Isolation Transformer or Power Regenerator

How are they different? Is one better than the other?

Let’s first just I assume that I have bad power. I have a Topaz 1.8 (.9 balanced) that I put my McCormack DNA-1 Deluxe (SMcAudio silver upgrade) on recently and the difference in sound was night and day. Was expecting subtle changes but not dramatic changes. The amp right out of the wall did not sound very good at all, which just did not make sense…it’s a good amp. Putting the iso in line explained why. So, my feeling is I need to get fresh power to my entire system. The Topaz in balanced form may have just enough headroom to squeek by (according to Steve McCormack) with just the amp on it. More would be better.

So, should I get a higher power iso (Topaz, Oneac) for the amp and using the existing one iso on the other gear? If so, does it matter if it is a IE-core or Torroid? Some say EIs let less noise through, some say a good Torriod will equal EI in terms of noise reduction and create less noise (EMI) than an IE. Any final verdicts on this?

Or would it make more sense to get a (Exact Power, PS Audio Power Plant Premier) power regenerator and put the whole system on it. Would any of these have enough headroom to cover my whole system?

I already have a dedicated 20A line to this system. Looking for bang-for-buck solution.

My System:

TADAC Tube Pre/DAC = 25W According to Paul at TAD)
Apple TV = 20W (according to Apple)
DIP (Original) = 10W (according to back panel)
Tivo HD = 40W (according to tivocommunity)
Video Switcher = (don't know but could it be much?)
TV = 240W (according to manual)
McCormack DNA-1 Deluxe = 400 (according to SmCAudio)
Paradigm PS1000 powered (250W/750W peak) Subwoofer = I can’t find this, any ideas? Let’s say 375

TOTAL = 1110W
I use a PS Audio P300 (re generator) on a dedicated branch circuit for my sources and pre.
My Amps (600 watts total constant) are connected to a Cinepro 20 Balanced (transformer) supply on a dedicated branch circuit. (2.5 Kw rated)
My Sub225's are connected to a dedicated branch circuit with parallel RFI/EMI filters connected to it. (straight power)
Regeneration for source and pre.
Balanced transformer for main amps.
Straight power for high load subs.
Dedicated branch circuits off of the same line for each.
You do not want to introduce any type of "conditioning" that might restrict current delivery to the amp loads that can constrict dynamics.
A single PS Audio Premier (or 1000) would not have enough 'reasonable' available power to run your whole system.
Also: the PS Audio regenerator is basically a single frequency 60hz amplifier. Thus it uses more than twice the power it generates. So if your electric bill is $25 a month just for your system, it will go up to $55 just for your system. this is a down side of regeneration no ads mention.
I own a PS Audio Premier and the fan turns on just for my Plasma. With a lot running, it will be a small heater, with a noticable fan noise.
So if you wanted a PS Audio to run everything, you should get two of them. Also be aware they make the A/C sinewave better, but still not perfect. they still have a small residual distortion. one percent or so.
For a isolation transformer, you get better efficiency. and can still get the 60v/60v technical power output (balanced power)
the difference of E trans vs toriod?? I do not know.
i own a Furman REF 20i I bought used here for $1,400., a Monster 7000SS conditioners also. (both have toroids)
So i am big on conditioning. (And have a PS Audio P600 used, on the way, for it's unusual ability to run up to 120hz... a feature I intend to play with)
Some little company (I lost the site) makes a wall mounted toroid with balanced out. (It was a ivory metal round case with a short cord to the wall, and an outlet, it mounted on the wall next to the outlet) priced like $100. to $300. i wish i kept the link.
I used to use an Adcom 315 just for the Forte 4a amp I used to own (sold the amp AND the conditioner to the same person to use together). That worked well. You really do NOT want to have the amp strain to get enough power. so you would want to conditioner with the amp on it to be only at 50% max of capacity.
I use a separate conditioner (monster) for digital, and the Furman for analog, including amp.
Power cords still add to the mix. and i have just recently discovered quartz crystals to help clean up the A/C. Subtle but the icing on the cake, once you have a cake you want.
Anyway. good luck
stop fooling around with 'stand-alone' power iso or re-gen systems. instead; do both at a much more effective level (both in performance and cost) with a 'whole system' isolation transformer.

