Keces P8 Linear Power Supply

  1. project86 Contributor
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    If you follow my ramblings here (and elsewhere), you may have noticed this device pop up in pictures on several recent posts of mine. It's just there in the background, doing its thing without calling much attention to itself. And yet, in many ways, it's the backbone of my reference system.

    The item in question is a new product from a name veteran HeadFiers will probably remember - Keces Audio. The company had some popular DACs roughly 10 years ago, known for their high value and musical sound. The little DA-151 was among the very first USB-only DACs I ever encountered.

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    I don't believe the company ever really went away, but they seemed to focus away from the North American market for some time there. That changes now with the launch of Keces Audio USA.

    The focus seems to be power products - I don't know if Keces has a larger portfolio for other markets, but for now North America gets a trio of isolation transformers plus a pair of linear power supplies. Like the early Keces gear, these models all seem to offer quite a bit of value per dollar.

    The one I'm using is the Keces P8 Linear Power Supply. Some specs from the site:

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    Toroidal transformer: a high-mass, low-profile, low magnetic field design

    No Humming or Buzz noise for 50Hz and Peak load, 100% Silent

    Low ripple noise and void of high frequency noise

    4A+4A or 8A continuous power

    Each output has two selectable voltages

    *All version included a USB output

    Keces_P-8_2-1140x720.jpg

    Features

    1. High Quality Toroidal Transformer provide pure power.
    2. Separate ground for each output rail.
    3. Ultra low ripple noise.
    4. No humming or buzz noise for 50Hz and peak load, 100% silent.
    5. OLED display currently output voltage and currently output ampere.
    6. USB Type A 5V output
    7. Dual output with USB output provide 4A for each with 1A USB output.
    8. Single output with USB output provide 8A with 1A USB output.
    9. Over Voltage Protection (OVP).
    10. Over Current Protection (OCP).
    11. Under Voltage Protection (UVP).
    12. Over Temperature Protection (OTP). 1
    3. The 4mm thickness of the aluminum chassis to effective to blocks EMI/RFI interference.


    Compatibility & DC output version

    1. Directly power DC 24V based phono stage or for all audio device that run on DC 24V.

    2. Directly power DC 20V based Laptop or for all audio device that run on DC 20V.

    3. Directly power DC 19V based NUC, Thin ITX system and Laptop or for all audio device that run on DC 19V.

    4. Directly power DC 18V based Pro-Ject products or for all audio device that run on DC 18V.

    5. Directly power DC 15V based Alpha Design Labs products or for all audio device that run on DC 15V.

    6. Directly power DC 12V based Mac Mini or for all audio device that run on DC 12V.

    7. Directly power DC 9V based SOtM products or for all audio device that run on DC 9V.

    8. Directly power DC 7V based SOtM products or for all audio device that run on DC 7V.

    9. Directly power DC 5V based Squeezebox or for audio device that run on DC 5V.

    10. USB Output provide DC 5V @1A. Directly power DC5V based USB DAC.

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    [​IMG]


    DC Connector 2.1mm Barrel

    AC Input Voltage 115V 60Hz / 230V 50Hz (Switchable)

    Power Consumption 210 Watts (Full Load Output)

    Casing Aluminum

    Dimension (WxDxH) 300x220x66mm

    Weight 6kg


    As you can see, this is a flexible device that can be configured any number of ways. The most obvious would be dual outputs - one for a music server or streamer (Squeezebox Touch, sMS-200, microRendu), the other for a DDC or USB widget (Wyred Recovery, Uptone Regen, etc).

    The only limitation is the total output capability of 8A - far higher than the somewhat conceptually similar Wyred 4 Sound PS-1. That device handles a maximum of 4 devices but shares 4A total between them. The Keces P8 only does two devices... BUT! Don't forget the USB output that can provide up to 1A at 5 Volts, making this a three-device PSU if your gear needs happen to match up. The USB output can be tapped using dual-head USB cables, or get an adapter from Keces USA to work with low power equipment.

    Me? I got the single device version feeding a Zenion music server. But I've also got the USB output feeding a Matrix X-SPDIF 2 DDC, and the result is spectacularly clean, rich, and musical. Running the Zenion with stock power brick, powering the Matrix DDC direct via USB power, just isn't the same. Still good, sure, but I the P8 brings very tangible improvements. I particularly enjoy the inky black background it produces, which is impressive considering I already run high-end power conditioning for the entire rig. Improvement is even more dramatic when I run straight from wall power.

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    I really enjoy the OLED display which shows the draw of connected gear. It looks like my system generally needs somewhere between 2A-3A when playing a single stream in Roon endpoint mode. But I see the draw ramp up when I do multi-room audio and DSD upsampling. This particular system still doesn't push the limits of the P8 but I bet I could throw together something that would if I really wanted to. That's where the OLED would really come in handy.

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    I'll have more thoughts as time allows. Just wanted to get this out there because I keep showing pics of this thing without ever really explaining what it is and why I like it so much. Did
    I mention it goes for a very reasonable $599 regardless of configuration? Single device that needs 12V, or dual outputs at 7V and 15V? Doesn't matter. That said, you'll have to inquire about custom cables for your particular devices, as I don't know what the price spread on those might be.

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    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017
    grigorianvlad likes this.
  2. ken6217
    Good review. I have mine coming in the next few days.
     
  3. grigorianvlad
    Good review indeed. I found this thread while researching how much current can a P8 deliver in each zone.
    Turns out it is 4Amp in a dual zone configuration.
    Mine powers two devices:
    Mytek Brooklyn DAC+
    SoTM tx-USBultra
    Premium DC power cords with Qualya connectors.



    Everything Project86 described I also experienced with the P8.
    1) Blacker background.
    2) Tighter bass
    3) Improved dynamics.

    I was afraid that the Keces wont deliver enough current in dual zone configuration. But the Mytek consistently needed only 1Amp no matter how hard I drove it with or without planar low sensitivity headphones, at any volume. I saw some publications about Sbooster with current measurements and they were able to drive the Mytek at 2Amp, but I couldn't make it so current hungry no matter what I did.
    The Keces showed 1.0Amp. So, there were 3 more Amps to spare. The tx-USBultra doesnt have an analog output stage or a headphone amp like the Mytek, so it only consumed 0.5Amp, with more 3.5Amp to spare.
    It was a tough choice between a Keces P8 and an Sbooster, but the Sbooster is so ugly, I decided to go with the Keces and I am not disappointed.
    One more note, I'd say the Keces improved the Mytek sound by 10%, but the SoTM improved it by 90% (if there was such a crude % measurement). They are somewhat different improvements , but my advice is to get a SoTM tx-USBultra even before getting a Keces P8, provided your DAC and the rest of the system are capable of reproducing the positive difference such a combination will deliver.
     
    project86 likes this.

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