My thoughts after a little while with the Empowered
Well, I've been burning in my Empowered PC for about a week or two now with the cord not moving or changing shape in any way (Igor says this is important). The sound has improved and I am much happier now with my system than I was.
The main change after burn-in has been an increase in clarity. I got more bass weight when I first installed the cord, and while the bass was already tight, I've found that after burn-in the bass response is slightly leaner and more taut, thus being much more natural. Similarly, the midrange has become clearer in a way that conveys sweetness without viscosity. Treble clarity and extension have improved as well.
So... how does this cord compare with others? The only other power cords I've had on my Meridian are stock 18-gauge power cords and a borrowed Tekline powercord of, I believe, approximately the same price as the K Works Empowered.
The Empowered cord is clearly a great improvement over the stock. For a hair over $200, it'd better be. I found the improvement worth the money, though. As I have mentioned, bass response is now deeper and yet tighter; the midrange isn't as syrupy but is clearer and more dynamic; the treble has become clearer.
The Tekline provides a greater challenge, but at the same price range, one might not expect a big difference. I did find a great improvement over my stock powercord with the Tekline as well. The biggest improvement was in the bass region as the bass became deeper and fuller; the midrange also gained more heft.
However, I much prefer the Empowered cord over the Tekline. The sound is much more balanced and clear than the darker sound of the Tekline. The Tekline still made my system sound natural, but the Empowered provides greater detail and the natural sound comes from a complete spectrum that's well represented. The Tekline provides a more comfortable feel, perhaps, in lending all music played across it a darker and warmer emphasis. It's good in its own way, but in my system the Empowered simply lets the music shine. And while my system may not be the best money can buy, it seems to me that it's good enough that clarity and transparency is a good thing.
The bottom line is that I highly recommend this powercord to someone who can spend the money. I know that I'm happy with my purchase.System used:Source:
Meridian 508.20 CD playerAmp:
Melos SHA-1 with NOS Tungsram PCC88 tubesHeadphones:
Alessandro-Grado Music Series ProInterconnects:
DH Labs Silver Sonic Air Matrix RCA, 1-meterPower cords:
Stock 18ga, Tekline, K Works Empowered on Meridian; modified captive cord on Melos.Music (list not exhaustive):
Charles Mingus - Mingus, Ah, Um; Shostakovich - String Quartets 11, 12, 13 (Taneyev Quartet on Melodiya); Bartok's string quartets (Emerson Quartet on DG); The Who - Who's Next (Deluxe); Led Zeppelin - Houses of the Holy
I'll try to upload a picture of the cord in my system (which hasn't had its picture posted in a long time) if, perhaps, someone would like to host it?