get an Equi=tech Wall Panel System and enjoy the lowest possible noise floor and the ultimate in dynamics. get that 'late night' performance all the time. be done with the power conditioner merry-go-round.

i have the 10KVa (10WQ) version. it weighs 380 pounds and is mounted on (in) a wall in the hallway outside my dedicated room. it replaced the dedicated electrical panel for my system. i run 13 circuits off the Equi-tech.

it makes all other power conditioners/isolation transformers look like toys.

depending on the model, including installation by a commercial electrician it will run you $10k to $15k. but start adding up all those stand alone boxes and then upgrading to the latest and greatest 'power conditioners' every few years and the Equi-tech likely will save you money. that's not even considering that every piece of gear you have will get an upgrade with better power.

i have friends who actually saved money installing an Equi-tech by selling their 'collection' of expensive power conditioners.

the Equi-tech also takes protection to a whole new level.
Main panel to two 5 KVA Xetreme isolation transformers to sub-panel that feeds three major audio systems. Two used isolation transformers for $800. Works very well. Just a way to save some bucks. Not for everyone.
note of caution. if you are dealing with installing an isolation transformer into your home make sure you follow local code requirements.....or your home owners insurance won't cover you in a fire related to power.

the Equi=tech is fully UL rated and is up to code.

some 'esoteric' wall panels are not code and not UL rated. when you install an isolation transformer the limiting part is the quality of the panel and the breakers.
The device Elizabeth refers to maybe the Goertz balanced power outlet. Interesting idea. I have no exprience with it.
does the Equi=Tech meet Canadian code standards as well?
Well, if bang-for- your-buck is where your headed, then you should consider,and contact Consolidated Power Co. in Troy, Mi. as they manufacture many of the lines that are advertized as audio grade products, and although Equitech is considered and oriented as an audiophile, studio product, their pricing is also reflective of this, and they seem short on specs to back up their product. Most of these companies have excellent product,but have different ways of achieving their end result. Never the less, a full blown dedicated power supply should always be ones STARTING point, to gain the most from ones system.
Mike lavigne`s solution although excellent is at the extreme in terms of scale and cost. Many music lovers will find this appraoch unaffordable,it may make smaller units "look" like toys but they`ll work well for many at a reasonable cost. I use a BPT model BP 3.5 Signature Plus with a 2KW rated balabced transformer with 10 outlets. My entire system is plugged in and the overall sonic performance is fanstastic in every way. This unit retails for about 3500.00 and is worth it. The use of balanced AC power is a wonderful way to go.
THANK YOU Tgrisham!! yes, i saw these and tagged the site, then lost it and tried via Google and just never could find it again. Great.
Wow, more confused than ever. The Power Plant Premiere I was looking at is actually a newer unit that is 1500 watts and is reportedly much more efficient, quiet and cooler than the older units (300, 600, 1000, 1200). Is this still not enough for my system?

I'd be fine going the isolation transformer route. But does regeneration achieve anything that isolation does not?
Not going to argue with success. Go bigger. However, might be more hum and certainly more power draw.
does the Equi=Tech meet Canadian code standards as well?

typically Canadian power grid issues mirror US standards so it's likely ok. but i would e-mail Equi=tech about it.
Thanks for the link. So would a 5kva wired balanced (2.5 kva) be enough to run my entire system from the electrical panel? My system at around 1200 Watts would come in at less than half the rated output of the ISO (2500 Watts).
2.5 KVA / 120V = 20.8A

