Chord Electronics Announces New Ultima Pre 3 Pre-Amplifier

Posted by Chord Electronics on May 6th 2022

All-new ULTIMA PRE 3 offers next-level performance

A new ground-up design preamplifier harnessing 30+ years’ of analogue amplifier-building expertise

Kent, England, 4 May 2022: Chord Electronics has launched an all-new ground-up design analogue preamplifier, the ULTIMA PRE 3. The new preamp is an entirely fresh design both inside and out, and benefits from the latest unique Chord Electronics’ preamplifier technologies, plus a striking new fascia design, all masterminded by the company’s founder-owner John Franks.

The ULTIMA PRE 3 harnesses more than 30 years of British amplifier-building expertise and takes advantage of the very latest developments in advanced low-distortion power supplies. These new devices offer exceptionally low noise and outstanding amplifier operation. Coupled with the company’s latest circuit design, the  ULTIMA PRE 3 offers new levels of preamplifier performance.

Benefiting from five analogue inputs (two balanced and three unbalanced), plus a separate AV bypass input, all five of the ULTIMA PRE 3’s inputs enjoy individual buffering and are selectively filtered against potential ingress from radio frequency interference. Selection switching is performed via sealed relays, controlled by microprocessors.

Externally, the ULTIMA PRE 3 benefits from a completely redesigned front panel. The new fascia offers a perfectly symmetrical design, centered on a circular power on/off sphere, using the company’s familiar polychromatic indicator lighting, giving a clear and simple indication of the amplifier’s playing status. The power sphere is flanked by a newly designed volume and input selector control knob, plus a combined balance and AV bypass control.

All casework is precision CNC machined from solid aircraft-grade aluminium, including the Integra legs. A black acrylic side-block alternative to the Integra legs is also available as a no-cost option. The upper panel features a pleasing vented design, which is enhanced with a dimmable LED light.

In addition to its five inputs, the  ULTIMA PRE 3’s rear panel features both balanced and unbalanced outputs, a 12 V trigger and IEC power inlet, plus a convenient 5 V/3 A USB Type-A output to power peripheral devices, including Chord Electronics’ DACs such as the Qutest and Hugo 2.

The new  ULTIMA PRE 3 is perfectly suited to a wide range of power amps, including the ULTIMA 5 and ULTIMA 6 stereo power amplifiers. It can also be used with the ULTIMA 2 and ULTIMA 3 monos.

The hand-built ULTIMA PRE 3 is available now in either Jett black or Argent silver. It will make its European show debut at High End, Munich, 2022.

Price and availability

The  ULTIMA PRE 3 is available to order now in the UK. US versions will be shipping in late Q2.

About Chord Electronics Ltd

Chord Electronics Ltd is a world-leading manufacturer of high-performance hi-fi and audio products. Since 1989, from its spectacular riverside base in Kent, England, Chord Electronics has been creating some of the planet’s finest hi-fi, home cinema and professional audio equipment. A technology-driven innovator, Chord Electronics continues to deliver excellence through exemplary audio engineering, cutting-edge design and a true aesthetic understanding.

Chord Electronics is trusted and admired internationally and its global customer base includes: Metropolis Studios, Abbey Road Studios (London); Sony Music Studios (New York), Skywalker Sound (California) and more.