Hi Wallst202, IMO, this is the only way to do it. I have not heard any conditioner help with amps. Plug it straight in the wall. Your ears are telling you the truth.
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Plugging directly into the wall is great, but the problem is you're open to spikes, current fluctuations, etc. A line conditioner/power conditioner is no good for an amp because it limits dynamics and restricts air/three dimensionality. I've tried lots of stuff and the best I've found is the PS Audio Ultimate Outlet (high current model). I've found virtually no difference between the UO and plugging into the wall - the UO has the advantage of providing protection to the amp without limiting dynamics, etc. I think it's because the UO doesn't "filter" as most line/power conditioners do. It just cleans up the AC, nothing more. As soon as I plugged my amp into the UO there was a tremendous increase in soundstage, bass, air, and blackness. It sounded just like plugging into the wall. But, just make sure the UO is dedicated SOLELY to your amp. Don't plug anything else into the second socket - if you want to use a UO for your front end, get a separate one.
An interesting side note. If you're already using a line/power conditioner, DON'T plug that into a UO since I've found that doing so is very limiting to sound - guess it's too much overkill.
I think the only way to find out is to try it and listen. Down here in the lightning capital of the world, we have little choice but to use surge protectors so it becomes a matter of finding what works best.
In contrast to Brulee's blanket statement, I really think the usefulness of power conditioners is quite a complex issue and relates to how dirty your line power is, how much EMI you have in your house, etc.
I too agree with Brulee and Drr-- plug it directly into the wall. Steve McCormack specifically recommended that I plug my DNA2 Rev. A directly into the wall. If you want to spend money on improving/cleaning up your electrical supply quite a bit, consider a dedicated AC system complete with good outlets and good power cords as needed/wanted. Good Luck. Craig
Yeah, things have to have a 'USA' name brand (even if it's made in China or Mexico) for you guys to buy...
What's so wrong with Yugoslavian gear? I've been to several sites and those guys *do* know their audio. Now it's a good time to buy because they're working on establishing a name for themselves in the audio market.
De Zorel is working at this time on closing a deal with a US importer. The guys at TNT Audio went on a frenzy about the DeZorel's. Even Hans-Martin (Germany) is buying one. But, they're from Europe--what do they know???
Try visiting (www.zero-distortion.com) for a new and fresh Hi Fi internet magazine--the Psychic's there...
As for line conditioners, I own a Tice. But the De Zorel audiophile model *is* on my upgrade list.
Chang 9900 amp works great (for amps of course) without limiting dynamics & also contains integral surge protection; it has a 30 amp current rating & very low surge impedance. More than one of my amps sounds better plugged into the 9900 amp than straight into my dedicated line, this is done along with pricey upgrade AC cords inline. Stereophile recommends the Changs; they don't limit dynamics.
ok, guys, seriously, i've not tried ANYTHING that doesn't limit or degrade dynamics other than dedicated outlets. it makes no difference what the device is called. FWIW, i'm toying now with the installation of a dedicated 220 v. outlet for my amp; i'll definitely do this if i go on the upgrade path to a boulder 1060 or 2060. in sum, im of the belief that itll sound better and cost less if you schedule your amp on your household policy and NOT plug it into anything other than a dedicated, high-quality outlet. -cfb
Kelly- I think your on to something!! 220v used with 110v gear would yield twice the output power of the amp, brilliant!! So if I do that my tube amp would produce 120watts for each channel, and the tubes would double as a night light!!!
BTW I know a great dry wall guy to plug all of those '.' holes you have in your walls ;)
Correct me if I am wrong but people seem to confuse spikes, noise and thunder. Thunder or excessive spikes are easy to control as they are usually adressed by devices in parallel with the line so they short when a high voltage hits MOV and gas tubes are usualy used. I haven't heard any comments on isolation transformers these can decouple your gear from the line which is a huge benefit (any comments?) as far as the 220V/110 comment goes this is usually a diode acting as a Voltage divider not really a benefit in my opinion.
My brother is using an isolation transformer on all of his line level components to great effect. Can't really do this with a good sized amp though, as most "reasonably priced" isolation transformers are relatively low current.
As to MOV's absorbing or shunting spikes, that is partially true. You need to keep in mind that MOV's definitely DO "burn out" or lose efficiency over time. The higher the voltage surge or spike and the more often that these devices have to deal with that type of situation, the more likely they are to fail. Just because it is plugged into a "surge protector" does NOT mean that it is "fully" protected. Sean
Hi, Wallst202. I own a monster2000 and my amp[sim4070se] is best run directly into the wall. But you can improve the performance of your 2000 by 1. setting it on bricks off the floor, 2. Going to www.musicdirect.com and buying a highwire powerwrap for $24.99. Put this on your fixed power cord to the 2000 and sit back and allow yourself an evil laugh...It raises this conditioner to a higher level....at least, in my system....I'm hearing such an ease to the presentation of the music and the backgound is dead quiet. Tiny sounds hidden behind loud sounds can be way back in the mix....good listening
BishopWill I too live in the "lightning capital of the world" and during those times when things are active I just unplug the gear. No surge protector will protect from a direct hit. I remember several years back when a friends picture tube on his TV set blew out! Nothing stops the path of that much voltage! Another example of what lightning can do inimpeded was a direct hit through a window and grounding into a bed, this started a fire in an apartment building. This is no exaggeration, I had a hard time believing it myself but saw it first hand and the damage it did. Surge protectors are only good for voltage spikes in the lines.
I agree with the dedicated line advocates. Why just today I plan on installing a dedicated 20 amp circuit using 10 instead of 12 gauge attached to 2 hospital grade receptacles, these babies really grab and have greater contact surface area.