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WK Audio

Manufacturer: WK AUDIO
Price (when reviewed): 12 000 EUR/2,5 m

Contact: WK Audio | Plichtów 48
92-701 Plichtów | POLSKA


Provided for the test by: WK AUDIO


translation Marek Dyba
images “High Fidelity”

No 233

October 1, 2023


WK AUDIO is the company of Witold Kaminski, established in 2017 in Plichtow, near Lodz. An architect by profession, passionate about music, and author of columns in "High Fidelity" on culture in the broadest sense, it offers a record clamp, an anti-vibration platform, AC power cables, and, for some time, also TheRed speaker cable. This is its PREMIERE review.

VERY MANUFACTURER WANTS TO HAVE a line in his portfolio he could call "the top", "flagship", and often simply - "the most expensive" one. Even if its modus operandi is to provide music lovers and audiophiles with affordable products, somewhere underneath there is also the need to "plant the flag" at the top.

That top means something different for everyone. The more expensive, so to speak, the brand, the more detached from real life will the stratospheric prices be - it will reach completely different levels for the Danish Aavik and Cyrus, or TechDAS and Rega. In general, however, we can assume that „flagship” is always about the most expensive in the range, and probably quite expensive product. Such is the case with TheRed Speakers cable (I use the company's spelling, in which 'The' and 'Red' are combined; the only exception is the badge on the box, where they are spelled separately).


THE SPEAKER CABLE WE TESTED is the first product of its kind in the brand’s lineup. They started with an anti-vibration platform, which after some time was joined by AC power cables. Today, the proportions have turned in favor of cables, as there is one platform, albeit in two finishes, and as many as three cables. Including the top-of-the-line TheRed Power (test → HERE).

With loudspeaker cables, however, Witek Kaminski opens a new chapter of his business, because he has never dealt with signal cables before, or if he did, we didn't know the results of those activities. The direction is clear: he wants to offer full cable range. When he started with the power cable, this one was not yet called "Power", but simply "TheRed" . The change was only forced, it seems, by the expansion of the lineup.


| A few simple words…

Owner, designer

THE THERED LINE is the top product line of my WK AUDIO manufactory. So far, TheRed Power cable was the only representative of it. It has met with great interest on the world market and received very favorable reviews among reviewers of the audio press.

⸜ AC TheRed Power cable

Today it is joined by TheRed Speakers power cable. Work on it has been going on continuously since October last year. TheRed is, like all other WK AUDIO products, a completely proprietary design. All of its elements, such as the type of conductors used and their braiding, anti-vibration materials, and the method of insulation are the result of more than ten months of work on the cable. The cable is built entirely by hand, in low-volume batches.

It is based on copper of very high purity. The cross-section of the working conductor is 4 mm2. The positive and negative conductors have been separated and have a different structure, reminiscent of the solution known from the power cable, where all three conductors are also run separately. At each end of the cable there is a wooden cube with information about the cable on it. This cube is also part of the vibration damping system.

⸜ AC TheRed Speakers cable

TheRed speaker cables are terminated with the latest top FURUTECH CF-201 NCF (R) spades. Any termination configuration of the cable with spades and banana plugs is available upon order. The cable is delivered to the customer in a wooden, handmade box. It is available in 2, 2.5 and 3 m lenghts. WK


WHEN THE CURIER BROUGHT THE PACKAGE with the tested cable to my place, I wasn't sure whether he brought some furniture from IKEA, although I hadn't ordered it, or a table, which I hadn't asked for either. However, since he did not ask me to pay for it, I accepted the package and placed it in the room. It is the largest cable package I have received so far. The large outer box housed a slightly smaller one made of wood; wood, apparently, is still one of the primary choices for small manufactures.

After sliding out the top panel and pulling out three pieces of foam, we get to the actual cable. And this takes the form of four separate runs - two per channel. As we read in the material above, they are not identical - the plus and minus runs have a different design. While this doesn't make sense at first glance - after all, we're talking about AC voltage, not DC voltage - it's actually more complicated than that.

Most amplifiers, for example, are unbalanced designs. And this means that the negative terminal is at the same time the ground terminal, that is, the voltage’s reference. It is different only in amplifiers with differential output. It is similar when it comes to the speakers' side. The crossover is also usually made so that the negative terminal is a common terminal. So it looks different (electrically) if you look at it from the minus conductor side, and different from the positive conductor side.

The solution adopted by the designer of TheRed Speakers is not very common, but it is not a complete exotic either. If, in listening tests, it offered concrete benefits - apparently it does. In fact, so does the choice of material for the cables’ spacers - that's where the long, thicker section of the cable that is more mechanically damped, transforms into a thinner, more flexible part that is terminated with plugs and connected to an amplifier and speakers.

