Nordost Takes a Quantum Leap

Not every breakthrough product available through cable manufacturer Nordost costs an arm and a leg. The new Quantum Resonant Technology products distributed worldwide by Nordost Corporation are a prime example. While the QX-2 costs $1700, and the larger QX-4 costs $2500, their amazing effects on sound suggest a product I'd expect to cost far more.

In Nordost's demo system, the first Quantum QX-4 device was placed between the wall outlet and the Nordost Thor power conditioner ($3300). Three additional Quantum devices (one QX-2 and two QX-4s) were placed between the Thor and various Burmeister components. The effects of the Quantums are cumulative; the more, the merrier (both you and Nordost).

What did I hear? On a Yolanda Adams recording, the sound of a single triangle in space continues to haunt me hours later. I have heard many systems reproduce the triangle's sound, but never has any approached the experience of sitting in a prime orchestra seat in San Francisco's Davies Symphony Hall and hearing it resound and decay in space. Nordost's system, however, got the closest to reality I've heard so far. Equally astounding were the purity of Elly Ameling's voice on Brahms, and the total immersion in Mahler's music I experienced when listening to Ivan Fischer's "Record to Die For" recording of Mahler's Symphony 2. Few systems with speakers less than 6' tall and weighing less than 400 lbs can match the image size that Nordost achieved with the Quantum.

Overall I felt which I felt created breathtakingly three-dimensional, all-involving images that transcend the categories of "analog" and "digital." The QX2 made sounds more real.

Of course, it didn't hurt that the rest of the system consisted a Burmester 061 CD player ($13.995) and 032 integrated amp ($22,495), Raidho C-3 speakers ($36,000/pair), eight Nordost Odin 1.25-meter power cords ($11,000 each), two Nordost Odin 1-meter interconnects ($16,000 each), and a set of Nordost Odin 4-meter speaker cables ($38,000). In comparison, the Quantum seems like a bargain.

Nordost's Lars Kristensen performed a most interesting experiment; demonstrating the difference that a single Nordost Odin power cord can make on an entire system. Simply switching the cord from the wall receptacle between Valhalla ($2500) and Odin completely transformed the sound of the entire system.

According to Lars, introducing a single Odin power cord into a system makes a far significant difference than the change of interconnects. Lars claims that even a system equipped with Nordost's far more modestly priced Blue Heaven can sound better than a system entirely wired with Valhalla when you change the initial power cable to Odin. $11,000 is not exactly a minor investment, but if a single Odin power cable can make that much of a difference, I certainly think it worth checking out. I certainly hope to do so sometime before I head to the great Blue Heaven.

Buddha's picture

200K in cable.

Glad to hear Nordost has solved all the world's other problems!

Man, I feel guilty being an audiophile. Are we a bunch of Marie Antoinettes?

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

The size of my waistline does suggest that I eat a fair amount of cake...

suits_me's picture

"Quantum Resonant Technology"The marketing seers done forgot to include the all important "nano" technology. Or claim.

Jason Victor Serinus's picture

A name is just a name. I urge you not to get caught up in the language, or in arguments about the validity of quantum physics. Instead, please listen, and decide for yourself if a product does what it claims.

suits_me's picture

I am heartened by your reply, which notes that "Quantum Resonant Technology," is just a name in this context, or more properly, a marketing concept/gibberish. The Nordost component obviously has no more or less relationship to quantum physics than does any other aspect of our reality, whether it actually changes the perceived sound or not. Unless you or someone wants to direct me to the relevant, "quantum" science via "the google."My criticism stands: The company forgot to invoke "nano technology." Perhaps they could smear some micronized sunblock on the casework just to cover _all_ of the requisite bases....

David Cockrum's picture

I too was astonished at the incredible effect of the Quantum QX4/QX2 boxes in the Nordost room. While I would estimate that the other great systems I have heard could generate a soundfield of maybe 20 feet deep (including my own), this system seemed limitless in its ability to reproduce depth, imaging, and ambience. When Lars switched the quantum boxes off, the soundfield totally collapsed, making the system sound very ordinary. One must hear the positive impact that these devices have on soundstaging to believe it. They sure made a believer out of me.

Radiv Sareieo Retsubelbac's picture

Quantum leap is a strong word in science. How a cable can be so good that we can call it a quantum leap, probably compared to previous products from Nordost, is for me like believing in Santa Claus. However, Nordost have a name. They can do and say pretty much what they like, and audiophiles bites right on it. Sad to use that amount money on advertisement, knick-knack, rubbish, and a name, instead of using the same amount on music. Any low cost cables sounds for sure pretty much like any cable from Nordost. There is no science that say anything else. But of course, high end has its own physical laws. That's a common accepted fact - at least among audiophiles :-))

Festus Blorp the Unquestionable's picture

I've done a LOT of experiementing with this technology in the last 15 years, beginning with the Tice products... Tice worked too. Tice went out of business and QRT appeared so I purchased some of the original QRT units. My impression is that their effect is somewhat similar to deep cooling of the circuit. There seems to be substantially less electron scatter noise. One can hear this even on cheap tabletop radios. My next step was to insert Bybee AC quantum purifiers directly before the IEC inlet on the QRT. Initially the sound is unbelievably horrid yet it slowly begins to open up and bloom into an amazingly clean, transparent sound like a layer of sandy grit (the one had accepted as "normal" before) was rinsed away. QRT plus Bybee is pretty incredible.

Festus Blorp the Unquestionable's picture

I only wanted to add that the combined QRT/Bybee treatment was in parallel to the audio circuit, no AC passes through a QRT/Bybee box. The QRT/Bybee thing was attached to a power distribution box via a 1 meter cryo treated CardasAC cable. Nonetheless, the effect was immediate and *intense*. The initial sound is so nasal it has an almost donald duck on helium quality. The first reaction is that this is a bad idea and to pull it out of the circuit. After about ten hours the total impact radically changes which may be the result of some kind of change in the audio circuits low level behaviors. You cannot believe how much hashy crud lies between you and the music until it's gone.

R. Foster Sayles's picture

What I find extremely damaging within our little hobby is the huge percentage of people talking out of their arss, just to be heard, not from an experience. Furthermore, the amount of deconstructive blather does nothing to enhance any of our Hifi experiences or knowledge base. Yes, you have the right to say whatever you care to, though just because you can, doesn't mean you should. If we don't show a little respect for each other, how can we expect to be taken seriously by others? I prefer to let the music do the talking and my ears to decide what works and what doesn't. I find the Quantum gear to be amazing.Happy (music) Listening!

jesus's picture

interesting for everyone

Not Impressed's picture

Jason Victor Serinus is the laughing stock of audio reviewers. I never take anything he says as true. He said in the forums that he always hears a difference is every cable, interconnect and power cord he's ever tried BUT doesn't trust DBT xD Pretty easy to make claims then back out from taking a DBT because they are so "flawed" How stupid can you get? He's a sham.

JonB's picture

The scientific evaluation of the QX4 on is laughable. The comparison is not supported with proper details of methodology. The error measurements are meaningless because they are a snapshot.Even more worrying is that the testers state that the device works best when above or below the tested CD player... is it working as a mains conditioner or as a shielding element of the player's casing!!!I haven't tested this equipment, so I wouldn't comment on it's effects. It might be great. Just don't waste time with the hokey science: get a legitimate company to test it properly and give an insight into how it works. Otherwise, do a blind test and use your ears.