Nordost Red Dawn Speaker Cables

Red Dawn

Nordost Red Dawn Speaker Cable

User Reviews (15)

Showing 1-10 of 15  
Unknown_Device   AudioPhile [Mar 29, 2008]
Strength:

When the correct balance is found by substituting a lot of different interconnects and power cords, Red Dawn sounds very pleasant - detailed, timbrally correct, harmonically beautiful, unobtrusive and light on the ears - all that on very different types of music from club and acid to jazz and classical. Even old regular cd's to sound like audiophile reissues.

Weakness:

Very fussy and system dependent. When in a wrong system, can sound emotionally cold, uninvolving, and robbing the music of its inner beauty. But that can be somewhat cured by trying some 5 to 10 different interconnects and different power cables, as well as various resonance devices under equipment - such as feet, cones, platforms and even springs. The cable has a tremendous potential, however. Audition it before buy - IN YOUR SYSTEM, and AT HOME!

It is a VERY system dependent cable! Audition it with your equipment at home first!! Every cable is very system-dependent, but this cable is more so than many others. That's the reason for only 4 stars. For example Kimber 8TC may be somewhat less spectacular overall, but it is much more universal, it's hard to find a system where 8TC would sound bad, and it is easy with Red Dawn. When I first connected it I thought - it is not burned in yet, it sounds more or less OK, let’s just wait. But even after two weeks with 8TC system sounded much richer and more involving. And after some time I realized that it should never be mated with Red Dawn interconnects – together they sounded totally uninvolving, boring and hard. First I thought - what a pathetic performance for a $900 retail cable (it sounded this way both with tube and solid state). But when I substituted the interconnects with AudioQuest Lapis, the emotional impact of the music went up dramatically. However, the timbral balance was still somewhat wrong, something was missing. And finally when I switched the AC power cable on the DAC from the custom-made Kimber (shielded 8TC) to a custom-made silver cable (6x1.3mm solid core 99.999 pure silver wire, fully shielded), I struck the ideal synergy and the sound of Red Dawn got totally transformed, it became very pleasant - detailed, timbrally correct, harmonically beautiful, unobtrusive and light on the ears - all that on very different types of music from jazz and classical to club and acid, and that's a good achievement for any cable. Even old regular cd's started to sound like audiophile reissues. I am happy with it now, but it took A LOT of fiddling to get there! Too much trouble to go through, IMHO. But I like it very much now :-)

Similar Products Used: AudioQuest Midnight, AudioQuest Indigo2, Kimber 8TC, 4TC, Audio Note AN-L, VanDenHull D352 Hybrid, Canare, VampireWire
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
crippler   Audio Enthusiast [Feb 27, 2003]
Strength:

Really digs all the power and energy out of your cd player signal.

Weakness:

For the money, none.

This is the cusp of high end. The clarity of the highs and balance was tingling. The bass authority was, wow can my system do that. They have the look and feel of high quality. To spend this king of money on cables 2 years ago, would never have happened, now I'm contemplating better cables because now I hear the difference of good stuff. I use Arcam Diva throughout with Kef 104.2's with Wireworld eclipse111 ( best neutral cable I ever heard, totally nuetral). I cannot recomend these cables enough. They are worth every cent.

Similar Products Used: Kimber pbj, monster 550i, Nordost black knight, Ecosse ma2 Maestro
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
dfcannon   AudioPhile [Feb 05, 2002]
Strength:

Natural, black background, interesting design.

Weakness:

Too honest for some recordings and types of music.

Recently I listened to these cables at Innovative Audio in New York and I was almost floored by how great they sounded. The components in the system were: Arcam FMJ DV-27 Arcam FMJ A-22 integrated amp Sonus Faber Grand Piano speakers First of all, voices were reproduced to degree of naturalness that was almost jaw-dropping. I have never heard vocals so rich, immediate and warm in an audio system, as I found for instance with a Sara K. CD. (My previous system contained the Sonic Frontiers Anthem Amp-1 and Pre-1 and a Rega Planet). Second, I have never been so at ease while listening to a CD. The background was so quiet that the music seemed to suspend in space. It was smooth and refined and relaxed. Instruments occupied their own places in space, even in some complex, early-80s rock by Rush. On the flip side, I also found the cables extremely revealing, to the point that studio rock became less fun by virtue of its often-compromised recording biases. The inevitable compressed, boosted sound and effect-oriented placement of instruments (such as having a drum move across the soundstage from the right to the left channel) sounded a little tacky. On the other hand, I have to hand it to this system and these cables... rock was crystal clear and never became congested, even at high volumes. In short, great wire for this system. I''m giving it 4 stars for value only because I''ve not demo''d (and certainly never in a serious way), systems at a significantly higher price point, so I can''t say whether these are "giant killers."