As you saw in the photo above, the power cable features these elements made of aluminum. The spacers holding the three runs equally spaced from each other were also made of the same material. The first photos that Witek sent me some time ago to show the prototype of the tested cable featuring also aluminum elements. The finished product, however, was delivered with wooden ones.

I asked Witek about it:

Indeed, I equipped the prototype with aluminum elements. However, the longer I listened to it, the more I had the feeling that something was missing. So I tried the wooden elements and that was it. Then, all I had to do was to listen to dozens of different versions and choose the wood I liked best. As it turned out, it was balsa (emphasis - ed.), which is a very low-density and lightweight wood.

Also, the cable is light and very flexible, in which it is completely different from the rigid and bulky power cable. Since it is so flexible it will be easy to arrange in the system. Structurally, therefore, it must resemble cables design so that there is a few metal elements as possible. And there is a long tradition of such designs, from DNM to Luna Cables to Crystal Cable. The exact topology is not known because, as usual, it is the company's capital.

All that is known is what the designer wrote: it is pure copper with a working conductor’s cross-section of 4 mm2. There is no information about the dielectrics and vibration-damping materials used for it. What you can see, however, are the terminals - these are excellent spades or banana plugs from Furutech, model CF-201 NCF (R). Their conducting elements are made of pure α (Alpha) cryogenically treated copper, damped with NCF (Nano Crystal² Formula) elements. NCF technology was initially available only in power plugs, but for some time now it’s been used also in speaker and low-level signal plugs.


˻ HOW WE LISTENED ˺ WK Audio speaker cables were tested in the HIGH FIDELITY reference system and compared to reference cables: Siltech Triple Crown and Crystal Cable Art Series Da Vinci. They were all placed on Acoustic Revive RCI-3H stands.

It was based on A/B and A/B comparison with A and B known. The tracks listened to were between 1 and 2 minutes long. The comparison was not instantaneous - the intervals were about a minute long. The cable connected a Soulution 710 solid-state power amplifier and Harbeth M40.1 speakers.


⸜ MAYO NAKANO PIANO TRIO, Miwaku, Briphonic BRPN-7007GL, Extreme Hard Glass CD-R (2017).
⸜ SUZANNE VEGA, Nine Objects of Desire, A&M Records 540 583 2, CD.
⸜ YES, 90128, ATCO Records/Warner Music Japan WPCR-15914, SACD/CD (1983/2014).
⸜ LEONARD COHEN, Popular Problems, Columbia | Sony Music Labels SICP-4329, CD (2014).
⸜ JOHN COLTRANE WITH ERIC DOLPHY, Evenings At The Village Gate, Impulse! | UMe 00602455514189, CD (2023).
⸜ CARL PHILIPP EMANUEL BACH, Württemberg Sonatas, wyk. KEITH JARRETT, ECM Records ECM 2790/91, 2 x CD (2023).

WHENEVER I WANT TO OWE someone who has nothing to do with audio, I show them the MAYO NAKANO PIANO TRIO CD entitled Miwaku, as burned on Glass Master CD-R, and tell them how much it cost. The effect is electrifying: from disbelief, to confusion, to reluctant - but still - admiration. When, on the other hand, I want to surprise people who have known audio for a long time, I just play it for them. The effect is exactly the same.

I myself listen to it for pleasure, because everything in it "worked" - the music, the realization and the release. With Witek's cable I heard something like club playing with it, even though it is, after all, a 100% studio recording. It was as if the Polish cable "tried" to re-create it the way it should sound. The character I'm talking about was created by showing a complex sonic fabric, with multiple layers, colors and dynamic shades. But not only that.

TheRed offered a nicely weighted sound, just the way I like it. Weighted doesn't mean colored, but revealing the scale of sound in the right way. And that's how this album was presented. In doing so, the Polish cable emphasized the lower mid-bass range, as both the double bass and the drum foot were energetic and powerful. Although the sound as a whole has a velvety polish, the bass is contoured and energetic. Yes, its attack is also mellow, but this phase lasted with the Polish cable for a very short time, after which the tightness and energy began. So it was energetic, but not overblown.

Anyway, the treble is shaped in a similar way, too. That is - they are clear and strong, but without a trace of brightening. So the sonority and the demonstration of the weight and scale of percussion instruments at the same time were great. We will hear a similar approach here as with the bass, that is, a gentle rounding and immediately afterwards a tightening of the sound, which results in on the one hand a velvety and on the other an energetic presentation.

