Nordost's new QBase Reference (QB10), QB8 Mark III, QSine and QWave

There was a lot to take in in the Nordost room at Munich High End. Building upon the upgraded QB8 Mark III AC Distribution Unit ($2300), which I described after it first appeared at AXPONA 2023 in Chicago, the company previewed the QBase Reference, aka the QB10 ($18,000), which is expected in the late summer or early fall. Equipped with 10 outlets and a 20-amp IEC, the QBase Reference includes heavy-grade wire and traces capable of supporting high-current amplifiers. Think of it as a fully maxed out, 32A-capable power distribution unit.

The QBase Reference/QB10 also incorporates two QSines and two QWaves which can be switched in and out in various combinations—more on these below—modified QPoint Resonance Synchronizer technology that affects AC current and, in Nordost's words, "manipulates all electromechanical resonances within its immediate proximity so that they resonate in unison with each other," and built-in SortFüt to further address resonance.

The QSine ($325/each), which differs from Nordost's QK1, generates a field that passively limits EMI on the AC line. According to its co-designer, Dennis Bonotto, it is not a filter but rather a device that shapes noise by adding noise to reduce broadband noise and create blacker backgrounds. The QWave ($450), in turn, is an upgrade to the QV2 that emits specific frequencies that impact overtones and harmonics in the bass and midrange. (The QV2 focuses solely on the bass region.) Ultimately, the QWave affects engagement, pace, rhythm, and dynamics.

The effects of the QSine and QWave are cumulative. While they work best in pairs, "the more the merrier," Bonotto said.