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QED Reference Audio 40 review

An impressive stereo interconnect that ushers through a high-quality sound... Tested at £85

Our Verdict

An impressive stereo interconnect that ushers through a high-quality sound

For

  • Reassuring build quality
  • Promotes an expansive soundstage
  • Allows for great depth and dimension to music

Against

  • Nothing of note

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

An impressive stereo interconnect that ushers through a high-quality sound

Pros

  • + Reassuring build quality
  • + Promotes an expansive soundstage
  • + Allows for great depth and dimension to music

Cons

  • - Nothing of note

The Reference Audio 40 looks like a serious stereo interconnect. Build quality and feel are very reassuring – you’re immediately drawn to the smart-looking ‘Analoc’ locking plugs.

QED claims these give a higher-quality connection with your kit.

Performance

QED Reference Audio 40

QED Reference Audio 40

Well, the Reference Audio 40 certainly ushers through high-quality sound.

You are made aware of a much broader and more expansive soundstage compared with Ecosse’s Baton Mk2.

Play Drake’s Hold On We’re Going Home and the QED interconnect brings fantastic depth and dimension.

Bass notes appear to plunge deeper and there’s a meaty, mature tone to music, but not at the expense of control or agility.

Verdict

Tunes are engaging and balanced with an impressive level of detail.

Lady Gaga’s Dope has texture and refinement in the piano – the interconnect really expresses the dynamics and nuances of the track.

If you're looking to upgrade from budget interconnects to something more sonically substantial, the Reference Audio 40 is a great option.

MORE: See all our speaker cable reviews

What Hi-Fi?

What Hi-Fi?, founded in 1976, is the world's leading independent guide to buying and owning hi-fi and home entertainment products. Our comprehensive tests help you buy the very best for your money, with our advice sections giving you step-by-step information on how to get even more from your music and movies. Everything is tested by our dedicated team of in-house reviewers in our custom-built test rooms in London and Bath. Our coveted five-star rating and Awards are recognised all over the world as the ultimate seal of approval, so you can buy with absolute confidence.


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