Quadraspire QPlus Reference interfaces…….eh?

Yes, it’s a bit of a mouthful isn’t it?

In plain-speak they go under the feet of equipment and were, I believe, developed primarily for those people who can’t accommodate dedicated racks and instead have to place their hi-fi boxes on shelves and furniture etc. but want some of the isolation benefits of a rack.  

I came to discover this new product when I was contemplating trying a CD555.  I have two stacks of Quadraspire SVT with bronze spike upgrades supporting the top shelves on each rack, both of which are bamboo.  Experimentation in the past has shown that my pre-amp and its power supply sound best from being sited on the top two shelves were the isolation benefit is greatest. So the prospective arrival of a CD555 presented a problem because it has to be on the top shelve because of its CD lid.  This posed a problem as regards the siting of my 552 as we didn’t want to reduce its performance and I didn’t like the prospect of having to change my racks.  So my dealer got his thinking cap on and having chatted to his contact at Quadraspire obtained a prototype set of the QPlus ref interfaces to try in my system.  I had never heard of them until this point.

Come the day when my dealer brought around the CD555 head-unit for my home demo he also brought with him the prototype QPlus.  Before we did anything with the CD555, we played a familiar song on the system ‘as is’ then took out the bamboo SVT with the bronze spikes on my brain rack, put the 552 on the ordinary SVT shelf but with the QPlus under each of its feet (this was achieved in about 30 secs) and then played the song again.  Outcome - neither of us could any difference. In other words, the addition of the QPlus had negated the potential deterioration of moving the 552 to a ‘lesser’ shelf.  This was a real result because it meant we could then proceed with the installation on the rack of the CD555 for the week’s long demo confident that I would only be hearing the difference that the CD555 made.  The consequences of that are described in ‘The benefits of being a dinosaur thread’ so I shall not repeat them here. Suffice to say that I later confirmed I wanted to buy the CD555 head unit and I ordered a set of QPlus Ref to go under the 552. Here’s picture of one under the 552:

Fast forward a week or two and my QPlus arrived.  Since I had decided to keep the CD555 my dealer wanted to do a full two-rack rebuild to ensure spacing and cable dressing were optimal. At the end of all that, with the CD555 fully installed and the new set of QPlus under the 552, we sat back and admired and listened to the newly stacked system.  Very nice it sounded, too.  

But ……there were the prototype QPlus on the carpet, now unused and staring at us.  Well, what were we to do? Experiment, of course.  Let’s see what if any difference would we hear if we now placed that set under the PSU of the 300?  We needed a reference, so LZIII came out and I pressed play on Since I’ve Been Loving You.  Sounded great.  Then the QPlus went under the feet of the 300PSU. I pressed play again: blimey, listen to that bass guitar!  Rather  surprised, the QPlus were then removed from under the 300PSU and put instead under the 300 head unit. Pressed play again: now Jimmy Page’s lead guitar sounded better.  This is uncanny.  I decided I needed another set of QPlus and my dealer left me with the prototype set under the 300’s PSU. After listening for about another hour I concluded I actually needed another two sets. Well, it wouldn’t be fair on the 300 to have only one of its boxes treated to a set, would it?

Being such a new product the extra two sets took a few weeks to arrive.  My dealer brought them around straight-away, the whole package from Quadraspire not yet opened. In it was the dealer’s new demo set.  So with the two new sets under each box of the 300 in place we listened again. Yep, the cumulative uplift was very nice.

But…. then we noticed the 555PSDR looking at us saying ‘hey, why am I being left out? So the dealer’s brand new demo set were unpacked and popped under the feet of the 555PS.  We sat back for another listen.  Bl**dy hell! This improvement was even bigger than both sets under the 300!? These things just had no right to provide an uplift of this scale and it was blindingly obvious to both us about 10 secs into track.

The dealer’s demo set didn’t leave the house.  

I’ll post a picture of the two stacks with the four sets in place soon so you can see that they are hardly obtrusive. I have no idea of how these QPlus things do what they do. Maybe they’ve got some fairy dust sealed deep within each puck. But I do know that they have significantly improved the performance of all of my black boxes sat on the standard SVT and I can recommend them.    

Original Post

I remember hearing Alester demo these at the Bristol show this year. They seem to work well. I too have the Quadraspire SVT racks and I’m adding bamboo shelves as I need them. They look and sound great. Did you demo Bamboo shelves as well as the Qplus feet? 

