With the new Chord ANNI, the English hi-fi manufacturer Chord Electronic Ltd. presents a new solution in the Chord Qutest Series, namely an amplifier that can be used for headphones as well as a stereo integrated amplifier.
Chord ANNI is a so-called desktop amplifier, at least that is how the English hi-fi manufacturer Chord Electronics Ltd. describes its latest addition to the Chord Qutest Series.
The special feature of this solution is not so much that it is once again a particularly small solution, which applies to all systems of the Chord Qutest Series, but rather the underlying technology, because for the first time the Chord ULTIMA Technology is used in the new Chord ANNI. Equally remarkable is that the new Chord ANNI can be used to drive headphones as well as compact speaker systems.
Headphones or compact loudspeaker systems?
The Chord ANNI is thus the first small desktop integrated amplifier that Chord Electronics Ltd. has brought to market, according to the English company, which thus describes this solution as particularly flexible in application.
Chord ULTIMA Circuit Topology
The new Chord ANNI desktop amplifier benefits from Chord’s proprietary ULTIMA circuit topology and is designed to exploit the full potential of today’s high-performance headphones and desktop monitors for the reproduction of high-resolution audio sources, according to Chord Electronics Ltd.
The compact Chord ANNI also features Chord Electronics Ltd’s recently announced Dual-feed-forward Error-correction Circuit Topology, which the manufacturer calls a particularly advanced technology that allows the amplifier to drive any headphone load, while error-monitoring and compensating for gain at all times.
All relevant connections despite compact dimensions
The Chord ANNI delivers an output of 10 watts into 8 ohms, whereby speaker systems are connected via plugs designed for 4 mm bananas. More space is simply not available here. A two-stage gain control for the speakers provides additional flexibility for a wide range of desktop monitors.
For headphones, the Chord ANNI offers a 3.5 mm stereo mini-jack as well as a 6.3 mm stereo jack, whereby both outputs can be operated simultaneously so that two people can actually enjoy music together.
The small Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier offers two pairs of cinch sockets for inputs.
The main control element is a volume control, which, and this is a detail worth mentioning, is a classic rotary encoder and also functions as an input selector switch.
This is worth mentioning because Chord Electronics Ltd. usually uses backlit balls as buttons in its compact solutions, which the company itself calls Polychromatic Control Spheres . And these are also found in the new Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier, although one of them serves as the aforementioned gain control button, the second as the main switch.
Compact, elegant aluminium housing
Another typical feature of the Chord Qutest Series is, of course, the machined aluminium housing of the new Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier, which is presented in black anodised form.
This makes the new Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier an extremely elegant system that can be prominently displayed.
The optional Chord Qutest Stand System, also known as Chord QSS, helps with this. In this context, it should also be noted that Chord Electronics Ltd. naturally pursues a system approach with the new Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier, thus recommending the combination with the other solutions of the Chord Qutest Series, be it the Chord Quest Digital to Analogue Converter or the Chord Qutest HUEI Phono Stage.
Power supply via external power supply unit
Of course, the new Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier is powered by an external power supply, namely a 15 V power supply. The Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier also has a 12 V DC output that can be used to power other components in the Chord Qutest Series.
The new Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier should be available these days, with a recommended retail price of € 1.549,-.
Getting to the point
Chord Electronics Ltd. already offers interesting solutions with the Chord Qutest Series, only, it was small “helpers” in the form of a D/A converter or a phono preamplifier that comprised this line. Now, the product line is extended by the new Chord ANNI Desktop Amplifier, which is really a system solution that can cover a multitude of tasks in the most compact and elegant form.