Similar Products Used: Synergistic Research Mark II-S (once owned them) Synergistic Research Alpha Quads Tara Labs (several models)
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
clark redwood   Audio Enthusiast [Mar 12, 2000]

The impact of the Red Dawn speaker cables on my system was nothing short of stunning. The background became pitch black, the midrange became crisp, smooth and clear, the bass tightened and the soundstage became wider. Now this system, CAL, Spectral, Aragon and Dunlavy SC-IV's, sounded pretty darn good already so the degree of improvement really took me by surprise. I have heard of a tendency for bass leanness with these cables but they match beautifully with the strong bass abilities of the 8008BB and SC-IV's.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Onesizefitsall   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 15, 2000]
Strength:

Male/Female voices, Dark Background, very detailed

Weakness:

Too Analytical, not very musical! There are better cables in this price range - some for a lot less!!!

I auditioned these cables in competition with the above list. At first, I really liked the Red Dawn (Note: I was auditioning a used pair of 8 Ft. with bananas). I let them "re-break-in" on my system for about 12 hours (the seller had used them daily for 2 years). At first I liked the detail and dark background that they projected. However, after a week, I found myself "losing the forest in the trees." Rather than enjoying the music, I was analyzing the presentation. Comparing it to the other cables above, the Analysis Plus product blew Red Dawn away. The Red Dawn in more detailed, but the MUSICALITY of the Analysis Plus AND the SOUNDSTAGE were superior. To top it off, the AP products costs much less! The AP products provide fantastic synergy with my system the Red Dawns went back to the seller!
System:
Audiomat Arpege
Vecteur Club Sixty
Monitor Audio 20SEC

Similar Products Used: Analysis Plus Silver Oval, Analysis Plus Oval 9, Harmonic Technology
OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
3
Raj J   Audiophile [Jun 11, 2001]
Strength:

Very transparent and detailed. High-current capacity. Good specs and good design.

Weakness:

Quite fragile, but carries life time warranty. Will point out flaws in existing equipment if not up to mark or same high-end standard. Must use with high quality equipment!

As noted above, I have used a lot of different types of cables from super flat line to monster garden hose thickness! All of them sound different. I have learned that no cable out there is better than the other because cable and interconncts are "SYSTEM DEPENDENT!" some expensive cables that would make a system blossom fully, would sound strangled on another system averaging to mediocre, where you might get better sound with average electrical zip-cord wire. The secret is to try different cables! As many as you can before purchasing anything. And the golden rule is to try the cables on YOUR SYSTEM AT HOME, not the demo ROOM!!! These are completely two different worlds! The system I have comprises of the following associated equipment:
preamp: Conrad Johnson PFR (line stage preamp)
poweramps: Manley Reference 350watt monoblocks (all tube design)
Cd player: Conrad Johnson DV2B (tube design)
Loudspeakers: Magneplanar MG3.5/R
Interconnects: Nordost Blue Heaven (factory terminated)
Speaker cable: Nordost Red Dawn with Z plugs

For the above system with Maggies and Manley tube amps, the best cables I have found to be the most transparent and musically satisfying is the Nordost blue heaven and red dawn combination. Use the blue heaven for the interconnects and the red dawn for speaker cable, you'll get a well balanced sound that is very pleasing overall. The sound reproduced keeps you involved with the music. You will not just sit and listen, you'll feel like dancing around or imagine playing the instrument yourself!
Cheers and happy listening,
Raj J

Similar Products Used: Nordost Blue Heaven, Nordost Flat line GoldMKII, Kimber Cable, Cardas, Van Den Hul, Monster top-end, and Audio Quest.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Dan   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 29, 2001]
Strength:

Incredible clarity and speed. Very dynamic and truth of timbre

Weakness:

fragile and gawky looking. Wife hates them out in the open

I got these cables thinking that they would be too bright for me but was looking for a silver speaker cable to try and the used price was right compared to the retail asking price. I was looking for a silver cable to run to the top posts of my Silverline Sonatina speakers which in their own right are ultra revealing. I really was thinking that these babies would be way too bright from all that I heard. However, I gave it a go and have been happy ever since even though I have since tried many other cables there too!
I was running Stealth Premier copper to the bottom posts of my speakers and Kimber 4 TC double runs to the top. This is essentially the 8TC but many find the double 4TC to be quicker? Who knows. Anyway first thing I notice as soon as the Nordost RD go in is how QUIET everything got! I never thought the KImber or Stealth ( which I tried up top also) or for that matter MIT MH-750 bi wires were noisy? However, once plugging in the RD I found that the other cables were in deed creating background noise I never knew existed? Go figure?
In goes the first CD. WOW!!!!!!!!!! Right from the first song I fell in love w/ these things. Speed! Clarity! Dynamics! Impact! Naturalness of vocals!!! Everything went up a notch. As they played longer and longer I also noticed a bigger air surrounding the notes and a certain delicacy in their individual presentation not there before. WOW!
Since that first day I have tried other silver cables in this spot. The Audiodyne Benchmark and a very expensive $2,000 for 4 meter pure silver ribbon cable also. Each time I notice things missing that the Nordost were doing better. I now run the Silver ribbon cables to the bass posts as they are fantastic at delivering clarity and speed to the lower notes and the depth is mind boggling from a 15 watt triode amp! However, I don't think I will be trying anything new up top unless I can one day luck into a pair of Nordost SPM on the cheap in the used market. I do understand that synergy is EVERYTHING! What these things bring to my system may not be what another system is looking for. However, don't dismiss these cables out of hand by what you sometimes hear about them being to bright! I feel my system is VERY revealing w/ an AES SUperamp running all NOS tubes. A Melos MAestro Pre amp w/ NOS tubes. A theta DB II transport and EVS Millinnium 2 DAC. I run TOp noth interconnects and most everything right down to my HArmonic Tech Magic One Digital cable is Silver or as revealing.