Hi Finkfan - I already had 2 bamboo shelves that I used at the top of each rack. The rest of the SVT is standard MDF.  I did originally wonder about swopping out the lower SVT MDF shelves for SVT bamboo but in discussion with the dealer (who I think has had several discussions with Al) we thought that wouldn't have given the equivalent benefit. I remember those bronze spike upgrades being a more noticeable upgrade than the bamboo.  But, of course, the bronze spikes can only be used for the top shelf. I think the QPlus might have bamboo in them but am not sure.

I did contemplate that briefly, Nigel, but didn't for a number of reasons. Apart from the cost of swopping out my two SVT stacks for two stacks of Fraim, I prefer the look of SVT, I like the low maintenance of SVT (no balls to ensure stay perfectly seated) and, most of all,  Fraim is wider than SVT and my dealer made clear I would have to turn at least one stack on an angle if it was to have any chance of fitting it in.  I just didn't want to get involved in all that.

M  

At my dealer demo today the LP12 was resting on one of these Quadraspire bamboo wall shelves (with bronze bits). It seems a very elegant piece of furniture and sounded good. As someone who has a suspended wooden floor, I'd definitely be interested in one...

I have the SVT  bamboo wall shelf under my LP12 and very good it is too. It also goes very well with my SVT racks of which I have three so no way am I going for Fraims anytime soon. The SVTs also allowed me to fit 3 racks in space between our inglenook fireplace and the wall - something I couldn’t do with Fraims. The SVTs are also considerably easier to dust and I doubt if my ears would frankly detect that the Fraims are ‘just so much better’. Only way to prove that would be a blind listening test. Luckily I didn’t buy my SVTs on a forum recco or I might have been a bit peeved to read that by implication  that they are so much worse than Fraims!

Ravenswood10 posted:

I have the SVT  bamboo wall shelf under my LP12 and very good it is too. It also goes very well with my SVT racks of which I have three so no way am I going for Fraims anytime soon. The SVTs also allowed me to fit 3 racks in space between our inglenook fireplace and the wall - something I couldn’t do with Fraims. The SVTs are also considerably easier to dust and I doubt if my ears would frankly detect that the Fraims are ‘just so much better’. Only way to prove that would be a blind listening test. Luckily I didn’t buy my SVTs on a forum recco or I might have been a bit peeved to read that by implication  that they are so much worse than Fraims!

I think someone on here has heard full-fat Fraim against SVT. It might have been The Strat (Fender). IIRC they thought each sounded slightly different but not necessarily 'better'.

Interesting. Have you tried them under your speakers? I use Stillpoints Ultra SS, which were transformative. I did experiment with them under my 3 Naim boxes, but was unable to discern much, if any, difference. So many different variables at play, I guess.

MDS posted:
Ravenswood10 posted:

I have the SVT  bamboo wall shelf under my LP12 and very good it is too. It also goes very well with my SVT racks of which I have three so no way am I going for Fraims anytime soon. The SVTs also allowed me to fit 3 racks in space between our inglenook fireplace and the wall - something I couldn’t do with Fraims. The SVTs are also considerably easier to dust and I doubt if my ears would frankly detect that the Fraims are ‘just so much better’. Only way to prove that would be a blind listening test. Luckily I didn’t buy my SVTs on a forum recco or I might have been a bit peeved to read that by implication  that they are so much worse than Fraims!

I think someone on here has heard full-fat Fraim against SVT. It might have been The Strat (Fender). IIRC they thought each sounded slightly different but not necessarily 'better'.

Well, that’s not what I found when I made the change. The SVT has many benefits - looks better, smaller, easy to set up, easy to dust - but in terms of pure sound quality it’s not as good. I’m always dubious about adding additional feet and so on in order to optimise sub optimal solutions and would generally rather go for something that works well straight out of the box. Witness the many examples of people adding glass and balls to Quadraspire, Hutter and so on. I’ve done it myself, but now having Fraim it’s nice to have something that is used as standard and where there is no incentive to try to turn it into something else. 

Kevin-W posted:

At my dealer demo today the LP12 was resting on one of these Quadraspire bamboo wall shelves (with bronze bits).

🔸It seems a very elegant piece of furniture ◾and sounded good.◾ 

🔹 Kevin-W,.....You said.."very elegant piece of furniture"..Yes,I agree with you.

