Power conditioner
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ampgalore

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What is a good power conditioner to get? I am looking around $300 or less.
 
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tomek

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try picking up a ONEAC off ebay. they don't have the 'audiophile' label attached to them and therefore are a lot cheaper.

hospitals use them for their gear.
 
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ampgalore

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Thanks Tomek! But which model should I choose? I visited the ONEAC homepage, they list 50Hz, 50-60Hz, and 3 phase 50-60Hz. The ones on ebay fall in the 60Hz category. Which one and which model is suitable for home audio use?
 
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Hirsch

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The single best bargain in power conditioning I've seen is the Monster PC1000 on clearance at buy.com. I believe Sean H originally pointed this out:

http://www.buy.com/retail/product.as...7&loc=111&sp=1

This is the exact same product as the HTS1000, but marketed under a different name for computer use.
 
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tortie

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Yes, you wont go wrong with the PC1000, gives you great surge suppresion too.

Shameless plug:

If you want a Brickwall, I have one for sale
 
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ampgalore

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Thanks Hirsh, just bought one


Tortie, the brickwall looks interesting, but it's a bit too big for my apartment
 
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SunByrne

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Hirsch
The single best bargain in power conditioning I've seen is the Monster PC1000 on clearance at buy.com.


How would the Acoustic Research AR-10V compare to this?
 
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Len

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Depending on what you're powering, I find most power conditioners have a deleterious effect on sonics. It is my opinion that no properly designed amplifier should be line conditioned (with the possible exception your power lines are very noisy or spikey). Most sources I've used benefited, but I do not use power conditioners on any gain/amplification devices. Without fail, I prefer the plugged-into-the-wall sound over the compressed dynamics of all the conditioners I've tried. This is true of my SS gear, and even more significant with my tube gear. I used to plug my Cary 300SEI into the PS Audio Powerplant 300 because the media tells me that it'll sound better conditioned. Now I know better.
 
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ampgalore

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So it is okay to plug the source in the a power conditioner, but not the amp?

What about an external DAC?

With headphone amps, would it be better just to plug it into a wall outlet?
 
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sacd lover

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Quote:

Originally Posted by ampgalore
So it is okay to plug the source in the a power conditioner, but not the amp?

What about an external DAC?

With headphone amps, would it be better just to plug it into a wall outlet?




You can plug anything into the power conditioner; source, headamp, preamp etc. Len's point was amps dont sound as good to him on power conditioning. I too agree with this especially with tubes. I use PS Audio ultimate outlets but the choice you made was both cost effective and a good unit. As for sources I like my cd player or dac's on them. The digital units seem to sonically benefit from the cleaner power and noise reduction.

I lost two tube amps to power surge/ lightning strikes last month. So I have my amps on the PS Audio units, even though the amps sound better straight into the wall. The real choice is do you sacrifice a little sound quality for protection; or do you go for sound quality only? I am erring on the side of protection currently but I went 25 years without a problem.
 
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Len

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sacd_lover expressed my opinion on the issue as well (if not better) then I could. While I find line conditioners have an negative impact on amplifiers, it's sometimes worthwhile if only as protection for your valuable gear. The depreciation of sound quality varies from conditioner to conditioner, with the PS Audio UO being better then most IMHO. The best I've used is Audio Magic, and I have heard Shunyatas perform admirably too.

Products that aren't intended to amplify signal as their primary purpose (e,g. sources, DACs, etc.) aren't subject to the dynamic compression that amplifiers and preamps are when plugged into line conditioners. I often find the sound can improve when you plug source equipment into some (not all) conditioners, mostly equipment that has mechanical parts like turntables and CDPs. My guess is the smoothing out of the incoming power helps stabilize the mechanical performance, and most source component power sections aren't remotely as robust as those you find in quality amps. But of course, that's just conjecture :p
 
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ampgalore

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Thanks guys for the great advice!

It would make sense for amps, since amps already have beefy transformers built in.

What bout TV and computers then?

Does plugging an amp into a powerstrip with surge protection degrade sound quality?
 
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Len

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I don't know what affect a line conditioner has on audio or video quality for a computer and television. I use a line conditioner (APS unit, to be precise) on my computer because I have important data that I can not afford to lose. The power supplies on computers are also rather wimpy and prone to brown outs.

Anything that has surge protection will affect sound IME. Surge protectors are current-limiting by design.
 
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Hirsch

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After hundreds of dollars in repairs on my gear due to a failure of an electrical box exterior to my unit, I decided that operating without protection was not an option for me.

The Tice Elite IV power conditioner I use in my home theater seems to result in a clearer picture on my set. I also use an Audio Magic Stealth Matrix Mini conditioner on my main headphone amp, with a rather dramatic increase in instrument separation and dynamics.

I've got Monster power conditioners all over the place, and they seem to reduce the noise floor wherever I use them. So, I've come to the conclusion that I've got dirty power, and that any compression I might be hearing is overwhelmed by the perceived increase in dynamics with noise gone. Since I got good results with the stage 2 filtering in the HTS1000 and HTS2000, I've avoided attempting to upgrade. I don't know if the higher level conditioners will sound better or worse, and most of the time I prefer to stick with something that I know works in my particular conditions.

I've also got a Monster AVS2000 on my den setup. That's not a conditioner, per se, but holds voltage at 120v with an output of 15 amps. If that's not enough to drive a headphone amp, something is wrong somewhere. I've also noted that it's common for my home voltage to approach 130 v in the evenings, so the Monster is looking good right now.

The only conditioner I've used that produced audible compression was the Brickwall (I forget the model, but it's the audio one). I've relegated that one to my computers.

Bottom line is YMMV. You're not really going to know how any particular conditioner is going to work in your system until you try it.
 
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