Amps In Wall Or Conditioner?


Stereo amp and subwoofer amp, both with upgrade PCs, plugged straight into (upgraded) wall outlets.
Same with tube preamp.

Now getting power conditioner for use on DAC, streamers, CD, maybe even analog sources. 
Conditioner has 2 high-current outlets. Majority opinion says don't use these for amps.
If not, how about preamp and/or DAC? Any foreseeable benefit or detriment of high-current vs. linear filtered?
Thanks! 
hickamore
I’m pretty sure “it depends”. I used to plug them all into my power conditioner. I added a direct line. That improved the sound. Then plugged the power conditioner into one of the two outlets on the direct line. Recently I put a direct line directly behind my amp and plugged my amp directly into that… sizable improvement.

So, my experience says amp directly into wall, the other components into power conditioner. Separate direct lines better still. The direct lines are really worth it (10 gauge).
ghdprentice, not sure I know what you mean by direct lines. Separate dedicated wall outlets for different amps on the same circuit? Or whole dedicated circuits for each amp? Or something completely different? Thanks.  
Plug into the wall outlet.
@ghdprentice is referring to is a separate circuit or line for ll his audio equipment. I have done the same in my listening room back when I built my house 20 years ago. So there are no appliances, computer or other noise in the line. 
gdh means he is running a line directly from his panel to the amp without any switches or other outlets in the way. Good amplifiers already have a great power conditioner built in. It is called a power supply. It filters out all AC providing the amp with clean DC power. If you have to use power conditioning it is best to use it upstream on the low level equipment.
I do not use any of it anywhere. It seems to be a problem I do not have.
A direct line is a dedicated circuit from the breaker box. Your breaker box is 220v… so I would get one on each leg (they are typically next to each other in the box) one for the amp and one for the other components (power conditioner). The sub will not matter much… I doubt most people could tell the difference where you plug it in.

The direct lines for me cost less than any one interconnect or power cord, but resulted in greater improvements in sound. I have a really good system… the better system the more obvious the improvement.
Rather than ask, you can see for yourself what sounds best.
I have my Canary Mono Amps directly in the wall on a dedicated 20 amp line.  All other components including Pre-Amp on InaKustic 3500P PC.  I was told by my amp builder to not plug amps into a PC.
builder3, yes I will experiment within the limit of available possibilities at any particular time.

gdhp, mijostyn, thanks for the clarification. As it happens, nothing but audio outlets on my (in that sense) dedicated circuit. Believe I will add a separate amp circuit, if an electrician should someday return my call. 

The remaining question: any problem switching the tube preamp to the conditioner's high-current outlet when the conditioner inherits the preamp's wall socket?

My literal definition of good is "improves sound". So if the conditioner is good then it improves sound and you plug everything into it. If the conditioner is not good then it does not improve sound and why would you plug anything into it?


Don't make things harder than they have to be.

I have a Coda #16 power amp and upon arrival I immediately plugged it into the PS Audio P15 regenerator since it has made my source and lower power components all sound better. I did not realize what that amp could do until one day I plugged it straight into the wall. Wow what a difference it made and I mean night and day. The Coda came alive like I had not heard it and the P15 was showing only 25% draw from all of my components plugged into it. Tomorrow my electrician is coming to install a dedicated line from the panel to my listening room and I am expecting another bump in quality sound which is already outstanding.


If power supplies cleaned out all incoming AC then they'd be pretty much standardized by now, which none are. No two make are alike. Most are built to a price point or with the belief by the designer that they are only intended to do one thing and that by going by the book, the problem is solved. 

That has never been the case.

All the best,
Nonoise
hickamore OP255 posts10-25-2021 6:59pmbuilder3, yes I will experiment within the limit of available possibilities at any particular time.

Glad to hear you won't be altering the time/space continuum. Safety first.
do not put the dedicated line (s) on separate legs of the  main panel. Rather get motors on the opposite leg e.g. freezer, fridge, AC, furnace. When you spec the wire size, get the max the electrician can correctly terminate. The marginal cost to upsize to max is normally pretty low.

Next get any switch mode aka wall wart power supply items on the PC, preferably on dedicated line. Depending on the quality level of your DAC it may need go on PC “ dirty “ circuit. Listen is the test. Cheap DACs lacking a Faraday cage normally find themselves on the dirty side.

then listen and experiment w remaining analog gear.
Thanks, all. As planned, stereo amp stays in the wall. Conditioner goes in the wall. DAC, streamers, CD go in the conditioner. Analog sources can probably go anywhere(?). Preamp and sub amp are the floaters. Then we listen and fiddle and await the electrician, more like Godot than the Iceman. Sorry for dumb question; my first tryout with an actual conditioner vs. Furman 8 + Quattro 4.
also if your breakers and or panel are older, consider replacing audio related breakers and clean / tighten ALL panel terminations.

enjoy the music
Depends on the power conditioner. I use a Puritan 156 and it does not limit current in any way. I tried going into my direct 20 amp line vs the Puritan. The Puritan sounded better. So it depends on the conditioner. The Puritan also has the optional Ground Master system and blocks DC. The system sings more beautifully with the amp plugged into the Puritan. My amp is the Circle Labs A200. The Puritan also quiets buzzing toroidal transformers and that is yet another plus.

Just this weekend I tried the wall vs the Puritan again just to confirm. It was quite obvious the Puritan was the way to go.

Other conditioners may limit current and negatively impact sound quality. Other conditioners may not have independently isolated outlets and thus mixing noise from digital components in with analog components. So it comes down to the unit in question and actual listening tests.
tomic601 +1. Fortunately, no wall warts in the system and DAC is a good one. If an electrician ever shows up I will have him follow your advice.

grannyring, have definitely looked at Puritan, which must be the gold standard as many other users verify your results. Given a larger budget and readier availability, Puritan is where I would go. For now, if the AQ Niagara can just clean up the DAC and streamers, I will call it a success.

Understand completely.  Folks love the Niagara.  Tvad here liked it more than the Puritan 🙂.  What’s most important is you just need to try for yourself.  Trial period would be great! 
@nonoise, if the power supply is not doing it's job correctly then you need to buy better equipment. And, on what basis are you making this statement, by what you hear or by actual testing of power supplies?
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I have my Canary Mono Amps directly in the wall on a dedicated 20 amp line.
I was told by my amp builder to not plug amps into a PC.

      I agree 100%
@mijostyn,
I used to wonder about this until I saw this video.

All the best,
Nonoise
@grannyring, 

"Depends on the condition"

Absolutely  correct. By no means are they all created equally. 

"Just this weekend I tried the wall vs the Puritan again just to confirm. It was quite obvious the Puritan was the way to go."

@grannyring funny you mention this. I did the same thing several weekends ago. I have the BPT 3.5 Signature plus which is a balanced AC isolated transformer power conditioner. For 12 years My amplifiers have been plugged into it due to it sounding better than direct in the wall AC outlet. 

I decided to plug amplifiers into the wall which is a 20 amp  dedicated line. No different now than 12 years ago. Same result,   better sound quality across the sonic board with the BPT versus the wall AC outlet. This will not be true for every power conditioner,  but certainly is for some.
Charles 

Funny Charles! Most familiar with your conditioner as I had two upper end units over the years. My gear, system, and amps all sounded better through it. I remember the music taking on better weight and bass foundation as well as cleaner and smoother highs. The weight it brought to the music stands out the most in my memory of BPT. Great unit!
"Love the Niagara 1200 paired with an AudioQuest Tornado power cord. Compared it to a Puritan 156, and sold the Puritan."

The Puritan has a series inductor in the AC supply to every outlet and can, under certain conditions such as dynamic (changing) current demands of Class A/B power amps, result in "current-starving" with a loss of dynamics and bass impact. Simply put, inductors oppose changes in current flow. Audioquest avoids this problem in the Niagra 1200 by using NO filters in the high-current (HC) outlets.
No current starving on ANY amp I put on the Puritan. Puritan advertises the same thing. I have put a 400 watt class A/B amp on it. A 55 watt pure class A amp on it……you get the idea. Always sounded better than plugging into my upgraded audiophile wall outlet as part of a dedicated 20 amp circuit isolated from the rest of the home’s electrical. That is my experience in my home. I suppose one could have a different experience based on a combination of realities all coming together. In audio one can never say something is true in all instances. My experience only.
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A most knowledgeable faculty in this school. Glad I signed up! 
and experience based…

Isotec is my gold standard, but i could live with … ? 

OP your router or network switch on linear power supply ?
"No current starving on ANY amp I put on the Puritan. Puritan advertises the same thing. I have put a 400 watt class A/B amp on it. A 55 watt pure class A amp on it……you get the idea. Always sounded better than plugging into my upgraded audiophile wall outlet as part of a dedicated 20 amp circuit isolated from the rest of the home’s electrical. That is my experience in my home..."

I have every reason to believe that your experience is as described. Class A amps have a relatively constant current demand, so a series inductor in the AC feed does not pose a problem. The same holds true for a heavily-biased Class A/B amp such as your Coda which runs Class A for the first 20 watts if moderate SPL is in play.

The series inductor becomes a problem, however, when a lightly-biased Class A/B amp is driven at high levels. A loss in dynamics and bass impact will result and may be what tvad experienced. This is the very reason why Audioquest and Furman use energy-storage technology in their pricier power conditioners. 
@tomic601 router/network switch not on linear filter, not even near the wireless source components (I use a booster in the listening room), but this could be arranged & I have explored the cost/benefit logistics, thanks in large part to your contributions on the subject. Even the conditioner doesn't aim to resolve some specific complaint. It's just the latest new toy that might -- who knows? -- lower the inaudible noise floor around here.
@tomic601 Somehow overlooked Isotek, thanks for the prompt. Now I'm off to watch Kevin D's pitch on the device. Nice that Upscale sells both, and I have tested/uptraded other components with them before.
OP you are welcome. you have many helping this thread. I was lucky to buy a couple of Furman 15 for all the digital infrastructure in the house, keep it clean before dumping back into the line…

Also, i have heard great things about both Puritan and Audioquest but so far have only heard the latter. it’s great you have choices.

best to you !

Jim
@tvad, I have my ROON Nucleus, Chord Hugo M Scaler, Hugo TT2 DAC, Woo Audio WA22 headphone amp, my network switch, and my router, all plugged into an AudioQuest Niagara 1200 power conditioner, which is plugged into the wall using an AQ Thunder power cord. I wasn’t aware or knowledgeable about the importance of clean power until I had gotten pretty deep into this hobby during the pandemic. I also use aftermarket LPS’s for the Nucleus, M Scaler, and the TT2. 
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I have had the Niagra 1200 for a couple of weeks now and am super impressed with it.  A quieter background and a more expansive soundstage.  I would say the improvement in the sound of my system adding the AQ unit was quite similar to putting Iso-Acoustic GAIA's under my Spatial Audio speaker... a remarkable improvement right away, no thinking about either acquisition.  I bought it for $1K and now it costs $1300 so I got it at the right time.

I got a real flexible Puritan Audio power cord recently and it has by far the least secure connection to the Niagra unit... just sort of hanging there.  My pal suggested wrapping the IEC female end with teflon tape, which I did, but clearly did not add enough wraps.  That I will do right away as it ought to provide for a more secure fit.  
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My friend is a Audiophile and master electrician he said and I followed using first a awg 10 -20 amp amp outlet
3 wire, a week later he said try this a 4 wire dual ground 
1 common ground ,the other a isolated insulated ground ,
that brought the noise floor even lower, after a solid 1 week breakin ad the previous week low level detail documented by 6 reference songs I use to compare it was a clear winner .
my integrsted gets plugged directly into the wall.
and hav3 a Siemens surge protection directly hook to my 200 amp service.

I took both my amp and sub off a PS Audio Ultimate HC Outlet and run them both straight into the wall. supposedly the UO is not current limiting but I prefer the way the system sounds with the Amp & sub into the wall.