◾and sounded good◾,...How do you know it.?Which wall-shelves did you compare against.?

/Peder🙂 

hungryhalibut posted:
MDS posted:
Ravenswood10 posted:

I have the SVT  bamboo wall shelf under my LP12 and very good it is too. It also goes very well with my SVT racks of which I have three so no way am I going for Fraims anytime soon. The SVTs also allowed me to fit 3 racks in space between our inglenook fireplace and the wall - something I couldn’t do with Fraims. The SVTs are also considerably easier to dust and I doubt if my ears would frankly detect that the Fraims are ‘just so much better’. Only way to prove that would be a blind listening test. Luckily I didn’t buy my SVTs on a forum recco or I might have been a bit peeved to read that by implication  that they are so much worse than Fraims!

I think someone on here has heard full-fat Fraim against SVT. It might have been The Strat (Fender). IIRC they thought each sounded slightly different but not necessarily 'better'.

Well, that’s not what I found when I made the change. The SVT has many benefits - looks better, smaller, easy to set up, easy to dust - but in terms of pure sound quality it’s not as good. I’m always dubious about adding additional feet and so on in order to optimise sub optimal solutions and would generally rather go for something that works well straight out of the box. Witness the many examples of people adding glass and balls to Quadraspire, Hutter and so on. I’ve done it myself, but now having Fraim it’s nice to have something that is used as standard and where there is no incentive to try to turn it into something else

Yes, I completely get that feeling, Nigel.  It's one of the benefits of having a full (save speakers and racks) Naim system that I very much like ie the knowledge that Naim has done the tweaking and optimising for me. So I can understand why you've taken that final step and changed your rack from SVT to Fraim. But, as I've said earlier, the size of Fraim ruled it out for me.

Now, I wonder if anyone has tried these QPlus Ref on a full-fat Fraim?  

Timmo1341 posted:
MDS posted:

Quadraspire's website says the QPlus are not designed to go under speakers. 

If your dealer stocks/can get hold of them it might be interesting to try a set of Stillpoints under your Focals. 

Mine are currently on spikes through carpet into a suspended wooden floor.  Aren't Stillpoints designed for hardwood or tiled flooring? 

Peder posted:

🔹 Kevin-W,.....You said.."very elegant piece of furniture"..Yes,I agree with you.

◾and sounded good◾,...How do you know it.?Which wall-shelves did you compare against.?

/Peder🙂 

I didn't compare it against anything. I just thought it sounded good, and would likely be an upgrade on my current Sound Org table, especially as I have a suspended wooden floor.

I really doubt if many people have the time or energy to go around comparing wall-mounted TT shelves.

If it sounds better than what I have already, is well made (it is) and looks good (which it does), has a good WAF score (it has), and represents good value (box ticked), then that's good enough for me. Life's too short to go around endlessly comparing wall shelves: I'd rather spend them time listening to music.

MDS posted:
hungryhalibut posted:
MDS posted:
Ravenswood10 posted:

I have the SVT  bamboo wall shelf under my LP12 and very good it is too. It also goes very well with my SVT racks of which I have three so no way am I going for Fraims anytime soon. The SVTs also allowed me to fit 3 racks in space between our inglenook fireplace and the wall - something I couldn’t do with Fraims. The SVTs are also considerably easier to dust and I doubt if my ears would frankly detect that the Fraims are ‘just so much better’. Only way to prove that would be a blind listening test. Luckily I didn’t buy my SVTs on a forum recco or I might have been a bit peeved to read that by implication  that they are so much worse than Fraims!

I think someone on here has heard full-fat Fraim against SVT. It might have been The Strat (Fender). IIRC they thought each sounded slightly different but not necessarily 'better'.

Well, that’s not what I found when I made the change. The SVT has many benefits - looks better, smaller, easy to set up, easy to dust - but in terms of pure sound quality it’s not as good. I’m always dubious about adding additional feet and so on in order to optimise sub optimal solutions and would generally rather go for something that works well straight out of the box. Witness the many examples of people adding glass and balls to Quadraspire, Hutter and so on. I’ve done it myself, but now having Fraim it’s nice to have something that is used as standard and where there is no incentive to try to turn it into something else

Yes, I completely get that feeling, Nigel.  It's one of the benefits of having a full (save speakers and racks) Naim system that I very much like ie the knowledge that Naim has done the tweaking and optimising for me. So I can understand why you've taken that final step and changed your rack from SVT to Fraim. But, as I've said earlier, the size of Fraim ruled it out for me.

