New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Power Strips bad for audio?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
quote from another thread:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
home depot power strips are BAD for audio and not recommended.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I have so much equipment in the den that I have power strips plugged into power strips.

I was wondering (Help!)
1) where I could do some research on the power strips impact to the hi fi
2) best ideas - run new lines from the electrical box or buy a monster power regulator or?

Den set up:
2 PCs and crt monitors, cable modem, , network gateway, printer, fax
9 Hi-Fi components
- McIntosh C20 tube pre-amp
- Dynaco ST 70 (for the highs)
- B&K ST140 (for the lows)
- electronic crossover
- Tuner, SACD player, Cassette player, turntable
headphone amp on the way
TV, VCR, , direct tv box, PC dolby digital box, card scanner, 2 palm chargers and a cordless phone.

Another bedroom with a PC, Hi-Fi, subwoofer, TV is on the same circuit from the main box...
Thanks,
Clay
post #2 of 21
Sonically, overall, I think those in-expensive Monster Power Conditioners (HTS-1000 or 2000) are worse than the power strips I've used for dedicated amplifiers.
post #3 of 21
I think a first step could be to check if it has any audible effects for you. Listen first to your best hifi components with as much of the other equipment on or at least in stand by. Then disconnect as much as you can and check if there is any difference.
Be careful when plugging and unplugging AC. I had an accident when unplugging, causing a power spike to go through my MC phono amplifier (sensitivity 0.4 millivolt) out to the speakers, and smashing the woofers.
If you hear any difference, it could be time to consider powerline solutions. I don't say that this experiment removes all noise on the powerline, but you should get a reduction.
post #4 of 21
Personalyl, I'm skeptical of the whole power thing, but I haven't tried any of this stuff yet.

I have read some posts about power cables making a difference and it goes into reasoning that seems logical to me but I still find myself skeptical.

After markl's conversion in the power domain I am now more willing to drop $50 on a VD cord and try it myself. he was quite skeptical before and now is quite the evangalist when it comes to power components!

If one wonders the effects of a power strip on audio, I would suggest trying it and seeing. I would hope it would make none or little difference as it sure would be a LOT easier to deal with routing power with those strips rather than running new power wires and outlets in the walls!

This being the case, they may very well be one of those necessary evils some of us have to live with.
post #5 of 21
PS. This is what I did before buying power cords. I heard a difference and bought power cords that improved it more than disconnecting components. It you want to experiment with powercords, try first on digital components as the CD player.
post #6 of 21
Why would power strip affect sound? I don't know anything about power strip. But I would imagine power strip is like a power splitter. So that would be the same as a power line wiring to different outlet of your house. Am I wrong?
post #7 of 21
The original quote was from me. The main reason you are typically urged not to use power strips is that they limit current which impacts dynamics.

Also, having multiple components, especially digital gear all hooked up un-isolated in a power strip allows for noise to accumulate.

Power conditioners, such as the Monster gear isolate each outlet from the others preventing this noise.

markl
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally posted by markl
The original quote was from me. The main reason you are typically urged not to use power strips is that they limit current which impacts dynamics.

Also, having multiple components, especially digital gear all hooked up un-isolated in a power strip allows for noise to accumulate.

Power conditioners, such as the Monster gear isolate each outlet from the others preventing this noise.

markl
Again, it sounds reasonable but I find myself skeptical. What Monster products do you recommend?

I have to say the *only* reason I am willing to try this when I get the money is watching your transformation.
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally posted by Nezer


Again, it sounds reasonable but I find myself skeptical. What Monster products do you recommend?
IMO the Monster HTS-2000 represents great value for the dollar right now. In my systems, they provide sonic improvements (although I use Tice power conditioner in my main system).