Perhaps that's why TheRed Speakers the sound is built slightly behind the line connecting the speakers. SUZANNE VEGA's vocals from the Nine Objects of Desire album had a lot of breath and were not approximated or "warmed up." This is important, because one can perceive TheRed Speakers as a rather warm cable, and this suggests a stereotypical slowing down. The cable does indeed seem a bit warm, but - as it turns out - not by coloring the lower midrange or withdrawing the treble, but by the approach I mentioned. And that's not the same thing. That's why we get what I was talking about with it, which is energy and explosive display of a kick drum and bass.

Focusing on the sounds coming from the listening axis and showing the foreground so that the sound doesn't "jump" forward through the Witek cable doesn't affect the building of bodies and scale of events - the bodies are big and the scale is wide. Although it is, after all, the case that if you pull something back into the stage, it gets smaller, that's how it works. The WK Audio cable takes the first step, but it doesn’t take the second one, as if it can render the energy of the sound so well that it doesn't change the "weight" of the sound.

It also doesn't it change because the bass is just strong with it. It's not a fast and light presentation, probably not what the designer had in mind. Its lowest range really shows a lot of information, and you will probably be surprised more than once by how much music is there. It's not ultra-precise control, but I had no problems with it - I simply perceived it as a "flavor" of this cable, not coloration. Because, to reiterate, this is an balanced, linear cable. For those who will have too much bass, I have bad news - there is something wrong with their system, or they should change their habits and start appreciating full-range, full-scale playing.

This is useful also with albums that usually sound a little lightly, perhaps even brightly. For example, 90128 by YES. The eleventh album by the band was released in 1983, right in the middle of the "synthesizer" revolution, as you can hear listening to it. Also, the sonic aesthetics are similar to what could be heard on the radio at the time, i.e. lots of treble, substantial but contoured bass, withdrawn midrange. Even if this particular version came out of the hands of the folks at Japan's Mixer's Lab, responsible for many excellent reissues, for example, for Japan's Stereo Sound magazine. Clearly, some things can't be improved.

Witek's cable played this album in a very cool way. A strong and tight bass filled out its sound from the bottom, and a slight rounding of the treble tamed the brightness. It's interesting, because with previous albums the treble wasn't lacking, it's not like the cable "filters something out". It acted a bit like it was adapting to the conditions and giving its best no matter what we were listening to. And it didn't stop being selective in the process. Reverbs superimposed on vocals, guitars scattered across the channels, surround effects - all this was reproduced with it clearly and legibly.

| Our albums

⸜ YES Owner of a Lonely Heart

ATCO Records/Warner Music Japan WQSP-1004
Seria „Classic 70's & 80's Hits”, 3” SP ⸜ 1983/2005

THE SINGLE ETITLED Owner of a Lonely Heart comes from the YES group's album entitled 90125. It was released on October 24th. 1983, two weeks before the album's release. It was a huge commercial success for this prog-rock group. In the United States, it became the first and last of its singles to reach the top (No. 1) of Billboard magazine's Hot 100 chart. Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, various artists mixed and remixed this material, and it is still played by many radio stations.

The version I wanted to present to you is special - it is a digital single on an 8 cm (3") CD (this version is often referred to as CD3). The disc received a cover identical to the Japanese 7" release, as did the inner wrapper. Singles of this type were introduced in the late 1980s and would have been sold mainly by Japanese publishers. However, it never caught on for good.

It is that type of disc that the smaller cavity in most drawers of CD players is designed for, and it can also be played on top-loader compacts - the CD3 specification is fully compatible with Red Book. You can’t play it in transports/players with slot drives. Although up to 24 minutes can be recorded on a small disc, it usually holds one or two tracks - the single in question holds only one.

Although the format was in retreat in the US as early as the late 1980s, and survived in Japan until the middle of the next decade, this particular single is said to date from 2005. And that's because this particular version was a retro gift for canned coffee buyers of Georgia Coffee (a brand owned by Coca Cola).

EQUALLY IMPORTANT AS WHAT I wrote about earlier is that this cable preserves the drive of the recordings. "Preserves" is an understatement, by the way - it sustains and energizes it. As a result, the rhythmic pulse of the electronic bass from Nevermind, a track from LEONARD COHEN's Popular Problems album, was presented in a strong, good way. What's more, Cohen's vocals had a pleasing top end that didn't "jump out" of the mix, and every now and then you could hear the "dirt" in his voice coming from recording with a very closely positioned microphone.

The cable doesn't magnify anything, but it doesn't diminish anything either - it’s a very cool thing. It will appeal to those who would like an element in the system that controls its timbre, steering it toward natural warmth, but who don't like a tangible "here and now" sound. That's why I talked about "club playing" on the Miwaku album, it's also why JOHN COLTRANE playing together with ERIK DOLPHY in 1961 at the Village Gate (Evenings At The Village Gate) sounded even more "club-like."

