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Chord Electronics welcomes BerTTi to its ULTIMA family

  • Chord Electronics has given us portable DACs called Mojo and Hugo, a high-end DAC called Dave and a ‘table-top’ power amplifier called TToby. The stutter comes for free. This week, that table-top power amplifier gets an update with the announcement that a new model – called BerTTi – is set to replace TToby as the matching power amplifier for the UK company’s HugoTT D/A converter, headphone amplifier and pre-amplifier.

    BerTTi inherits TToby’s low-profile, half-width aircraft-grade aluminium chassis and still sports single-ended and balanced XLR outputs – plus loudspeaker binding posts and IEC power socket – on its back panel. So what’s new?

    Under the hood, the basic Class A/B topology hasn’t changed but the circuit design has. BerTTi inherits the feed-forward error correction found in Chord’s higher-end ULTIMA amplifiers for 75wpc of output power into 8 Ohms. This feed-forward correction algorithm was first developed by Dr. Malcolm J Hawksford before being refined by Bell Labs’ Bob Cordell and tweaked by Chord Electronics founder John Franks.

    Those keeping score will note that BerTTi’s output power is 25wpc less than TToby’s. John Franks told me at Munich High-End this year that BerTTi offers lower distortion and higher degrees of transparency than its predecessor.

    From the press release: “BerTTi utilises our proprietary ULTIMA technology which continuously monitors the electrical and thermal performance parameters for each of the MOSFET power devices used within this advanced design. This additional circuitry adds an extra layer of control in the power components’ topology that lowers all distortion modes when compared to ordinary high-quality amplifier designs.”

    Franks has also fitted BerTTi out with two modified power supplies and “an additional auxiliary power rail for the front end, which provides extra voltage to drive the custom-made MOSFETs.”

    BerTTi’s technical specifications, as supplied by Chord Electronics, are as follows:

    Output power: 75 W into 8 Ω
    Frequency response: 5 Hz-100 kHz +/- 0.5 dB
    Input impedance: 100 kΩ
    THD: 0.008 %
    Gain: 30 dB
    SNR: 87 dB (A-weighted)

    Price? £3995.

    Pre-orders are open now with shipping slated to begin in September. Your choice of Jett Black or Argent Silver.

    Further information: Chord Electronics

    Written by John

    John currently lives in Berlin where he creates videos and podcasts for Darko.Audio. He has previously contributed to 6moons, TONEAudio, AudioStream and Stereophile.

    Darko.Audio is a member of EISA.

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