Our product specialists receive questions on a daily basis about Nordost products, their application, and hifi in general. We thought that we would take a minute to share some of our most recent and frequently asked questions here so that everyone can get the answers they are looking for!
Q: I have never owned any type of audio power equipment. Where do you think I should start?
A: A lot of our advice would depend on your particular system. Generally however, step one would be investing in a high quality distribution block. Our QBASE units address the conflicting flows of signal and ground paths in a typical system, which create noise on the line. By using a unique method that we call “star-earth topology”, our QB8 and QB4 units (QB6 if you are from the UK) control ground flow by lifting the impedance level of every outlet except for one (the “primary earth” outlet) by .5 Ohms. This creates an uninterrupted, straight-line AC distribution path from the wall to each individual component. This has a significantly positive impact on your soundstage—it lowers the noise floor without any high frequency compression.
Q: My dealer supplied me with a copy of the Nordost set up and tuning disc. Could you let me know how long and how often I should use the “burn in” track?
A: We’re glad that your dealer gave you the Nordost System Set-Up and Tuning Disc. It really does accelerate the burn in process! Using the burn in track on repeat, your interconnects and speaker cables will require about 96 hours of continuous play to get to the point where we consider them “burned in” (power cords burn in much faster and don’t require this). After that, if you use the disc once a year for several hours, the cables will continue to perform perfectly. We recommend that you repeat this process yearly in order to ensure that your cables are subjected to frequencies that your music might not contain.
Q: I am already using most of Nordost’s power products. I am now thinking about adding QK1 and/or QV2, but I don’t know which I should use in my one remaining free outlet. What problem(s) are the two different units designed to solve?
A: I think it is important to clarify that these two units are not solving problems per se, but more importantly, they are adding harmonics in different frequency ranges. The QV2 adds harmonics to the midrange and upper bass frequencies, and the QK1 adds harmonics to high frequencies—so you use them to add clarity to those areas.
The QV2 provides more audible effects, since it’s easier to hear changes within the mid and lower frequency spectrums. However, both the QV2 and QK1 make nice improvements.
We also want to point out that these units are not limited to the space available on your distribution block. QV2 and QK1 units can also be plugged into wall sockets, as long as they are in the same circuit as your sound system. When you are purchasing these devices, it is important to note that QV2 units work best in pairs, since that has a tendency to double their impact — QK1s work great in any quantity.