Newz Mania

Going Back to the Future with the Mission 778X Integrated Amplifier


Around the time that I celebrated my Bar Mitzvah in 1983, British loudspeaker manufacturer, Mission, introduced its first integrated amplifier — the Mission 778. The 778 wasn’t ground breaking and it’s probably accurate to say that the industrial design was inspired by the earliest Naim amplifiers of the 1970s that featured a rather compact, half-width chassis.

12 months later, Mission introduced its Cyrus lineup of electronics and whilst there is a cult following overseas for the Cyrus One and Cyrus Two Integrated Amplifiers, the company wisely decided to focus on the loudspeaker side of its operations which are still going strong in 2022. Mission is part of IAG along with Wharfedale, Audiolab, Quad, Leak, Castle, and Luxman.

Mission introduced the 770 loudspeaker during the pandemic and it has already become one of the most popular modern “vintage audio” loudspeakers on the market.

Mission 778x Integrated Amplifier

The new Mission 778X Integrated Amplifier is the third product in the series which includes two loudspeakers and it offers a mix of “Back to the Future” for a number of reasons.

The Mission clearly borrows some design cues from the Quad Vena Integrated Amplifier; the amplifiers are likely manufactured and assembled in the same facility overseas.

The Mission 778X is a revisit of a classic Mission amplifier concept that was the Mission 778 – an affordable integrated amplifier that offered simplicity in operation but over-performed in the driving of loudspeakers.

The new Mission 778X maintains the influence of simplistic operation, large tractile controls, and a multitude of inputs. It’s a compact, ’80s inspired integrated amplifier that is fully equipped to meet the demands of modern music lovers, from vinyl fans to digital streamers.

The 778X offers 65 watts (4 ohms) of power and includes a phono stage based around a JFET-based circuit with precise RIAA equalization. It’s optimized for MM cartridges.

Complementing the RCA line inputs are digital and coax connection options and a built-in Bluetooth receiver that supports the aptX and AAC codecs.

The 778X is also equipped with a high-performance ESS ES9018K2M Reference chip with ESS Technology’s 32-bit HyperStream architecture and Time Domain Jitter Eliminator; the internal DAC can decode up to 32-bit/384kHz PCM and DSD256.

As someone who owns the first generation Quad Vena and Audiolab 6000A Integrated Amplifiers — I’m slightly puzzled by this product which seems to offer features from both of them.

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If the Mission 778X can offer the crisp and detailed presentation of its predecessors, they might have something that will appeal to very specific consumers looking for a mix of nostalgia and modern connectivity options.

Where to buy: $549 at Amazon

Product Specifications:

Inputs 1 x Coaxial, 2 x Toslink Optical, 1 x PC USB, 1 x Bluetooth (aptX/AAC),
2 x AUX,1 x RCA (Phono MM)
Outputs 1 x Coaxial, 1 x Toslink Optical, 1 x RCA (PRE Out) 
Sampling Frequency Optical / Coaxial: 44.1kHz-192kHz;
PC USB:44.1kHz-384kHz(PCM) / DSD64, DSD128, DSD256
Preamplifier Section
Gain (max.) +0dB (Line), +47dB (Phono MM) 
Input Sensitivity 540mV (Line, Volume = 0dB)
2.5mV (Phone MM, Volume = 0dB) 
Input Impedance 10K (AUX); 47K//100pF (Phono MM)
Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) <0.003%
Frequency Response (ref. 1kHz) 20Hz-20kHz (±0.1dB)
PRE Output Level 2.1Vrms (max.)
PRE Output SNR >110dB (A-weighted)
D to A Converter ESS Sabre32 ES9018K2M
Resolution 32-bit
Max. Sampling Frequency Optical/Coaxial: 192kHz;
USB: PCM 384kHz / 11.2896MHz (DSD256)
Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) < 0.001% (1KHz @ 0dBFS)
Output level (0dBFS, 1KHz)  2.1Vrms
Power Amplifier Section
Gain +31dB
Rated Power Output 2 x 45W (8 ohms)
2 x 65W (4 ohms)
Frequency Response (ref. 1kHz) 20Hz-20KHz (± 0.5dB)
Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) <0.005% (30W / 8 ohms)
Input Sensitivity 540mV (RCA AUX In)
2.5mV (Phono MM)
Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) >108dB (ref. 45W, A-weighted) 
Crosstalk @1K >80dB (ref.1W)
Standby Power Consumption <0.5W
Headphone Amplifier
Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) < 0.01% (1kHz, 50mW ) 
Output Impedance 4.7 ohms
Load impedance 20-600 ohms
Dimensions (mm) (W x H x D) 236x98x380.6
Net Weight 6.3kg
Finish Black / Silver
Power requirements (depending on region) 220-240V ~ 50/60Hz
100-120V ~ 50/60Hz
Standard Accessories Power Cord, Remote Control, User Manual, Antenna

Related Reading:

Best Budget Integrated Amplifiers


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