August 27, 2021 CASE STUDY: The Red Dragon – Alloy Yachts New Zealand

Isolated in an unforgiving maritime environment, Red Dragon provides a secluded ocean voyage for high net worth charter clients who expect perfection. The world-class superyacht boasts modern AV performance and reliability, despite corrosivity, reflectivity and vibrations in tight bulkhead spaces.



  • Corrosion from salt in devices and cables.
  • Impact and vibration from waves shifting devices and connectors.
  • Tight and cramped bulkhead spaces with signal noise.
  • High reflectivity of signals from the water.


  • EVS long length HDMI cable (now updated to PRS3).
  • Custom engineered connectors resilient to vibrations and impacts.
  • Non-corrosive jacket materials.
  • Triple shielded signal against ocean reflectivity and tight space noise interference.


  • Zero failure expectation.
  • No reported faults by the integrator in over 14 years.
  • Red Dragon uses Kordz products to this day.


Images with thanks to Alloy Yachts’

Red Dragon is a 52m (170ft) fast cruising superyacht built by the world-renowned craftsmen at Alloy Yachts in New Zealand. The luxury vessel’s sophisticated design and engineering was adapted by Dubois Naval Architects to be a perfect blend of high performance and luxury comfort in chartered sailing, through the Mediterranean in summer months and the Caribbean in winter. 

In luxury maritime, superyachts are a life-changing experience where a vessel transcends space and time. In this place, guests are promised a contemporary and relaxing maritime adventure with a smooth, luxurious experience. For Red Dragon, its aesthetically clean and the functional style features an anthracite grey and white superstructure engineered with robust aluminium. This creates a shell for everything within to offer a state of the art, luxury experience with the ability to stay operational for long periods at sea without external assistance.

The system aboard consisted of:

  • Kaleidescape – 16 zone high definition 6Tb audio/video server.
  • Marantz home theatre systems combined with Speakercraft in-ceiling speakers and Velodyne subs are used throughout the yacht.
  • A variety of custom mounted 17″-57″ LCD TVs with dedicated Lumagen high definition scalers with RS232 control.
  • A Runco and a custom made discrete electric Stewart projector screen with a silent Lutron motor.


Seamless experience in an unforgiving environment.

Maritime environments pose significant challenges for reliable connectivity in digital devices. We joined the integration team, Liquid Automation, to connect the high-end devices in the games room, living room, bathrooms, and bedroom suites for Red Dragon. This could be achieved only with a cable product that could perform adequately in cramped bulkhead spaces and in marine environments prone to corrosion. Additionally, waves and unpredictable vibrations could cause cables to become disconnected unexpectedly.

At the time, common HDMI cables were stiff, rigid and prioritised price or performance over ease of use and installation versatility. Their connectors were poorly crafted and either came apart or fell out of their sockets due to motion, use, and the weight of the cable.

Shielding was not adequately applied in these cables and consideration of environmental noise was overlooked, especially in maritime applications. On a superyacht, power is likely installed next to signal wires as there is little room in cramped bulkhead compartments. A cable with no shielding faces reflectivity from the ocean and noise within a tightly packed electrical space. Simply put, connectivity with common cables at sea is unreliable at best. 

Red Dragon clients expected a flawless experience, regardless of the unforgiving environment at sea. When clientele charter Red Dragon, they anticipate sailing effortlessly in a high-class superyacht without being bogged down by the specifics of the technology behind the experience. This expectation made the Red Dragon a specialist application, requiring a freshly engineered solution that could maintain signal integrity over great distances, against the corrosive sea air and be comfortably installed with minimal space while performing to the standard of the modern devices the superyachts clientele were accustomed to. 

Crisp audiovisual quality without deviating from the vision of the engineers.
An immersive cinematic experience despite the environmental constraints. 

Simply a seamless, predictable experience in every room, on every voyage, each and every time.


A new solution engineered against the sea.

Images with thanks to Alloy Yachts’

For such a high profile installation, Kordz Managing Director James Chen was on-site during implementation to ensure the product met the specifications and would perform reliably. At the time, our newly launched Kordz EVS long length HDMI cables were chosen for their high flexibility and compact design, which allowed Liquid Automation to fulfil the vision for Red Dragon without compromise. The cable provided an unwavering digital signal over long distances and its elegant flexibility allowed installation in the tight bulkhead spaces.

Each video channel within Kordz EVS was individually shielded against electrical noise and the reflectivity of water that can make signal reception difficult. New materials were evaluated to address the specific demands the maritime environment dictated. Greater resilience, long-term reliability, compactness, flexibility and a newly designed connector were engineered to combat the unpredictable impact of waves. 

The Kordz EVS HDMI cable’s larger 28AWG solid conductors provided generous bandwidth and ensured compatibility with the latest 4K video resolutions in all superyachts rooms. Superior signal integrity was achieved through silver-plated conductors while its induction soldered connectors with 2kg retention force ensured connection would be physically maintained. These diecast connectors provided an exact fit and above standard strain relief could absorb shock, impact and absorption, while keeping the devices – and their connection – performing optimally.

In addition to Kordz EVS’ additional flexibility and certification, the new 2Kg connector allows the cable to stay in when needed as well as unplug should the engineered length extend beyond the safety limit. If a component falls from a shelf, the cable connection would not allow the attached devices (including the TV)  to follow the fallen device as this will cause even more damage whilst the vessel is in motion.

Before Liquid Automation performed the integration on board, the cable infrastructure had already been installed and tested with complete accredited documentation. This allowed a smooth audiovisual installation where the focus was solely on the vision of Red Dragon as a premier superyacht experience. 


Smooth sailing for Red Dragon’s AV

Failure on a world-class superyacht is unthinkable. 

Something as simple as disconnection in their grand suite can impede the entire allure when clientele pays upwards of US $250,000 for the voyage of a lifetime. The repercussions for the owner can be devastating. For one, the repairs or support needed won’t be available until the next port of call. And sailing through unspoiled islands in the Caribbean could mean no support at all from the nearest port, where a superyacht built for solitude was an uncommon appearance.

But for Red Dragon, the products aboard are performing as they would out of the box to this day. Our Kordz EVS series has transitioned to the next-gen HDMI technology and its promise of best-in-class home cinema connectivity lives on currently in Kordz PRS3, 

Many years on, the system continues to work flawlessly, while experiencing some of the harshest and most aggressive environments involving vibration and corrosion, yet maintaining the engineering required to deliver a boast-worthy, world-class experience.” – James Chen, Kordz Managing Director

Even as Red Dragon has faced several remodels, and devices come and go, unlike many of their substitutes, the performance of the original Kordz HDMI cables holds true. While the quest for high-performance connectivity solutions becomes ever more complex as device capabilities expand, we simply stay true to the core principles of our products: fast, effective and robust. And we raise the ceiling on performance as technology dictates.

In delivering optimal performance reliably in the world’s most unforgiving situations, Kordz engineers towards predictable reliability. 

Want to connect your next big AV idea to reality? 

Find out how we can combine strategy, experience and technology to make it happen. Get in touch.

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