What a coincidink!
Ngjockey, Pardon my ignorance, but I am assuming that is a good thing? A 2.5 kva/120v iso would equal 20.8 amps, the size of the breaker on that line. Therefore, if all my equipment on that line has never caused the breaker to pop, the 2.5 KVA iso should be enough for the whole system, correct?
I was there for the installation of an Equi=Tech 10.5WQ, and personally I wasn’t too impressed. It didn’t do any more than the filtration system he had (RSA Dmitri and flagship Jena Labs PCs) and sold—and it cost tons more. Neither was my friend, who spent big money on it, that impressed. He thought it was better by a little bit, but I think he was expecting a lot more. So, having first-hand experience with Equi=Tech, I’m not sold. YMMV.
Equitech is a LOT of money for something once installed, it is in there and no resale value at all. At least with stand alone power conditioners and regenerators you CAN resell them. And if you buy used, you really don't lose a lot of money.
Various heavy duty models are available.
My Furman REF20i is good, the Torus (associated with Bryston of Canada) and others who make big A/C power conditioners. The new PSAudio 1000 may be capable of supporting your stuff. Like I mentioned, I use several different models of power conditioning, and think they are great.
I never saw an ad for a buy my Equitech, removed from panel...
check out pure power latest regenerator, the 3000 model.
can handle 2000 watt continiously and peaks of 3000 watt afaik. should be sufficient for your system.
Yes, that's a good thing. 20 in, 20 out. You're 900VA should have a 7.5A fuse protecting it from overload.

Always recommended at least double the capacity on the iso as the maximum draw. Haven't I said that before? Particularly for class AB amps.

Now then... code (as mentioned by Jea48 in your previous thread)... That's tricky with DIY setups where the transformer is wired in any way not implicitly intended. It's been done hundreds, maybe thousands, of times but it's different from UL approved commercial products. If the local authority follows NEC to the letter, "balanced AC" is not allowed in residential applications. Minimum compliance would be GFCI outlets (preferably orange) and labeled "Warning Technical Power". I might also suggest "Not for lighting". There is also a perceptual leap between plug-ins and hard-wired because the nearby dedicated transformer or enclosure is a warning in itself. Lak's setup is fine because it's not balanced. Personally, I think it can be done responsibly but I'm not "the authority having jurisdiction".

Canadian CSA code agrees with 99% of all UL certifications but there is no provision for "balanced AC" Not exactly a loophole since it's pretty specific about single-phase wiring.

IOW: You're on your own there, bud. Risk/cost/reward... your decision.

In my business, I see boilers all the time that aren't strictly code compliant for their BTU's (million+) but that's fine, as long as they're approved and certified. Install incorrectly or make one little change and guess who's ash is on the line.

To those reading this and questioning balanced AC from a standard isolation transformer, notice the 240/120 specification.
For example...
I have the Equi=Tech 10kva & have found it to be better than anything I have used to date.

I have tried & used many of the stand alone units as well as some of the power regeneration. The results with the Equi=tech's unit is way above the rest. IMHO....of course.
Some of the stand alone units work very well & are worthy of consideration depending on your budget & needs.

Maybe one of the unimpressive results stated above is due to lack of burn in time. I would say with all the new wiring, transformer, & outlets it does take some time to settle in for the true evaluation of the units. In my situation & system I have to agree with Mike Lavigne, the equi=tech was the way to go. Mine has been in service for 3+ years & I could not be more pleased with the results.

You do not have to buy the mack daddy Equi=tech unit from them to get great results. Call & talk with them, they are very knowledgeable & helpful to guide you. They have been doing this for many years & have a great reputation in the industry.

There are many ways to go about cleaning up your power & it's very hard to say what works the best. Many factors play into the equation, where you live & the power grid around you is a factor. Doing something to help YOUR power grid is always the first & proper step to take in achieving good sound quality for your room & system.

Products are always improving, so who's to say what is best.
Do your homework & make a educated decision on what works best for you & your budget.
Word of caution: On some of the stand alone units & even other manufacturers of isolation transformers, beware of them adding or taking away (as per) adding their sonic signature on the sound. There are tonal differences to many of these units.

Some add filter capacitors and regulators within the component's power supply that change the sound.