QED Performance Audio 2 review

Agile, fun and nuanced, the QED would do well in pretty much any system Tested at £40

What Hi-Fi? Verdict

Agile, fun and nuanced, the QED would do well in pretty much any system


  • +

    Entertaining, energetic sound

  • +

    detail and nuance abound


  • -

    Slightly lean bass robs midrange of body

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We’ve long been fans of QED’s interconnects, so we were interested to see how this previous five-star product stacked up against our current Award-winner, Chord’s CrimsonPlus interconnect, in our listening rooms.

So, we duly hooked it up between a Cyrus CD 6 SE CD player and Roksan Caspian M2 integrated amp, with ATC SCM11 stand-mounted speakers completing the system, and set Radiohead’s In Rainbows spinning.

Compared with the Chord there’s less immediate composure, but what you lose in precision you gain in bounce. Where the CrimsonPlus keeps dynamics under tight (if still expressive) control, the QED lets the music bound along with more agility.

There’s bags of detail on offer, too, and vocals chime through clearly on a track such as Stacey Kent’s Postcard Lovers. There’s no disputing this cable’s facility with subtlety.

What stops it getting the full five stars, however, is a slightly lean quality to its bass performance. True, this is the spring from which all that agility emerges – bit it robs the midrange of some body, which can get tiring to listen to at times.

Overall, though, this is a very capable interconnect.

See all our analogue interconnect reviews

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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, Reading 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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