Nordost Sort Kones

brion -- Mon, 11/07/2011 - 22:40

 Has anyone (besides me) any experience with these? I like 'em. I know HP was going to review them, but hasn't said a word yet, so I'm wondering about others' experience.

JLeeMD -- Tue, 11/08/2011 - 14:06

No but I've used Stillpoints cones in past...very effective.  Recently switched to Stillpoints Ultra and found them, surprisingly, MUCH better.

brent -- Tue, 11/08/2011 - 15:46

The Nordost Sort Kones are incredible and in general make more sonic difference than upgrading a pre-amp, power amp or source component. The differences are huge. You have no clue what your component can really do unless they're on Sort Kones. - Brent

brion -- Tue, 11/08/2011 - 21:07

Which have you tried? I have all except the Titanium. I find the steel ones not quite what I want, but moving to ceramic and bronze, considerable difference, although, if the bottom of one's electronics are thin, one needs to move them by fractions of an inch to find the best position. I found myself somewhat dismayed by how open the middle and upper midrange frequencies opened up by moving them left or right, particularly under tubed amps with flexible bottom plates. Nonetheless, I persevered and discovered their "sweet spot" (something mentioned in Hi Fi Plus' review). I would imagine that they will reveal their abilities in  a higher resolution system, although I've found them effective in several different sets of electronics. I'd probably recommend putting   Blu Tack on the inside bottom of any resonating electronics' plate and then it is easier to find  the sweet spot. Otherwise, one is simply damping resonances on the bottom plate of the amp/preamp/cd player instead of discovering the full potential of the Kones, which is considerable. 

brent -- Wed, 11/09/2011 - 12:27

I've only heard the TC's but they dramatically improve everything they touch: Linn Klimax Kontrol, Linn Solo's, Rowland Criterion, Rowland 625's, Levinson 53's, EMM Labs XDS1, etc. I was commenting to a Rowland dealer that I would really like to see a mono version of the 625's, which at that time we didn't know was going to happen, we put 4 TC Sort Kones under the Rowland, and we both immediately commented that we had our mono version, it just totally transformed the sound and apparent power and dynamics of the amp. The rap on the Rowland 625 has been the dynamics of the amp. The reviewers need to hear them with Sort Kones. - Brent

brion -- Thu, 11/10/2011 - 04:19

 Yes, I can believe that the dynamics of a component increase considerably. 
I've used the 3-cone configuration, but will put another brass cone under two more components to see how noticeable the change is. Nordost's tech, Paul, suggested sliding a 5th cone under a component until it "stuck" and that would be another resonant point. I'm going to give that a try. He also indicated that it did not actually degrade the sound to have different types of cones under a component, simiply that it made more sense to have the same kones under one component. To which I replied, "Yes, when I win the lottery, I'll have all titanium cones, thanks." For now, the brass is my cone of choice, since it's easy enough to start with ceramic and then slowly buy a brass cone in between and eventually end up with enough Kones for amp, preamp, cd players and even speakers themselves (although I'd probably settle for ceramic under them and THEN put a brass or titanium). The nice thing is, when you move upward in the hierarchy, or even replace one Kone, say, replacing a ceramic for a steel kone, or a bronze in place of a ceramic unit in a 3-kone setup, the difference -- given a system that is correctly positioned and resolving, the difference is eye-raising. And immediately so. Even in a modest system, the difference is noticeable as more of a sense of space around lower-pitched instruments, even on mini-monitors that don't have much bass below 50. I can more easily separate cellos from double basses by tonal quality now. One can hear second harmonics enough to give the sound more "body" and "weight" to the musical presentation. Pretty cool!. I haven't yet heard the titanium ones...

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