Now, I wonder if anyone has tried these QPlus Ref on a full-fat Fraim?  

Mind you, ever thought about bamboo replacements for the nasty MDF items supplied with the Fraim? Joking of course - before I get death threats

MDS posted:
hungryhalibut posted:
MDS posted:
Ravenswood10 posted:

I have the SVT  bamboo wall shelf under my LP12 and very good it is too. It also goes very well with my SVT racks of which I have three so no way am I going for Fraims anytime soon. The SVTs also allowed me to fit 3 racks in space between our inglenook fireplace and the wall - something I couldn’t do with Fraims. The SVTs are also considerably easier to dust and I doubt if my ears would frankly detect that the Fraims are ‘just so much better’. Only way to prove that would be a blind listening test. Luckily I didn’t buy my SVTs on a forum recco or I might have been a bit peeved to read that by implication  that they are so much worse than Fraims!

I think someone on here has heard full-fat Fraim against SVT. It might have been The Strat (Fender). IIRC they thought each sounded slightly different but not necessarily 'better'.

Well, that’s not what I found when I made the change. The SVT has many benefits - looks better, smaller, easy to set up, easy to dust - but in terms of pure sound quality it’s not as good. I’m always dubious about adding additional feet and so on in order to optimise sub optimal solutions and would generally rather go for something that works well straight out of the box. Witness the many examples of people adding glass and balls to Quadraspire, Hutter and so on. I’ve done it myself, but now having Fraim it’s nice to have something that is used as standard and where there is no incentive to try to turn it into something else

Yes, I completely get that feeling, Nigel.  It's one of the benefits of having a full (save speakers and racks) Naim system that I very much like ie the knowledge that Naim has done the tweaking and optimising for me. So I can understand why you've taken that final step and changed your rack from SVT to Fraim. But, as I've said earlier, the size of Fraim ruled it out for me.

Now, I wonder if anyone has tried these QPlus Ref on a full-fat Fraim?  

As a pertinent follow-up to this earlier exchange with HungryHalibut, I was chatting to my dealer this evening. He'd seen this thread.  So I asked, have you tried the QPlus Ref on full-fat Fraim? Yes, was the reply.  Tried the prototypes under a Nova and it definitely improved it.  Apparently some of the folk at Naim know, too.  So, you Fraim converts, maybe that's not as far as you can go?  

fatcat posted:

If you want to save yourself a bit of money, get down to Lidl and pick up one of these. Just the right size for an LP12.

Or, one of these. Just the right size for a shoebox size amp.

Refreshing 

IKEA have some too, not £900 but £12 😁

 

fatcat posted:

If you want to save yourself a bit of money, get down to Lidl and pick up one of these. Just the right size for an LP12.

Or, one of these. Just the right size for a shoebox size amp.

No substitute for a proper blinded trial. All my working life - some 36 years and counting I’ve focused on the evidence - not this subjective nonsense. So let’s have the Lidl option properly evaluated! I’m a Naim convert but please can one really hear polished balls vs tarnished?  Common!!!

hungryhalibut posted:
 

Well, that’s not what I found when I made the change. The SVT has many benefits - looks better, smaller, easy to set up, easy to dust - but in terms of pure sound quality it’s not as good. I’m always dubious about adding additional feet and so on in order to optimise sub optimal solutions and would generally rather go for something that works well straight out of the box. Witness the many examples of people adding glass and balls to Quadraspire, Hutter and so on. I’ve done it myself, but now having Fraim it’s nice to have something that is used as standard and where there is no incentive to try to turn it into something else. 

Hi HH,

while I think I get what is behind your post, would you see things different if the feet came with the SVT?

Or, from another perspective, does it matter if the full version with footers came first and the lesser one without them later (think Fraim and Fraimlite here) or the other way around like the Quadraspire things?

Perol posted:
fatcat posted:

If you want to save yourself a bit of money, get down to Lidl and pick up one of these. Just the right size for an LP12.

Refreshing

IKEA have some too, not £900 but £12 😁

 

🔹 Perol,....Three in our group have tried IKEA's plate,..both as top-plate on a AudioTech and a Vulkan wall-shelf.

