers both balanced and unbalanced connections plus high-quality loudspeaker terminals.

The ULTIMA topology is a design featuring John Franks’ latest circuit creation, the first all-new design in three decades.

Technical Specifications

Output Power: 480W RMS per channel @ 0.05% distortion into 8Ω;

Frequency Response: 1dB @ 0.2Hz to 46kHz and -3dB 0.1Hz to 200kHz

Signal to Noise Ratio: Better than -84dB

Channel Separation: Better than 90dB

Input Impedance: 100kΩ Unbalanced/Balanced

Output Impedance: 0.04Ω

Dimensions with included integra legs: 481mm x 176mm x 377mm

Price & Availability

ULTIMA 3 £11,000 (each); available now

Find Chord Electronics at The UK HIFi Show Live 2019: Windsor Forest room

You will find our UK Hifi Show Live 2019 reports here after the show


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