This recording was recently released for the first time and is a cool addition to the discography of these musicians. But listening to it, it's not hard to understand why it wasn't released right after the recording. The technical quality of the material is not special, and the mix is dominated by percussion pretty much covering the other instruments, most notably Dolphy's flute.

The recording was shown by TheRed energetically and without being overly heavy-handed. This was real playing on stage, a document captured at a time when Coltrane was in great shape. The audience noises didn't get in the way either, which with some more open cables is quite annoying, as I read it as a realization error rather than a "flavor". TheRed glued it all together nicely and the album made musical sense with it, even if on the technical side it wasn't great.


WHAT I'M WRITING ABOUT are important things, crucial to understanding what this cable can do - and it can do a lot. It's a relatively inexpensive, and truly high-end cable that fits into a system it is added to, and while it modifies the sound in its own way, it does so not against the system, but empathetically, along with it. To be clear, it is inexpensive in the context of the prices of cables from other manufacturers.

Something else seemed more important to me, however, and that is the very rare but extremely important, namely a combination of restraint and offensiveness that we get with it. Listen to KEITH JARRETT playing the Württemberg Sonatas of CARL PHILIPP EMANUEL BACH, and you'll hear in a nutshell what I mean. The recording was made on a cassette tape recorder, years ago, in the musician's home studio. So it's not particularly resolving or expressive. Instead, it has musicality "sewn up" in an unpretentious, yet seriously made interpretation of the musician. On the one hand, WK Audio showed the dynamics of these recordings, because it did not close the sound, but on the other hand it conveyed the velvety tone achieved by the mastering of this material by Peter Laenger.

TheRed is a dynamic, strong-playing cable with a velvety attack and vibrant sustain. Low, powerful bass and perspective shifted deep into the stage are its other hallmarks. Simply put - high-end.


THIS TEST HAS BEEN PROVIDED UNDER THE GUIDELINES adopted by the Association of International Audiophile Publications, an international audio press association concerned with ethical and professional standards in our industry; HIGH FIDELITY is a founding member. You can find more about the association and its constituent titles → HERE.

Reference system 2022

1) Loudspeakers: HARBETH M40.1 |REVIEW|
2) Line preamplifier: AYON AUDIO Spheris III Linestage |REVIEW|
3) Super Audio CD Player: AYON AUDIO CD-35 HF Edition No. 01/50 |REVIEW|
4) Stands (loudspeakers): ACOUSTIC REVIVE (custom) |ABOUT|
5) Power amplifier: SOULUTION 710
6) Loudspeaker filter: SPEC REAL-SOUND PROCESSOR RSP-AZ9EX (prototype) |REVIEW|
7) Hi-Fi rack: FINITE ELEMENTE Pagode Edition |ABOUT|


Analog interconnect SACD Player - Line preamplifier: SILTECH Triple Crown (1 m) |ABOUT|
Analog interconnect Line preamplifier - Power amplifier: ACOUSTIC REVIVE RCA-1.0 Absolute-FM (1 m) |REVIEW|
Speaker cable: SILTECH Triple Crown (2.5 m) |ABOUT|

AC Power

Power cable | Mains Power Distribution Block - SACD Player: SILTECH Triple Crown
Power (2 m) |ARTICLE|
Power cable | Mains Power Distribution Block - Line preamplifier - ACOUSTIC REVIVE
Power Reference Triple-C (2 m) |REVIEW|
Power cable | Mains Power Distribution Block - Power amplifier - ACROLINK Mexcel 7N-PC9500 |ARTICLE|
Power cable | Power Receptacle - Mains Power Distribution Block: ACROLINK Mexcel 7N-PC9500 (2 m) |ARTICLE|
Power Receptacle: Acoustic Revive RTP-4eu ULTIMATE |REVIEW|
Anti-vibration platform under Acoustic Revive RTP-4eu ULTIMATE: Asura QUALITY RECOVERY SYSTEM Level 1 |REVIEW|
Power Supply Conditioner: Acoustic Revive RPC-1 |REVIEW|
Power Supply Conditioner: Acoustic Revive RAS-14 Triple-C |REVIEW|
Passive filter EMI/RFI: VERICTUM Block |REVIEW|


Speaker stands: ACOUSTIC REVIVE (custom)
Hi-Fi rack: FINITE ELEMENTE Pagode Edition |ABOUT|
Anti-vibration platforms: ACOUSTIC REVIVE RAF-48H |ARTICLE|

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Clamp: PATHE WINGS Titanium PW-Ti 770 | Limited Edition

Record mats:


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Headphones: Headphone Cables: Forza AudioWorks NOIR HYBRID HPC