If I plug my CD player into a power conditioner ..

... is it still necessary to replace the CD player's stock power cord with an upgraded model specifically for digital application? Or are my power "issues" resolved at the conditioner (Brickwall plugged into a dedicated line), making it unecessary?
It is conceivable that the sonics of your system may be affected by digital noise that originates within the CD player, which is fed back into its power cord, resulting in RFI (radio frequency interference) radiating FROM the power cord to susceptible points elsewhere in the system. The extent to which that may be an issue will, of course, be dependent on the particular system, including its physical arrangement.

Use of an upgraded power cord that provides shielding could help that, if in fact it is an issue in your particular system. That does not necessarily mean, though, that the power cord has to cost a lot. For example, Signal Cable's Digital Reference Power Cord, which I use on my CDP (together with a BrickWall), provides a braided + foil double shield.

-- Al
QUESTION: Does your amp have a Good power cord - if yes, then switch cords and see what happens

Since you have a dedicated line - you've already ventured into the `Power Zone`

As you have probably read on Agon - for many of us, power components (cables, outlets, connectors etc) are considered as important as any other component in a system

A dedicated power line may negate the need for a power conditioner - that is unless you have a noisy digital source impacting the whole system.

My personal journey started with a Panamax power conditioner - and yes, it made a difference.

Once I installed a dedicated power line I then proceeded to verify if my power conditioner was necessary, by replacing it with a DIY Power Distribution Centre that used good quality parts and cables e.g. Pass and Seymour MRI outlets $24 each and Furutech power cable. I also replaced all my power cables. AND THEN I LISTENED :-)

In my case the DIY Power Distribution Centre out-performed the Panamax and my `environment` is quiet, so no need for any `conditioning`. Granted, I have no surge protection, but I`m planing a household unit for that anyway. It is however, protected by pushbutton breakers similar to power conditioners.

Also, all of my power cables are sheilded with a floating shield design (i.e. the shield is only connected to the mains plug) the theory being any `noise` is grounded at the socket and does not impact the component.

So - I could say YES replace it, but since I do not know everything about your sytem - I would be guessing.

The next question is - what is a good brand of power cord

I have tried two brands with great success...
- DH Labs Power Plus is very good and affordable
- Furutech are excellent and a little more expensive

If you can attach a plug to a cable then go the DIY route
- my 7ft DH Labs 12 gauge DIY cable cost around $75
- my 7ft 10 gauge Furutech DIY cable cost around $250 (for amps)
- my 7ft 14 gauge Furutech DIY cable cost around $$160 (for sources)

And yes - the furutech are better than the DH Labs, but its very very close.

There are a whole host of assembled after market cables and one that springs to mind as GOOD & AFFORDABLE is the Pangea brand - lots of positive feedback on them here on Agon

One last thing - if your outlet is just a standard 20amp from Home Depot - replace it with a Pass and Seymour MRI Grade 20 amp outlet. Your ears will thank you :-)

I have listed my favourite components, but there are many more out there - I always start with reasonably priced and work up from there. Furutech, Oyaide and othes are the creme of the crop, PS Audio a little more reasonable - your choice

One IEC and mains connector I have used and was impressed with, is available on Ebay called Vanguard - at $21 for the both of them - granted they are from China, but they are gold on copper and work very well.

Hope this helps with your decision :-)
My personal "Power Discoveries"...

What I experienced within my system was the "amount of benefit" attained when replacing a power cord was directly related to the quality of the associated component.

- My Naim amp (my most expensive active component) performed quite well and when I replaced the power cord the improvements, although quite noticeable, were more subtle - for example, the acoustics in the recording venue were more prounounced

- The improvements with my Cambridge Audio 640p phono stage and Dacmagic by comparison, where quite startling. Lots more of "everything"!
- Granted, I replaced the stock wal-wart power supplies with a much upgraded DIY version with toroid transformers that had significantly more headroom and quality power cables all round, but I think it demonstrates the benefits of what a good power supply can achieve.

But more surprisingly - I also experienced similar improvements by replacing just the power cord on my Apple TV2.

Looking back on my findings and delving a little into quality component construction, the one commonality is a really good power supply transformer, which contributes significantly to their performance.

So, will quality components benefit as much by replacing the Stock power cord?

I believe that all components perform to their peek ability when the "power corridor" is of optimum quality

Unfortunately, like anything else in this "hobby", higher quality components will require higher quality power cords in order to achieve "the best" results. That applies power condditioners also.

BUT, putting a set of Ferrari wheels on an army jeep won't get you 0-60 mph in 3.5 seconds - so choose wisely :-)

If you would like to pursue a "phased approach" to upgrading your "power corridor"...

- I would start at the breaker panel and upgrade from there with a dedicated line and quality outlet - if you can't replace the line - at least replace the outlet.

- for system components - I would start with the power cords of the sources and work towards the pre-amp and then the amp.

NOTE: This is just a suggestion and not a rule :-)

Upgrading your "power corridor" is just one facet of a system's cabling, the "other pieces of wire" in your system are just as important :-)

My "Other Pieces of Wire" are
- Silver Litz Tonearm loom direct to phono stage & Eichman Silver Bullet RCA's
- Stager Silver Solids interconnects
- DH Labs Silver Sonic TOSLINK optical cable - wire: NO - Interconnect: YES!
- Van den Hul Van den Hul D-352 HYBRID Speaker Cable

None of my wires are the very best money can buy, but I feel they do provide me the best "Bang For My Buck"

Its a funny old hobby - ya start just by listening to some music - and then... :-)