I'd bite the bullet and replace those lights: you'll have to eventually, no?, or deal with that black presumably carcinogenic crap that leaks out of all the ballasts as they wear out.
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I tried plugging the equipment into a Furman DST-8. No improvement.
Right. Only one thing will work: ditch the lights. The ballast tends to go bad over time and once this happens there really is nothing to do but replace. You can try LEDs and maybe luck out. But usually it is the ballast and game over.