Chord Electronics SPM 1050 review

Astonishingly fast and punchy-sounding power amp Tested at £3990.00

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

The SPM1050 does everything you'd want from a power amp


  • +

    Speed, articulation and insight

  • +

    a great all-rounder


  • -

    Only that its intended partnering preamp isn't quite as good

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Few pieces of high-end kit are as well made as this Chord power amp. The metalwork is immaculate, and all the controls feel engineered to last decades.

The SPM1050 sits midway into Chord's vast range, using some circuitry from superior siblings, though with compromises made in component quality to hit this price.

And it's astonishingly fast and punchy, sounding more powerful than even its 200-watt per channel power rating would suggest.

The SPM1050 delivers an exciting and stable sound that's as happy with the gentle ramblings of Tracy Chapman's Let It Rain as it is with The White Stripes's Elephant at full volume. Clarity and the ability to keep composure on difficult material are additional highlights.

In short, Chord's power amp is a great product that need fear no rival. The only downside is that its intended partnering preamp – the CPA3000 – isn't quite so impressive in its class. Otherwise, the SPM1050 is a star of a power amp.

What Hi-Fi?

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