a power conditioner for your "modest" system (at any price) would not be cost effective. just my humble audiophoolish fwiw....peace, warren
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I've just seen a few used Foundation Research LC-1 and LC-2 passive in-line power conditioners for sale here on Agon.
Last summer Marty DeWulf of Bound for Sound rated these the best line conditioners he was aware of and purchased them for his big rig.
That was the old version. The new versions are multiple times better than the old.
I heard that the old versions can be upgraded to the new version for a rediculously low fee.
Warren brings up a good point but I can't say that I agree with him.
Proper line conditioning is so critical toward achieving superior sonics I would consider it an absolute fundamental and foundational ingredient to any system at any stage.
And better to obtain proper line conditioning now rather than later for several reasons:
1. Regardless of where a system's sonic capabilities are currently, one is able to take more full and more complete advantage of each component's true potential. Thus potentially bringing greater listening pleasure now.
2. Should one ever consider upgrading their components over time (most do), you will also be able to take more full and more complete advantage of every new component demo'ed or purchased. And thus bringing potenially greater listening pleasure tomorrow as well as allowing one to make a more informed decision on future purchases.
3. If AC power coming into the dwelling from the pole is always inherently noisy for every listener(and it is) and if proper line conditioning can minimize the negative impacts of noisy AC (it does), then it only makes sense to buy now rather than later. That is, assuming you don't buy the wrong line conditioners. :)
Take a serious look into the Quantam ElectroClears.
I live in a high rise building and had installed 3 ElectroClears. The sonics and television picture had improved significantly. And, the improvements didn't include any tradeoffs. They cost only $50.00 each, and work extremely well in cleaning up your AC line to improve your audio and/or video system.
This was "the best" reasonably priced addition I've experienced.
I am a big believer in power conditioning--Big Time. I just can't see anything in your price range that's going to set you free. Ideally, starting with the power conditioner, will give your electronics, from the get-go, the best electric they deserve--optimally bringing out the best in your electronics. A few years ago I added an Audio Magic Stealth power conditioner to my well thought out (what I thought to be/final for a long while ) system. After (this is the nature of this audiophoolish hobby, I suppose)a couple of months, I began the upgrade tango, leading to a change of everything right down to my power cords and ICs. And what did I end the upgrade with? An Audio Magic Eclipse power conditioner. Go figure. peace, warren
Yes, there is a power conditioner that is pretty good in this price range: Blue Circle Noise Hound. $110! My friend has this & uses it for the front-end & TVC pre. He likes it a lot. His amps go into the PS Audio Ultimate Outlet. Here is the website:
I've tried the Blue Circle Noise Hounds before, and it unfortunately, had rolled off the highs noticably.
I've just installed 3 Quantam ElectroClears and they have cleaned up my AC lines quite well. It had increased the soundstage, firmed up the bass, and removed any glare associated with digital sound. There were also no tradeoffs made within the system.
I am extremely pleased with the improvements.