The brilliant Gold Note IS-1000 Deluxe Integrated Amplifier has just won an Editors Choice award in The Absolute Sound Magazine’s 2022 Awards!
High performing ‘super’ integrated amplifiers have gone from strength to strength over the past few years with products like the Vitus RI-101 and the move away from multiple boxes to one box that does everything to a very high standard has really gained traction and the concept of a more simple system is proving very attractive at all price levels. It takes up less space, uses less cabling and in many case you simply need an amplifier, a network connection and a pair of loudspeakers and you are set! Once one box was thought to be a sonic compromise over separate pre-powers, but not any more!
Priced at £5000 the IS-1000 Deluxe is the first integrated amplifier in my portfolio of products, I keep it on permanent demonstration and it has proven itself to be rather popular and I must say that for the price of admission the performance and feature set is a genuinely tough act to beat.
It throws out 125 watts per channel and sonically it is very open and transparent whilst retaining a really nice natural tone and balance, there is no stridency or forwardness in the presentation at all. It offers excellent weight and is an incredibly engaging listen – I’ve been using it most recently with a pair of Boenicke W5 SE speakers which aren’t the easiest speaker to drive, in a room which is almost 4m square (with high ceilings) there is absolutely no shortage of bass weight, quite the opposite – it has surprised more than a few people these past few weeks.
The IS-1000 Deluxe is much than just an integrated amplifier as well of course, it has a built in MM/MC phono stage (based around the award winning PH-10 minus its adjustability). It has 3 analogue inputs (1 x XLR and 2 x RCA), it also has fixed and variable outputs on 2 pairs of RCA connections. One of the RCA inputs can be set as either a line input or MM/MC and the other RCA inputs can used as an AV bypass if needed.
Not forgetting of course the brilliant onboard DAC which offers 3 x optical inputs, 1 x RCA coaxial input, 1 x USB-A socket (to play music from USB sticks), plus a network connection via Wi-Fi or Ethernet.
Connect the IS-1000 Deluxe to your network and it opens up a whole world of streaming audio options – Spotify Connect, Qobuz, Tidal, Deezer, vTuner Internet Radio, Airplay and it also supports MQA playback. It can also play music from UPnP servers such as Minimserver.
Not forgetting of course the IS-1000 Deluxe is also a Roon Certified Endpoint – so you can use Roon’s superb app for control and you can fall down the rabbit hole of new music discovery! Roon is without doubt the best interface and the best tool for discovering new music, it really is very good.
If you are using Spotify Connect you simply use the Spotify app on your phone or tablet, select the IS-1000 as the output device and off you go. If you want to stream Tidal, Qobuz, Deezer or vTuner you just use Gold Note’s own app.
There is non-Deluxe version of the IS-1000 available as well, this is £4200. In terms of the amplification, phono stage and digital connections it is identical, but the Deluxe version uses a better quality DAC.
As ever part exchange is welcome and if you have any questions don’t hesitate to get in touch