Even if you don't hear a difference, the difference you won't hear if a heavy power spike comes through the wires is an important consideration also.
post #10 of 21
I just want to add this bit of info. I am not a "high end" audio dude.
When I was a ham radio guy(still am actually), we had a guest speaker from the power company come and talk to our club.
Just for your info:
He said that the 60hz voltage you get fluctuates during low power consumtion times. That is when they take their generators off line and do maintenance. Instead of three generators, they would take one off line and use only two to generate power. This would affect the uh...signal of AC you are getting. Granted this is in HI, so I don't know how other power companies execute their maintenance.
In the low consumption times, they often "tweak" their systems and it effects things like electric clocks. From what I remember, he said that in off peak hours, the 60hz could fluctuate by +- 5%.
Do the power conditioners you mention act like computer back ups? Do they provide pure 60hz signals to the transformers?
Hey! I like cables and believe!
Just wondering about ac cords.
md
post #11 of 21
Thread Starter 
Millerdog, that is interesting. I will have to check out what PG&E does in the Bay area and how much hz and volts change.

I saw a Monster Power stabilizer at Good Guys for $1,500 that actually maintains exact power if the input is 80-120v.
The big impressive meter on the front shows what it was doing. It was adding a few volts when I saw it (and it was constantly changing a bit). It must also regulate the hz.
It looks cool and impressive. A bit rich for my blood right now. especially since I was laid off in May.

I have a bunch of research to do on power based on the other threads. I need to be sure my equipment has enough current for one thing like Markl was saying. I should probably get an AA in engineering so I could understand audio better.
post #12 of 21
"Again, it sounds reasonable but I find myself skeptical. What Monster products do you recommend?"

You can readily find the new PB 1100 from Monster for $150 on the web. That's what I use. Only the $1000+ Monster products re-generate power. PS Audio makes some lower-cost units that won't handle power amps (they don't put out nearly enough wattage for a HT amp for instance), but all your other equipment will work with it (up to 300 watts of power consumption).

Now that I understand how critical good power is in my system (see the Virtual Dynamics thread), I am seriously considering a PSAudio P300.

markl
post #13 of 21
There are reasons why a power strip can sound BETTER then plugging in to seperate outlets. It provides for a lower resistence ground connection between the components. It is just like star grounding your power cords ground connection. As to current limiting- it is really difficult to come up with a reason a simple power strip would limit current. Copper wire will conduct a lot of current right up to the point it starts to heat up. If you go to a filtered power strip, such as the Monsters, and similer types, the inductors (ferrite types normally) do have an effect on current flow. I have not noticed any problem with my Monster Power conditioner.
post #14 of 21
Granted this is marketing fluff, but Monster goes to great lengths to assert that their products do not limit current. To wit from their site:

"Will the Monster Power Center restrict current to my power amplifiers?

No. On the models that contain High Current Filters, we have passed over 21,000 watts of power through to demonstrate its capabilities. For Monster Power Centers that do not have High Current Filters, the fillter becomes saturated for a few Milliseconds but does not impede current flow."

When I first switched from a regular $10 power strip to a Monster Power conditioner, I have experienced elimination of hum, but most significantly, the picture quality of my TV improved in a very night and day fashion. I also have the cable itself plugged into and out of my Monster conditioner and that really helped "clean up" the picture even more.

Differences in audio are much harder to discern mainly due to the difficulty of doing any A/B comparisons. It would take me an hour to plug and unplug everything to compare audio with/without the conditioner. However, based on the clearly visible differences in the performance of my TV and DVD player, I am willing to accept that the Monster conditioner positively impacts audio as well. My TV (a 36" Sony WEGA) is a power hog yet picture quality is clearly improved. I doubt my PB1100 is limiting current in any way.

OTOH, I wouldn't dip below a PB1100 ($150) in the Monster line. I am not an electrical engineer, so maybe not the best person to explain technically how/why "audiophile" power products work. I can only relate my experience (which seems to gel with "conventional wisdom" on the power strip vs. power conditioner debate) which was very positive.

markl
post #15 of 21
I still don't understand the current limiting issue. The statement of passing through 21,000 watt is very confusing. The monster supply is only 15 amp and at 21,000 watt they'll have to pass 200 amp. The house wiring will burn first at that kind of rate.

If current limiting is the issue, then from audio point of view you'll be able to hear a difference if someone turns on the light in the next room.

The RFI/EMI issues is more logical and reasonable as well as ground loop isolation if you have multiple equipment.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav: