I suppose you could wait the time it will take for Peter (Pbnaudio) to run his upcoming Great AC Outlet Shootout and consider its results, one way or another, before pulling the trigger on suitable duplexes. But, I know I can recommend one thing you may not yet know about that will be far more important to the sonics of the finished strip than indeed what kind of duplex you will be using...and I can't over emphasize that idea enough. In my own DIY powerstrip - a $30 Home Depot job with 5 rather robust-looking (but certainly conventional) duplexes - I installed 5 little devices from Alan Maher Designs (Facebook) that Alan calls "QDS" or "quantum duplex shields". They look like just a thin little copper strip that attaches to the rear of the duplex by means of double-sided tape (already attached to the QDS, just peel and stick), but you also connect a single wire already attached to the copper strip to the duplex's ground screw. The QDS works by greatly suppressing a duplex's tendancy to "ring", the kind of ringing that interferes with harmonic reproduction (harmonic distortion) and simply shunts it to ground. But, the QDS like all of Alan's other products are designed to do only one thing: reduce electrical noise. It's just that there is truly a lot of sonic justification for doing so. You would also use one on the system duplex at the wall - a definite chokepoint for everything plugged into it. Each copper QDS is $20 on Facebook and his usual sale price (on just about every holiday on the calendar) is that if you buy 3 you get a 4rth one free. If you have any doubts at first, I can tell you that if you order just one and put it at the wall on the system duplex it will just blow you away...after that you won't need any convincing from me. Whether your current duplex costs $200 or 20 cents, I'm sure the QDS will make a believer out of you as it did me.
Inside the copper strip is a proprietary piece of paper that aids in its effectiveness, although I'm not sure what it is exactly or what its role is. But, I do know that there is a silver version ($45) and a gold version (usually $60, but market price on that one) as well. The Gold QDS offers the most noise reduction of the 3. Also, each type of QDS can sublely affect system voicing, silver offering more extention and gold more bass articulation and overall warmth, and so on. The silver version is known to do nice things for video, too.
My own DIY strip is a simple, plain-jane $30 Home Depot strip whose (captive) AC cord I cut to a manageable length and then capped it with a Furutech copper male connector. But, the real reason I chose the strip was twofold: 1) it was fairly robust and yet cheap, by any audio standard, and 2) it had actual (traditionally shaped) duplexes contained inside (not just a single-file row of individual outlets). That allowed me the use of QDS in the power strip.
I suspect your strip will be a little more involved than my own, but I can't stress enough how huge these little things have been in my own system. ALL AC outlets ring, some more than others, but they all ring. Ideally you could use QDS on every duplex and wall switch in your home(!). Expensive?? It would surely add up, especially in a big house, but in view of my own experience with them (I have more than a dozen of them and have just ordered more) that would likely be worth every penny. These things have only been on the market about a year or so and, although Alan is on the verge of debuing at his only brick-and-mortar store in Nashville in a matter of days, Facebook has up to now been the only way to get his stuff. His group of follwers on FB have knowingly signed up to buy his products understanding that they are the 'guinnea pigs' that he is testing his products out on so he can finalize which of them he will be bringing to market (along with his business partners, but it's Alan whom I believe runs the R&D). For example and to give you some idea, I just ordered a pair of equipment stands from him at $350 each (they are of the new type that offer both vibration control and electronic noise reduction in one device, but operate on a completely new and different princple than any offered by the competition). He says he'll offer them again after his store has opened, but, in agreement not to undercut his partners, he will necessarily sell them at what will be their retail price: "at 4 times the [$350] price". He says he has to do that just to be taken seriously next to all the $5k+ power conditioners out there that these things will match or beat...so, if you can buy all that then maybe you can see what I mean about what a buyer's market his site really is at the moment. No word on how much the QDS will increase to, if even at all. In return FB members get the chance to buy some pretty cutting-edge stuff at extemely little over actual cost, before what will inevitably be the more customary high-end mark-up is tacked on. I myself am into AMD already to the tune of nearly $4k, but I now consider that fundamentally more important than the $5.5 system, itself, that I own. Of course, you could just start with $20, but I do warn you, these little things are the Lays potato chips of the audio world. And nope, not affiliated with AMD in any way.
Thanks for the comments. I am not too sure about dealing with Alan Maher though, lets leave it at that.
Right now, I have found some Military spec wiring that is 12 gauge silver coated over copper multi strand. But, I am open to suggestions on other wire type or wiring techniques.
Look for 'hospital' grade outlets and wiring. If you are up to it build in a surge protector, and that is a challenge.
Buconero117 , Thanks, The Audience power conditioner that will be feeding the power strip does have surge protection.
Not to sound negative, but why in heaven's name would you build your own power strip? They aren't that expensive, and unless you are going to submit your device for UL certification you could have some issues collecting from your insurance company in the event of a fire. Just sayin'...
Br3098, Most power strips have some sort of cheap wiring, filtering, surge surpression,outlets and or IEC.
There are some very good A/V power strips out there. Admittedly, they are usually overpriced.
Hopefully you have never had to, or never will, make a insurance claim for a home fire. But once you have been through the nightmare that most insurance company investigators and claims depts. put you through, I guarantee that you would never condone the use of any non-UL approved device in your home. These folks are looking for any excuse to deny all or part of your claim, and the use of any type of non-UL product attached to AC power will cost you orders of magnitude more than just buying the approved product.
Mil spec silverplated copper is GREAT wire.
I had a 600 ft roll of teflon coated mil spec 12 gauge a few years ago and i wish i had bought several of them.
I currently use a set of dual quad twist of that 12 gauge wire from a 20 amp single duplex on its own breaker in my kitchen 35 ft to the stereo. I wrapped each quad with plumbers teflon to tighten the wrap. Then a pair of 12 gauge grounds between the dual quads.. all rapped up with heavy plumbers teflon. (some blue australian teflon tape at Menards)
Works great to my two power conditioners...
I like your idea of a variety of duplex in the strip.
Then you can contrast and compare!!
And if one or two really shine.. Swap out the not so great ones later.
Leave enough space for oversized wall warts.
Thanks everyone for the comments.
Br3098, since I have many hi end power cords that are not UL approved I guess I have already crossed that line.
Elizabeth, it sounds like I do have the same wire, thanks for the approval. That is my plan to try various outlets.
Unsound, I hear ya about those pesky wall warts but at this time they need not apply. The Junction boxes that I have ordered are of a heavy grade aluminum that already has cut outs for the outlets and they will run perpendicular to the power strip.
Elizabeth, I'm trying to understand your quad twist. Are you saying you are using 4 12 ga wires that are twisted together and then connected to each connection on the outlet? If so, wouldn't that be like a 3 ga aggregate and how the heck would you connect that much wire to an outlet?
I must be missing something.
Ozzy, Cryoparts sells some nice readymade powertstrips at very reasonable prices as far as high end power strips go. By the time you buy a high quality non-ferrous enclosure and add up the cost of receptacles, power inlet and wiring, your total cot could be as much or greater than what Cryoparts is asking for the readymade item.
Gbart, you are probably right. But I will have the knowledge of knowing exactly what my DIY is made of.
P.S. I did contact Cryoparts website and the phone number that was listed.I was told that the main man had died and they are no longer in buisness.
Four 12 gauge wires in a quad twist. thus two wires are for hot, two wires are for neutral. Those just fit into the aftermarket A/C plug (with one of the two additional grounds)
Two quads, and two wall plugs into the A/C duplex in the wall.
The run of wires is bundled so the two quads have the extra ground wires between them
The far ends at to common plastic A/C boxes. One box has the duplex split so the quad pair entering it have one pair for each half of that duplex outlet.
The other quad is split aat the end so each pair goes to it's own double duplex box a further 10 feet down from the first single box.
(So each end of the rack area has some power outlets)
One conditioner is on each of a quad. the others are spares.
The in wall duplex I added a real jumper of the same wire instead of just relying on the internal metal link between outlet pairs
I just purchased a Oyaide R1 outlet. So when I build the power strip I will use;
Still waiting for many of the parts.
A few helpful hints.
Use the silver plated wire on the positive and neutral post, not on the ground. Use a quality 10 or 12awg pure Copper cable there. This will neutralize any excessive brightness coming from the two silver plated copper cables, and add more fullness and smoothness to the power strip.
Twist the two silver plated cables together, and counter spiral wrap (not to tight) the pure copper ground cable in the other direction. This helps with EMI and RFI interference.
Use your own Copper Sleeve tweak on the power strip. Put the copper sleeve at the base where the power cord or IEC goes into the unit. I have three DIY Power strips made this way in my system now.
Ivan_nosnibor very detailed post about all AC outlet's ringing is true. So when I made my power strips a couple of years ago I started trying different things to stop the ringing. I ended up with copper faceplates on all my outlets and I used Carbon Fiber peel and stick strips on the faceplates. Just a little on the sides and top. To much and the sound was choked. Removing a piece less than a 1/2 inch was the difference. You want to calm the vibrations and not take away from the music. It looks like a fun project, enjoy.
Jejaudio, Thank you for tips, I will use them.
Jejaudio , By the way, where did you buy the carbon fiber "peel and stick" ?
Does anyone think that using some ERS within the power strip to be a good idea?
I picked up the Carbon Fiber peel and stick at a auto store back in 2009, looking for something else. I don't remember which auto shop I bought it from. But I don't think it should be hard to find.
Well I made my first power strip.
This first one is only a 4 outlet.
I have in it the Synergistic Tesla SE outlet and the original Synergistic Tesla outlet version along with a Furutech IEC Inlet.
The chassis that I'm using came straight from China and is made out of very thick 1/2" aluminum with feet.
The finished 4 outlet strip was put on my Cable Cooker and will probably cook until late Sunday.
Next up is to make a 8 outlet chassis made out of the same thick Aluminum and with the Furutech IEC inlet.
But, in this strip I will be using Oyaide R1, Maestro, Audience Hospital grade cyroed and a Hubble 5362 cryoed outlets.
I have the Oyaide and Maestro outlets already cooking on my Cable Cooker. From what I have read the Oyaide takes a very long time to break in.
So, I will give that outlet about 9 days total on the cooker and then recook the whole finished product for a few more days.
ozzy, can you comment on where you got the box? feel free to email me at ryancoleman at yahoo.com. mahalo
See if the link below helps. If so scroll down the page.
There are a lot of other great items to buy from on this site.
Clickable link, takes about 5 seconds to do,very handy, see markup tags instructions.http://www.vt4c.com/shop/program/main.php?cat_id=1038&group_id=2&hit_cat=
I added a couple of pictures of the first DYI power strip to my system view.
Ozzy, how secure are the recptacles with only the single center screw holding them in the box?
They seem to be very tight. But, I did puchase some nice stainless steel screws to hold them in.
I was thinking the same thing. I have Oyaide R1 receptacles and with their iron grip, I can assure you something would snap if only the center screw was holding the outlet. The Oyaide WPC-Z receptacle cover addresses that issue in its engineering to mount the receptacle to the aluminum casework and subsequently using different screws mount the aluminum case to the outlet box. On the Oyaide WPC-Z, the center screw is only used to attach the very cool eye candy black carbon fiber faceplate that hides the mounting screws.
I think it would be simple enough to DYI drill holes in order to mount the receptacle by its end tabs.
Raks, thats another problem.
The outlet tabs need to be bent over to be placed in position inside the chassis. The outlet strip is made in such a way that the mounting of the outlet fits down into a recessed machined cut out. I purchased longer than usual stainless screws for the center screw.
I agree though that attaching the tabs to the chassis would have been my proffered mounting method.
Well, Ive got the power strips completed and I have posted some pictures of them on my system".
Because the outlet tabs need to be bent over to fit in my aluminum cases I did not place the Oyaide and Maestro in them. Those outlets were placed into single DIY outlet strips? To perhaps better understand as to what that is, please look at the pictures. Both of these "single" strips are used before my Audience aRtp2-TO power conditioners using separate dedicated circuits.
So, far the only strip still burning in is the aluminum 8 outlet strip.
So here are my impressions of the outlets in the system thus far.
The Oyaide R1 sounded a little thin and ragged when first plugged in after just a few days on the cable cooker, so I put it back on the cooker for another 9 days. Once reinstalled into my system it has blossomed into a great sounding outlet that is currently in use with my digital equipment.
The Maestro outlet was also cooked, but only for a few days. It sounded very nice right away and is being used with my Analog equipment.
Yesterday, after about 5 days of burn in, I tried the 4 outlet Aluminum strip with Synergistic Tesla SE outlets with my Pass Labs Preamp and my BSG Qol unit. Quite an improvement over what I had been using. (A cheapo 3 way tap)
As stated previously, the 8 outlet aluminum strip with all Audience Cryoed outlets is still burning in and should be ready this week end for audition.
So far I can conclude that each step has improved the sound quality, in such ways as more dyanmics, better bass quality and a general smoothness that is so very nice.
After I get the final 8 outlet burned in I will be able to move all of these units around and see how they perform on my various pieces of equipment.
A bare bones approach to a "power strip," perhaps, but being a DIY-solution in all its simplicity I find it very worthwhile:
I use non-shielded, twisted 16AWG solid-core copper installation wires(ground-wire twisted in the opposit direction) as powercables on all my components - i.e. poweramp, DAC, HTPC, and from the wall outlet to the "connection-point"(normally a power strip) where the three powercords meet. Instead of a power strip per se I simply bundle the bare positive wires, return and ground dittos in their respective screw terminal where they meet the wall outlet wires, and hereby avoid connectors in the opposit end of the components - something I believe of importance. Arguably not a very practical approach if one is in the need to completely unplug the powercords regularly, but other than that a simple and indeed sonically "sound" solution which has sat in my system for a few years now. The whole shebang is star-grounded, BTW.
If nothing else this solution is very cheap($15-20) to try out, but I wouldn't recommend it if it weren't worth it - sonically speaking. Though the PVC insulator on the wires is not ideal(the insulator material here is arguably not as important as with speakercables and IC's) the copper quality is beyond resproach, and very important is that they're solid-core wires. To me solid-core wires in general simply sound more right than the multi-stranded alternatives, providing cleaner/purer and better resolved highs, more organic and physical mids, tighter and subjectively deeper/weightier lows.
Ozzy, how would you compare the sonic signature of the Oyaide R1 vs the Maestro?
Mikey8811, I really like the Oyaide R1. It has more dynamics and in my system a more deeper sound that sounds purer.
Figures that the more expensive one is the better sounding...
Ozzy - just saw your power strips - looks great
Where did you get that case?
Some things I did with mine (if you are interested)
- I have a 15 amp pushbutton breaker for protection of the unit/devices - good fuses get expensive and may still impact sound
- I used crimped spade connectors for connection to the breaker - I don't like solder joints for power
- I used Furutech mains conductors for the internal wiring
- I wired all outlets in a star configuration to prevent cross-outlet contamination - not in parallel as you have. For this I used a termination block to accomodate all the wires.
- I also added a couple of switches to control 2 of the three outlet/pairs.
My initial cut at this was without switches and breaker, but after signficant testing I found neither the breaker or switches detracted from the sound.
The switches are good quality 20 amp SPST and the breaker is a quality 15 amp thermal model
Better quality magnetic/thermal are available for aroud $40, which may prove to be better, but since I did not nitice any sonic degredation I stopped there :-)
My power distribution box only powers source components - the amp goes into the wall outlet
My outlets are Pass and Seymour MRI grade 15 amp outlets ($25). The MRI rating means they have no ferous materials in their construction.
I found these to be superior the regular 20 amp hospital grade outlets I have tried in the past and they clamp even better - more like a vice, which eliminates the need for additional support of heavy cables. I also have these at the wall outlet.
Williewonka, I bought the cases from China, I think the site is posted early on in this thread, if not I can provide it.
"I wired all outlets in a star configuration to prevent cross-outlet contamination - not in parallel as you have. For this I used a termination block to accomodate all the wires."
I'm interested, but not quite sure how I could fit that configuration into my Case. Can you send me an email with a picture to show how you did it?
I have never tried the Pass and Seymour you mentioned, but others also have posted that they like them.
So far, I have tried Synergistic SE, Maestro, Audience and Oyaide R1 outlets.
In my opinion, the Oyaide R1's are the best and they have the grip of death on a plug.
Ozzy - I've placed a diagram on my System page...
Then Page-down to the bottom
I use that type of terminal block because you can really tighten down on the wire.
Since I used stranded wire, I also used crimp spades to connect to the block and the outlets
I started with Romex, but then changed to Furutech mains cable conductors.
How much were the Oyaide outlets where you are?
Would be interesting to try one, but I'm too tight :-)
I do believe that the best power outlets/cables/etc.. make all the difference, even to the most modestly priced components, but some of this stuff is outrageously priced - Oh Well - the next life :-)
Williewonka , Thanks for the diagram.
I used a Furetech IEC inlet which uses screw down connections. The wire that I used was 12 gauge military spec silver coated cyoed copper teflon insulated .
I bought 2 Oyaide R1's from a online Dealer. I also bought a few of the Oyaide's from a seller on Ebay or Audiogon (I can't remember exactly) who was selling both Oyaides and Maestro outlets.
The Oyaides retail for about $150 each,and they are tough too find much cheaper than that, but I managed to pay less than half.
It's worth it to try to find one for your set up and determine what you think.
I have not yet found an outlet that is totally non ferrous even 2 that claim to have zero ferrous materials. Certainly easy to swap out ferrous fasteners to brass but some parts are not easily reached nor should they be when they cost 1 to 2 hundred each and make printed claims as to their contents. Even stainless steel is magnetic when approached by an N52 magnet. I will keep looking. Tom
"It's worth it to try to find one for your set up and determine what you think"
Hey - how about if you tried the Pass and Seymour - if there was no difference you could get some of your money back by selling off the Oyaide on Agon!
Just Kidding :-)
I might give it a try some day - but I got a new arm to save up for first