Similar Products Used: Pure silver Audiodyne, Pure silver ribbons, Kimber, AQ, MIt 750, Purist Audio Design, and others
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
john   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 24, 2001]
Strength:

Detailed, very transparent.

Weakness:

A little on the expensive side.

I’ll ditto what everyone else said. These speaker cables are very detailed and transparent. They changed my system for the better. (They better had for that kind of money). Anyways I wished the Red Dawn interconnects were this good but unfortunately they're not. I highly recommend these though, one of the best speaker cables you can buy.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Boris   Audio Enthusiast [Nov 17, 2001]
Strength:

Transparent, fast and natural

Weakness:

None

I've replaced my Audioquest Granite with Red Dawn and what an improvement, the sound became more open and transparent with a biger sound stage, exelent product.

Similar Products Used: Audioquest Granite
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Roy Jacobsen   Audiophile [Aug 13, 2001]
Strength:

Looks, build, soundstage, depth, the way they sonically reproduce voices in a very natural way.

Weakness:

None so far.

After having owned and tried several different speaker cables in my present setup, I thought I knew the capabilities of my system, that was until i tried the Ded Dawns (RD).

I was fairly satisfied with my previous cables, the Nordost Blue Heaven's (BH), but was looking for even more depth and wider soundstage. So I went to my local dealer, and borrowed 2 sets of RD to audition them at home, one set was single-wire, and the other bi-wire.

When I first hooked up the single-wire RD's, the first thing I noticed was a much more natural sound from the vocals, I usually use a recording from Kari Bremnes:Svarta Bjorn, and Pink Floyd:Dark Side Of The Moon as reference CD's. Kari's voice came out as natural as if she was there right in front of me. The second thing was the quietness in between words, it was all black,.. NO noise at all, which was an enormous improvement from the BH. The third major improvement was the singers "s-sounds", which with the BH at times sounded very sharp and unnatural, very "digital" is perhaps the nearest i can come up with to describe it.

Now i tried the bi-wire version, and the same sonically caracter appeared, but with an even wider and deeper soundstage as result. The bass went deeper, and with more control, and the ribbon tweeters of my Kappa's had never been as soft, and yet so crisp as with these cables.
The midrange is in a class of itself, creating a very natural and "analog" feeling, and maybe my SFCD-1 with its 6922 tubes, and my Electrocompaniet amps all together matched the RD's perfect? Dark Side Of The Moon was almost scaringly clear, I had never heard such a nerve on this album in my home before. The improvement from the BH's were enormous, David Gilmour's guitar on "Speak to me/Breathe", the first cut on this album gave me the chills, I was stunned by the soundstage from this old but very very good produced album, need I say I had a wide smile on my face? :)

The closest i can get in trying to explain the sound is: I now have some of the magical feeling as I sometimes get when i listen to high-end tube gear; magical, alive, natural.

Well,... I think I have managed to get a very well matched system which I think I get the best out of now. (hmmm... well,... maybe the Nordost Valhalla, at a much higher cost maybe could??? ....)

System Used:

Sonic Frontiers SFCD-1, balanced CD player
Electrocompaniet 4.5, balanced preamp
2 X Electrocomp. AW60FTT, balanced poweramps
Infinity kappa 8 Reference, speakers
Nordost Blue Heaven, balanced interconnects
Nordost Pulsar Points under all components
DIY base platforms, under all electronics
DIY rack, made out of Granite and aluminum

The poweramps are internally rebuilt at the factory to work as bridged, balanced monoblocks. And the synergy between all my components seems to be near perfect. But be warned,... these cables may not fit into all combinations, I have learned that wery bright sounding and analytical setups may not be the best match with these cables!
But if you, like me prefer the natural and "warm and natural" sound, you might want to audition these cables next time you concider an upgrade!

Similar Products Used: Monster 1.2s, Nordost Blue Heaven, Kimber Monocle-X, and Several DIY cables.
OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
5
Showing 1-10 of 15  

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