They also modified the IKEA plate in various stages..until they went over the border,and it got worse.
An interesting experiment.

/Peder 🙂

MDS posted:
Timmo1341 posted:
MDS posted:

Quadraspire's website says the QPlus are not designed to go under speakers. 

If your dealer stocks/can get hold of them it might be interesting to try a set of Stillpoints under your Focals. 

Mine are currently on spikes through carpet into a suspended wooden floor.  Aren't Stillpoints designed for hardwood or tiled flooring? 

They are designed to work just as effectively on all surfaces - tile, wood, carpet.

MDS posted:

Here's the two racks with the four sets of QPlus Ref in place. You can also see the bronze spikes and arrangement at the top of both stacks.

 

Looks fabulous. I like the blingness, not too showey but handsome.  I wouldn't be surprised if the combination with footers raises the performance level beyond a full fat Fraim.

MDS posted:
Ravenswood10 posted:

I have the SVT  bamboo wall shelf under my LP12 and very good it is too. It also goes very well with my SVT racks of which I have three so no way am I going for Fraims anytime soon. The SVTs also allowed me to fit 3 racks in space between our inglenook fireplace and the wall - something I couldn’t do with Fraims. The SVTs are also considerably easier to dust and I doubt if my ears would frankly detect that the Fraims are ‘just so much better’. Only way to prove that would be a blind listening test. Luckily I didn’t buy my SVTs on a forum recco or I might have been a bit peeved to read that by implication  that they are so much worse than Fraims!

I think someone on here has heard full-fat Fraim against SVT. It might have been The Strat (Fender). IIRC they thought each sounded slightly different but not necessarily 'better'.

That would be me.

MDS posted:

Here's the two racks with the four sets of QPlus Ref in place. You can also see the bronze spikes and arrangement at the top of both stacks.

 

MDS.

Looks Superb.... really like the black....

I recall Alastairs demo of the Q Plus at the Bristol show......  it was very very impressive.

you have a great system....I’m particularly jealous of that newly acquired CD555

Peder posted:
Kevin-W posted:

At my dealer demo today the LP12 was resting on one of these Quadraspire bamboo wall shelves (with bronze bits).

🔸It seems a very elegant piece of furniture ◾and sounded good.◾ 

🔹 Kevin-W,.....You said.."very elegant piece of furniture"..Yes,I agree with you.

◾and sounded good◾,...How do you know it.?Which wall-shelves did you compare against.?

/Peder🙂 

Agree with Peder.  I tried Quadraspire's bamboo wall shelf when it first came out years ago - and compared it to my previous Quadraspire acrylic version.  Not impressed at all.  Others I know agreed as well.

 The LP12 went back on top of Fraim until Roger from Tiger Paw came out with the Vulkan wall shelf.  Now we are talking - many others I know feel the same.  Spectacular results - the LP12 no longer sits on the Fraim and I can return to dancing in my room without any problems.

 

glevethan posted:
Peder posted:
Kevin-W posted:

At my dealer demo today the LP12 was resting on one of these Quadraspire bamboo wall shelves (with bronze bits).

🔸It seems a very elegant piece of furniture ◾and sounded good.◾ 

🔹 Kevin-W,.....You said.."very elegant piece of furniture"..Yes,I agree with you.

◾and sounded good◾,...How do you know it.?Which wall-shelves did you compare against.?

/Peder🙂 

Agree with Peder.  I tried Quadraspire's bamboo wall shelf when it first came out years ago - and compared it to my previous Quadraspire acrylic version.  Not impressed at all.  Others I know agreed as well.

 The LP12 went back on top of Fraim until Roger from Tiger Paw came out with the Vulkan wall shelf.  Now we are talking - many others I know feel the same.  Spectacular results - the LP12 no longer sits on the Fraim and I can return to dancing in my room without any problems.

 

Mr Swain seemed concerned when I told him (many years ago) that my LP12 was resting on a sagging Quadraspire acrylic shelf. I moved back Evo and then to SVT bamboo shelves with bronze bits. A massive improvement.

I think a blind test of Bamboo/bronze Quadraspire SVT verses the Fraim would favour the Fraim because it’s at its best when you can’t see it.

The test we did showed Fraim to be more punchy and detailed and Quadraspire flowed better and sounded sweeter. Both are very good but the Quadraspire edges it when cost, appearance  and practically (dusty and far too wide) are taken into account.

Keith

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