Power Ca­bles:


We are all too fa­mil­iar with the gar­den hose thick, heavy, in­flex­i­ble, tech-flex cov­ered va­ri­ety of af­ter­mar­ket power ca­bles that au­dio­philes seem drawn to; I my­self am not im­mune to as­so­ci­at­ing big­ger (in this case thicker) with bet­ter. The Nor­dost Heim­dall 2 power cord; how­ever, takes a dif­fer­ent path. Heim­dall 2 power cords are slen­der and lim­ber spec­i­mens that have a rather fu­tur­is­tic look - I could eas­ily pic­ture them in a sci-fi flick (prop de­part­ments take note!). As well, their vi­brant red colour, smooth skin and slen­der pro­file give them what I would re­fer to as (and I might be alone here) an almost edi­ble candy-like ap­peal – those with young chil­dren or a sweet tooth, be­ware. The ca­bles are ter­mi­nated with sub­stan­tial black plas­tic plugs that have vis­i­ble brass screws - rem­i­nis­cent of com­mer­cial grade plugs – though a step above in ap­par­ent re­fine­ment. I found that the plugs fit very well, which gave me con­fi­dence in their con­tact. Along with the stan­dard Norse 2 fea­tures men­tioned above (i.e. Mi­cro Mono-Fil­a­ment FEP Con­struc­tion & solid-core, 99.99999% OFC with 60 m sil­ver-plat­ing) the power ca­bles have the fol­low­ing spec­i­fi­ca­tions: 3 x 16 AWG con­duc­tors; 10pF/ ft ca­pac­i­tance; 4.0 Ohms per 1000ft/304M DC re­sis­tance; 15 Amp – power rat­ing (ter­mi­na­tion de­pen­dent) and; a sig­nal prop­a­ga­tion de­lay of 85% light speed.

Fol­low­ing the sug­gested im­ple­men­ta­tion strat­egy, men­tioned above, I first in­serted the power ca­bles, re­plac­ing the power cord on my CDP, preamp and amp. I held-off on the QB8 power dis­tri­bu­tion bar, in­stead plug­ging the power cords di­rectly to my ded­i­cated cir­cuit wall sock­ets. The re­sult, quite frankly, was a sur­prise that had me riv­eted. Spa­tial cues were en­hanced, along with mi­cro dy­nam­ics. Be­fore me was a larger sounds­tage with in­creased im­age size, along with richer tonal colour and com­plex­ity. Lis­ten­ing to Shelby Lynne’s sul­try and im­pres­sively recorded al­bum Just A Lit­tle Lovin’ served to pro­vide me with deeper in­sight. The ti­tle track on this al­bum is amaz­ing and I’ve be­come very fa­mil­iar with its sub­tleties. The open­ing kick-drum al­ways gets me and with the Heim­dall 2 power ca­bles in place, the dy­namic im­pact, though hav­ing a fa­mil­iar mag­ni­tude, was clearly faster on the up­take, bring­ing with it a greater sense of the drum skin and mak­ing the ex­pe­ri­ence that much more real. From another per­spec­tive, the open­ing cym­bal strike came across with greater ex­ten­sion but also seemed to jump out from what I per­ceived as a qui­eter back­ground. Lis­ten­ing to the tap­ping of the hi-hat, I was taken aback by the abun­dance of har­monic com­plex­ity; no­tice­ably more con­sis­tency to its timely clash. Shelby’s vo­cal style is en­thralling and with the Heim­dall 2 power cords even more so. There was a lovely smooth­ness to her vo­cal­iza­tions and with it came greater warmth, with­out any com­pro­mise in de­tail. When an in­stru­ment is ren­dered with more in­tri­cacy, it gains ex­pres­sion and this is ex­actly what I heard with the bass gui­tar, while the lead gui­tar also re­vealed an ex­tra level of mi­cro-de­tail, in­creas­ing my en­gage­ment. All of this sat within an im­aged venue that was now larger, more open – gain­ing depth and even height, ris­ing up in the up­per cor­ners.

Power Dis­tri­bu­tion:

Hav­ing ex­pe­ri­enced the im­prove­ments wrought by in­tro­duc­ing the Heim­dall 2 power ca­bles, I was ready to add the Nor­dost QBASE QB8 power dis­tri­bu­tion unit. The QB8 is im­pres­sively built with a thick ex­truded alu­minum en­clo­sure akin

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